Industrial Revolution Essay, Research Paper
Do revolutions have to have bloody conflicts in them to be called that? The Industrial Revolution is a direct contradiction to that statement; it is the only revolution in history not to have one single drop of blood shed at any time. The Industrial Revolution was a period from 1700-1850 in which new technology was being discovered at an alarming rate. The average British person born in 1760 saw more changes in his or her lifetime than ten generations of ancestors had seen in theirs.
There were many factors that aided the Industrial Revolution. One for instance was the change in farming many wealthy landowners started to buy out small landowners this process was called enclosure. In the 1700’s many wealthy landowners began to look for new ways to increase the size of their harvests. The first man to experiment in this way was Jethro Tull he improved the process of sowing the seed by a seed drill; it allowed farmers to sow seed in well-spaced rows at specific depths. The second invention to follow was the invention of crop rotation; many farmers wanted to find a way to keep their fields fertile so they would waste a year of planting. So instead of letting the field be barren was to grow a different crop each year so it would stay fertile and you could still grow crops. The next improvement in farming was when Robert Bakewell began trying to raise his quality of livestock; by allowing only the best animals to breed he increased the weight of his sheep and also greatly improved the taste of the mutton. This improvements in farming had great effects on the population, since there was a more food more children were born and that fuel more workers for the factories.
The next fuel for the Industrial Revolution was that Great Britain had many advantages. First was the abundant natural resource which Britain had all three that were needed coal, waterpower, and iron. Second was a favorable geography since Britain was a island nation had many great harbors, they had many ships which gave them a great over seas trade which provided great raw materials. Among other were great political stability, good banking system and a favorable climate for new ideas.
The cotton industry was the first struck by the Industrial Revolution. By 1800 six major inventions had totally transformed the cotton industry. First of these inventions was the flying shuttle which was little more than a boat-shaped piece of wood to which yarn was attached, but it allowed a weaver to work twice as fast. Since the invention of the flying shuttle spinners couldn’t keep up with weavers so the next invention was the spinning jenny. This simple machine allowed one spinner to work six to eight threads at a time. Both of the previously mentioned were hand-operated machines. Next to come was the water-frame; it used the water from fast-flowing streams to drive the spinning wheels. By combing features from the spinning jenny and the water-frame Samuel Crompton made the spinning mule, it made thread that was stronger and finer. The water-frame and spinning mule were too large and expensive for people to have in their homes so wealthy merchants setup machines in places called factories. Lastly of these improvements was the cotton gin, it pulled the seeds out of the cotton which made it much faster for the producer of it and then they could turn out more bales.
Another part of the Industrial Revolution the when the steam engine was built and later improved by several inventors. At it best at that time the steam engine gave way to trains so workers could live in the country and still go to work in the big cities. Also supplies could be carried faster by train and more easily. By 1850 only 25 years after the first line had been built there was over 16,200 miles of railroad track in Britain eventually a foreigner called Britain, “the workshop of the world.”*
The cities literally had over night growth and so the planes for them were not well thought out so many of the cities were to crowed and waste got to be a problem, one observer said “Manchester was little more than a huge overgrown village.”* Along with the many problems in cities the work place wasn’t safe either, many people got hurt form the large machines any since children also worked they spent most of the day away from there parents getting picked on by the foreman’s. Since children have such same size they were perfect for clearing the vents in coal mines, which was very dangerous and bad for their health. Later the British parliament set forth labor laws for children since they interviewed a trapper that said “my daughter starts work at 3 a.m. and ended at 10:30 p.m. They get quarter of a hour for breakfast, and dinner a half an hour, and drinking a quarter of a hour.”* This made it so that children couldn’t work until age 10 and then they can only work about 8 hours a day.
Later workers thought they were being treated unfairly because the owners were getting richer and he workers weren’t. So to get fair treatment the workers formed unions that gave them a great vote in the government because as a whole they can all go on strike. With this they got more wages and better working hours.
All the improvements in the Industrial Revolution led to what we can our life today later the telephone would be invented and then the radio. With all these improvements came many different political views and ideas, also great leaders that would lead us to the millenium and back. Later would come the conquest of space but we must remember that all this was because of this brief period in time.