Preheat oven to 325°F. Have ready two parchment lined baking sheets.
In a large bowl whisk together flour, salt, baking soda and spices.
In a mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together softened butter, shortening, and 1 1/2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in molasses, then beat in the egg.
Gradually add flour mixture and stir until blended.
In a small shallow bowl put remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Form dough into 2-inch balls (for large cookies) or use a medium cookie scoop (about 2 tablespoons) to form smaller balls.
Roll in sugar. On baking sheets arrange balls about 4 inches apart (closer if making the smaller cookies) and flatten slightly with bottom of a glass dipped in sugar.
Bake cookies on center rack for 15 minutes, or until puffed and golden. (Cookies should be soft.) Transfer cookies with a metal spatula to racks to cool.