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Industrial Revolution


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Richard Arkwright
A barber turned inventor, Richard Arkwright, invented the water frame at almost the same time. Vastly different from the hand-operated spinning jenny, the water frame required hundreds of employees and much more power to operate (water power).
The Agricultural Revolution
The Agricultural Revolution was a gradual but profound revolution in agricultural methods that promoted accelerated economic growth. The Agricultural Revolution eliminated the traditional pattern of village agriculture and replaced the medieval open-field system and the annual fallowing of some fields with a new system of continuous rotation that resulted in more food for humans and their animals. Enclosed fields, continuous rotation, heavy manuring and a wide variety of crops were all innovations present in the Agricultural Revolution. With the extra food being harvested each year, the cost of food went down, and the population boomed.
Limited Liability Industrial Banks
In a Limited liability bank a stockholder could only lose his or her original investment in the bank's common stock. Able to attract many shareholders because of the reduced risk (from full liability banks), were able to mobilize impressive resources for investment in big industrial companies. This type of bank successfully promoted industrial development.
Edwin Chadwick
Edwin Chadwick believed that disease could be prevented by cleaning up the urban environment. This was called his "sanitary idea". Chadwick correctly believed that the stinking excrement of communal outhouses could be carried off by water through sewers at less than one twentieth of the cost of removing it by hand. Chadwick's reports on sanitary conditions became the basis of Great Britain's first public health law, which created a national health board and gave cities broad authority to build modern sanitary systems.
Cottage Industry system / Putting out system
In the Putting-out system merchants and artisans will give peasants certain amounts of raw materials, tell them to make them into basic part for something, and pay them about a week later for whatever they get done. Peasants are doing simple things for the artisans, so the artisans can spend more time on things in their trade that actually require attention and skill. The peasants are doing this in their spare time, and as a result, they are making disposable income. They can later use this money in a market to give the market a boost. There are problems with this system though. From the very start there is always the possibility the peasant will not do the work. With the artisan or merchant comes to the peasant expecting something to be done, and nothing is done, then the artisan or merchant just lost a week of labor they themselves could have done. This lack of control decreases efficiency at times. Conflict also emerges between the peasants and merchants/artisans, as the merchants/artisans complain that the peasants are stealing some of the raw materials, and the peasants are complaining that merchants were giving them not enough materials for what they expected to be done.
Mines act of 1842
The mines act of 1842 prohibited the underground work for all women as boys under ten. This law was passed following an investigation into the British coal industry before 1842. Inquirers were appalled a the sight of girls and women working without their shirts, which was common practice because of the heat, and they quickly assumed the prevelence of licentious sex with the male miners, who also wore very little clothing.
Chartist movement
The goal of the Chartist movement was political democracy. The key chartist demand -- that all people be given the right to vote -- became the great hope of millions of people. Working people developed a sense of their own identity and played an active role in shaping the new industrial system.
James Hargreaves
James Hargreaves invented the spinning jenny in 1765. The spining jenny was simple and inexpensive, and greatly increased the efficiency of the usually female spinner.
William Cockerill
William Cockerill and his sons began the export of textile machinery from Britain to continental Europe in 1799. In 1817 his most famous son, John Cockerill, purchased an old palace in Belgium and converted it into a large industrial enterprise, which produced machinery, steam engines, and then railway locomotives. Many skilled British workers illegally came to work for Cockerill in Belgium, and others founded their own companies throughout Europe. Thus, British technicians and skilled workers were a powerful force in the spread of early industrialization.
Fritz Harkort
Fritz Harkort was a pioneer in the German machine industry. After serving in England during the Napoleonic wars, he quickly concluded that it was necessary for Germany to match England in Industry. He set up shop in an abandoned castle in the Ruhr Vally, and became known as the "Watt of Germany". Lacking skilled laborers to do the job, Harkort turned to England for experienced, yet expensive, mechanics. He also had to import thick iron boilers that he needed, which carried a tremendous price tag. Although he did build and sell many engines, he also accumulated heavy financial losses for himself and his partners, and in 1832 his financial backers forced him out of his company and cut back operations to reduce losses.
The Factory Act
In 1833 reformers of the factory system scored a major accomplishment in the Factory Act. The factory act limited the factory workday for children to eight hours and that of adolescents to twelve hours. The law also prohibited the factory employment of children under nine; they were to be enrolled in the elementary school that factory owners were required to establish. The Factory Act forced the rapid decline of employment of children, and thus the factory act broke the pattern of whole families working together.
James Watt
A huge breakthrough for the steam engine came through the work of James Watt. When observing a Newcomen engine in 1763, he saw that the engines great waste of energy could be reduced by adding a seperate condenser. This invention greatly increased the efficiency of the steam engine, and led to its much more practical use.
In the mid 1700s the landowning nobles discovered that if they enclose their land, and use it for a specific purpose, they will make for money than they would with the open-field system. When these open-fields are fenced in peasants who were formerly using this land, now needing work, migrate to urban areas to work in emerging factories. This process is known as proletarianization -- the transformation of large numbers if small peasant farmers into landless rural wage earners.
Tory party
The Tory party was a party that was completely controlled by the landowning aristocracy. The Tory party passed the corn laws in 1815 to help defend their ruling position, and later the 10 hours act, which got much of the working class on their side against the middle-class.
Thomas Malthus and David Ricardo
Thomas Malthus and David Ricardo were some of the most influential critics of the industrial revolution. In his famous essay "Essay on the principle of Population (1798), Thomas Malthus argued that population would always tend to grow faster than the food supply. The only way to fend this off, in his opinion, was that young men and women had to go back to the old way of marrying later in life. The wealthy English stockbroker, David Ricardo came out with the "Iron law of Wages", that says that due to the population strain, wages will always tend to sink to just above subsistence level.
Ten hours act
The ten hours act of 1842 limited the workday for women and young people in factories to ten hour. This was an effort of the Tory party to gain support from the working class.
European Mercantilism was a system of econoic regulations aimed at increasing the power of the state. The fundamental belief of Mercantilism is that there is a finite amount of money in the world, and Mercantilists aimed at getting as much of that money for themselves as possible. They did this by encouraging imports, disencouraged exports. They put tariffs on these imports, and used that money to further boost their economy.
Corn Laws
Passed in 1815 by the Tory party, the corn laws restricted foreign grain imports. During the wars with France the British had been unable to import cheap grain from eastern Europe. Agricultural prices had skyrocketed, and the landed aristocracy had received higher rents. Fearing peace would bring imports and lower prices for wheat, the aristocracy rammed the Corn laws through parliament. This was a very selfish legislation for the aristocracy's own advantage. The law lead to protests and demonstrations by urban laborers, supported by radical intellectuals. Eventually in 1846, when much of the working class allied with the middle class, the Corn laws were repealed in 1846. Their elimination was Britain's first steep towards free trade.
Reform bill of 1832
The Reform bill of 1832 was an act of parliament that introduced wide-spread changes to Great Britain's electoral system. As a result of the bill the House of Commons emerged as the all-important legeslative body, the new industrial areas of the country gain representation in the commons, and third, the number of voters increased by about 50 percent. The pressures building in Great Britain were avoided without revolution or civil war.
Body Linen
A result of the breakthroughs in spinning and weaving, cotton goods became much cheeper, and they were bought and treasured by all classes. In the past only wealthy could afford the comfort and cleanliness of underwear, which was called body linen.
The Luddites were a group of people who attacked whole factories in northern Europe in 1812, and smashed many of the machines they thought were putting them out of work.
The combination acts of 1799
In 1799, partly in a panicked reaction to the French Revolution, Parliament had passed the Combination acts outlawing unions and strikes. These acts were widely disregarded by workers. Unions continued to form and were not afraid to strike. In the face of widespread union activity Parliament was forced to repeal the Combination acts in 1824.
Thomas Savery and Thomas Newcomen
Thomas Savery in 1698 and Thomas Newcomen in 1705 invented the first primitive steam engines. Both engines burned coal to produce steam, which was then used to operate a pump. Both machines were extremely inefficient, but by the early 1770s many of them were operating successfully in English and Scottish mines.
George Stephenson
After years of work, George Stephenson built the first locomotive in 1825. In 1830 his "Rocket" sped down the track of the Liverpool and Manchester railway at sixteen miles per hour.
Open-field system
The open-field system was a system of agriculture that used a system of communal land for landless peasants to use. When these open fields were enclosed these peasants no longer had any land for animals or crops. As a result, a migration to cities occurred that greatly strengthened the urban workforce and allowed for factories to take off.
Friedrich List
Friedrich List was a dedicated nationalist who believed that an agricultural nation was not only poor but also weak, increasingly unable to defend itself and maintain its political independence. The practical policies that List focused on were railroad building and the tariff. List supported the formation of a customs union among the separate German states. Such a tariff union came into being in 1834, and it allowed goods to move without tariffs between the German states. Another tariff was also created against other nations to help infant industries develop. By the 1840s List's economic nationalism had become increasingly popular in Germany and elsewhere.
People's charter of 1838
The People's charter of 1838 demanded universal male suffrage. In three separate campaigns hundreds of thousands of people signed gigantic petitions calling on parliment to grant all men the right to vote. Parliament rejected the petitions, but the working class learned valuable lessons in mass politics.
The Proletariat was a class of rural wage earners, very dependent on their jobs to provide for their families.

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