General view of three employees at work in the Bureau of Chemistry's Naval Stores Investigation Laboratory, a division of the Leather and Paper Laboratory. Assorted laboratory glassware and apparatus, as well as notices concerning rosin and turpentine, are visible in the photograph. Part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Naval Stores Laboratory researched agricultural products like pine sap that were utilized to manufacture soap, paint, varnish, and other industrial products.
The Bureau of Chemistry was established in 1901 through Congressional appropriations as a successor to the U.S.D.A. Division of Chemistry and significantly built upon the work of its predecessor, which researched the adulteration and misbranding of food and drugs on the American market. The 1906 Food and Drug Act notably increased the Bureau’s regulatory powers and led to the establishment of laboratories for testing the purity and composition of foods and drugs. In 1927, the Bureau of Chemistry effectively disbanded when its powers were reorganized under a new U.S.D.A. body, the Food, Drug, and Insecticide Organization (later the Food and Drug Administration).
United States. Food and Drug Administration. “Naval Stores Investigation Laboratory,” n.d. USDA Bureau of Chemistry Photograph Collection, Box 1. Science History Institute. Philadelphia. https://digital.sciencehistory.org/works/5425kb124.
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