This is Blair's take. The cookies remind me of Mrs Brownson's when I was very young.

The instructions are my own...There really never were any but creaming the sugar and lard and refrigerating it. Temperature range was what she gave me, but 350F should do.

Maudie Belle’s Gingerbread Cookies
c sugar                                 c Briar Rabbit Molasses
c lard                                                3 c plain flour
1 t soda                                t salt
c buttermilk                          3 heaping t ginger
2 t cinnamon                            t cloves
Cream sugar and lard.  Mix in molasses. In a separate bowl, combine and wisk all dry ingredients. Add dry ingredients and buttermilk to lard/sugar mixture alternately. Mixture will be thick and tough to mix. Scrape bowl once or twice during mixing taking care to incorporate any dry ingredients at the bottom or around sides. You may have to knead a bit by hand if too tough to mix in order to ensure all ingredients are well incorporated. Handles better if refrigerated.  Roll out and cut w/ cutters. Bake 10 minutes w/aluminum foil on cookie sheets 325-375 degrees.