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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/411

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Popular Science Monthly

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���The picture at the left shows the boys skinning a muskrat. The skin must be removed whole, without cutting. At the right the boys are stretching and tacking two new skins to the boards

��is generally alive. Often, though, the rising tide has drowned him. But if he is alive, he is speedily dispatched by a blow on the head from a stick in the hands of one of the young trappers. This blow must be delivered in a certain spot, so as to kill the rat quickly, and without soiling or in any way injuring the fur.

When the day's bag has been collected, It is brought home and skinned. Skinning a muskrat requires skill. When the rats have been skinned, the pelts are drawn (inside out) over a pointed board or stretcher. They are then stored in a barn or other place that is dry and well-ventil- ated by a current of air. At the end of two weeks the skins are sufficiently dried. They are then laid aside. When a sufficient number of pelts have been collected, Freet brings them over to the fur market on West 13th Street, New York city, where he receives forty-five cents each for them.

The season opens on November ist, and closes on April ist. As the season gets older, the skins become more valuable, until, toward the end of the season, they are worth seventy-five cents each.

Just prior to the Christmas holidays, these boys had collected and sold forty-

��eight pelts. With the money resulting from the sale of these pelts, they treated them- selves to a few things they needed and bought Christmas presents. Then they returned to Hackensack to renew the cam- paign and to collect more skins, for which they will purchase what they WcUit for the summer.

The Latest Kind of Artificial Feet Are Made of Paper Pulp

IN spite of the fact that there Is little fiction in the stories of the soaring price of paper, the uses to which this product is being put are constantly increasing in number. We have paper furniture, paper cloth, paper silks and clothes, and even paper legs.

Now Dr. Svindt, of Denmark, who is responsible for the artificial leg of papier m^ch6, has brought forward a paper foot, intended to meet the needs of the crippled soldiers. These feet are said to be strong enough to withstand ordinary usage, and they have the added advantage of being cheap. A model of the foot is made of wire gauze, and upon this is poured a specially prepared pulp which entirely fills the interstices of the wire gauze.

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