By J. Mac Culloch, M.D. F.L.S.
Chemist to the Ordnance, and Lecturer on Chemistry at the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich.
IT is well known that when wood and other vegetable substances are submitted to destructive distillation, there is produced, among other matters, a black dense fluid resembling molasses or common tar. My connection with the Ordnance powder-mills having compelled me to examine some of the properties of this substance, which is obtained in large quantities in the process of making charcoal, I was induced to extend my enquiries, in consequence of finding that the nature of the compound has not hitherto been understood.