Industrial Revolution in America
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Industrial Revolution in America
Timeline of the First IndustrialRevolution of America
The Erie Canal opens and allows goods toflow between the Great Lakes and NewYork City.
Opening of the Erie Canal
Work began on the Baltimore &amp; OhioRailroad, the nation’s first commercialrailroad.
Baltimore &amp; Ohio Railroad
Women made up 80% of the textile millwork force in America.
1830s Textile Mill
Cholera Pandemic in New York state causedby water pollution of densely populatedurban slums.
The Panic of 1837
Second Bank of the United states closed,millions of dollars in bank notes, risingbusiness failures, high unemployment rate
Samuel F.B. Morse develops the firstfunctional telegraph.
Painted portrait of American artist andinventor Samuel Morse (1791 1872)
The Industrial Revolution completelytransformed the United States until iteventually grew into the largest economy inthe world and became the most powerfulglobal superpower.
The industrial revolution occurred in anumber of places across the world includingEngland, North America, ContinentalEurope, Eastern Europe and Asia.
Took place between 1750 and 1850
Began in England and then spread toContinental Europe and North America
Took place between 1850 and 1914
Began in America and then spread toEurope
When Was the Industrial Revolution inAmerica?
Full-scale Industrialization didn’t occur inAmerica until two textile manufacturers,Samuel Slater and Francis Cabot Lowell,introduced mechanized textilemanufacturing to the United States in thelate 1790s and early 1800s.
Where Did the Industrial Revolution TakePlace in America?
The American industrial revolution began inNew England.
Several large-scale textiles mills wereestablished in the region during the late18th and early 19th century which quicklyled to widespread industrialization in theregion:
The Beverly Cotton Manufactury inMassachusetts in 1787
Slater Mill in Rhode Island in 1790
Waltham Mill in Massachusetts in 1814
Massachusetts’s role in the industrialrevolution was pivotal, particularly becauseof its textile mills.
It is often referred to as the “cradle of theAmerican industrial revolution.”
How the Industrial RevolutionChanged America
Caused rapid urbanization in America
In 1800, only 6 percent of the population ofAmerica lived in cities but by 1900, thatnumber had increased to 40 percent
Caused a rise in unskilled labor
Prior to the 19th century, most Americanswho were not employed in agricultureperformed a skilled trade
The use of child labor also led to new laborlaws, such as the 1938 Fair Labor StandardsAct.
Poor working conditions and low wages ledto the growth of labor unions
Workers had little political support due tothe fact that many of them were immigrantsand women who were not allowed to vote
New economic changes led to social andcultural transformations
A new middle class/bourgeoisie
Consisted of entrepreneurs, businessmen,law and medical professionals
Inventions and Technologiesof the Industrial Revolutionin America
Cotton Gin, invented by Eli Whitney in 1793
McCormick Reaper, invented by CyrusMcCormick in 1831
Steel plow, invented by a blacksmith namedJohn Deere in 1837
Telegraph, invented by Samuel Morse in1844
Vulcanized rubber, invented by CharlesGoodyear in 1844
Sewing machine, invented by Elias Howe in1846
Safety break for elevators, invented byElisah Otis in 1853
Bessemer process, invented by HenryBessemer in 1856
First telephone, patented by AlexanderGraham Bell in 1876
First roller coaster, patented by EdwinPrescott in 1898
First airplane, Orville and Wilber Wrightinvented the first plane that was notpowered by wind in 1903
Model T, Henry Ford invented the FordModel T automobile in 1908
War of 1812
The War of 1812 led to a British blockade ofthe United States eastern coastline
Cut off from the sea, Americans beganfocuses more heavily on manufacturing inorder to make money and create the goodsthey couldn’t get through trade.
The causes of the secondindustrial revolution in Americawere
The United States had a number of naturalresources, such as timber, water, coal, iron,copper, silver and gold.
Industries took advantage of these naturalresources to manufacture a number ofgoods to put on the market.
Railroad networks in the U.S. promoted thegrowth of industries like coal and steel andsped up the transportation of goods tomarket
Encouraging mass production, massconsumption and economic specialization
Abundant Labor Supply
Railroad work also attracted a large numberof immigrant workers to the United States
Provided an abundant labor supply forgrowing businesses
The immigrants who migrated to Americawere young
Hard workers who were not afraid of riskand arrived determined to make somethingof themselves
The lack of government regulation allowedbusinesses to flourish and grow at a rapidpace
Business owners had full control of theircompanies without governmentinterference
It created widespread environmentalproblems and poor working conditions
In the second half of the 19th century, newinventions brought about even moreindustrialization.
The invention of electricity and the lightbulb allowed factories to stay open longerwhich vastly increased production volumes.
Textile mill working all night in NewBedford, Massachusetts, photo by JackDelano, circa 1941
Electricity led to the invention of theelectric motor.
Which greatly improved transportation andled the electric trolley and the electricsubway train.
Henry Ford’s assembly line and the rise ofmass production after the turn of the 20thcentury also spurred industrialization.
The total manufacturing output of theUnited States was 28 times higher in 1929than it was in 1859.
The causes of the first industrialrevolution in America
Embargo Act of 1807
Prohibited American merchant ships fromleaving for foreign ports and prohibitedforeign vessels from carrying Americangoods out of American ports.
Of the Napoleonic Wars between Franceand England
To cut both England and France off fromthe American market
The hope was that England and Francewould suffer economically
Then cease to attack American merchantships and stop blocking each other fromtrading with the Americans.
The act had no effect on the British orFrench economy
Completely devastated the Americaneconomy
But the lack of access to foreign goodsforced the Americans to begin producingmore of their own goods.