Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Textiles and Clothing


Wool blankets are important to the economy of the state since South Dakota is one of ten leading states in wool production. Wool’s greatest competitor, synthetic fibers, has increased in production from 85.2 million pounds in 1949 to 470.5 million pounds in 1958, an increase of approximately 550 percent. This competition by synthetic fibers has resulted in the wool industry undertaking intensive re-search to develop finishes that would improve the quality of wool products. Results of South Dakota and Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Stations research indicated that wool blankets ranked highest of all fiber types in warmth qualities, however, shrinkage in laundering was a limitation. Since completion of that study blankets treated to prevent shrinkage or dimensional change have become available on the market. It was decided by workers at the South Dakota and Minnesota Agricultural Experiment stations to continue research on blankets using all wool blankets with the new shrink-resistant finishes. Blankets purchased for the study included two blankets labeled machine washable and six with shrink-resistant finishes, two of which had antibacterial treatments. Using these blankets, it was the purpose of this investigation to compare shrink-resistant finishes and their effectiveness on wool blankets after repeated launderings; and to determine effectiveness of antibacterial finishes on wool blankets after repeated launderings.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Textile fibers
Textile research


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University