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1810-1860, American Industrial Revolution. 

-1810, US industry turning out $115 million worth of goods; 1860, $2 billion;

- second only to Britain in total industrial output.

- 1810 most cloth still made in homes; 1860, textiles America's largest industry.


Other businesses - clocks;

1800 in US, only one white adult in fifty owned clock.

Connecticut clockmaker Eli Terry.

Special water-powered machines;  

1820 2500 clocks per year, 30 workmen; price down to $7.50

1830, stamp out clock gears from sheets of brass; $1.50

rural peddlers;


U.S. military –

French goal - weapons with standardized, interchangeable parts. "armory practice"

1798 contract Eli Whitney.

promised 10,000 muskets with interchangeable parts in two years - took nine years, not fully interchangeable.




Arms manufacturer Simeon North -

1) principle of interchangeable parts - make all fit standard gauge.

2) 1816 first US milling machine. 


federal armories, Springfield, Mass. & Harpers Ferry. VA. 

Blanchard lathe - copying lathe, Thomas Blanchard 1819 - make gunstock 22 min.


New England manufacturer John Hall - 1824, 1000 rifles, interchangeable parts.

Complex system of jigs, fixtures, pattern pieces, and "go or no-go" gauges. 

Three sets of gauges - working gauges, inspection gauges, & master gauges.

Machinery - automatic stop mechanisms, "self-acting".

"One boy with these machines can perform more work than ten men with files in the same time & with greater accuracy.  The best person that has ever worked with my cutting machines is a boy only 18 years old, who never did a stroke of work in his life before that."

Causes problems at Harpers Ferry Armory – worker resistance. 

Interchangability tremendously expensive. 

Samuel Colt revolver or six-shooter – popular 1840s - not made interchangeable.

 - 1840s & 1850s sewing machine - Elias Howe;

320 stitches per minute,

pig iron, bar iron & sheet iron, wire, bar & sheet steel, varnish, wood casing.

I.M. Singer - marketing - installment buying, repair shops, demonstrations, advertising.


Lowell system:

Boston importer Francis Cabot Lowell;

1820s new mill town, Lowell MA.

new labor source -  farmers' daughters in New England.

working 73 hours a week, 12/13 hours a day. 

paternalistic system of labor management – company-run boardinghouses.

literary magazine “Lowell Offering”.      

mills five & six stories tall, multistory towers, clocks & bells; two levels of waterwheels powering 10,000 looms, employing over 10,000 women & men.

At peak one million yards of cloth per week – export to South America, Russia & India. 

1850, Lowell second largest city in Mass. 

One factory alone one thousand workers.

1830s, increasing competition;

1834 wage cuts 15% - workers on strike.

immigrant workers from Ireland, especially children. 


Agricultural technology –

McCormick reaper - horse-drawn reaping machine, 1830s

tapping market through advertising, sales network.

Prairie Breaker & John Deere plows - steel-covered share which resisted soil sticking to it & clogging up cutting.