Shel, I thought of you today when looking thru "The Picayune Creole Cook Book", more specifically, in the soup section.
Thought this might help:
1 Lb of bones per Qt of Water
Put bones in cold water, without salt, and heat slowly. The pot must be covered, and no salt must be added until the meat is thoroughly cooked as the addition of salt tends to harden the fibers of the meat and prevents the free flow of the juices. At no stage of this process must the soup be allowed to boil fast as boiling fast will cause cloudiness. If the bone has been fractured every inch of its length, the soup will be all the stronger and more nutritious. The soup should be slowly cooked 4-5 hours before the vegetables added. Do not allow the soup to cease boiling once boiling has begun and never add water after the ingredients are once put together and begin to boil. The vegetables used should include pieces of cabbage, a turnip or two, carrots, parsley, celery and onion (garlic, cloves, thyme, bay leaf and allspice are optional). Boil slowly for another hour or so. For additional color, they suggest putting a whole onion (skins and all) into the coals and when it browns, dust it off and throw it into the soup.
They suggest straining the soup thru a towel to drip, remembering never to squeeze the bag. :)