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Monday, October 18, 2010

Westward Movement: The Industrial Revolution, Transportation, Communication

1789, Samuel Slater came to America, violating England's emigration law that was designed to keep skilled craftsmen in their own country.  In Rhode Island, he built the necessary spinning machinery to operate a cotton factory.
More factories soon sprang up in the North.  This proved to be a huge advantage for the Northerners later during the Civil War.

In 1793, the cotton gin was invented by Eli Whitney.  

Whitney was also called the "Father of Mass Production" for his method of producing guns.  Previously, only skilled craftsmen made muskets one at a time.  Whitney made it possible for even unskilled workers to assemble many muskets, using uniform parts.       

Elias Howe's sewing machine

James Watt's improved steam engine.  The steam engine allowed factories to be built anywhere, not just beside swiftly flowing streams where they used to need the waterpower for their factories.

1834, Cyrus McCormick's reaper

1807, Robert Fulton's steamboat, the Clermont

The Erie Canal

1825, The Erie Canal

Laying track for railroads

1836, Samuel Morse invented the telegraph

1860, the Pony Express was a fast way of communicating, taking less than half the usual time to get a letter across the country.  It only lasted 19 months due to the completion of telegraph lines all the way to California.
See this Want Ad for the Pony Express.

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