In early days, dyers depended almost entirely upon the vegetable kingdom as the source of their supply of coloring materials, the most important exceptions being sepia from a species of cuttle fish and Tyrian purple from the Murex. Feral plants were the chief reliance but the uncertainty of obtaining a sufficient amount of the raw material, as well as the inferior quality of much of that brought to the market together with the development of the science of organic chemistry led to the replacing of natural dyes with synthetic or artificial dyes.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1912 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Kellogg, Harriette S.
"Native Dye-Plants and Tan-Plants of Iowa, with Notes on a Few Other Species,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 19(1), 113-128.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol19/iss1/19