M.lsnard, the French Consul at Boston, gives the following account of the manufacture of Beet Root Sugar, in a letter to the editor of" L'lnvention " : " In 1810 I conceived the project ot establishing, at Paris, a factory for making Marseilles soap, that is, a composition of olive oil and soda. Before undertaking it, however, I determined to pursue a course of special chemistry in its application to soap-making, and for this purpose 1 cultivated the acquaintance of M. Baruel, who was employed in the Laboratory of the Ecole de Medicine at Paris. Having been shown by this latter some beet-root sugar, and knowing the importance attached to the manufacture of a home- produced article by the government, I made experiments on a larger scale in conjunction with M. Baruel, and finding that it could be manufactured for between 20 and 24 sous per pound, I directed a memoir to the government, which was published in the "Moniteur" of March, 1811. After , several interviews with the Minister, which were unsuccessful, a sample of the sugai was presented to Napoleon by M. Chapta), who donated 120,000 francs for establishing the manufacture, observing, with regard to a loan ot that sum which had been requested for the purpose, "I do not lend, but give it." Subsequently, by the imperial decree of March 25th, 1811, M. Baruel and myself were nominally gratified with the necessary sums for the formation of two experimental schools, and shortly after we were credited by the Minister of the Interior for the sum of 10,000 francs, M. Baruel on the Prelect of the De partment du Nord, and myself on the Prefect of the Bas Rhin. Not being satisfied with the conduct of the Prefect, nor the quality and price of the beet-root, I obtained permission to remove my establishment to Pont-a-Mous- son, Department de la Meurthe, where I formed a partnership with two rich capitalists. After having erected a building capable-of producing from 1500 to 1800 pounds of sugar, I demanded of the Prefect of the Bas Rhin the 30,000 francs remaining due. But we were on the eve of 1814, and this Prefect had other things to occupy him besides sugar. Stras burgh was shortly after blockaded, and Pont- a-Mousson attacked by the Cossacks ; our work was stopped, $ve-sixths of our beetroot rotted, and our enterprise was ruined. Being occupied in the process of saccharifica- tion by means of sulphuric acid for applying it to distilling from potatoes, I was engaged by a wealthy individual in the United States to come over and erect a vast establishment of this kind. On my return to France, in 1837, I petitioned the government for compensation for the 30,000 francs yet due to me, but was refused, although its justice was not contested ; I was, however, named to the office of Consul at Boston, on the re-establishment of a Consulate at that place, where I had for five years previously exercised the duties of Vice Consul.
This article was originally published with the title "Beet Root Sugar" in Scientific American 8, 13, 99 (December 1852)