That is a great list there.
My alltime fave book regarding tobacco is Sublime Tobacco
It is a joy to read.
The Ehwa book is the most helpful tutorial style book,
For anyone interested in the historical aspects on the UK tobacco trade, reading the following two books gives much, almost too
much, interesting information:
WD & HO Wills and the Development of the UK Tobacco Industry, 1786-1965
by B. W. E. Alford
Trust in Tobacco
by Maurice Corina
I will try to add here in this thread, which is a wonderful idea by the way, a few reviews in the proper sense --- eager to review Kendal Brown
which I'll try to do at some point this weekend, in the meantime, here's something bookish that I scribbled on about previously...
Upon the Distinction Between the Ashes of Various Tobaccos
Sherlock Holmes said:
"I have been guilty of several monographs. They are all upon technical
subjects. Here, for example, is one "Upon the Distinction between the
Ashes of the Various Tobaccos". In it I enumerate a hundred and forty
forms of cigar, cigarette, and pipe tobacco, with coloured plates
illustrating the difference in the ash. It is a point which is continually
turning up in criminal trials, and which is sometimes of supreme
importance as a clue. If you can say definitely, for example, that some
murder had been done by a man who was smoking an Indian lunkah, it
obviously narrows your field of search. To the trained eye there is as
much difference between the black ash of a Trichinopoly and the white
fluff of bird's-eye as there is between a cabbage and a potato."
Ian Henry Publications
This numbered limited edition is of 300 copies is of the famous monograph written by the eminent consulting detective, re-discovered and newly edited by Nino Cirone, with contemporary illustrations by Paget, Partridge, et al – but there are a few anomalies to disturb Sherlockians, not least that some stories that had not yet been written by John Watson are somehow included! Puzzle your way through the Canon.
Although the original msrp was only £15.99, current available copies fluctuate wildly in price, some astronomically so, but with patience you can find a copy for a reasonable sum.
just checked Abebooks to see what was on offer --- 3 available copies with one edition having a truly insane asking price:
https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Search ... &kn=&isbn=
An interesting sidenote:
David A. Randall helped penning this catalogue in 1937:
http://www.indiana.edu/~liblilly/holmes ... iana.shtml
David A. Randall, then manager of the rare-books department of Scribner’s Book Store on Fifth Avenue in New York, later the head of the Lilly Library at Indiana University, Bloomington. Randall was a Baker Street Irregular himself.
For this sale, he and Starrett created the memorable Catalogue of Original Manuscripts, and First and Other Important Editions of the Tales of Sherlock Holmes, as Written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Together with Important Biographies, Pastiches, Articles, Etc., and a Few Extraordinary Association and Unique Items, which contains a strong streak of whimsy.
Alongside legitimate entries for items in Starrett’s collection are convincingly written but entirely fanciful ones, for items such as monographs by Sherlock Holmes that exist only in Dr. Watson’s tales — such as Upon the Distinction between the Ashes of the Various Tobaccos, in which, said Holmes in the novel The Sign of Four, “I enumerate a hundred and forty forms of cigar, cigarette, and pipe tobacco, with coloured plates illustrating the difference in the ash.”
http://www.bsiarchivalhistory.org/BSI_A ... 0Shelf.pdf
I have enjoyed this book very much.
If you are interested in Sherlockiana and can find a copy for a reasonable price, it is well worth getting.
I was so taken with the descriptions that I tried a few with my own hand in imitation of the style and had great fun in so doing.
Crom Dullahan & Co. - Tathagach Bar
Founded at Dungarvan, Ireland, in 1832, this company specialises in hard tobaccos and Dullahan's Tathagach Bar is one of the firms most popular offerings.It is best known for robust strength, yet smooth mildness, coupled with an aromatic scent unlike any other.
Lime water is used in the boilers for the massive steaming presses, which add traces of a tart citric flavour note.
The engines are fueled by bog-wood , saturating the entire atmosphere, and a peaty creosote smokiness seeps into the leaf,
adding even further undertones to its odoriferous complexity.
It then undergoes repeated liquid immersions, in various steeps, to acquire its unique perfumery -
most notably, the strange pharmacopoeiac elixir contains valerian root , decoction of figs, cascarilla bark extract, and orris oil.
Essence of ambergris is added to prolong the intensity of bouquet.
Tathagach Bar has a loyal following with workingmen, but is of a price not easily afforded by unskilled labourers,
finding most favour amongst blacksmiths, coal heavers, railway workmen, farmers scattered across the countryside,
and rather oddly, a fair number of cantankerous old judges.
The ash is a peppered dark grey, with the inky flecks having a shardlike character.
Density is remarkable. So heavy are the particles of ash that when placed in water, they will actually sink.
Very few other ashes exhibit this characteristic.
Hardened and compact dottles are also often found alongside.
~ ~ ~
R. Rory & Sons - Inverness Twist
Robert Rory's Inverness Twist is especially prized in the North and is extremely suitable for the sporting outdoorsman; it is especially the tobacco of choice amongst deerstalkers as it is said that the aroma is attractive to deer and may actually lure the beasts into close proximity.
Using as the main filler a strong dark Kentuckian, and smaller scrap portions of Varinas from Venezuela;
as the cover is used a rich deep ruddy Virginia to wrap the outer layer.
The manufacture is time-consuming and requires much dexterity.
One man and two boys are necessary to produce it, a bench several yards in length is made use of, with a spinning wheel at one end, turned by one of the boys. The other boy arranges a number of damp leaves, with the stalks removed, end to end upon the bench, taking care to lay them smooth and open; and the man immediately follows him, and rolls up the leaves into the form of a cord by a peculiar motion of his hand. As fast as this is done, the finished tail is wound upon the spinning-wheel. It is transferred from the spinning-wheel, by the action of machinery, to a frame connected with it.
Subsequently, it is wound or twisted up into a hard close coil, and darkened by immersion into a spirited olive oil which has been infused with various herbs and roots that are said to be Druidic.
The long coiled rolls are then slowly roasted upon heated slabs.
When this entire meticulous process is finished, the twists appear blackened, as if they had been dipped into an inkwell.
The ash is noteworthy as it appears coal black with a gleaming sheen; and when rubbed between the fingers, there is a noticeable oiliness. There remains a subtle trace of its distinct odour. Density is on the heavy side, with a granite-like inner core. The texture is uniformly smooth and firm with no anomalies.
~ ~ ~
Captain Yorke of Whitechapel - Old Bardo Black Shag
A very strong dark shag as the sort sailors and fishermen seem to prefer, although it has gained wide acceptance amongst the general working-class as well, a universal soother as it were. It is one of the oldest recipes by the renowned Captain Yorke and continues to be made true to the original formula and preparation by his inheritors, Old Bardo Black Shag, along with the equally celebrated Fantasma Flake, enjoy an immense popularity and both are distributed far and wide across the country.
Old Bardo has a signature scent owing to civet musk being added liberally as a dressing agent, and the aroma is further enhanced by the fact that during the cure it is laid below a bed of bronzing bracken, mottled bramble and moss, which contribute a subtle vegetative quality of a woodsy character.
It is deceptively stout in the sense that it is so smooth and mild smoking, yet carries a very heavy weight of strong stampeding elephants if puffed too vigourously in frantic fashion.
It is, of course, raven black of colour, and quite crisp to the touch.
The ash, however, is nearly white, being a very pale shade of grey, tending to be quite fluffy and delicate - indeed, the slightest touch will obliterate it into nothingness. The exotic fragrance is lost in the ash, yet its distinctive tendency toward complete disintegration remains a telling clue.