Whitehall Ledger 

Harrison 7th-8th Graders Learn Tanning at River Camp


November 17, 2021

Photo courtesy TOM ELPEL

TRICKS OF THE TRADE: River Camp instructors Evan Seitz and Jesse Leonard are shown here teaching Harrison students how to scrape and dress a hide in Cardwell.

On Monday, November 15 the seventh and eighth grade students of Mrs. Ehlers' Harrison School class made their way to River Camp in Cardwell to learn the traditional skills of skinning, graining, and prepping animal hides for tanning/dressing.

"I don't call it tanning, because we aren't using tannic acid," Instructor Barnes explained to the students. "Really what we are doing is "dressing" the animal in preparation for a lecithin treatment." He explained that very rarely does he now use brains to tan the hides brought to him. Instead, he uses lecithin, a mixture of fats essential to cells...

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