Information about: Salt

Index | Salt

Note: Information is dated. Do not rely on it.

Salt, Common. A substance in common use as a seasoner and preserver of food from the earliest ages. It exists in immense quantities dissolved in sea water, also in the waters of salt springs, and in solid deposits, sometimes on the surface, sometimes at greater or less depths, in almost every geological series. Rock salt, that is, salt in the crystalline or solid form, is found in great abundance in England. It is also found in abundance in nearly every country of Europe. The supply in other continents is equally great. The basin of the Indus and other parts of India possess extensive salt plains. In China deep salt wells abound. The Sahara and central and southern Africa afford inexhaustible supplies. Most of the South American republics, the West Indies, and the United States also have large natural supplies. Salt manufactured from sea water is produced extensively along the Mediterranean and Atlantic seaboards of Europe as well as in America. It is chiefly made by natural drying in shallow reservoirs, but also by boiling. Salt from sea water is usually known as bay salt. Most salt, however, is produced from rock salt or from brine springs, the latter being due to the melting of rock salt by water. The salt mines of Wieliczka in Galicia were worked in the twelfth century, and are the most celebrated in the world. The chief manufacturing centers in England are in Cheshire and Worcestershire. The salt deposits of the United States extend widely through the geological strata. The most important salt yielding states are Michigan and New York, whose deposits are of remarkable richness. The wells, which are in the vicinity of Saginaw bay, seem inexhaustible in supply. Some are over 1,900 feet in depth. In New York the salt deposit occurs in the Salina formation, at a depth ranging from 600 to more than 2,000 feet. The rock-salt bed in places is 250 feet thick and is known to underlie a district 200 miles long with a probable average width of 25 to 30 miles. In Louisiana, on Petit Anse and Avery islands, is an immense deposit of rock salt of unusual purity. On Virgin river, Nevada, there is a bed of rock salt, extending as a bluff along the river for over twenty-five miles: more than sixty per cent of the cliff is salt. of great purity.