Preheat oven to 350°F.
Grease and flour a 9"-by-5"-by-3" loaf pan
Dissolve baking soda in milk.
Mix sugar and molasses, add milk and soda mixture. Then add 2 cups sifted flour.
Add chopped dates or raisins, if you like them.
Pour into a 9"-by-5"-by-3" loaf pan and bake at 350°F. for about one hour.