The Industrial Revolution

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  • Topic: Industrial Revolution, Steam engine, Factory
  • Pages : 5 (1755 words )
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  • Published : October 8, 1999
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Examine in detail the History of the Industrial Revolution. Discuss why Britain led the way in the Industrial Revolution and also explain in detail the effects of industrialization on society.

Had it not been for the industrial revolution, I would doubt very much that we would enjoy the technology we have in the year 2000. The reason we have this technology is that between the years 1750 and 1914 a great change in the world's history was made. People started to discover faster methods of producing goods, which increased their economy. These people were mainly British and French, but after a few years the French were distracted by their revolution, and the British continued to industrialize. However you must not think this industrialization had no effects on society because it did. So in this essay I am going to talk about the history of the industrial revolution, discuss why Britain led the way in the industrial revolution and also I am going to explain to you in detail the effects of industrialization on society.

In the midevel ages people were living in total darkness, and they did not know what was going on in the world around them. Happily the medieval ages were followed by the renaissance. Then came the year 1750, the year of the agricultural revolution in Britain which led away to a revolution in industry. Charles Townshend for example was one of the people who made the agricultural revolution possible. He suggested rotating the crops every year or two, to help the soil get enriched with vitamins and nutrition's. The America's then introduced potatoes to Great Britain. New farm machines were invented, for example Jethro Tull developed a seed drill which planted seeds in straight rows and farmers began using new iron plows in place of inofitiant wooden plows. In addition to that, the enclosure movement brought wealthy people to farm larger amounts of land, which was very good for the agricultural revolution. This revolution improved peoples diet and health leading to an increased population, which demanded healthy food, clothing and employment. Since many farmers were seeking jobs, they found it now in the textile industry, which created a new demand for laborers. You shall notice now that the mechanical inventions were so rapid and each one triggered another new one. A few examples of these inventions are the flying shuttle by John Kay, the spinning jenny by James Hargraves, the water frame by Richard Akriwght, the power loom by Edward Cartwight, Samuel Cromptons spinning mule, and Eli Whitney's cotton gin. All these inventions gave the British cotton industry a further boost. Also the new machines were expensive and had to be set up near rivers, where running water turned a water wheel to power the machines. Inventors such as Arkwright built spinning mills and for that he hired hundreds of workers all operating under the factory system. This system brought machines and workers together in one place under one roof for a number of hours each day and workers were paid daily or weekly wages.

As the industrial revolution unfolded new sources of power such as the steam engine was developed. It is true that the idea of the steam engine existed since 1698 but all along it had problems like intense pressure, or it required a lot of coal to fuel it. However in 1760 James Watt developed a perfect steam engine which revolutionized transportation. Not only so but also brought great changes in the iron and coal industries, which Henry Bessemer contributed greatly to, by developing a procedure that helped the production of steel, this stronger more workable steel triggered the growth of other industries as well.

What do these industries depend on? Yes they depend on good transportation systems to bring raw materials to factories and to distribute finished goods. Thus they started building canals between mines and factories, then a road surface, and finally the rail...
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