I've been cleaning up the residence basement and was wondering what kind of paint had been applied to the walls. It is flat, white, thick and textured with sand in a few locations. So I looked in the old "Household Hints and Discoveries" book from 1909 and found this recipe for cellar paint;
Slake enough lime for a pailful of whitewash. Mix half a pint of flour with cold water to a smooth paste, thin with scalding water, and boil until it thickens. Pour this boiling hot onto the whitewash and stir vigorously.
Or use boiled rice strained through cheese cloth. Add a teacupful of the strained rice to a pailful of slaked lime. Cover cellar walls twice a year or oftener with whitewash, to which add copperas at the rate of 2 pounds to a gallon. Apply whitewash freely, removing all shelves, etc., so as to cover the entire surface of the walls.
So, what do you think I did?
That's right. I made me a batch and went at it. (Without the iron sulphate of course.) In fact I have made two batches. It works really well. It goes on like a gooey paste and dries to a brilliant white. It covers stains pretty good too. I don't know about painting my basement twice a year since this is the first time I've done it in 14 years. One more thing, I can't tell if I like the whole wheat or bleached all purpose flour better ...