SPINNING Co Ltd 3773
These men and ladies and their foreman dressed in a white coat worked at the Braid Water Spinning Co. Ltd. at Ballymena in 1939 when Linen was a booming industry.
They were from the Preparing room and the reason they were having their photograph was that they had hit their target and usually got a bonus.
Now Tow Linen - unbleached was because the Tow were shorter flax fibres as separated from the long fibres before the spinning process. These shorter fibres make a lovely
linen yarn that was a bit more rustic in nature than the line linen made from the longer fibers. You will often find mention of tow being used to clean gun barrels and for fire
lighting. Tow does make a reasonable kindling and when you had finished using some for cleaning a gun several times, You would put it in a fire-bag for fire lighting use.
Tow is the short fibres left over after combing or "Hackling" the longer flax fibres called ""Line"". It can be used as above, or it can be used to make tow cloth. Tow cloth was a "
cheaper material which was used for making work clothes, work frocks were often made from tow. A tow rag one would assume is the material from worn out old tow cloth
clothing and is no longer any use for anything but to be used as a cleaning rag or perhaps for making tinder for flint and steel fire lighting.
I guess the term tow ragbeing used for a person who is not up
SPINNING Co Ltd 3776
It's the 15th November 1945 and these three ladies are spreading out the tow These workers are spreading tow, some of the finer fibres separated from the straw in the heckling process, where straw is removed from the fibres so it can go into the machines to be turned into a hard wearing Liinen and they are doing this at Braid Water Spinning Co. Ltd. Factory which sadly is now a large shopping area. Did you know that Linen is one of the strongest materials in the world and was used to cover planes in the First and Second World Wars. If you have leak stick a piece of linen in it,the linen will swell and stop the leak.
You can buy the Irish Linen at Merchant-and-Makers-Irish-Linen-31-Chapel-Lane-Ballymena.