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Volume I 



/ ^- 

SLATER EDITION is limited 
to 500 registered and num- 
bered sets, of which this is 
Set No ^.Z.:^.... 

Copyright 1911 
By- James H. Lamb 

•S-p , Co h 


♦IT N THE early stages of the history of the modern world, the 
" strongest and richest nations were the best fighters, — those 
who could wrest from others what they needed, whether of food 
or clothing, or shelter : the capital of a nation was the brawn and 
muscle of her warriors. This was the age of destruction, other- 
wise, the heroic age. But men tired of constant warfare; having 
won riches, they craved ease. A new era dawned, and heralded a 
softer and a wider civilization, — the age of construction. Cathe- 
drals and palaces were btiilt, art in her thousand forms awoke, 
men painted, and sang and wrote. Then came Caxton, the maker 
of books ; men read and thought ; and thought gave birth to in- 
vention. The limitless possibilities of the minds of men, as they 
studied the organic principles of form and motion and applied 
them to their uses, ushered in a new age, — the age of production. 

The history of human endeavor in the early stages of manu- 
facturing reads like an Eastern fairy tale, when the Sons of In- 
dustry awoke the Geni of Tvfachinery and compelled him to do 
their bidding. The story is human, too,, and though told in the 
tersest way, one may read between the lines a history of the 
heart; of courage in the face of difhculties, of patient persever-' 
ance in spite of all obstacles, of self-denial, and even of privations 
cheerfully borne in order that the object in view might be ac- 
complished. So, one by one, were the marvels of textile ma- 
chinery wrought with patient endeavor by those who are among 
the great benefactors of mankind. The capital of each nation 
lies now in her industries, in the brawn and muscle of her 
workers, not of her fighters. 

The industries of a nation may be listed under two cate- 
gories; those which furnish luxuries, and those which are es- 
sentially necessary. While the first may be productive of im- 
mense wealth, may furnish employment to a great number of 

(iii) ^ 

3 3 

mil imj^^ 


persons, and so in a measure be essential to the well-being and 
prosperity of a nation as a whole, the second are absolutely 
indispensable to the life and integrity of the state; for, lacking 
them, in great internal crises, nations would be dependent on 
foreign countries for their supplies of common necessaries. 

First under the head of the latter must be noted the textile 
industries, as being of vast importance in all civilized countries. 
In fact, the amount of the textile manufactures of a country 
would appear to be a criterion of its prosperity. Spain, in her 
period of decadence, has witnessed the declination of the spinning 
and weaving industries which had made her a powerful and 
wealthy nation under the Moors and under the first Catholic 
kings; Japan, on the other hand, which is marching with giant 
strides toward the highest civilization, realizes that in order to 
keep pace with modern ]:)rogress she must look to her manufac- 
tures and follow the example of the United States and Europe, 
and of India, also, we may add, in augmenting her textile in- 

At the head of the textile manufactures of the world we 
must place cotton, as much for its diversity of production as for 
its amount; for no one article of manufacture so dominates the 
prosperity of the world at large as does the product of the 
wonderful plant gossypium. For this reason the initial volumes 
of this series are devoted to cotton, as being by far the most 
important of all textile industries, especially to the United States, 
which provides over sixty-nine per cent of the raw material 
consumed throughout the entire world in the cotton industry. 

At the outset it was the intention of the publishers to 
condense within the narrow confines of a single volume the 
History of the Textile Manufactures of the United States, but 
although they have not deviated from their purpose of pre- 
senting merely essential facts in the historical and technical 
articles descriptive of the i)rogress and methods of the various 
branches of the industry, and in their biographical sketches of 
the leaders and the pioneers of the textile industries, and those 
in the briefest manner possible, the material so kindly and 
promptly sent in to them at their first request exceeded many 
times the limit ihey had set, and obliged them to define a new 


u' l^prii^^ • ■ ■ 

policy and to provide for the publication of a number of vol- 
umes, one or more to be devoted to each particular mdustry in 
the order of its importance, as cotton, wool, silk, flax, hemp and 
its kindred fibres. 

Innumerable books have been written regarding the kings, 
warriors and statesmen of the nations, getting forth in glowing 
colors their deeds and their triumphs, but little has been set down 
concerning the Great Captains of Industry, of their invincible 
courage and determination, and of their achievements for the 
welfare of mankind. People at large know almost nothing in 
regard to the vast importance of the industrial forces which 
make the prosperity of the nation. But the time has now come 
when the story should be told, when the people should have placed 
before them an authentic history of the origin and rise of the 
various industries which make the United States one of the most 
prosperous and wealthy nations of the earth. 

Here are no deeds of bloodshed; no lurid flame of the 
havoc of war; the light upon the pages is that of a thousand 
forges glowing, the rythm is that of a thousand anvils ringing, 
as the swart workers produce, not weapons of destruction and 
defence, but the delicate parts of mighty machines, into which 
the makers have transfused, it would almost seem as one watches 
them at work, some of that intelligence which they themselves 
have received from the Great Source of All Intelligence. Here 
are no devastated homes, no fields laid waste, no harvests de- 
stroyed ; the forces of industry have verily made the waste places 
to blossom, have increased the harvest a hundredfold, and filled 
the land with pleasant homes for the millions of patient workers. 

As for the men whose ability and enterprise and capital 
have made all this possible, their best eulogy is the record of 
their lives and works, which will be found within the pages of 
these volumes. 

The publishers and editors of this work owe a debt of 
gratitude as well for the words of pleasant encouragement as 
for the help that has been afforded them along every line by 
hundreds whom they have approached for information concern- 
ing the technicalities of the difl^erent industries which are treated 


in the scope of this work which the}' now present to the pubHc 
in the confident assurance that their labors will be appreciated. 
The authenticity of the facts concerning both men and 
manufactures, as set forth in this series, has been proven beyond 
a doubt, it being the pur])ose of the publishers to produce a 
reliable compendium for referential purposes. To this end the 
most thorough researches have been made, the work of inves- 
tigation having been agreeably lightened by the cooperation of 
all those who have been approached for information. 



The History of Cotton Production. 

Paet I. — In the United States. — Daniel C. Eoper 1-8 

Paet II. — In other Countries. — E. M. ISTorris 8-16 

Egyptian Cotton. — C. M. Blaisdell 17-19 

Cotton Ginning. — Eevised by A. L. Smith 20-27 

Transportation in its Relation to the Cotton Industry. — W. 

W. Finley 28-34 

Cotton Speculation in America. — Carl Geller 35-52 

The Manufacture of Cotton.— E. M. Xorris-. 53-76 

Combing and Carding 77-96 

History of Spinning. — Wm. E. Draper 97-103 

Yarn and Thread Winding.— F. H. Bishop 104-112 

History of Weaving. — Revised by George Crompton 113-141 

Origin and Progress of the Art of Knitting 142-153 

Mercerization of Cotton. — John II. Lorimcr 154, 155 

Silky Lustre of Mercerization. — Wm. AV. Crosby 156, 157 

Bleaching, Dyeing and Printing. — L. Da Costa Ward 158-175 

History of the Dyestuifs and Dyeing Industries, by Herman 

A. Metz. . . .' 176-180 

History of the. Development of the Coal Tar Dye Industry in 

U. S. A.— J. F. Schcellkopf ." .'. . . 181-183 

Flax : Its Cultivation and Manufacture 184-190 

Hemp, Jute and Kindred Fibres 191-199 

Rope and Rope-making Materials 200-215 

Textile Machinery.— George O. Drainer 216-222 

Evolution of the Transmission of Water Power, by Charles T. 

Main .- 1 223-231 

Electric Power as Applied to Textile Machinery, by Sidney B. 

Paine ' 232-238 

Mill Engineering.— F. W. Dean 239-244 

History of Factory Fire Insurance, by Frederick Downs 245-249 

Cotton Seed and its Products.— E. M. iN^orris 250-257 

Biographical Sketches 258-406 

Histories of Mills 407-451 



Samuel Slater Frontispiece 


Plate 1. Cultivation of Cotton 3 

Plate 2. Ginning 23 

Plate 3. Transportation 33 

Plate 4. Carding and Combing 77 

Plate 5. Spinning ." 99 

Plate 6. Winding Ill 

Plate 7. Weaving 127 

Plate 8. Jacqnard Loom 139 

Plate 10. Printing 163 

Plate 11. Flax 187 

Plate 12. Hemp and Sisal 195 

Amory, Arthur 375 

Arlington Mills 445 

Aver, Frederick 325 

Ayer, James Cook 327 

Beverly Cotton Mill 409 

Brayton, David Anthony 331 

Crapo, William W 335 

Crompton, George 304 

Dana Warp Mill* 433 

Dana, Woodbury K 379 

Dartmouth Manufacturing Corporation 441 

Dean, Francis W 388 

Draper Company 420 

Draper, George 281 

Draper, George ■ 289 

Draper, William F 284 

Fabyan, George F 347 

Goo'dall, Thomas 341 

Greene, Stephen 339 

Harding, Edgar 351 

Hill, William H 400 

Hopewell, John 358 




Histories of Mills 407-451 

Jackson, Patrick Tracy 276 

Lawrence, Amos A 269 

Littlefield, Alfred H -365 

Lowe, Arthur H 396 

Lowell, Augustus 265 

Lowell Machine Shop 416 

Ludlow !^[anufacturing Associates 431 

Lyman, Arthur T 318 

Lyon, Alvin S T 406 

Main, Charles T 386 

Marble, Edwin T 310 

McArthur, Eobert 405 

Merrimack Manufacturing Company 412 

Pacific Mills '. 436 

Parker, Walter E 398 

Parsons, Theophilus 394 

Peck, Leander 11 370 

Sanford Mills 448 

Sayles, Frederick C 368 

Seabury, Dwight 392 

Shaw Stocking Company 450 

Sheldon, Frank P 383 

Summersby, Walter H 372 

Taft, Gustavus 302 

Wellington, William H 344 

Whitin, John Crane 297 

Whitin Machine Works 424 

Whitman, William 360 

Part I — In tije Unite,d States 


The growing of cotton has entered more extensively into the build- 
ing of the United States, has exercised a greater influence upon the 
character, the manners, the customs and the destinies of its people 
than that of any industry. Cotton has been grown and used for cen- 
turies in India and China, and even in Mexico and South America, but 
it remained for this country to give the industry its commercial importance. 
When the needs of a rapidly growing population demanded an increase in 
the supply of raw textile material, the United States, as if by the hand of 
destiny, began her slow but sure work in meeting this necessity with a fibre 
which has so amply supplemented others that, by lowering the cost, it has 
made it possible for the greater part of the human family to wear what 
otherwise must have remained only the garb of the favored. 

Introduction of cotton growing. — When Christopher Columbus dis- 
covered America in 1492, he found the cotton plant growing wild, but the 
earliest effort to cultivate it in the United States was in 1 621, in what is now 
the state of Virginia. The seed of the first cultivated varieties probably 
came from the Levant or the East Indies. It was at first planted as an 
experiment and for more than a century was not seriously regarded as 
a useful crop. Its cultivation during this period was confined to small 
patches for domestic uses. In fact, the culture never reached large pro- 
portions in Virginia, as the soil and climate made tobacco growing more 
profitable. Further experiments in cotton growing in these early days 
were made in Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, but of 
course, the production in these localities was never large. Had the first 
settlements and experiments been made further south, in say, Georgia or 
South Carolina, where climate and soil are better suited to the plant, the 
development of the industry would no doubt have been more rapid. It 
was introduced into South Carolina about 17.33. The trustees of the 
Georgia Grant, who received seeds from England, introduced it into 
Georgia in 1734. A desposition, taken in London in 1739, for the use of 
these trustees, declared, "The climate of Georgia is very healthy and the 
climate and soil are very fit for raising silk, wine, and cotton, all of 
which products can be raised without the aid of negroes." Subsequent 



history did not bear out this assertion so far as labor is concerned. Labor 
was scarce and expensive and the tedious process of separating the seed 
from the fibre cost more than the Hnt was worth in the market. To provide 
the necessary quantity of cheap labor to cultivate, harvest and clean the 
crops, importations of slaves into the cotton growing districts were made, 
and from that time forth cotton growing and slavery sustained and fostered 
each other. Cotton was grown in Lx)uisiana as early as 1741, for in that 
year, Dubreuil of that locality invented a machine for separating the seed 
from the lint, which wonderfully stimulated <:otton growing. 

The two general species of cotton grown in the United States are 
upland (Gossypium Herbaceum) and sea-island (Gossypium Barbadens). 
(See Plate i.) 

Sea-island cotton was introduced into Georgia in 1786 by Governor 
Tattnall, who secured the seed from the Bahama Islands and who en- 
couraged its cultivation along the coast of that state. To Kinsey Burden 
and wife, of Colleton county. South Carolina, is due the credit for its 
introduction into that state about 1786, and for making the careful selection 
of the black seed from which have come all of the best varieties now grown 
in the United States. The first commercial quantity was grown in 1790 
by William Elliott on the ground where Jean Ribault landed his first 
colonists and claimed the country for France. The cultivation of this cotton 
is now confined to portions of South Carolina, Florida and Georgia ; the 
superiority of the product of these states being in the order in which the 
states are named. 

Cotton area. — The present cotton-growing region of the United States 
is about 1,450 miles long from east to west and about 500 miles in width, 
containing approximately 700,000 square miles, or about 445,000,000 acres. 
Of this the annual cotton-producing area amounted in 191 1 to about 33,000,- 
000 acres, which means that only one acre in every fourteen of the total 
is devoted to cotton. 

The area in which cotton was grown in the United States in 1910 is 
indicated on the accompanying map. Localities producing upland cotton 
only are represented by horizontal lines, and those producing sea-island or 
both sea-island and upland cotton by barred lines. (See Plate i.) 

Development of cotton growing. — The early development of this industry 
was very slow, the first samplet of American cotton being sent to England 
in 1739, or 118 years after its introduction in Virginia. Several bags were 
exported from Charleston in 1747, but it was not until 1753 that there was 
sufficient interest manifested in the industry to call forth a cotton premium. 
In that year a citizen of Delaware offered £4 ($20) for "the most cotton 
and the best cotton off one acre." The small demand for this fibre was 
a drawback to the culture, the market price being frequently less than the 
expense of growing, gathering and preparing it. There were no adequate 
implements for cultivating and harvesting, but the greatest obstacle was a 

PLATE I— Cultivation of Cotton 

1. Cultivation. 

2. Cultivation. 

3. Unopened Roll (Uplmul Cotton). 

4. Mature Cotton Boll. 

5. Cotton Field. 

G. Cotton Plant. American Upland. 

7. Cotton Plant, American Upland. 
S. Sea Island Plant. 
9. Asiatic Plant. 
10. Area. 



scarcity of labor. The following record of shipments to Liverpool in 1770 
is interesting: "Ten bales of cotton from Charleston, three bales from 
New York, four bags from Virginia, and three barrels from North 
Carolina." In 1784 some fourteen or fifteen bales were shipped to England, 
and eight of these were seized in Liverpool as being improperly entered, 
on the ground that so much cotton could not have been grown in the 
American Colonies. After the Revolutionary War, however, the develop- 
ment was more rapid, as in 1701 the United States exfKirted the equivalent 
of about 400 bales, of 500 pounds each, that being but one-tenth of the 
crop of 1790. Three-fourths of this crop was grown in Georgia and 
practically all of the balance in South Carolina. 

The later development of the industry was greatly fostered by a better 
understanding of the culture ; that "how to do, comes of doing" was found 
true here. Implements for use in planting and cultivating rapidly im- 
proved. The "roller gin" has already been mentioned, and improved forms 
of this are still used for sea-island cotton, but the invention of the saw-gin 
for upland cotton, commonly credited to Eli Whitney, marks the most im- 
portant epoch in the history of cotton culture. From the invention of 
this gin ire 1793, the industry advanced very rapidly. Two years later the 
effectiveness of the saw-gin was wonderfully increased by the success of 
Mr. James Kincaid, a resident of the district now known as Fairfield 
county. South Carolina, in applying water power to the operation of the 
gin. Later the application of steam power and the invention of improved 
presses for baling the lint were helpful factors. As slavery had had much 
to do with the development of the production of cotton, it was only natural 
that the abolition of slavery should bring radical changes to the industry. 
Demoralized conditions of labor following the Civil War necessitated 
changes in the methods of growing cotton. Many of the large antebellum 
plantations were subdivided into small farms, to be rented or to be cultivated 
on the "share system." These conditions prevail generally at the present 

The increase in the supply of labor in the Southern States has not kept 
pace in recent years with the requirements for the general industrial develop- 
ment in that section, and cotton growing in some localities has been em- 
barrassed thereby. However, the better prices which have been commanded 
by the staple o'f late years, and the consequent ability of the grower to 
pay better wages, together with the increase of conveniences for living 
in the country, evidenced by the appearance of the telephone and the free 
delivery of mail, are tending to check the movement of the population from 
rural districts. 

The use of commercial fertilizers has been a very important factor in 
the development of cotton growing. Prior to the Civil War the crop was 
grown continuously on the same land without any attempt to prevent the 
depletion of the soil. The expensive labor which resulted from the war 


made it advisable "to make two ears of corn and two blades of grass grow 
where only one grew before." This condition of enforced economy made 
it necessary to grow and harvest more cotton on less land and with the 
least possible amount of labor. By breaking the soil to the proper depth, 
it has been found that the taproot of the plant is enabled to sink deeper 
into the soil and the cotton fibre is thus materially increased in length and in 
uniformity. This method of deep preparation also protects the soil against 
washing. It has been found to be valuable as a means of drainage in seasons 
of excessive rainfall and also a proper means of preventing damage from 
prolonged droughts. It is interesting to observe that the intensive system 
of farming, which involves a thorough preparation of the soil and the use 
•of commercial fertilizers, rotation with leguminous crops, and rapid and 
intelligent cultivation, had its beginning in South Carolina about 1857. 
However, the use of this system for many years was quite desultory, and 
•did not, until very recently, receive general consideration. 

There can be no question that from thirty to fifty per cent profit will 
result from the judicious use of fertilizers; which not only increases the 
size of the plant but makes 'it easier and less expensive to cultivate, adding 
to the yield without increasing the labor or acreage, and actually enlarges 
the climatic area within which cotton may be profitably grown. As 
fertilizing hastens the maturity of the crop, it is a valuable guard against 
the ravages of insects, especially the boll weevil. 

Transportation facilities have also contributed to the development of 
cotton growing. While many navigable streams running through the cotton 
belt helped the grower to market his crop by boat in the earlier stages 
of the industry, in later years railroads have offered far more satisfactory 
means of transportation. 

Cotton growing in the United States has been especially favored by 
the character of the soil and of the climate. Perhaps nowhere else are the 
conditions of heat, moisture and soil so well adapted to it. This country 
holds the first rank in cotton growing, because of these factors, by a long 
growing season, amplq rainfall, and a suitable season for harvesting. 

The development of the cotton industry and trade of the United States 
is fully set forth in the figures of the table which is shown upon page 5. 

The statistics of ;the table show that there was a very rapid growth in 
the production between 1790 and 1800, due very largely to the invention 
■of the saw-gin; that there was aj marked decrease between i860 and 1870, 
'due to the Civil War; and that since 1870 the production has gone on in- 
creasing until a crop of 13,500,000 bales of 500 pounds each for the United 
States and 20,000,000 bales for the world, are but reasonable and necessary 
results. Of the world's suppply of cotton for mill consumption the United 
States contributes about sixty-five per cent; British India, nineteen per 
cent ; Egypt, seven per cent ; Russia, three per cent ; with the other 
countries of the world producing the remaining six per cent. 


Production, Consumption, Exports and Imports of Cotton for the 
United States by Five-Year Periods Since 1790. 





Exports of 





round as 
half bales 


bales, gross 




net weight 

of bale 


Value of 
lint per 
upland , 
















6, 975! 494 

"133, 464" 















































































' 2,295 





























































































36 5 












Harvesting and handling cotton. — Cotton picking is general throughont 
the United States by September i and continues until about January i 
following. In southern Texas, cotton is picked as early as the 15th of 
June, and in the Mississippi and Red rivers, sometimes as late as the; 15th 
of March. The fields are picked over three or four times during a season 
when labor is plentiful, but when labor is scarce they sometimes remain 
untouched until all the bolls are open, when the crop is gathered at one 
picking. The expense for picking the cotton is the largest item in the 
cost of production. For upland' cotton it amounts to about twenty per 
cent of the entire cost and for sea-island cotton it is slightly more. The 
entire crop is still picked by hand, just as it was in the beginning of the 
cotton growing industry. While one man with proper machinery can culti- 
vate thirty acres, it requires four pickers to gather the crop as rapidly as 
is necessary to prevent loss. A fair average day's work for a cotton picker 
during a season is about one hundred pounds of seed cotton. At such a 
rate it would require about one and one-half million persons, working four 
months, to gather tlie average season's crop and would involve the ex- 


penditure of more than ten per cent of the value of the crop. (See Plate i.) 
The industry is very mucli hampered by the lack of mechanical ap- 
pliances for harvesting the crop. Numerous attempts have been made to 
invent a machine for picking cotton, but none of these has been successful, 
since all of them have revealed such defects in practical working as to 
prevent their adoption. The chief difficulty in perfecting a mechanical 
cotton picker is the irregular ripening of the cotton. Scientists may be 
able to overcome this obstacle. Cultural methods and research may lead 
to the development of a cotton plant on which a large percentage of the 
bolls will mature uniformly. Florists have brought about such uniformity 
in the blossoming of flowers, and a careful study of the cotton plant will 
certainly result in interesting and valuable developments for it. 

The early method of handling cotton at the gin was exceedingly 
laborious, wasteful, and unhealthy. Much has been done in recent years 
in the way of combing, ginning and baling plants so that speed might be 
increased and labor economized. A modern ginnery containing three gins 
of seventy saws each and a double square-bale press, is presented in the 
accompanying illustration. (See Plate 2.) 

From the hand seeder, advance was made first to the animal power 
gin, which, with a forty-saw capacity, yielded about two thousand pounds 
of lint cotton per day, and then to the complete battery ginnery, carrying 
in some instances as many as fifteen gins, each with seventy saws, operated 
by steam power and having a capacity of 150 bales, or 75,000 pounds, in 
twelve hours. The condenser and automatic feed press have superseded the 
old wooden screw. The laborious handling of the seed is avoided, it being 
blown either into a seed room or into the waiting wagon of the owner. 
In this way the life and value of the seed are better preserved in con- 
formity with the requirements of the oil mill. (See Cotton Seed and its 
Uses, Ibid. ) 

Much complaint has been made by the consumers of American cotton 
as to the careless methods of baling and wrapping. Unnecessary waste, 
deterioration in quality, and greater danger from fire are among the 
disadvantages resulting from the present practices. The demand for a neater 
bale is both warranted and urgent. In many instances, the American 
cotton is not uniformly distributed, and the bale is sometimes several inches 
thicker at one end than the other. When these loosely pressed bales reacTi 
the compress or the consumer they are frequently in a dilapidated condition, 
brought about to a large extent by the practice of each of the several 
bidders ripping open the covering and extracting samples of the cotton. 
In this condition the bale is as easily ignited as tinder. 

One of the most interesting features in connection with the cotton 
growing industry is the ultilization of the seed which at one time was 
practically a waste product. Although several cottonseed oil mills had been 
built in the United States prior to 1840, the industry did not reach com- 


mercial importance before 1870. While there were only 7 cottonseed oil 
mills in the United States in i860, there were 26 in 1870, 119 in 1890, 369 
in 1900, while at the present time there are more than 800. The amount 
of capital invested in the industry at the present time is about $100,000,000, 
and the value of crude products manufactured annually is more than 

The value of tlie American cotton crop, including the seed, amounts 
annually to approximately $800,000,000. 

Collection of cotton statistics. — Much attention is given to the collection 
of cotton statistics. Exchanges, brokers, and trade journals expend hun- 
dreds of thousands of dollars annually in the collection of information rela- 
tive to the condition, of the crop during the growing season, and regarding 
the commercial movement of cotton during the harvesting season. Many 
trained statisticians devote their time exclusively to these statistical en- 
deavors. The expenditures made by the National Government and by the 
several cotton-growing states and other local subdivisions in the interest of 
cotton, not including the cost of educational work in the schools, colleges, 
and institutes, amount to approximately $1,000,000 annually. Of this, 
probably one-third is devoted to cotton at the experiment stations, one- 
third to statistical inquiries, and the remaining one-third to special phases 
of the plant and its enemies. A number of bureaus in several departments 
of the National Government are now charged with work relative to some 
phase of the cotton industry, and the general scope and importance of these 
endeavors are indicated by naming the character of the investigations. 

Bureaus of National Government charged with cotton investigations. 

Department of Commerce 
and Labor : 





Character of investigation. 

Statistics, each season, of cotton ginned to specified dates, 
and of stocks, and of consumption of cotton ; statistics 
of acreage and production decennially from a canvass of 
the growers; and special reports on cotton manufac- 
tures and cotton-seed products at five-year periods. 

Statistics of exports and imports of cotton and its manu- 
factures and of cotton-seed products; also, statistics 
relative to the internal and coastwise movement of cotton. 

Information relative to foreign markets for cotton and cot- 
ton-seed products. 

Special investigations as authorized by Congress 

Special investigations relative to wages paid, cost of living, 
and other conditions affecting labor in the cotton industry. 



Character of investigation (continued). 

Department of Agriculture 

Plant Industry 



Office of Experiment 


Biological Survey 

Office of Public Roads. 

Interstate Commerce Com 

Estimated statistics of acreage and production and informa- 
tion relative to condition of crop during growing period. 

Information relative to farmers' cooperative demonstration 
and farm-management work ; cotton breeding ; cotton ac- 
climatization ; cotton standardization, and cotton diseases. 

Information relative to Mexican boll weevil and other 
insect pests. 

Information relative to condition of soils; methods of treat- 
ment, and fertilizers. 

Information relative to experiments of agricultural colleges 
and stations; collection and dissemination of general in- 
formation regarding the colleges and stations, and of in- 
vestigations in this and other countries. 

Information relative to rainfall; temperature, and meteor- 
ological conditions. 

Economic relation of birds with regard to insects and 
other pests. 

Questions and conditions relative to practical road building. 

Hearing of complaints relative to discrimination in freight 

Part II — In Other Countries 


Cotton is produced by all the species of the genus gossypium, which 
belongs to the natural order of the Malvacea; it is allied to mallow, holly- 
hock, and hibiscus, the resemblance being very apparent both as regards 
the foliage and the flowers. The species are herbaceous, shrub, and 
trees, either perennial or annual. It is indigenous to the tropical and 
sub-tropical parts of Asia, Africa, America, and all of Australia, but its 
cultivation has extended far into the temperate zones. All the species have 
leaves with three to five lobes, rather large flowers, sometimes purple, or 
partially so, but usually yellow. The flowers soon fall. They grow singly 
from the axils of the leaves, and are surrounded at the base by three large 
heart-shaped, toothed involucral leaves or bracts, partially growing together 
as one. The fruit is a three to five-celled capsule, springing open when ripe, 
and contaii^ numerous seeds enveloped in cotton which issues from the 
capsule after it has burst open. The species are numerous. Linnaeus 
enumerated five, I.amarck in the Encyclopedia Metliodique enumerates eight 
specimens. Cavanilles and Willdenow recognize ten. According to the 
latter, the following species are distinct from each other : ( i ) Gossypium 
herbaceum. (2) G. Indicum. (3) G. Micranthum. (4) G. Arboreum. 
(5) G. Vitifolium. (6) G. hirsutum. (7) G. religiosum. (8) G. lati- 
folium. (9) G. Barbadense. (10) G. Peruvianum. Cultivators usually 
divide all into four primary species, each of which has several varieties ; 


some cotton planters having recognized not less than a hundred. These 
four species are: d) Gossypium barbadense, the most valuable of which, 
the beautiful long-stapled "Sea-Island" is a variety and is grown upon 
the islands and a portion of the mainland of Georgia, South CaroHna, and 
Florida, the saline ingredients of the atmosphere being indispensable to its 
growth. Egyptian cotton belongs also to Gossypium Barbadense. This 
plant bears a yellow flower and a small, black seed. The character of the 
plant changes when it is grown far inland, the seed becoming large and 
hairy. (2) Gossypium herbaceum pertains to India, China, Egypt, etc., 
the principal varieties being known as Surat, Madras, and short-stapled 
Egyptian, and it is grown in America, being known, as American Uplands. 
It is a small shrub, having a yellow flower; the seeds are covered with a 
greenish down and the staple is smooth and silky, although short. It is 
hardy, and can be produced farther north than any other species of the 
cotton plant. (3) G. Peruvianum is a native of South America, of which 
the green-seed cotton of the United States is a variety. The stem is 
ten to fifteen feet in height, the flowers are yellow, and the pods contain 
eight or ten black seeds, firmly attached in a cone-like mass. The staple is 
long and strong, and the cotton stands next in value to Sea-Island, and 
long-stapled Egyptian. (4) G. Arboreum is a large tree-like plant found 
in India, China, and varieties of it have long been successfully cultivated 
in the United States. It has a red flower and produces fine yellowish- 
white wool, somewhat like Sea-Island, when climate and soil are favorable. 
The plant is perennial and will produce fibre (in good seasons, two crops) 
for five to seven years in succession. 

According to some authorities, cottoni derives its name from the Latin 
name for quince, cotoneum malum. Pliny speaks of "wool-bearing trees," 
which he says "bear -fruit like a gourd, and of the size of a quince, which, 
bursting when it is ripe, displays a ball of downy wool, from which are 
made costly garments of a fabric resembling linen." One species of quince 
has leaves covered on the upper side with downy wool, similar to the 
leaves of cotton, and this, according to the etymologist Skinner, and to 
Johnson, led to the application of the word cotoneum to cotton. If this 
19 correct, the name did not come to the English language direct from the 
Latin, but is derived from the Arabic. The Arabic word in European 
characters is koton, and is pronounced goottn. The Italians and Spaniards. 
who first received cotton from the Moors, took their name for the sub- 
stance — the Italians calling it cotone, and the Spaniards, algodon, that is, 
godon with the article "al" prefixed. 

The cotton plant is a very delicate organism, and for its fullest and 
best development is peculiarly dependent upon a fitting soil and climate. 
The method of cultivation is practically the same in all countries where the 
fibre is grown, but it more nearly approaches perfection in the United States. 
Sowing is done from March to May (according to greater or lesser degrees 


of spring frost) and picking begins in August and continues until the be- 
ginning of November. The cottons grown in the United States, which is 
the largest producer of the raw material, are varied in kind and excellent 
in quality, owing to the adaptability of the climate, the scientific methods 
of cultivation, and the careful manner in which it is prepared for the market. 
Sea-Island, grown on all the islands off the coast or directly upon the 
coast of South Carolina and Georgia, is the best cotton in the world, and 
accordingly brings the highest prices. The staple is one and three-quarters 
to two and one-half inches long. The fibre is extremely silky, fine but 
strong, and can be spun to the highest counts of yarn. English authorities 
claim that in one instance it was spun into counts which afforded 2,150 
hanks to the pound. A pound of such yarn would measure one thousand 
yards. Grown far from the coast in the above-mentioned States, it is from 
one and one-half to two inches in the length of its staple and can be spun 
up to 2oo's for ply yarn. Florida Sea-Island is grown on the mainland of 
Florida from Sea-Island seed. It is strong and rather coarser than Sea- 
Island, the staple being shorter, nor is it so carefully cultivated as the 

The cotton crop of India is inferior in quantity only to that of the 
United States. For many years the cultivation and manufacture of cotton 
has been fostered by the British government in India. In the plains of 
Bengal, the cotton raised, though short in staple, was the finest grown in 
the world and formed the material out of which the exquisitely delicate 
Dacca muslins were fabricated. It was known as Dacca cotton, and the 
plant is a distinct variety of Gossypiumj Herbaceum. What little is raised 
is used at home in the looms of a few native weavers. The cotton from the 
Deccan, or Central India, is the best Indian cotton exported; the staple is 
about seven-eighths to one inch. Southern India also produces some of the 
best cotton grown in that country, which, however, owing to the conditions 
of its cultivation and preparation for market is short of staple and dirty. 
India exports much of her cotton to England as raw material, and con- 
sumes an immense amount in her own mills. 

Much attention has been given by the British government in India 
to the fostering of the cotton growing industry, and the ginning and pre- 
paring of the staple for the market, many experiments having been made in 
regard to the choice of seed for the various localities, cause of deterioration, 
best methods of cultivation, etc. The variety called Indian cotton is more 
naturally adapted to the dry climate of India since it has a long taproot 
which enables it to draw sustenance and moisture from greater depths of the 
soil than the American species with its lateral roots spreading near the 
surface. Many experiments have also been made in ginning, the machine 
most in use being a roller gin of the improved Macarthy type. Nothwith- 
standing these efforts, the cotton is inferior as compared with Sea-Island 


and the best grades of long-stapled American, and comes into the market 
in a dirty condition. 

Through the efforts of the British Cotton Growing Association, the 
area under cultivation in India was increased from 18,025,000 acres in the 
crop year 1903 to 20,001,000 acres in the season of 1905; to 22,488,000 in 
1906; 21,630,000 in 1907; 19,999,000 in 1908; 20,227,000 in 1909. And the 
efforts of the Association are also bent on inyiroving the quality of the fibre 
and bettering its preparation for market. 

China produces about one and one-quarter to one and one-half million 
bales of a rather short-stapled cotton, which is somewhat harsh to the 
touch, and very white. It has the quality of mixing well with wool. The 
crops are entirely consumed in the domestic manufactures. Cotton of a 
similar type is also grown in Japan and Corea, and that also is used in the 
home manufacture, Japan importing more than sha grows. 

Egypt is the fourth in point of amount of the cotton-producing coun- 
tries of the world. From time immemorial, a fine quality of cotton has 
been grown in the upper region of the Nile, particularly in Abyssinia. (See 
Egyptian Cotton, by Blaisdell, Ibid.) 

In 1906-07, the cotton crop in Egypt was the largest ever grown in 
that country, amounting to 6,949,783 cantars (the cantar equals 99 pounds), 
practically every bale being consumed early in the year. The total ship- 
ments to all countries from Egypt were 921,726 bales, averaging 725 
pounds net weight. Of these, America, owing to a shortage caused by the 
Gulf storm in 1906, took 119,850. 

We give the following particulars in regard to cotton growing in 
Africa other than Egypt. The shortage of cotton in 1903-04, and the 
subsequent attempt to corner a market brought about the formation of the 
British Cotton Growing Association, which operates under a royal charter, 
with a paid-up capital of $1,250,000, which has as its object the cultivation 
of cotton in the British colonial possessions and dependencies lying within 
the latitudes of what may be termed the "cotton belt" of the world. Pro- 
fessor Wyndham R. Dunstan, F. R. S., director of the Imperial Institute, 
South Kensington, asserts that "cotton may be successfully grown in those 
countries which fall in a region lying, roughly, forty degrees North and South 
of the Equator, providing that the soil is appropriate, and that the rainfall 
or irrigation is sufficient. Within this region, the following British colonies, 
protectorates, and dependencies are included : British Honduras, the West 
Indies, British Guiana, Gambia, Sierra Leone, the Gold Coast, Lagos, 
and Nigeria, East Africa and Uganda, South Africa, Mauritius, the 
Seychelles, India, the Straits Settlements, and Federated Malay States, 
Australia, New Guinea, Liji, Egypt, Cyprus and Malta. In most of these 
countries, the rainfall is adequate, and in those in which it is deficient, 
irrigation is possible in nearly every instance." 

It was impossible at the outset for the Association to extend its 

sMTi library; 


operations over so wide a field; the West Indies, Africa, and India were 
therefore chosen as the spots in which to make the initial efforts, and the 
experiments carried out since then have definitely proved that large quan- 
tities of cotton can be grown in the British Empire. The Association 
supplies seed without charge for experimental purposes, and was instru- 
mental in obtaining through the government grants-in-aid from the local 
governments in Africa, which were allowed annually untif March 31, 1910, 
as follows : 

Southern Nigeria 5,ooo 

Northern Nigeria i ,000 

Gold Coast 1,500 

British East Africa 1,000 

The Association contributed a like amount and an agreement was 
made that the whole of the £17,000 should be annually spent in experimental 
and instructional work. Money has been loaned to planters and ginning 
stations have been established. 

In 1907, a serious drought throughout the whole of West Africa, during 
the growing period of the crop, seriously affected the returns. Progress 
on the Gold Coast is slow ; the quality is satisfactory, but it is feared some 
years must elapse before an appreciable amount is obtained. In Lagos, 
the quality of the cotton has been greatly improved. Northern Nigeria 
produces from 50,000 to 80,000 bales of a good quality. Uganda promises 
extremely well as a cotton-growing country, the quality proving excellent. 
Mr. Winston Churchill, as Under Secretary of State to the Colonies, visited 
East Africa and Uganda in 1908, and reported that in Uganda alone there 
were over 20,000 square miles (12,800,000 acres) suitable for cotton culti- 
vation and over 1,000,000 farmers. In Nyassaland, cotton growing has 
made solid progress ; cotton of a superior Upland type can be grown in 
the highlands, but the cultivation of Egyptian in the lowlands has not yet 
proved a conspicuous success. In Rhodesia, where much newly cleared 
land was planted, the results were not eminently satisfactory, as cotton 
does not do well in such ground. A number of white planters have been 
growing good cotton in Eastern Rhodesia, and gins and presses have been 
sent out. Very satisfactory cotton has been grown in the Transvaal under 
the auspices of the Zontpausberg Cotton Syndicate. Some little experi- 
menting has been done in Natal, and in Cape Colony some most beautiful 
samples of cotton have been grown, but the attempt has not passed beyond 
the experimental stage. 

The Government is proceeding to the task of building railways, 
through the cotton-growing districts, so that the crops may be expeditiously 
conveyed to the shipping points. Those who are qualified to forecast 
the future of the cotton-growing industry of .Africa, declare that they 





















are not unduly optimistic in predicting that the crops will increase in a 
steady yearly ratio until the production ultimately reaches the amount of 
5,000,000 bales per" annum. 


1903 1904 1905 1906 1907 1908 

Gambia 50 100 300 

Sierra Leone 50 100 200 150 

Gold Coast 50 150 200 200 

Lagos 500 2,000 3,200 6,000 

Southern Nigeria 50 100 150 150 

Northern Nigeria 50 100 500 1,000 

Total for West Africa. . 750 2,550 4,550 7,500 

Uganda 500 

British East Africa 200 

Nyarsaland 2,200 

Rhodesia 100 

Total for East Africa. . 150 850 2,000 3,000 4.700 7,100 

A course similar to that of the English has been taken by the French in 
regard to their African colonies. We glean many interesting facts from a 
report prepared by the "Association-Cotonniere Colonial." In Algeria, 
ginning factories have been established with hydraulic presses for the 
baling of the cotton in several sections, and three co-operative cotton- 
growing companies were formed in Orleansville, Philippeville and Bone; 
each company has established ginneries which are run by electric plants. 

In Algiers, experiments led to the conclusion that Mississippi seed did 
well in the districts of Philippeville, Guelma and Batna, where irrigation 
is not possible, yielding a remunerative crop in spite of the lack of rain. 
In the plains of Sig. Perregaux, Orleansville, up to Blida where irrigation 
is possible, the great majority of the planters have adapted Mit-afifi. In 
these plains, it gives a yield varying from 14 to 22 hundredweight of cotton 
per hectare, which is a larger yield than that of the same variety in Egypt, 
and a successful trial has been made with bi-annual cultivation at Chelif, 
where cotton is in its very element. In the Soudan, the work was mostly 
limited to the installation of ginneries. Experiments of irrigation are in 
course at Richard-Toll, where ten to twenty hectares are to be cultivated, 
experimentally. Dahomey crops are good and increasing. The seed is 
smooth and the fibre excellent. In other colonies good progress has been 
made, especially in Guadeloupe, where ginning and pressing machinery 
has been imported. In New Caledonia the extension of cotton cultivation 
is most marked, Caravonica cotton being that best suited for the island, 
the same variety showing good results in northeastern parts of Madagas- 


car. Tahiti and the Somalis Coast also show an extension of cotton 

cultivation. The following table gives a definite idea as to what is 
being done in this direction : 

Cotton Produced in the French Colonies in 1907-08: 

1907 1908 

Higher Senegal and Niger 40,190 18,250 

Dahomey 91.445 59.035 

Algiers 31,725 60,400 

Guadeloupe 1,042 16,150 

New Caledonia 5,ooo 

Reunion 950 

Madagascar and Comores 10,240 

Somalis Coast 500 

Tahiti i ,000 

164,402 171.525 

750 bales 780 bales 

In the German colonies much has been done on the same lines and the 
success is inspiring. For Togo the output for 1907-08 was 1,691 bales of 
ginned cotton, as compared with 1,205 bales in the year 1906-07, an increase 
of over forty per cent. Ginning factories have been established at all the 
large centres. In Cameroon, experimentation is still in its preparatory 
stages. The building of railroads and the waterway Niger-Benne will 
probably open out wide districts. Native cotton grown at Alkassim, in 
North Carolina, has been valued in Germany as fully equal to middling 
Texas. In New Guinea the cultivation is still in the earlier stages of 
experiment. In German East Africa the cultivation has made satisfactory 
progress, and cotton growing by the natives is now on a firm footing in 
the Rufidji district. The cotton crop in German East Africa for 1907-08 
was about 1,600 bales, an increase of about 850 bales as compared with 
the year before. In Russia a large amount of cotton is grown, the cotton 
area lying within the Asiatic Territory of the Russian Empire in Turkestan 
and Transcaucasia. In the former, cotton has been cultivated from the 
most ancient times, being chiefly grown on lands not needed for the prime 
necessities of life, such as wheat, rice, barley and other staples. Cotton 
cultivation here attained its greatest development soon after i860, when 
the Russian cotton trade was suffering from the effects of the war in the 
United States. Since then Russia has devoted a great deal of attention 
to the development of the plant, and the culture was encouraged by the 
government. Upland American cotton was introduced, proved to grow 
successfully, and energetic measures were taken for its cultivation, seeds 


being distributed free of cost to those who desired them, and manuals in 
regard to the cultivation of the American Upland were published in the 
Russian and local languages ; and in 1890, 245,000 acres produced more 
than 45,600,000 pounds of clean fibre. The native cotton is cleaned by 
the primitive wooden roller machines worked by hand power. But nearly 
all the Upland cotton is sent to ginning mills, where modern, and in most 
cases. American gins are worked by water or by steam. In 1893 there were 
about 100 of these mills in Turkestan with more than 400 gins and 120 

Cotton for Russia in Europe is shipped from other countries of 
Central Asia; namely, Bokhara, Khiva and the Transcaspian territory. 
Bokhara produces about 54,000,000 pounds of cotton of the Asiatic variety 
mainly; Khiva, about 21,000,000 native variety, but vastly superior to other 
Asiatic growths. The Transcaspian territory grows but 360,000 pounds, 
mostly Upland. The aggregate product of all the Central Asiatic countries 
is 144,000,000 pounds, three-fourths of which is sent to European Russia. 
In Transcaucasia there are about 100,000 acres devoted to the cultivation 
of cotton, mainly native, for Upland has not displaced the variety planted 
by the natives from very early times. The yield is about 230 pounds per 
acre. In the Province of Samarkind American cotton is rapidly taking 
the lead, as it is in the Province of Khojind also. In addition to her 
large crops, Russia also imports a great (|uan1ity of cotton from the 
United States, Great Britain, Germany and Egypt. 

In the British West Indies experiments have been made under the 
auspices of the British Cotton-Growing Association. Sir Daniel Morris, 
the imperial director of agriculture for the West Indies, had already 
accomplished much of the pioneer work, and the assistance of the association 
was confined to setting up several ginneries and extending financial aid 
to needy planters. The cotton grown was the finest Sea Island, and in 
1907, there were 5,057 bales of it shipped to England. 

Brazil sends into the market a large amount of poorly-cultivated and 
badly-ginned cotton. It is somewhat wiry in the fibre, the staple being 
a trifle longer than that grown in the Cotton Belt. 

From Peru, we have three varieties. Sea Island, Rough and Smooth. 
The Rough Peruvian is of the most importance, because of its similarity 
to wool, which renders it of great value for mingling with wool in the 
making of merino woolens. It has a woolly, crinkled staple about one and 
one-fourth to one and one-half inches long; it is clean and well prepared, 
and, when carded, its resemblance to wool is so close that it could be 
sold as that commodity even to a dealer. Like wool, it takes the dye readily, 
and holds it fast. When mixed with wool, it reduces the tendency to 
shrinkage in the wool with which it is combined ; it renders the goods 
more durable and less expensive to produce, and gives them a better 
lustre and finish. This "vegetable wool," as it is called, is largely imported 



into the United States, chiefly for the use of manufacturers of woolen 
goods. Some of this cotton, grown on copper soil, is quite "Red." The 
"Smooth Peruvian" is shorter and resembles the Gulf Cotton of the 
United States, while the Sea Island resembles Florida Sea Island. 

The production of cotton in Mexico in 1909 was estimated at 125,000 
bales of 500 pounds each. Turkey produced 70,000 bales of cotton in 1909. 

Considerable quantities of cotton are grown in other countries, among 
which are Greece, with about 15,500 bales; Italy, 10,000 bales; Indo- 
China, 15,000 bales; Africa, other than Egypt, 25,000 bales; Haiti, 10,000 
bales; Dutch East Indies, 10,000 bales: Japan, 5,000 bales; Korea, 5,000 
bales; Argentina, about 5,000 bales, and the Philippine Islands, 4,000 
bales. While cotton growing in Australia has not passed the experimental 
stage, the present indications in Queensland are promising. The institution 
by the commonwealth of a bonus to the growers is serving as an incentive, 
but the requirements for local consumption will readily absorb the pro- 




The introduction of cotton into Egypt is due to a certain Mako Bey, 
who, about the year 1820, made the first attempts in his property near 
Alexandria. It is from him that the "Mako Cotton" or "Mako BaumwoUe," 
principally employed in Germany, comes. The French call the same thing 
"Tumel Cotton," after a certain Tumel, gardener of Mako Bey, who occu- 
pied himself principally with these plantations. 

This culture, protected by the Vice King, Mehemed Aly, acquired 
some importance in a few years. But the great development of the 
industry occurred after the "Civil War" in America, on account of the 
fabulous prices that were paid at that time. 

It is not positively known where the first seeds came from, or if 
the primitive color was brown, or if this color was acquired from at- 
mospheric influences or the action of the soil. Since it has been used for 
manufacturing it has been distinguished by four principal qualities, long 
fibre, strength, silkiness of texture and dark color. It is an established 
fact that the same seed planted in the different districts does not give 
the same results, either in quality or quantity. Whether it be the climatic 
influences or peculiarities of the soil that contribute to produce a cotton 
more or less long, silky, and even of slight difference in color, is not 

These influences, together with the carelessness of the cultivators in 
the choice of seed, may have contributed to the degeneration of the 
original stock, while the crossing of plants has made new varieties and 
regenerated or changed the product of the country. Within the last few 
years the government has interested itself seriously in the cultivation of 
cotton by encouraging the culti\rators in the choice of good seed, and 
in discovering more productive varieties. 

The principal varieties of Egyptian Cotton are the following: 

Brown Cotton. 

I. Achmouni, discovered somewhere in the seventies, in the village 
of "Achmoun," province of Garbieh. This cotton was for a long time 
the principal textile product of the country, yielding at least two and one-half 
to three cantars the Yeddan (one Yeddan, 4200 square metres). Now it is 
entirely abandoned in lower Egypt, while the cultivation is continued in 


upper Egypt. The product is, on account of the sandy soil, a Httle woolly 
and of a light shade, but of a tolerably strong fibre and healthy. 

2. Bamia, so-called on account of its resemblance to "Bamiet," a vege- 
table of the country. The color is almost identical with the Achmouni, 
but the fibre is longer and stronger. The seed was found about 1890 
in the Province of Dakahlich, and gave from the beginning good results. 
The culture has been limited, because a good deal of the soil does not 
seem suited to it and because it is very susceptible to inclement weather, 
especially fogs. It is planted in parts of Dakahlich (Mansuza), Garbieh 
fSamaund Mahalla), and the product constitutes scarcely three to four 
per cent of the entire harvest. It is the cotton represented by our types 
13 and 14. The return in good years is four-fifths cantars the Yeddan. 

3. Mit Afifi. This cotton originated in the village of Mit Afifi, 
Province of Menonfieh. The color is darker than the Achmouni and 
Bamia. The fibre is fine and strong. As it grows much faster than the 
other two varieties, it is less exposed to the fogs of autumn, and the 
plant is not so delicate. This explains its .superior yield, which is three 
and one-half to six cantars the Yeddan. On account of these advantages, 
the cultivation of the Mit Afifi spreads rapidly all through lower Egypt, 
and constitutes seven-eighths of the entire crop. The best qualities are 
furnished by the Province of Menonfieh and the Southern part of Garbieh, 
especially the districts of Cafre, Layat, Tantah and Birket-el-Sab ; the 
silk is long, fine and strong. It is the cotton of our types 15, 16 and 17. 
In Behera and the Northern part of Garbieh, the product has generally 
a shorter fibre, but fine; so that it passes for Nos. 16, 17 and 18 when 
the customer does not desire an especially long fibre. Clarkieh, Galionbieh 
and Dakahlich furnish a less fine cotton, but strong and healthy, which 
goes in large quantities for the types 18 and 22. 

4. Gallini. Cotton very fine, long and strong, resembling Sea Island. 
It was for a long time the principal product of the North of Garbieh. 
But having degenerated and given results less and less satisfactory, the 
culture was abandoned. 

5. Colon blanc. (White cotton. ") The seed was introduced from 
America during the War of the Rebellion. Several districts, principally 
Lifta, Lamanoud and Birket-el-Sab, were well adapted to this culture 
which for twenty years was very extensive, yielding four to five cantars 
the Yeddan. This cotton constituted about twenty per cent of the entire 
crop, but since that time it has slightly degenerated and given place to 
other more lucrative varieties. To-day it constitutes only three or four 
per cent of the crop. 

6. Sea Island. Seed imported from America, cultivated only in a 
small strip and soon abandoned completely on account of its very meagre 


7. Hamouli. White variety, cultivated in small proportions for some 
years. Actually it has already degenerated and is mixed with Mit Afifi. 

8. Lafiri. White cotton, discovered within a few years by a certain 
Mr. Lafiri. The fibre is long, strong and fine. The returns are said to 
be superior to that of the Mit Afifi. Nevertheless, the cultivation has not 
extended beyond simple trials. 

9. Abbassy. White cotton, fine and long, discovered recently by a 
certain Parachimonas who named it Abssy, in honor of the Vice King 
Abbas Ililmi. The trials made in 1907 gave a return of eight to ten 
cantars the Yeddan. Trials are to be made on a much larger scale, but it 
is impossible as yet to give an estimate of the result. 

Cultivation on a grand scale never yields the same result as a trial 
on a small extent of ground, which naturally receives the most minute 
care and attention. Cut if the highest hopes are realized only in part, this 
cotton will doubtless augment materially the Egyptian harvest. The pro- 
duction of cotton in upper Egypt in comparison to the total crop is in- 
significant. It amounts to 200,000 to 250,000 cantars per year, two to 
three per cent of the entire crop. Nevertheless, this culture is susceptible 
of a great increase when a rational civilization shall secure regular ir- 
rigation. The best cotton of these regions is that of Beni-Sonef, tolerably 
long and fine, while the districts of Zayoun Bibeh Magaga and Minieh 
furnish a cotton of the same appearance, but generally shorter and more 

The bulk of the crop then comes from lower Egypt, which is divided 
politically into six principal provinces, of which Menonfieh and Garbieh 
are in the Delta : Behera at the left, and Galionbieh, Clarkieh and Dahahlieh 
on the right of the Delta. 

We have already mentioned above, the districts which furnish the 
best cotton. It is necessary, however, to add that a system has been 
adopted within a few years, of planting seeds from other provinces, which 
has given good results, and which at the same time diminishes the great 
difference in quality which existed formerly between the cottons of dif- 
ferent provinces. 

Generally speaking, the Bamia has the longest fibre, from one and 
one-half to one and three-fourths inches; the Mit Afifi of Menonfieh, 
Nos. 15 and 16, approach it equally. The shortest fibre is found in the 
Province of Zayoum and Behera, which is from one inch to one and one- 
fourth inches. 



The origin of the primitive cotton-gin is lost in the mists of antiquity. 
From time immemorial, the natives of India pursued the art of manu- 
facturing cotton into cloth and into muslins, and it is obvious that very 
early in their manipulation of cotton must have arisen the necessity for 
a mechanical contrivance for separating the lint from the seed. The "churka" 
or Indian gin must have been almost coincident with the rude wheel for 
spinning and the simple looms in which they wove the first webs of 
cotton cloth, we know not how many thousands of years ago. 

The churka (See Plate 2) is a small hand-mill or gin, commonly 
operated by women, and "consists of two rollers of teakwood, fluted 
longitudinally with five or six grooves and revolving nearly in contact. The 
upper roller is turned by a handle, and the lower is carried along with it 
by a perpetual screw at the axis. The cotton is put in at one side and 
drawn through by the revolving rollers : but the seeds being too large to pass 
through the opening, are torn off and fall down on the opposite side from 
the cotton." The churka, in various modifications, still exists all over 
India, the best-known type of the machine being the Guzerat churka, 
which consists of two rollers, an upper iron one, of about half an inch in 
diameter and a lower wooden one of about two inches in diameter. These 
rollers revolve with unequal rapidity, the iron one much faster than the 
large wooden one. The common churka is obviously a very crude and 
imperfect machine: the feeding being done by hand, it was impossible 
to supply the whole length of the roller and so work it to its full capacity. 
To atone for the imperfection of the churka, the cotton was subjected 
to a second process called "bowing." This was performed with a large 
bow (See Plate 2) made elastic by a combination of strings which, 
being put into contact with a heap of cotton, the workman strikes the 
string with a heavy wooden mallet, which operation, while freeing the 
cotton from dust and husks, raises it to a downy fleece. In the course 
of ages cotton found its way to all the countries of the East and into 
Europe, and the churka and bow with it. Still later, the two last named 
were introduced into America, supposedly from the Bahamas, and the 
bow gave rise to the commercial phrase, "bowed Georgia cotton." (See 
Plate 2.) In the Dharwar district of the Southern Mahratta country 
of India another method of ginning is in use, which is adapted only 
to the long-stapled, small-seeded cotton grown there. The cleaning of 
cotton by the foot roller is accomplished thus : "The cotton is spread 


over a smooth, flat stone of from one to two feet square, sometimes round, 
sometimes square shaped : an iron rod eighteen inches long is placed on 
the stone and a forward rolling motion is imparted to it by the foot of 
the worker ; sometimes the rod is shorter and slightly conical and the 
motion is then circular, round and round the stone : in both cases the 
effect is that the seed is squeezed out and pushed away in front of the 
iron roller, leaving the clean cotton fibre behind it on the stone. From 
four to six pounds of clean cotton is the output of a day's work." 

Efforts were made at a very early date in the cultivation of cotton 
in the South to improve upon the churka, and several roller ginning 
machines were invented; notably, in 1742, a French planter named Dubreuil 
invented one of the first machines for separating the seed from the fibre ; 
in 1772, a somewhat similar one was constructed by a Mr. Cribs or Krebs, 
and a more practical gin was introduced from the Bahama Islands by 
Dr. Joseph Eve, of Augusta, Ga., about 1790. These roller gins, a mod- 
ernized and improved application of the principles of the churka, proved 
admirably serviceable for the ginning of the long-stapled, smooth-seeded 
Sea Island cotton ; but an immense problem confronted the planters of 
the inland states, that of harvesting and preparing for manufacturing 
purposes the prolific crops of short-stapled or Upland cotton. Necessity is 
ever the mother of invention, and when man's need for certain things 
becomes imperative, ideas spring forth from various sources simultaneously, 
as though they had been hibernating in men's minds, awaiting the crucial 
moment. So it was at this epoch of the culture of cotton in America. 
Hardly had Eli Whitney received a patent for his toothed-roller ginning 
machine, than Hodgen Holmes invented and received a patent for a gin 
necessarily similar in some respects to Whitney's, but having toothed 
plates or circular saws revolving on a cylinder instead of the spiked 
wooden cylindei' of Whitney. The honor of establishing the first practical 
and productive power gin in the world must be conceded to Hodgen 
Holmes. This gin was run by water in Fairfield county. South Carolina, 
by Mr. James Kincaid, in 1795. But we are pressing forward unduly fast. 

In 1792, Eli Whitney, a native of Massachusetts and a graduate of 
Yale College, travelled by boat to Savannah, Ga., intending to penetrate 
into the interior from that place in the hope of finding a position as a 
tutor, and thereby to obtain the means to follow the studies which would 
fit him for the profession of the law. On the boat he met Mrs. Nathaniel 
Greene, the widow of the .\merican Revolutionary General of that name, 
and this lady invited him to make her house his home and take up his 
studies immediately. Whitney had evinced a taste and aptitude for me- 
chanics from boyhood and he at once made himself useful in that direction 
about his patroness' plantation. At this time, there was no method for 
cleaning the lint from the seed of the short-stapled, green-seeded Upland 
cotton but that of hand-picking, a pound of cleaned cotton being the 


result of one day's labor of one woman; and the wearied slaves who had 
wrought all day in the cotton field were set to seed the cotton as their 
evening's task. Whitney at once set to work, and the result of his ex- 
periments was a machine which successfully separated the large, woolly 
seed from the fibre of the Upland cotton. (See Plate 2.) Whitney's 
petition for a patent was filed with Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State, 
June 20, 1793, and a patent was issued to Eli Whitney, March 14, 1794, 
signed by George Washington, President; Edmund Randolpli, .Secretary of 
State, and William Bradford, Attorney-General. This gin, in the documents 
filed at the patent office, and in the United States District Court, Savannah, 
Ga., is described as having a wooden cylinder into w'hich were driven spikes 
or teeth of iron wire for the purpose of separating the lint from the seed. 
The patent issued to Hodgen Holmes, May 12, 1796, was signed by George 
Washington, President ; Timothy Pickering, Secretary of State, and Charles 
Lee, Attorney-General, and was for an improved gin having circular saws 
fixed at regular intervals upon a cylinder which passed through spaces 
between ribs. Thus while Whitney's invention of a gin consisting of a 
wooden cylinder, carrying annular rows of wire spikes, a slotted bar and 
a clearing brush was fundamental, the practical application of the funda- 
mental idea was completed and carried out in a practical manner by 
Holmes' invention of a gin with a shaft carrying circular saws, which passed 
through narrow spaces between ribs. (See Plate 2.) 

. Immediately upon the receipt of his patent, Whitney entered into 
partnership with Mr. Miller, of Savannah, in the manufacture of cotton- 
gins. His idea was to own all the gins and to gin all the cotton produced 
in the country. Now, after the advent of the gin in 1794, a large crop 
of cotton was grown for the following season, the planters supposing that 
it could be prepared for the market by the new gins; but Whitney & 
Miller could not supply the demand, and, naturally, there was much in- 
fringement of the patent and many lawsuits in regard to it. When tfte 
heavy crops were ripening on the fields and the gins were not forthcoming, 
the planters had rough gins made in their own blacksmith shops. Whitney 
received from South Carolina, as the price of the State rights, $50,000; 
from North Carolina about $30,000, and from Tennessee about $10,000, 
his royalties in the Southern States thus amounting to $90,000, a very 
considerable sum in those days. In Georgia, priority of invention was 
claimed for a gin invented by Mr. Joseph Watkins, a planter of that State. 
His machine consisted in part of a wooden cylinder in which were 
inserted short spikes or teeth of iron wire, and Georgia refused to pay a 
royalty to Whitney, who, nevertheless, brought twenty-seven suits for in- 
fringement of his patent in Savannah, Ga. ; of these, a decree for perpetual 
injunction was issued against Arthur Fort and John Powell; a verdict was 
granted against Charles Gachel for $1500 and against Isaiah Carter for 
$2000; judgment in default was allowed in one case; in two cases there 

PLATE II— Cotton Ginning 

1. The Churka. 

2. The Bow. 

3. Whitney's Remodeled, 

4. Eagle Hand Power. 

5. Primitive Cotton Press. 

6. Munger Huller. 

7. Munger System Outfit. 



was a verdict for the defendant, and the rest of the actions were non- 
suited or dismissed. 

Whether the saw-gin was due wholly to the inventive genius of 
Whitney or of Holmes, or whether the machine is partially the work of 
each, is a moot point to-day. The time was ripe for the invention of the 
saw-gin, it was brought into being and completely revolutionized the cotton- 
manufacturing trade of America and of Great Britain, and built up the 
Southern States on a basis of agricultural prosperity. To give some idea 
of the speedy transformation of the business of producing cotton for 
manufacturing purposes, note the following figures : In 1792, the amount 
of cotton marketed was 63,000 bales, of 500 pounds weight each. In 1796, 
when the saw gin had been in use for barely three years, the amount was 
200 000 bales, which, in the year 1909, had risen to the amount of 9,436,400 

Various modifications have from time to time been made in the saw- 
gin, but none have proved of any commercial value, and the fundamental 
working principles of the modern saw-gin are the same as when patented 
by Whitney and Holmes ; perhaps it inclines rather more to the Holmes' 
model, for the operation of Whitney's gin was intermittent; when one 
breast full was ginned, the operation was suspended in order that the seed 
might be let out. The Holmes gin worked continuously, the improved form 
of the breast enabling it to make and carry a revolving roll of cotton, the 
seed dropping out as the roll of cotton revolved in the breast. 

The main features of the modern saw-gin are : i, a feed box, or 
hopper, for the seed cotton ; 2, a revolving distributer ; 3, a cylinder with 
circular saws; 4, a brush. The parts which were formerly made of wood 
are now of steel or iron, while the brush, wliich in Whitney's gin consisted 
of four cross arms studded with bristles, is now a hollow wooden cylinder, 
having twenty-five to thirty-five rows of bristles. Various devices have 
been patented for les.sening the friction at the breast, revolving heads at 
the ends of the breast proving of lasting merit for this purpose. The 
product of the modern saw-gin is twenty-two pounds seed cotton each hour 
per saw, or seven pounds lint cotton, turning out 880 pounds from a forty- 
saw gin ; eighty saws is the largest gin made, while the most popular size is 
the seventy-saw gin, which has a cripacity of 1,500 pounds seed cotton per 
hour; the gins are set in batteries of four so that in the pneumatic elevator 
system a ginning outfit with four seventy-saw gins would elevate, clean, 
gin, and bale more than five to six thousand pounds of seed cotton per 
hour. The speed of tlie steam-power gin is more than twice that of the 
mule-power gin, but the gain is questionable. The old proverb, "haste 
makes waste," holds good in this, as in other matters ; the higher the speed 
the more badly damaged is the staple, and the price obtained is necessarily 
lower, quality being sacrificed to quantity. 

The huller, or double-breasted gin, is a type of saw-gin especially 


designed for handling the cotton grown in the lowlands of the Mississippi, 
Delta and other bottom lands, where the cotton grows large and thick and 
ripens fast. Some of the dried bolls, which are locally termed "hulls," 
fail to be separated by the pickers, and this work is accomplished by the 
"Huller gin," Whitney's spiked roller with Holmes' saw-carrying cylinder. 
It has a double breast; in the bottom of the outer breast is a spiked 
roller which combs out the "hulls" as the saws draw the cotton up into 
the main breast. All parts of this gin are larger in proportion than those 
of the regular saw-gin, and fewer revolutions are necessary to turn out 
the same quantity of lint. 

At the outset, the saw-gins were set up on the plantations (see 
Plate 2), a building of wood being erected to house them and to furnish 
storage for the cotton as it came from the field, a lint room for the cotton 
as it came from the gin, and another to store the lint until it could be 
baled; also a place for the running gear, which was usually driven by 
horse or mule power. As for baling in the older gin houses, there was 
usually a circular hole cut in the floor of the lint room, and through this 
aperture a large sack was hung, into which the cotton was packed by hand. 
Later on, when it became desirable that the bales, to facilitate their trans- 
portation, should be of uniform size and shape, and as compact as pos- 
sible, came the screw press, which was entirely separate from the gin 
house, though adjacent to it; this was worked by horses or mules until 
after the Civil War, when small steam engines were used. About eleven 
plantation hands were employed about the ginnery and press and the 
ginning and packing of two or three bales was considered a sufficient day's 

After the close of the war, the emancipation of the slaves gradually 
brought about a change in the way of doing things ; labor was necessarily 
scarcer and more costly, and many devices were invented for lessening the 
amount required. A mechanical feeder was attached to the gin, which 
enabled the ginner to dispense with one helper, and, at the same time, a 
condenser attachment to catch the lint and deliver it from the gin in a 
continuous bat did the task of the lint-room hand. 

Then followed a compact press, which could be managed by two 
men, and which was placed conveniently near the condenser. This made 
help to carry the cotton from the lint room to the press unnecessary, as 
it did also the mules and men for operating the screw press. Then by 
degrees the planters adopted the tenant system, and it was found cheaper, 
simpler and more satisfactory for the planter to buy a steam engine, 
hire the necessary help and gin for the public at a fixed charge. There 
were, too, perambulating ginneries, which travelled from plantation to 
plantation, often doing the work on the cotton field. Then followed 
well-designed and fitted steam ginneries, equipped with latest labor-saving 
devices. The greatest difficulty, and that which was last to be overcome, 


was the problem of baling. In 1883, Mr. R. S. Miinger introduced a 
pneumatic system of elevating and cleaning cotton, which consisted of a 
pneumatic elevator which took the cotton out of the wagon or bin, elevated 
it above the gins, cleaned and delivered the cotton upon a spiked belt, 
which distributed it into a battery of feeders much better than it could 
be done by hand. In the feeder it was thoroughly cleaned again before 
entering the gins (a battery of say four gins), from which it was delivered 
into a common lint flue attatched to a batt-ery condenser, which separated 
the air from the lint cotton and formed a continuous bat, fed automatically 
into a double press box (see Plate 2), thus elevating, cleaning, ginning, 
baling and pressing the cotton in one operation. While it must be conceded 
that the saw-gin with its high rate of speed has solved the problem of 
harvesting the vast crops of Upland cotton grown in the Southern States, 
it is indubitably true that it injures the staple by cutting the fibre when 
tTie saw is worked at a high rate of speed, and unless the gin is carefully 
managed the cotton is liable to be cut. 

There are other important machines for ginning cotton beside the 
saw-gin. The roller-gin has been brought to a high state of perfection 
in England for use in Egypt and in India, and many have been brought 
to the United States for use in ginning the long-stapled Sea Island cotton. 
A limited quantity of this type of gin is made here, but the ginning 
machinery business of the United States deals chiefly with the saw-gin. 
The gin almost invariably used throughout Egypt is that known as the 
Macarthy patent, self-feeding, single-action, which is particularly suited 
to long-stapled cotton, and which separates the seeds without crushing 
them, while the fibre is, as a rule, uninjured. The Macarthy gin, the in- 
vention of which is ascribed to an American, in its original and simplest 
form consisted of a leather roller and two steel blades. One of these 
steel blades or knives is pressed tightly against the revolving leather roller. 
The seed cotton in front of it is drawn in by the rough leather surface, 
and gripped between the blade and the roller until the seed only is kept 
back at the edge of the knife. To some extent, the mere friction of the 
leather roller on the fibre will detach the cotton from the seed, but in 
order to expedite this action, the seeds, as they are held fast at the edge 
of the fixed blade, are struck oft by another blade, to which is imparted 
a quick reciprocating motion at a very small distance in front of the fixed 
blade, and thus the seed falls to the ground on one side of the roller, 
whilst the cotton is delivered on the other. The fixed blade is called 
the "doctor knife" and the movable blade "the beater." In feeding, as a 
rule, the seed cotton is placed in front of the roller and doctor knife, on 
a grid provided with such openings between its bars that the seed can 
pass through it, only after it has been freed from all the cotton adhering 
to it. The various gins constructed on the Macarthy principle difTer in 
the construction of the leather roller, in the shape of the beater, and the 


modes of imparting motion to it, in the methods adopted for maintaining 
the pressure of the "doctor knife" on the roller, in the construction of the 
feeding arrangement and in tlie speed at which the machines are worked. 

The American saw-gin was introduced into India for the manipulation 
of the acclimatized American cotton grown at Dharwar, and was manu- 
factured at the government saw-gin factory established at that place, but 
the advocates of the roller-gin in India claim that the superior quality 
of the fibre prepared by it renders its use desirable even for kinds of 
cotton in which the saw-gins yield a much greater quantity. "There is 
no doubt that the roller-gin separates the fibre from the seed with verj- 
much less injury to the fabric than is caused by the use of the saw-gin, 
and in some future time, no doubt, the most improved patterns of it will 
be widely adopted in the cotton belt of the Southern States." 

Mr. Forbes Robertson, in an interesting and minute report of ex- 
perimental trials made in Madras and Broach in India, and in Manchester, 
England, in 1879-80, gives some very interesting figures in regard to 
both roller-gins and saw-gins. He suggests that the great inferiority 
of the saw-gins in regard to the injury done to the cotton may, perhaps, 
be due to lack of knowledge as to their manufacture and working on the 
part of the factory superintendents. In these experiments special notice 
was taken of an American sixty-saw gin, made by Daniel Pratt, of Pratt- 
ville, Ala., the machine being an improved and modified Whitney type 
which was sent to England at the request of Lord Clarendon, then foreign 
secretary, and the machine received great commendation. 

A favorite gin in India is the single-roller, double-action gin of the 
Macarthy type, which cleans in one hour 25 to 45 pounds of American 
Upland, Indian, Chinese, and all short-stapled cottons per hour, and 40 to 
70 pounds of long-stapled. The double-roller gin, intended for both long 
and short-stapled cottons, cleans 95 to 125 pounds of short-stapled cotton 
per hour and 140 to 180 pounds of long-stapled per hour; Dobson & 
Barlow's single-action knife roller yielded 116 pounds per hour of "Dharwar 
American" and American Upland, and 140 to 180 pounds of long-stapled 
cotton. These gins are all 42-inch roller-gins, and a 42-inch roller-gin is 
equal to an i8-saw gin. As these figures show, the Dobson & Barlow 
single-action knife roller is not so very far behind the saw-gin in point 
of quantity, but it is very much better in the point of quality of its 
work, the cotton cleaned by it being in very fine condition. 

The conditions in India can hardly be compared with those of the 
United States ; so much of the cotton growing being done by individuals 
on small farms or holdings, these usually gin their own cotton in their 
houses, and for the purpose a cottage churka was some years ago 
perfected by a Mr. Forbes, who was superintendent of the government 
cotton-gin works. 

We will not go into details here respecting the various gins now 



manufactured in the United States as there will be a complete history of 
each important manufactory of this class of machinery in another part 
of this work. There were in active operation in the United States in 
1909, 26,431 ginneries, with 3,709,835 saws; steam power was employed 
in 23,766 of these ginneries; water power in 1,544; gasoline power in 806; 
animal power in 199; electric power in 116. There were in addition 238 
establishments where Sea Island cotton w;as ginned by other than saw-gins. 





Industrial and commercial development in all ages and among all 
peoples have been dependent on transportation. It is impossible to con- 
ceive of human existence, even in a most primitive state, without trans- 
portation. The man of the Stone Age carried to his cave the meat on 
which he fed, and the skins which made his bed and clothing. Each 
step of his advance in civilization has been made possible only by a 
corresponding expansion of transportation. As communities developed, it 
was found that certain individuals were more successful in producing 
certain things, and specialization of industries had its first rude beginnings 
and commerce in the form of barter. Owing to differences in climatic 
conditions and the distribution of natural resources, it was found that certain 
industries were peculiarly adapted to certain localities. This resulted in 
the gradual growing up of a system under which there were produced in 
different localities more of certain commodities than were needed for con- 
sumption in those localities, and commerce between communities began. 
From those early beginnings, when goods were carried on the backs of men, 
in rude canoes, or on pack animals, and when commodities were exchanged 
directly for other commodities, there has been slowly developed through 
succeeding centuries our present system of world-wide commerce, without 
which our present high level of civilization would be impossible. This 
commerce is carried on by a system of transportation which places at the 
command of the people of each community the products of the world. 

To no line of human activity are the adequate and efficient transporta- 
tion facilities more essential than to the cotton textile industry. Cotton is 
the most widely used of all the textile fibres. Man has been defined as a 
clothes-wearing animal, and, in the manufacture of clothes, no other ma- 
terial is so largely used as cotton. This fibre, which is in universal use 
wherever human beings live, cannot be produced at all in many localities, 
and can be produced most advantageously only in certain comparatively 
restricted regions. Leaving aside the comparatively small production of 
China, South and Central America, the West Indies, and other localities 
where cotton growing has been attempted, the commercial crop of the 
world is produced by the United States, India, and Egypt, and whatever may 
be the future of the efforts being made to extend the cultivation of cotton 


in other regions, the world must now, and for the immediate future, depend 
for approximately sixty-five jjer cent of its cotton fibre upon the Southern 
section of the United States. 

The universal character of the demand for cotton fibre and the com- 
parative restriction of the localities in which it can be successfully produced 
make the industries of the production of this fibre, its preparation for use, 
and its distribution, peculiarly dependent upon transportation. Transpor- 
tation enters into the production of a piece of cotton goods even before the 
seed in planted in the ground, for, except in the Nile Valley and a few 
other localities especially favored by natural conditions, the use of fertilizers 
is essential to successful cotton production, and transportation is essential 
to the distribution of commercial fertilizers. Following the production of 
the crop, the seed cotton must first be carried to the gin, from thence the 
seed is carried to the oil mill, and the lint to the textile mill, either directly, 
or after having first passed through the compress. To trace the lint cotton 
through all of its various stages of manufacture into articles for final use, 
and to trace the distribution of these articles would involve an account of 
the transportation system of the world, embracing every means of water 
carriage on ocean, lake, river, and canal, every railway line in every country, 
and every wagon road and pack train route throughout the world. 
Adequately to perform this task would require years of labor and the results 
would fill volumes. Within the scope of a single chapter little more can 
be done than to consider, in a broad way, the interrelations of the cotton 
textile and transportation industries. 

As the principal region of cotton production is in the Southern section 
of the United States, we are chiefly interested in the development of trans- 
portation in its relation to the American crop.. Prior to the invention of 
the cotton-gin, the commerce of the Southern section of the United States 
was confined almost entirely to localities bordering on the seacoast and 
the navigable rivers. Shipments from Charleston, which was the most 
important port on the southeastern coast, were composed principally of 
lumber, naval stores, rice, and Sea Island cotton, all products of the coastal 
plane and the adjacent islands. In a general way similar conditions existed 
at each of the other South Atlantic and Gulf ports, the commerce being 
only such as could be collected by coastwise and river navigation. Follow- 
ing the invention of the cotton-gin and the rapid development of the Upland 
cotton industry in the Piedmont Belt, extending from Southern Virginia 
to Central Alabama and in Western Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, 
there was a radical change in agricultural conditions and a need of increased 
facilities for transportation. The annual production of cotton, which in 
1790 was equivalent to 3,138 bales of 500 pounds each, increased rapidly 
to 73,222 bales in 1800; 177,824 bales in 1810; 334,728 bales in 1820, and 
732,218 bales in 1830. 

The principal market for cotton was in England, with some demand 


in New England, where at least one mill had been established five years 
before the invention of the cotton-gin, and where the industry began to 
thrive about the beginning of the nineteenth century. To 1-each either 
market, cotton from the interior had to be carried to the coast. ( See Plate 
3.) In the western section this was a comparatively easy matter, for the 
lands adjacent to the river courses had been first settled, and that section 
was plentifully supplied with navigable streams flowing directly to the 
Gulf or to the Mississippi. It was in the eastern or Piedmont Belt that the 
need of improved transportation facilities was most felt by the cotton 
growers. Most of the streams flowing into the Atlantic were shallow, and in 
no case were they navigable into the Piedmont section. Before the con- 
struction of railways the problem of the cotton planter of the Piedmont 
section was to get his product to the head of navigation. As the season for 
marketing was during the late fall and winter, when draft animals were not 
needed on the farm, long wagon hauls were practicable, but as late as 181 8, 
Colonel Abraham Blanding estimated that two-thirds of the market crops 
of South Carolina were produced within five miles of some river on which, 
at least, down-stream navigation was possible, and that practically all of the 
remainder were produced within ten miles of such streams. 

Various expedients for carrying cotton to the ports by the river ways 
were resorted to. A distinct type of boat, known as the "cotton-box," was 
developed. This was a flat boat with high sides, which, when it had been 
filled with cotton, was floated downstream, and at the end of the down trip 
was sold for lumber. Steamboats were early introduced on the Southern 
streams, on those of the Western cotton belt and on some of those flowing 
into the Atlantic, notably on the Savannah River below Augusta, were 
highly efficient. (See Plate 3.) 

The establishment of steamboat navigation on the Savannah hastened 
the construction of railways which were to prove the ultimate solution of 
the transportation problem of the cotton belt. The people of Charleston 
saw trade being diverted more and more to Savannah by way of the river. 
After various other plans had been tried, they undertook what was then the 
bold experiment of attempting to divert traffic from the head of navigation 
in the Savannah to Charleston by railway. The result was the construction 
of the railway from Charleston to Hamburg, which when it had been 
completed for its entire length of 136 miles in 1833 was the longest railway 
in the world. The success of this enterprise was soon followed by the con- 
struction of other lines, and railway development in the South continued 
until the devastating Civil War arrested Southern progress for the time 
being. By 1S60 the Southern States had the skeleton of a relatively com- 
plete railway system, which afforded reasonably satisfactory facilities for 
the commerce of that period. 

From 1792 until the war period, and to a less extent for two decades after 
the close of that conflict, the economic development of the South was 


dominated by cotton. The profits that could be reaHzed from the produc- 
tion of this great staple led to the neglect of other forms of agriculture, 
and little progress was made in manufacturing of any kind. The people 
of most communities concentrated all their energies on the production of 
cotton, with the proceeds of which they bought not only manufactured 
articles, but food stufifs which, under a more diversified system of agricul- 
ture, they would have produced at home. The consequence was that the 
transportation problem of the South at that period was the carrying of 
cotton to the seaboard and the carrying into the South of food stufifs and 
manufactured commodities produced in other localities. Hence it was that 
the earliest Southern railways led from the cotton fields to the seaports 
and river towns, and that they were soon supplemented by lines from the 
North and Northwest by way of the Tenne.ssee and Shenandoah Valleys. 
(See Plate 3.) 

The application of steam to ocean navigation played an important part 
in shaping the course of cotton traffic on land as well as on water. Steam 
made the mariner independent of the ocean currents and the winds, and 
gave to the shorter routes advantages they had never had before. The 
effect was to increase the relative importance of the North Atlantic ports 
of the United States as compared with those of the South Atlantic and the 
Gulf, and when rail facilities became available, a larger proportion of the 
transatlantic cotton traffic was carried through Norfolk, Baltimore, Phila- 
delphia, and New York. In later years Southern ports, notably those of 
the Gulf, in close proximity to the Central and Western cotton fields, have 
been regaining much of the ocean traffic. 

Economic conditions in the cotton belt, prior to the beginning of the 
industrial development and the greater diversification of agriculture, which 
began about 1880, were, in some respects, very unfavorable to railway con- 
struction and operation. Owing to the sparseness of population in most 
localities, passenger traffic was generally unremunerative, and, on many 
of the roads, freight traffic was confined almost entirely to cotton and to the 
relatively small quantities of commodities required for consumption along 
their lines. On these cotton-carrying roads there was a great rush of 
business for a few months and, stagnation for the remainder of the year. 
They were compelled to look for their revenues to the traffic hauled 15e- 
tween September and January. 

The industrial awakening of the South, about two decades after the 
Civil War, led to important changes in the relation of Southern transporta- 
tion lines to the textile traffic. Railways which had theretofore been simply 
carriers of cotton became carriers of cotton goods and other manufactured 
commodities as well. Altliough cotton manufacturing had been carried 
on in the South as a household industry from a very early day and a mill 
was put in operation near Statesburg, S. C, in 1790, it was not until tRe 
decade between 1880 and 1890 that the real development of the Southern 


cotton textile industry began. From that time on the economic law which 
tends to concentrate manufacturing in proximity to the sources of raw 
materials, has been working for the Southern mill industry, and it is inev- 
itable that sooner or later, if Southern supremacy in cotton production is 
maintained, the greater part of the world's supply of coarse cotton goods 
and a large proportion of the finer goods as well, will be manufactured in 
the Southern mills. 

As recently as 1880, the consumption of Southern cotton mills amounted 
to but 188,748 bales, equivalent to only a little more than three per cent 
of the American crop of 5,755,359 bales produced in that year. In 1907, 
the Southern mills consumed 2,410,993 bales, equivalent to more than 
eighteen per cent of the crop of 13,305,265 bales produced in that year. 
In addition to Virginia, where the total production in 1907 was but 14,602 
bales, while the mill consumption was 68,668 bales, North Carolina, one of 
the distinctively cotton States, has become a net importer of cotton — the 
mill consumption in 1907 having been 770,275 bales, and the total production 
of the State 626,642 bales. On the basis of the figures for 1907, about 
eighteen per cent of the American crop is consumed in the cotton-produc-- 
ing States ; about the same amount is used by other mills in the United 
States, and the remaining sixty-four per cent is exported, going chiefly 
to England and Continental Europe. The future may be expected to see 
an increase in the proportion used in the cotton States and decreases in the 
proportions shipped to other States and exported. 

The development of the textile industry in the cotton States has neces- 
sarily resulted in radical changes in the volume and direction of currents 
of traffic. In the early days the movement was practically all from the 
interior to the South Atlantic and Gulf ports, and thence by sea to Europe 
or New England. Later, with the construction of North and South rail- 
way lines, there came about a rail movement to the more northerly ports 
and direct to northern mills. These movements still continue, but they are 
now crossed in every direction by cotton moving to Southern mills. This 
movement to Southern mills is more complicated than might be supposed, 
for the reason that, generally speaking, a mill is not able to secure all of 
its cotton in its immediate neighborhood. While, in the aggregate, a con- 
siderable amount of cotton is sold directly from the plantation to a nearby 
mill and is not hauled by rail until it has been made up into yarn or cloth, 
the requirements of mills for particular grades of material are such that a 
mill in North Carolina, for instance, may buy cotton produced in Alabama 
or Texas, while cotton produced in its immediate locality may be shipped to 
some other State or to Europe. Mills in Upland cotton regions may re- 
quire for the particular class of good they are making, a certain proportion 
of Egyptian cotton, or Sea Island cotton, and thus cotton produced in 
widely separated localities may finally meet in a single piece of goods. 

Changes in economic conditions and in the centres of manufacturing. 







I-. I- 

71 E 





U (4 U 


have brought about changes in the currents of traffic in cotton goods as 
well as the raw material. As the manuacturing industry in Europe, and 
especially in England, antedated the development of production on a large 
scale in the United States, it was inevitable that the established industry 
should hold the market, and hence, just as the traffic in raw cotton centred 
toward the European mills, the currents of traffic in manufactured goods 
diverged from these mills. Thus as late as 1859, the last year before the 
Civil War period, we find that exports of cotton were equivalent to 3,535,- 
373 bales on the basis of 500 pounds to the bale, while consumption in the 
United States amounted to only 845,410 bales. 

The first effect of the rise of the New England industry was to reduce 
the volume of imports of the coarser grades of cotton goods. As the New 
England industry grew, it supplied constantly a larger percentage of the 
domestic demand, not only for coarse goods, but for finer grades as well, 
and began to compete in foreign markets. Then came the Southern 
industry, competing first in the domestic market for coarser fabrics, but 
soon invading the export field and following the example of New England 
by taking up the manufacture of finer goods as well. This tendency of the 
Southern mills to manufacture finer goods is shown by the fact that the 
amount of fine yarns spun by them increased from 886,200 pounds in 1900, 
to 17,858,453 pounds in 1905. 

The growth of the cotton mill industries of the Northern and Southern 
States and the diversification of their products, has been reflected in the 
transportation of cotton goods. The currents of traffic still flow from 
European mills in constantly greater aggregate volume, though in some 
directions the flow has been diminished and they are now crossed in all 
directions and met in the markets of the world by currents of traffic from 
both the Northern and Southern sections of the United States, and in 
some of the Oriental markets are meeting with an increasing output from 
the mills of India and Japan. 

Just as the growth of the Southern manufacturing industry has pro- 
foundly affected the transportation of raw cotton, so has it affected the 
domestic transportation of cotton goods. Prior to the time when the . 
Southern mills became a factor in the situation, the lines of traffic in the 
United States were from the Eastern manufacturing centres and the ports, 
to the interior. Movements from Southern points, either for domestic 
consumption or for export, were inconsequential. All this has now been 
changed, and, although there is still a large movement into the South of 
foreign and domestic goods, and even a return movement of Southern goods 
shipped back to the South after having been bleached and finished in the 
North, this is of small proportions in comparison with the large and steadily 
increasing movement of the products of Southern mills to domestic markets 
and to the ports of the Atlantic, the Pacific, and the Gulf for export. 

The demand for cotton goods is increasing not only with the increased 



population of the world, but also with the advance in the standard of living 
which is slowly, but surely, taking place in many regions as a result of 
higher civilization and more stable political conditions. The cotton planter 
of the United States, with such assistance as other regions may be able 
to give him, is capable of keeping pace with this demand. It is the task 
of those of us who are engaged in the business of transportation to carry 
the raw cotton to the mill and to carry the finished product to the utter- 
most ends of the earth on such terms that cotton fabrics shall be within reach 
alike of the lady of fashion, who pays at the rate of twenty dollars per 
pound for Swiss embroideries, or the Manchurian peasant, who pays at 
the rate of twenty cents a pound for the material for jiis clothing. 




Real estate speculation flourished in ancient Greece and Rome. Fore- 
stallers in grain and flour have amassed fortunes ever since the days of 
Joseph in Egypt. Spices were "cornered" in the Middle Ages. South 
Sea and Mississippi stock were the basis of furious speculation early 
in the eighteenth century. Cotton speculation, on the other hand, is barely 
a hundred years old, but during those hundred years more venturing has 
Been done on the rise and fall in prices of this staple than of any other 
commodity. Long before the "futures" system was introduced, cotton 
furnished sport for daring operators and merchant princes. Of course, 
when the cotton crop amounted to only a million bales or so, speculative 
"lines" did not run to half a million bales, as they frequently have done 
since 1890, but relatively speaking, a venture of ten thousand bales some 
ninety years ago was as momentous an undertaking as twenty times that 
amount would be nowadays. If a venture pans out badly now, the operator 
can shift his burden by covering himself in other options or markets. 
Such facilities were nonexistent before the Civil War, and only a mighty 
deep purse could save a man if he found the market going steadily against 
him. This accounts for the enormous fluctuations in cotton prices recorded 
within a very few weeks, often within a couple of days, in times gone by. 

It may be worth while chronicling a few of the more important events 
in the reigns of the various American cotton kings. 

Very little is known about the pioneers of the American cotton trade. 
In the eighteenth century it was the custom to consign cotton along with 
other products to London, Liverpool, Havre, and Hamburg merchants, 
who remitted the proceeds in manufactured products of their countries. 
In the second decade of the nineteenth century there appears upon the 
scene a merchant who may fairly be considered the prototype of the 
modern cotton speculator. His name was Vincent Nolte. Of German 
descent, though bom at Leghorn, in Italy, he acquired his mercantile 
training at Leghorn, Hamburg and Nantes. Quite early he was thrown 
in contact with the leading commercial spirits of that period, and, being 
possessed of great self-reliance, business ability and a thorough knowledge 
of modern languages, he was entrusted while still a young man with the 
management of extensive financial ventures; for instance, the transfer of 
large quantities of silver coin from Mexico via the United States to Eng- 


land, a risky undertaking in those troublous times. He acquitted himself 
to the satisfaction of his principals and his share of the profits enabled 
him to make a start on his own account. In the course of his travels, in 
1806, he had visited New Orleans and resolved to settle there, returning 
late in 181 1. NoJte's arrival at the Southern port coincided with the 
outbreak of hostilities between this country and England. Although the 
war checked trade, Nolte found plenty of outlet for his venturesome 
spirit. The English had blockaded the mouth of the Mississippi, and 
cotton stored at New Orleans was a drug in the market. Nolte bought 
250 bales of cotton at 11 cents per pound and brought them on a small 
craft through Lakes Borgne and Pontchartrain and Mobile Bay to Pen- 
sacola, where he sold the cotton at 22 cents, investing the proceeds in 
woolen blankets which he sold on his return to New Orleans at a splendid 
profit. During the defence of New Orleans it was found difficult to properly 
mount heavy cannon on the marshy ground around the city and recourse 
was had to platforms of cotton bales. A cargo of 245 bales of good 
cotton belonging to Nolte was confiscated for that purpose by General 
Jackson. Nolte. who had enlisted as a volunteer, protested against the 
use of this good cotton when plenty of low-grade cotton could be had 
in the city at much lower prices, but was told that as it was his own 
cotton, he at least would think it no hardship to defend it. Although 
he had bought the lot a short while before at 10 cents, his claim at that 
price was rejected, because on the morning of the battle a New Orleans 
broker had sold him another lot of good cotton at 7 cents, the owner 
anticipating the defeat of the American troops and fearing to lose every- 
thing in the sack likely to follow the capture of the city. General Jackson 
had heard of this transaction and decided that 7 cents was the market 
price at which Nolte should be indemnified. The defeat of the English 
showed Nolte's good judgment, and three days later a vessel brought news 
of the treaty of Ghent and the end of the war. At one bound cotton 
prices jumped to 16 cents, and finally the indemnity commission passed 
Nolte's claim for the 245 bales at 10 cents. lie tells us that some of the 
French settlers, weary of war times and desirous to spend their declining 
years in peace and quiet at home, now took opportunity to leave New 
Orleans. As no exchange was to be had, they invested their savings 
in cotton, which cost them about 12 cents per pound. The freight to 
Havre amounted to 7I/2 cents per pound. 

From 181 5 to 181 7 Nolte was in Europe extending his business con- 
nections among the French and English cotton importers. During his 
absence several competitors arrived at New Orleans from Europe, notably 
two Scotch houses who exported raw cotton and imported manufactured 
goods, principally Manchester and Glasgow cotton goods. They were 
clannish, worked together, and, being in close touch with the English 
markets, often used their superior sources of information to spread un- 


favorable news about the state of the British cotton trade whenever they 
felt like buying or wished to scare away intending purchasers of cotton. 
During his stay in England, Nolte had come to the conclusion that cotton 
was bound to advance in value, and immediately on his return bought 
heavily. Shortly afterward the Scotch houses also began to buy, notwith- 
standing the pretended "bearish" news they had from home, and Nolte 
made a handsome profit on his purchases. Step by step his position in 
the market became more influential. He was the first one to send out 
printed advices on the cotton market and the crops, accompanied by 
diagrams of the course of prices from week to week, the variations of 
the rate of exchange being shown in a different color. These tables 
proved a great success and brought Nolte many orders from Europe. 
On an average he bought 18,000 bales a season, as compared with some 
7,000 bales bought by his competitors, but during the season of 1820-21 
his shipments rose to 40,000 bales, the greater part of which he had 
bought quietly before the other New Orleans buyers were aware of the 
fact. As prices rose sharply, his heavy purchases turned out very profit- 
able, and these fortunate results induced many of his French corres- 
pondents to entrust him with large discretionary buying orders. With 
the prospect of a good demand from England, the shipping season in 
1821 opened at 20 cents, as compared with 16 cents the previous year. 
The crop was, however, a large one, and prices quickly declined so that 
his purchases on reaching Europe showed a heavy loss. A great deal of 
the cotton bought on discretionary orders was thrown on Nolte's hands 
and the drafts were allowed to go to protest. In the autumn of 1824 the 
Liverpool cotton merchants anticipated a considerable advance in cotton 
prices. The speculative fever was in the air. All sorts of financial 
schemes were launched and found ready subscribers. Havre experienced 
a cotton corner, the entire local stock of 10,000 bales having been bought 
up by one dealer. It is worthy of note that one of the leading Liverjxx)! 
firms, the Quaker house of Cropper, Benson & Co.. at that time issued 
a circular predicting small cotton crops henceforth, in consequence of 
the abolition of the slave trade and the probable annual decrease of the 
colored population of the Southern States. Late in 1824 the surplus of 
stocks resulting from previous- large cotton crops had been absorbed by 
the mills, and much anxiety was felt in Liverpool concerning an early 
arrival of fresh supplies from the United States. Nolte was in England 
in the fall of 1824, and on his return to New Orleans he found that instead 
of an export of 150,000 bales during October and November, 1824, on 
which Liverpool had relied, scarcely 30,000 bales had been shipped, and 
not more than 20,000 bales could possibly be exported during December. 
In anticipation of higher prices, Nolte bought at once 5,000 bales, and when 
on February 14, 1825, he received the news of the close of the Liverpool 
market on December 21, 1824, with an order to buy 10,000 bales, he was 


amply prepared. Liverpool had risen one penny when the inadequacy of the 
local stock had been ascertained and New Orleans jumped 3 cents on receipt 
of the Liverpool mail. On the lot of 5,000 bales so judiciously bought, Nolte 
made a profit of $60,000, and on one consignment of 950 bales he gained 
$55,000. Prices in England rose no per cent, but spinners curtailed their 
purchases and fell back on their reserve stocks, which proved far heavier 
than the Liverpool merchants had anticipated. Brazil, which did not as a 
rule ship more than 175,000 bales a season, all at once doubled her exports. 
There was a deadlock for a time ; importers and merchants held firmly to 
their price, and spinners kept out of the market. In May, 1825, a Glasgow 
house received 5,000 bales from New Orleans and determined to oflFer the 
entire quantity for sale. The Liverpool merchants implored them not to 
sell below the price set by the "bull" clique, but deaf to their entreaties the 
Glasgow people sold the 5,000 bales at a concession of 2I/. pence per pound. 
The bubble burst and prices declined rapidly, the more so as the new crop 
proved to be unusually large. Nolte was entangled by engagements not to 
sell his cotton stored at Liverpool without the consent of his English friends. 
Shortly before the collapse he had sold 6,000 bales to a Charleston dealer. 
The promised remittance failed to come, and when in Liverpool cotton 
prices tumbled from 16 pence in April to 9I/4 pence in July, causing the 
suspensions of many of his Liverpool friends and also of his Charleston 
correspondent, Nolte failed with liabilities of $1,200,000. During the next 
few years he was engaged in winding up his afifairs and spent most of his 
time in Europe. At one time he did a profitable business in supplying arms 
to the French militia, thanks to his friendship with Lafayette, whose 
acquaintance he had made in America. Some twelve years later he returned 
for a brief spell to the cotton market, but the chief part was then played by 
another man, Nicholas Biddle. 

Riddle's operations in the cotton market are not so well defined as were 
Nolte's. In the main, Biddle was a financier and his connection with the 
cotton market arose out of his intimate relations with the Southern State 
authorities and banks. 

Biddle was president of the Bank of the United States, of Philadel- 
phia, the foremost banking institution of the country. It had formerly been 
under Federal charter, but incurred the enmity of President Jackson, who 
persistently vetoed the renewal of the charter. The bank therefore con- 
tinued under charter of the State of Pennsylvania. Interstate business was 
denied the bank, but it managed in various ways to meet the difficulty. It 
largely invested in Mississippi State bonds issued in 183 1 and 1833, to form 
the stock of the Planters' Bank. To other Southern banks it furnished tfte 
entire capital. 

Early in the thirties a land boom swept over the United States, the like 
of which has never been seen before or since. It affected the South partic- 
ularly and caused the rapid settling of Mississippi, Louisiana and Arkansas. 


Young cotton planters migrated to the Southwest from Virginia and the 
Carolinas, with gangs of slaves from their paternal estates. They largely 
depended for financial aid on the banks, and thanks to the backing of the 
great Philadelphia institution there was no lack of banking facilities. Mis- 
sissippi alone increased within five years her nominal banking capital from 
$1,000,000 to $21,000,000. The credit system was carried to an extent that 
can now scarcely be credited. Men with very little capital bought cotton 
plantations and slaves and drew on their bankers immediately against the 
yield of the first crop, before the seed had been sown. As long as cotton 
prices remained highly remunerative, everybody made money, but when the 
turn of the tide came, the strained credit of the South collapsed like a house 
of cards. The reaction came in the spring of 1837. Cotton declined quickly 
from 17 cents to 10 cents, and bankers and brokers who had made large 
advances to the planters were the first to suffer. Nine-tenths of the mercan- 
tile firms of Alobile failed. In New Orleans, every house of importance 
went down and cotton became almost unsalable. Biddle's bank was hard hit, 
but weathered the storm, and he did his utmost to revive the moribund bank- 
ing institutions of the South. 

Through his intimate connections with the South, Biddle had a vital 
interest in the great Southern staple, and noticing the ever-increasing cotton 
consumption in England, he argued that it would only be necessary to 
market crops judiciously, buying up and storing any troublesome surplus, 
in order to create a practical monoply and obtain good prices. In the autumn 
of 1837, he sent representatives to Charleston, New Orleans and other 
Southern markets to purchase enormous quantities of cotton for account 
of the Bank of the United States, for shipment to Liverpool and Havre. 
His eldest son, a youth of twenty years and an old unsuccessful Philadelphia 
merchant, May Humphreys, he sent to Liverpool to sell this cotton. The 
new firm, Humphreys & Biddle, though without knowledge of the English 
cotton trade, at once obtained a larger share of the business than the 
Browns, Barings, Lizardis or any other of the old-established and substantial 
houses of that great cotton mart. In Havre, his consignees were the large 
banking and commission firm of Hottinguer & Co. By granting facilities to 
Southern banks, he induced them to make liberal advances on cotton and 
to ship a large portion of it to his son's house in Liverpool. This enabled 
him to control the cotton market in this country and to carry out the principle 
of monopoly. The first year this colossal undertaking prospered and Biddle 
decided to extend it ; in fact, he was obliged to do so if he wished to maintain 
the monopoly. ?Ie found it necessary to strengthen the Southern banks which 
had, as his indirect agents, induced the planters to send their cotton for sale 
to Liverpool, the advances being made in depreciated paper. What South- 
ern banks had survived the crash of 1837 were badly crippled, and in 
the summer of 1838 their paper had fallen to a discount of 25 to 30 per cent. 
It was clear to Biddle that the Southern banks could not obtain control of 


the new crop unless they were enabled to resume specie payment and raise 
the value of their paper to par. 

Under ordinary circumstances, foreign merchants and capitalists would 
have flocked to the South and purchased the cotton at a low price, consider- 
ing the advantage cash would have given them over the depreciated South- 
ern paper. By throwing the cotton on the Liverpool market, they would 
have lowered the price and interfered with Biddle's idea of prolonging the 
monopoly. Accordingly, Biddle in August and September, 1838, commenced 
rebuilding the Southern banks that had engaged in the cotton trade, and 
he purchased the bonds of others to enable them to go into the operation. 
Biddle and a few of his Philadelphia friends, principally the officers of the 
Girard Bank, began buying enormous amounts of Southern State and bank 
bonds. In one week they invested about $10,000,000 in the State of Missis- 
sippi. Half of this sum was distributed among four insolvent banks at a 
nominal interest of 7 per cent, the principal to be repaid in three annual 
instalments. These banks were the Commercial and Railroad bank of Vicks- 
burg, the Planters', the Agricultural and Commercial Bank, of Natchez. 
It is said that before purchasing the bonds of these banks, Biddls and his 
as.sociates had bought up an immense amount of their notes at 28 per cent 
discount, and in the bolstering operation they used this paper at par. The 
other five millions were invested in Mississippi State bonds, to establish 
the Union Bank of Jackson. This new institution soon flooded the country 
with its paper and advanced as much as $60.00 per bale (of 360 lbs.) or 
almost 17 cents per pound, when the average price in New York during the 
previous season had not been much above 10 cents. It is true, the 1838-9 
crop was decidedly a short one, furnishing only 1,360,000 bales as against 
1,800,000 bales the previous season. Much of the large 1837-8 crop had 
been held back by Biddle, his operations extending throughout Louisiana, 
Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama and Arkansas. In view of the threatened 
shortage, it seemed that he would be able to market at very remunerative 
prices not only the 1838-9 crop, but also the balance held back out of the 
previous one. 

Here again our friend Nolte appears on the scene. Rich in experience 
but poor in worldly goods, he had returned to the United States and in New 
York met the representative of Biddle's Havre correspondents, a friend of 
his. Thinking that with his knowledge of the New Orleans market he might 
be useful to Biddle he obtained a letter of introduction to the great financier. 
Biddle received him well, but would make no change in his New Orleans 
arrangements, offering, however, to extend to Nolte banking facilities if 
he wished to start again on his own account. Early in 1839 Nolte arrived at 
New Orleans and awaited reports from his English friends', the Barings. 
The English cotton trade had expected that the 1838-9 crop would be quite 
as large as the preceding one, about 1,800,000 bales, but Nolte soon saw that 
it v,'ould be much less. At the end of 1838 the Liverpool stock was reduced 


to small proportions, and the size of the crop as well as the policy of the 
U. S. Bank party were of the utmost importance. It looked as though 
Biddle had attained his object of an extension of the monopoly and Nolte 
as well as his English friends were hopeful of a quick and decided rise in 
prices. Nolte made a start by buying 1,000 bales, although his cash capital 
amounted to less than $500. He continued buying and shipping cotton for 
the Barings and Browns, of Liverpool, Denistouns, of Glasgow, and Hottin- 
guers, of Havre, and within a quarter of a year he had handled 37,000 
bales. In the meantime, the market, instead of advancing, had persistently 
declined, due to the disinclination of the spinners to buy. Seeing this, the 
Bank party preferred to take no chances and offered its cotton freely. It 
was the old story: mills had been buying liberally when cotton was much 
cheaper and they now fell back on their reserve stocks. Consumption was 
checked by the high prices of breadstuffs on account of the short grain crops 
of 1838. Within a few months, Nolte again found himself in difficulties. 
The cotton shipped to Europe on consignment could not readily be sold, or 
only at a heavy loss, and remittances came in slowly. Nolte was imprisoned 
for debt, but soon released, and at once left New Orleans forever. On his 
return voyage to Europe he met a rich South Carolina planter. General 
Hamilton, a friend and admirer of Biddle's. Hamilton had conceived the 
idea of forming a board of information at some central point in the South- 
ern States whose duty it would be to keep in touch with the condition of the 
European markets, consumption, stocks, etc., and also to finance the cotton 
crops of the planters. The American members of the Association should be 
kept infonned as to the relative value of cotton, and those that were not 
willing to sell at the market price should receive advances and entrust the 
sale to the foreign agents of the board. By such means General Hamilton 
hoped to make cotton prices steady and remunerative. He took a liking to 
Nolte and offered him an important position on the board, but just when 
Nolte was ready to return to America in furtherance of this new project, 
his friends, the Hottinguers, of Havre, informed him that they would let 
a draft of the U. S. Bank for 6,200,000 francs go to protest. This was 
the beginning of the end of Biddle's bank and his vast schemes. The Bank 
soon failed, carrying down all the banks in Pennsylvania and south of that 
State. The Liverpool offshoot of the Philadelphia concern, the firm of 
Humphreys & Biddle, closed its atfairs and the two members returned to 
America with large fortunes. 

The following decade witnessed a steady increase in cotton production, 
which soon outstripped consumption. The natural result was a decline of 
cotton prices to very low and unremunerative figures. The average price 
for the season 1844-5 was only 5.63 cents in New York, and another low 
level was seen in 1848-9, in consequence of the political disturbances in 
Europe. With the discovery of gold in California and Australia, a general 
trade revival set in, which lasted until the beginning of the Civil War, 


enhancing cotton prices and improving the lot of the sorely-tried cotton 
planter. Late in the fifties, consumption had again outgrown production, 
and English spinners became anxious about a sufficient suppply of raw mate- 
rial. The Manchester Cotton Supply Association was formed, and seed, 
tools, gins, instruction and teachers were sent to every likely and unlikely 
corner of the earth. It is an interesting question whether this expensive 
propaganda would have achieved any results worth mentioning but for the 
cotton famine caused by the Civil War. The fact that with the return of 
normal conditions in the South these schemes utterly failed everywhere 
should answer it negatively. ' 

During the Civil War, individual speculative deals in cotton were quite 
common, but the enormous fluctuations, extending at times to fifty and even 
sixty cents per pound in a single fortnight, limited cotton speculation to 
comparatively small quantities. At this time, "futures" were first intro- 
duced, as the mills were unwilling to run the risk of the tremendous price 
fluctuations. They bought certain quantities of cotton at a determined price 
for delivery at stated later periods, and the New York brokers who sold them 
the futures had to cover their risk in other directions, either by securing 
the spot cotton or by buying futures from other brokers or operators. These 
transactions were, however, merely private deals, were not officially 
recorded and did not attain great importance, but the fact remains that the 
"futures'' system owes its inception to the time of stress and uncertainty 
during the Civil War. 

During the entire war, there were several million bales of cotton locked 
up in the South, where it was a drug in the market, while in the North and 
in Europe it commanded fabulous prices. Blockade running became a very 
profitable, if risky, business. A good deal of cotton ran the blockade from 
Charleston, Mobile and Wilmington to England via the Bermudas, and 
during the years 1862, 1863 and 1864, some 400,000 bales of American 
cotton managed to get into Liverpool. In the early stages of the war, many 
thousand bales were shipped from Liverpool to New York. In 1863, the 
Confederate Government placed a loan of £3,000,000 in England, paying 
seven per cent interest. It was readily subscribed, because any bondholder 
could, by giving sixty days' notice, demand the payment of his bond in 
cotton at sixpence per pound delivered in the interior of America, within ten 
miles of a railroad during the war, and on consummation of peace at one of 
the Southern ports. The value of this Confederate stock to an English 
cotton merchant can easily be understood. The bonds could soon be bought 
at a discount of fifty per cent wliich reduced the purchase price of the 
cotton to threepence. Fitting up a ship with manufactured goods and run- 
ning the blockade into one of the Southern ports, the English merchant couTd 
sell his goods at an enormous profit, claim his cotton for the face value of 
the bond, reload his ship with cotton, and if he was successful in running 
the blockade outward, he could sell his cotton at a profit of 600 to 800 per 


cent. It was said that the capture of seven vessels would not cause loss, if 
the eighth vessel were successful. Toward the end of the war, the gradual 
advance of the Federal lines opened up some cotton territory and released 
the cotton stored there. Plach Northern victory was therefore followed by 
a sharp slump. Sherman's march from Atlanta to the sea caused cotton to 
drop from $1.80 to $1.00. The late Edward Matthews, father of Professor 
Brander Matthews, of simplified spelling fame, had the happy faculty of 
getting cotton through the lines wherever the Union army advanced. The 
Federal Government did not look with favor on this cotton traffic. It put 
money into the hands of the South, whereas it was Northern policy that 
cotton should remain a useless commodity while it stayed in the South. 
Charles A. Dana, later the brilliant editor of the New York "Sun," entered 
into partnership with Roscoe Conkling toward the close of 1862 for the pur- 
pose of buying cotton in such parts of the Mississippi valley as had been 
occupied by the Union forces. He soon became convinced, however, that to 
permit the purchase of cotton within military lines was bad for the Federal 
Government and should be stopped. He pointed out that the mania to 
acquire sudden fortunes by cotton speculation had already to an alarming 
extent corrupted and demoralized the army, and he urged President Lincoln 
and Secretary of War Stanton to put an end to the cotton traffic within 
the military lines. The close of the war released some 2,500,000 bales of 
cotton held in the South, worth about $400,000,000. About three-quarters 
of this amount was taken by Europe and gave this country the value of 
$300,000,000 in gold. The liquidation of this valuable asset did much to 
re-establish the shattered credit and finances of the United States. 

After the war there followed the dark days of reconstruction. Labor 
conditions were topsy-turvy, most planters heavily in debt, and the Southern 
cotton factors bankrupt, almost to a man. The advances they had made 
just prior to the war to farmers and planters had never been repaid. What 
financial aid could be rendered, had to come from the North, and in this 
way New York suddenly forged ahead as a cotton market. A good many 
Southerners came North and made fortunes. To mention but a few, there 
were R. T. Wilson, from Tennessee, John C. Latham, from Kentucky, 
Archibald B. Gwathmey, from Virginia, and John H. Inman, from Georgia. 
The last named became a power in- the cotton trade and cotton speculation. 
Coming to New York soon after the war with $100 in his pocket, he even- 
tually turned this into $10,000,000. To his career we will revert at greater 
length later. 

The five years after the Civil VV^ar were a period of sudden price fluc- 
tuations. Advances and declines of five cents in a week were by no means 
uncommon, and cotton trading and spinning was a very risky business. We 
have already shown how during the war the system of trading in futures 
had sprung up. It found ever-widening acceptance, particularly after the 
organization of the New York Cotton Exchange and the introduction of 


regular methods and rules for futures trading. Free use began to be made 
of the insurance feature of the futures system by the mills, not only in this 
country but also in Europe. Futures, like everything else, may be put to 
illegitimate uses, but it is absolutely certain that the introduction of the system 
has had a salutary, because steadying, influence on the course of prices. 
With a cotton spinner the main thing is the price of the raw material, but a 
consideration almost as important is that there be a certain stability of ihe 
market which permits him to make his calculations ahead for some length 
of time. Before the era of futures, an even approximate stability of the mar- 
ket was not to be thought of, but the introduction of futures tended to lessen 
fluctuations by extending the upward or downward swing over a longer 
period. If prices are high, there are always cool heads ready to sell for 
deferred delivery, and when the expected decline sets in, their buying to 
secure profits tends to hold and steady the market. If prices are low, there 
are always shrewd men to pick up cotton in the shape of futures, this pre- 
venting or delaying a further decline, and on a rise their re-sales act as a 
brake. Mr. Henry Hentz, one of the oldest and most respected cotton 
merchants in the New York market, said some time ago: "During 1866 and 
1867, before the New York Cotton Exchange was established, cotton dropped 
from two shillings to sevenpence in Liverpool. The crop of 1867-8 was a 
very small one, only about 2,500,000 bales, and it was taxed 2 cents a pound 
by the Government. Now, I say with emphasis, cotton would never have 
dropped to such a low point — it subsequently advanced to 33 cents in 
1868-9 — had there been an opportunity for the holders to hedge their hold- 
ings by the sale of futures." The futures system enables the planter to sell 
part or the whole of his crop when the price appears attractive to him, 
months before his crop is gathered. The spinner can buy his supply for 
many months to come, whenever the price seems low enough to him, simply 
by buying futures. He need not even go into the market and exchange his 
contracts for actual cotton, although he may do so. He can simply regard 
his futures purchase as an insurance against a rise in the market. 

With the return of settled labor conditions in the South, with the 
gradual cutting up of the large cotton plantations into smaller holdings, with 
a steady increase in acreage and a gradual displacement of colored by more 
efficient white labor, production slowly but surely gained on consumption. 
For a time the trade boom in this country and the crop failure of 1871 held 
prices steady, but the adoption of the gold standard by Germany in 1873, and 
other countries subsec|uently. caused a steady appreciation of gold and a 
corresponding decline in prices of all commodities. "Sell, even if you have 
to repent," became the guiding rule for the large New York, New Orleans, 
Liverpool and Manchester houses, and considerable fortunes were built up 
through steady adherence to this principle. There was no spectacular spec- 
ulation in this. It was the steady grinding down of values by the apprecia- 
tion of gold, incidentally helped by the increasing supply of cotton and by 


enormous "short" sales that gathered the golden harvest for large houses, 
many of whom were ably managed by the keen, calculating genius of the He- 
brew race. Their operations were much facilitated by the gradual spread of 
the futures system. In 1870-1 only 2,500,000 bales were traded in for future 
delivery on the New York Cotton Exchange, and a great part of this was 
actually delivered on maturity of the contract. In 1874-5 the sales of futures 
in New York amounted to 8,357,000 bales, in 1879-80 to 34,000,000 and in 
1895-6 to 55,000,000, while New Orleans traded during that season in 15,- 
500,000 bales. The average price declined from 17 cents in 1870-1 to 15 
cents in 1874-5, 12 cents in 1879-80 and 614 cents in 1894-5. 

During these twenty-five years some efforts at speculative manipulation 
were made by several operators. More or less unintentionally, a cotton 
corner had been brought about early in the seventies by the large manufac- 
turing firm of Garner & Co. Runge, of Galveston, late in the eighties, tried 
to corner both wheat and cotton, but failed. D. G. Watts and Sol Ranger 
made a name as successful speculative cotton merchants. Inman was active 
at times both on the "bull" and the "bear" side, though generally as a 
"bull," and his operations were keenly watched by the market. It is said 
that at times his "line" would reach and exceed 500,000 bales, spots and 

The first ten million crop, in 1894-5, depressed prices below 6 cents, 
and early in 1895 cotton had few friends. Inman began buying on a very 
large scale early in the spring, when spot cotton was selling at about 51^ 
cents in the New York market. The country was just recovering from tfie 
period of financial and commercial depression following the panic of 1893. 
Inman was one of the first to recognize the change for the better, and to 
appreciate its importance to the cotton trade. He steadily bought both spot 
cotton and futures in all markets. He accumulated an enormous line, esti- 
mated by many at about one million bales, but after an advance of 2 cents 
he realized his profit and closed the deal early in June. The market declined 
slightly, but then a drought began in the South, which turned out to be the 
most serious in the history of the cotton belt up to that year. It extended 
from the beginning of July to the early part of October, with hardly any 
rainfall to relieve it. This cut oiif the early prospects of the crop from nine 
and a-half million to eight million by the middle of August and to seven 
million by the end of September. . Encouraged by this virtual crop failure, 
Peter Labouisse, of New Orleans, started to buy heavily. He had a large 
and enthusiastic following, mainly in the South. Prices kept advancing and 
cotton went from 7 cents to 9^/4 cents, the bull movement not culminating 
until the middle of October. Labouisse carried his bull campaign so far and 
the markets became so congested from heavily overbought conditions, that 
he was unable to unload and secure his profits. He knew the market would 
break the moment he tried to do so. He bought as long as he could and 
his friends followed him, but the crash finally came through attention being 


called to the weakness of the speculative position, and when other specu- 
lators tried to sell out, a panic ensued which lasted from Friday afternoon 
until the following Monday night. In less than a dozen trading hours, 
prices for the various options broke nearly i% cents per pound. Cliques 
had to be formed in New York, even among the bear element and outside 
interests to protect the market from running into greater disaster. The 
stock market, too, was shaken by the collapse, and at New Orleans four 
firms went to the wall. Labouisse was compelled to retire from business 
and there were many pitiful stories told of how his sudden reverse and loss 
of over $3,000,000 in paper profits affected him. 

In 1896 John Inman, after many a brilliant and successful campaign, 
met with defeat. As the supply was small and the prospect for the new 
crop unusually promising, he bought near options and sold new crop options 
on a very large scale. At one time, the difference between August, the last 
old crop option, arid October, a new crop option, was about a cent and the 
"straddle" looked highly profitable. In July, drought set in again and cut the 
crop off to the extent of a million bales. New crop options gained rapidly 
on old crops, and toward the end of August, that option was below October. 
It was reported at the time that Inman had lost a good slice of his fortune. 
His defeat, which was his first serious one, so preyed upon his mind that 
his health broke down. He keenly felt the decline of his prestige and the 
heavy losses of his friends, who followed him in his operations, and was 
compelled to withdraw from business. 

About this time, a new power in the cotton market made its appearance. 
Theodore H. Price, a Southerner by parentage, a close student of cotton 
lore and statistics, who had been brought up in the cotton trade in all its 
ramifications, now began to enter at times into large deals, though his opera- 
tions at that period cannot be compared in magnitude with his later ventures. 
Mr. Price, then a member of the firm of Price, McCormick & Co., under- 
took to gather a large following, and his circulars began to attract general 
attention, not only in this country, but also in Europe. 

The year 1896 marked the lowest point of depression in commodity 
prices, and from then on the depreciation of gold and the corresponding 
appreciation of commodity values set in. The Transvaal, American and 
Canadian mines began to yield an ever-increasing supply of gold, and as by 
this time most civilized nations had accumulated the gold stocks necessary 
to serve as basis for the universally accepted gold standard, the influence of 
the growing gold supply on commodity values was henceforth unhampered. 
Depressed though prices were by the two enormous crops of 1897 and 1898, 
the market was able to make a determined stand at 5V^ cents and the "bears" 
could not budge it. Henceforth it has been "Sell and Repent"' with a ven- 
geance for many of the large houses, and a good slice of the fortunes built 
up by steady and successful short selling between 1873 and 1896 has since 
been lopped off. 


On the two large crops of 1897 and 1898, there followed in 1899 a 
very short one. Theodore H. Price was one of the first to recognize the 
crop failure. He started bulling the market in August, 1899, when prices 
were still around 6 cents, and in spite of the indifference of European 
markets and London predictions of an eleven million crop, pushed values 
steadily upward to 772 cents at the end of the year. 

During Mr. Price's bull campaign in the fall of 1899, there happened 
a tragi-comic byplay which is well worth recalling. 

On September 29, 1899, New York had given itself up to the full enjoy- 
ment of "Dewey Day." The week had been a strenuous one for the cotton 
brokers, as between Monday and Thursday, September 25 to 28, cotton had 
advanced some fifty points. Glad of the rest or respite, as the case might 
be, many New York brokers had gone to the country. All the other cotton 
exchanges were open for business as usual. It would seem that the regular 
staff of the New York office of the Western Union Telegraph Co. had also 
taken a day off, and a "green" man was apparently entrusted with the trans- 
mission of the official Liverpool market cables to New Orleans and the other 
exchanges. It seems to have been the practice to note each fluctuation, as it 
was reported from Liverpool, against the closing price of the previous day, 
but the "green" man added them collectively. Starting with reporting a 
decline of some 5.64 points, or 15 American points, he soon varied the tune 
and kept on reporting advances, piling agony on agony for the unhappy 
shorts until he had managed to gather together an advance of 82!/^ English 
points, equal to 250 American points, or $12.50 per bale. New York 
being closed, New Orleans had all the trading to herself and wild 
excitement reigned. The surging, gesticulating, shouting, yelling, dis- 
hevelled mass of men around the fountain on the New Orleans Cotton Ex- 
change screamed at one another like maniacs, and never in the history of the 
Exchange have such hair-raising scenes been enacted. The steady ad- 
vance by jumps of 2.64 points and at times 3.64 points at last aroused 
suspicion, and the Exchange was closed before the innocent instigator of 
the excitement had gotten through his entire schedule of advances. Direct 
communication with Liverpool revealed the fact that very little change 
had occurred, and all trades done on the basis of the erroneous Liver- 
pool quotations were declared void. Very heavy losses were, however, 
sustained by some traders, and much confusion and actual damage was 
caused at the Interior markets which had received the Liverpool quotations 
via New Orleans, Galveston, Houston, Savannah, Charleston, Augusta, 
Little Rock, Atlanta, Mobile, etc., had been infected by the sudden bull fever 
and large quantities of spot cotton were readily bought. The New England 
markets had received the same erroneous quotations and kept the wires busy 
with accepting overnight offers from Southern factors which the latter were 
just as eager to withdraw. The Southern cotton merchants peremptorily 
wired their interior agents: "Buy cotton." When asked at what price, the 


only reply was: "Buy cotton; too busy to talk," and they bought cotton, lots 
of it. Some of the country buyers sent men on swift horses scurrying along 
country highways and clearing out crossroad stores of private stocks of 
cotton, at advances of $i.oo to $2.00 a bale. By the time the news came that 
the Liverpool advance was bogus, these agents were beyond reach and kept 
hurrying on, buying cotton at a big loss long after their employers knew the 
story of their undoing. One large Savannah house bought 5,000 bales in 
the interior at an advance of about $1.50 a bale. When the mistake was 
finally discovered, the reaction was equally intense on all the Exchanges. 
Before the tangle was fairly straightened out, much loss had to be pocketed 
and a great deal of litigation ensued. But for the prompt action of the 
New Orleans Cotton Exchange, in suspending the session, losses would have 
been much greater. 

To understand the ready acceptance of the erroneous quotation.s, it must 
be borne in mind that traders were keyed up for bullish news. As we 
pointed out, there had been a good advance in the early part of the week, 
and it was rumored that Rockefeller had gotten hold of the cotton market. 

When Theodore H. Price had put the market up about 1% cents. He 
thought prices high enough and early in January, 1900, he not only sold 
out, but went "short" heavily. For a day or two the market wavered, 
but the insufficiency of the crop had in the mean time dawned upon the 
trade and prices moved steadily upward. Price saw his mistake and quickly 
reversed his position, but a good share of the profits made in the early 
part of the campaign was lost. Cotton kept climbing until March, when 
9y8 cents was reached. Price was now very bullish, and seemed to 
intend a May corner, but was unable to stand the strain of the enormous 
quantities of futures and spot cotton thrown at him, principally by the 
large Philadelphia house of McFadden. On May 24, 1900, his firm failed 
with liabilities of $13,000,000. It was one of the largest commercial failures 
in the history of the country and will no doubt always remain unique for 
the fact that within three years, through shrewd and conscientious liquida- 
tion of the assets, even the unsecured creditors received 80 cents on the 
dollar, and were paid in full one year later by Mr. Price, personally and 
voluntarily. His prediction as to the course of the market in the summer 
of 1900 was fully borne out by the rapid rise that set in soon after his 
failure. Where he had left off, two New Orleans operators, W. P. Brown 
and Frank Hayne, made a fresh start, but they were content with moderate 
profits and no corner was attempted in this country, although supplies fell 
to a very low level and many mills had to stop for want of raw material. 
In Liverpool, however, there was a full-fledged September corner, prices 
rising about 2^/2 pence for the September option in less than ten days. The 
bullish excitement was fanned to white heat by the Galveston disaster 
and Neill's estimate of a crop of but nine and one-half millions. On 
September 13th, the bull speculation reached its climax, but so much cotton 


was brought to Liverpool from all the other European markets, and even 
from mills, that soon afterwards the bulls abandoned the corner. 

The crops grown in 1800, lOOO, looi, and 1902 were all moderate ones, 
but production and consumption were so evenly balanced that prices 
fluctuated little. In 1901 and 1902 Theodore H. Price made several success- 
ful turns, and, through the able and lucid exposition of the market position, 
statistically and otherwise, in numerous circulars regained his prestige as 
the best-posted cotton man. In the fall of 1902 he engineered an enormous 
straddle, buying the January option and selling an equal quantity of March 
cotton. The commitment on each option was about 750,000 bales. For 
some reason or other, the straddle was not successful and was liquidated in 
the early part of January, 1903. It is remarkable that the liquidation of 
these huge amounts of futures was attended by little or no excitement and 
was accomplished before the market became aware of the fact. 

A new cotton king now enters on a brief reign. Daniel J. Sully, of 
Providence, R. I., had recognized the shortness of the 1902 crop and began 
buying heavily early in January, 1903. Through persistent buying he 
gradually lifted prices to 11V2 cents in May, when he took his profits and 
temporarily withdrew from the market. Brown and Hayne, of New Orleans, 
taking up the bull campaign where he left off. They cornered July, August, 
and September both in New York and New Orleans. A September corner 
in this country is of rare occurrence, as generally there is plenty of new 
crop cotton forthcoming, but in 1903 the crop was exceptionally late. In 
September. 1903, Sully came back into the market, but met with very 
indifferent success at first, in fact, it is said that during the decline follow- 
ing the series of corners he lost his entire fortune and had to rely on 
assistance from a wealthy friend. This decline was, however, short-lived, 
and an early frost cutting down the growing period of the crop to a mini- 
mum, it was soon seen that the crop would be even smaller than any of the 
three preceding ones. Prices rapidly advanced and soon Sully was again 
on his feet and pursued his favorite methods of pushing up the market by 
the brute force of buying huge amounts. At the end of January, 1904, the 
July option had reached the dizzy height of 17V2 cents, which showed a 
rise of more than 8 cents in less than four months. Sully showed good 
sense in cleverly unloading on unsuspecting associates and the public, and 
when early in February he announced that he was retiring from the 
market for a much-needed rest, prices fell sharply 4 cents within a few 
days. At one time it looked as thotigh a panic was impending, and Sully's 
friends prevailed on him to stay and support the market. A fresh advance 
began which carried prices to within i cent of the previous high record. 
Here Sully's friends and associates turned the tables on him, selling out 
before he had a chance to realize his paper profits. The selling became 
universal. Sully found it impossible to stem the tide, after prices had 
declined 2 cents in three days, and on March 18, 1904, he declared his 


inability to meet margin calls. The announcement caused a further im- 
mediate break of 2 cents, but heavy purchases by the McFaddens and other 
shorts steadied the market. 

The 1904 crop made an excellent start and as under the stimulus of the 
very high prices the cotton acreage had been greatly increased, Theodore 
H. Price early recognized the excellent chances for a bear campaign. No 
man ever spent as much money on gathering crop information and securing 
reliable statistics as this indefatigable operator. He became convinced that 
the crop would exceed twelve million bales and might even reach fourteen 
million bales, and his enormous short sales netted him a fortune. There 
was a steady decline of about 8 cents between Easter and Christmas, 
excepting a brief rise in August engineered by Price himself against the 
congested short interest. In the spring of 1905 Price turned bull and 
again had a very successful campaign. His winnings on July 3, 1905, 
were popularly estimated at a million dollars. In August he turned 
bearish and conducted a profitable campaign against Dick Brothers, who 
had tried to run an October corner. For once Price overstayed the 
market and for a time was a heavy loser, as the 1905 crop turned out 
to be quite as small as Price had predicted. Still the surplus from the 
previous enormous crop proved sufiScient to satisfy all needs, and with tEe 
turn of the year a rapid decline set in. By February, 1906, Price had made 
good all previous losses and for a time withdrew from the market. In 
April, 1906, Price started a May squeeze which was fairly successful, but 
he remained bullish in the face of excellent prospects for the new crops. 
In August he abandoned his campaign and prices broke sharply. 

The brilliant outlook for the 1906 crop was rudely disturbed at the 
end of September by one of the fiercest tropical storms that have ever 
swept over the cotton belt. Quantitatively, the loss was not so large, but 
qualitatively it is hard to estimate. Sufifice it to say that the average quality 
of the 1906 crop was the poorest in many years. It is claimed that in the 
revision of grades the New York Cotton Exchange did not take sufficient 
account of the scarcity of good grades, with the result that the difference 
between Liverpool and New York increased from seventy-five points at 
the end of October to 200 points in April, 1907. Enormous straddle or 
arbitrage operations were carried on between the two markets, and it is 
estimated that at one time this straddle interest amounted to close upon 
five million bales. The winnings of the successful straddlers, mostly 
wealthy spot houses, are in the aggregate estimated at $20,000,000. 

The start of the 1907 crop was highly unfavorable and as business in 
all branches of trade and industry the world over was on feverish boom lines, 
cotton prices rose rapidly. Theodore H. Price, excellently posted as 
always, was a heavy winner on the bull side, but as a close student of 
economics he foresaw the gathering of the storm and predicted the panic 
months ahead. He turned bear in August and again was very successful. 


as at the end of October the panic caused a sharp break of prices. The 
last few months of 1907 saw a remarkable and highly profitable straddle 
engineered by a number of prominent New York cotton houses, Craig & 
Jenks being the leaders. They bought the December and sold the January 
option. In September the December option was ten points below January. 
During December that option had advanced to a premium of seventy points 
above the following month. 

Early in 1908, Sully reappeared for a short while on the speculative 
stage, but his success was very moderate. Price also turned bullish on 
the market, but the after-panic effects, the closing of prominent New York 
banks, and the general apathy following the speculative carnival of the 
previous year, all this weighed heavily on the cotton market and carried 
prices down about four cents between the middle of January and the end of 
April. Price is said to have lost a great deal of money on his deal and has 
since then devoted most of his time and attention to the development of a 
mechanical cotton picker which seems to have solved the thorny labor 
problem in the South. In May, IQ08, Jesse Livermore became active in 
the cotton market and worked a July corner. On the futures end of the 
deal he made a good deal of money, but lost heavily on the accompanying 
spot transactions. He also endeavored to squeeze the August and Septem- 
ber options, but was unsuccessful and current gossip credits him with heavy 
losses on his cotton speculation. The IQ08 crop was a very large one and 
prices declined to eight and a half cents toward the end of the year. 

Early in 1909 a new star rose in the speculative firmament. Eugene 
Scales of Dallas thought that in view of the deficient winter moisture in 
Texas and the steady advance of the boll weevil the next crop would be a 
moderate one. It is said that on a diamond ring he raised $400, invested 
this in cotton and within ten months turned this into $8,000,000. As Scales 
had expected, the 1909 crop turned out to be small, and in his bull operations 
he was joined by James A. Patten, the prominent Chicago grain operator, 
Colonel Thompson, allied with metal interests and reputed to be many times 
a millionaire, the New Orleans veterans. Brown and Hayne, and some 
lesser lights. The advance was practically continuous until the end of the 
year, when an advance of about seven cents had been recorded. The bulls 
had an enthusiastic following and everybody seemed to look for 20 cents 
in the near future. Early in 1910 the McFaddens made an eminently 
successful raid on this congested long interest, and prices declined almost 
3 cents in as many days. For a time the market wavered but toward the 
end of February the old bull clique took hold again and with the help 
of Southern mills, arranged to take up what spot cotton would be tendered 
to them in March, May, July and August. The program was faithfully 
adhered to, in spite of the fact that all the bull leaders were indicted by the 
Federal Government for violation of the Sherman law. It is an open 
secret that on the spot end of the deal the losses were enormous, but much 



money was made on manipulation in the futures market. The bull campaign 
culminated at the end of August when that option climbed to 20 cents. 
There somehow, a hitch occurred, cotton coming out from unexpected 
quarters. Angry recriminations followed and so far this feature of the 
bull campaign has not been cleared up. 

Herewith we conclude our unpretentious sketch of cotton speculation 
in America. To an unbiased observer it would appear that whatever has 
been the ultimate fate of the individual operator, he fulfilled a useful 
function. Without him the course of prices would have been more erratic 
and the business of the spinner more uncertain, though this may seem 
paradoxical. Beyond any doubt, whenever a prominent speculator is success- 
ful, he steadies the market, and if he reads the signs of the market wrong, 
he is generally the heaviest loser. 




Of the beginning of the manufacture of cotton we have no record. 
We trace it back to the shadowy ages beyond all chronicles, the age of myth 
and legend, and there lose trace of it. India was its birthplace, but 
Hindoo mythology is uncertain, and does not aid us in determining when 
cotton was first spun and woven there. The earliest mention of it is 
found in the religious books of the Hindoos, in the Rig Veda, Hymn 105, 
verse eight, written 1500 years before Christ, in which there is an allusion 
to "threads in the loom;" and in "The Sacred Institutes of Manu" (800 
B. C), cotton and cotton cloth are repeatedly referred to under the Sanscrit 
names "Kurpasa" and "Kurpasum," and cotton seeds as "Kurpas-asthi." 
Kupas, the common Bengali name for the cotton with the seed, used all over 
India and occasionally heard in Lancashire, is probably derived from the 
Sanscrit, according to J. Forbes Royle. 

Herodotus, writing of the Hindoos, 400 B. C, says: "They f)ossess a 
Icind of plant which instead of fruit, produces wool of a finer and better qual- 
ity than that of sheep, and of this the Indians make their clothes." Nearchus, 
Admiral of Alexander the Great, records the fact that the Indians wore 
linen garments, the substance whereof they were made growing upon 
trees ; and "this is indeed flax, or rather something much whiter and 
finer than fiax." He also gives the Indian name for cotton as tala. 
Evidently, the manufacture of cotton in India dates from a very antique 
period, for it had attained a high degree of excellence long before the 
time of which Herodotus wrote, and a large export trade in white and colored 
cotton fabrics had already been established. Strabo, noted for his accuracy, 
mentions on the authority of Nearchus, the flowered cottons of India, and 
celebrates the numerous beautiful dyes with which they were colored. They 
attained almost incredible perfection in their fabrics, and that with the 
rudest and simplest of implements. The cotton, being ginned by the 
churka, a wooden mill, made for that purpose (see Plate 2) and 
bowed, was spun by the women. A heavy one-thread wheel of teakwood, 
of the rudest make, was used for spinning the coarse yarn ; while 
the finer threads were spun with the spindle, with or without the distaff. 
The yarn thus prepared was given to the weaver, whose loom consisted 
"merely of two bamboo rollers, one for the warp and the other for the web. 


and a pair of geer. The shuttle performs the double office of shuttle and 
batten, and for this purpose is made like a large knitting needle, and of 
a length somewhat exceeding the breadth of the piece (this was not 
always so; sometimes, the shuttle was short and was thrown). This ap- 
paratus, the weaver carries to a tree, under which he digs a hole large 
enough to contain his legs and the lower part of the geer. He then 
stretches his warp by fastening his bamboo rollers at a due distance from 
each other on the turf by wooden pins. The balance of the geer he 
fastens to some convenient branch of the tree over his head ; two loops 
underneath the geer, in which he inserts his great toes, serve instead of 
treadles ; and his long shuttle, which also performs the office of batten, 
draws the weft through the warp, and afterwards strikes it up close 
to the web." With such simple apparatus as this did the Indian weaver 
manufacture "webs of woven wind," as Dacca muslins were called in 
the Oriental hyperbole. "Some calicuts," writes Tavernier, "are made 
so fine, you can hardly feel them in your hand." He further says of the 
turbans worn by the Mohammedan Indians, — "The rich have them of so 
fine cloth, that twenty-five or thirty ells of it put into a turban will not 
weigh four ounces." Another writer says, — "When this muslin is laid on 
the grass, and the dew has fallen upon it, it is no longer discernible." 

India remained in advance of Europe in the industry far into the eigh- 
teenth century. Though largely imported into England, the Indian cotton 
goods were' regarded with great disfavor by the home manufacturer, though 
they brought large profits to the merchants. Daniel DeFoe, in his "Weekly 
Review" in 1708, says, in regard to the preference exhibited by the people 
for Indian chintz, calico, etc., — "It crept," he says, "into our houses, our 
closets, our best chambers! curtains, cushions, chairs, and at last beds 
themselves were nothing but calicoes and Indian stufifs, and in short, almost 
everything that used to be made of wool or silk, relating either to the 
dress of the women or the furniture of our houses, was supplied by the 
Indian trade. The several goods brought from India are made five parts 
in six under our price, and being imported and sold at an extravagant 
advantage, are yet capable of underselling the cheapest thing we can set 
about." We shall see later on how unfounded were his fears. 

From India, cotton goods were early introduced into Persia, and a 
reference to them occurs in the book of Esther (Chap, i, v. 6) in the 
description of the decorations of the palace of Shushan for festivities 
given by King Ahasuerus, B. C. 519, which mentions that there were white, 
green and blue hangings, the word translated green being in the Hebrew, 
Karpas, and should be rendered cotton-cloth, so that the hangings were 
of white and blue striped cotton. (We are indebted to the work of Mr. 
H. Lee for this explanation, and he is also authority for the assertion 
that cotton was known in Egypt as early as 550 B.C.). Alpino, the 
Paduan physician and botanist, f 1553- 1607) records that the Egyptians im- 


ported cotton at that date, that gossypium herbaceous did not grow there, 
but that gossypium arboreum was cultivated in private gardens as an 
ornamental plant, and the down was not used for spinning. The Greeks 
were acquainted with muslins and calicoes brought from Egypt two hundred 
years before Christ. A little later, 63 B. C, P. Lentulus Spinther, the 
Roman redile, introduced cotton in the Apollinarian games, and Csesar 
the Dictator covered with awnings the whole Roman Forum and the 
Sacred Way from his own house to the Capitoline Hill. 

In the seventh century, cotton was freely cultivated and manufactured 
in Arabia and Syria, but not until the tenth century was it grown for 
manufacturing in China. The Moors introduced it into Spain (712 A. D.) 
but when the Moorish domination of Spain was crushed in 1492, the manu- 
factures fostered by them were discarded ; yet the cotton plant is still found 
growing wild in that country. Under the influence of the Moors, cotton 
was cultivated in Greece, Italy, Sicily and Malta, but when they were 
expelled from Europe, it departed for a time also. The art first revived 
in Italy. In the fourteenth century, the fustians and dimities of Venice 
and Milan were much esteemed in Northern Europe. Next, it was es- 
tablished in Saxony and Suabia, and found its way into the Netherlands, 
and fustians were largely manufactured in Prussia and Germany. Two 
events made the fifteenth century a crucial epoch in the history of the 
cotton trade — the discovery of America by Columbus, and the discovery 
of the passage to India round the Cape of Good Hope by Vasca da Gama. 
Sailing westward in quest of a nearer route to India, Christopher 
Columbus reaching one of the Bahamas thirty days after leaving Spain, 
the natives in canoes surrounded his ship, offering for barter cotton yarn 
and thread in skeins. 

In Cuba, he saw the women clothed in cotton garments, and noticed 
the hamacus (hammocks) of strong cotton cord. Oviedo, the Spanish 
historian and chronicler of the Indies (1478-1557), gives the same account 
of Hayti, and at the discovery of Guadaloupe in the same year, cotton 
thread in skeins was found everywhere and looms with which to weave it ; 
in all of these places, the idols were made of cotton. This manufacture 
had evidently been handed down from a far distant time. 

The "new world" is after all as old as the rest of the globe and was 
apparently as early populated. In Mexico, and in Central America, are 
found indubitable proofs of the greatness and the culture of former 
dwellers in the land. Pyramids, vast as those of Egypt, huge reservoirs, 
aqueducts, and the ruins of temples and palaces record the fact that a 
powerful and wealthy nation, skilled in all the important arts of civilization, 
once existed. But these are their only records ; we know nothing of their 

In Peru, Pizarro and his soldiers in 1532 found evidences of the 
same antiquity. Humboldt describes the great road from Quito to Cuzco, 


built by the ancient Peruvians, and macadamized with broken stone mixed 
with lime and asphalte as "Marvellous." Tombs, temples and palaces 
arise on every hand. They have lain in ruins for centuries, but are still 
traceable. They were the works of men who lived thousands of years ago, 
and amongst their manufactures was that of cotton. There are in the 
British Museum some mummy cloths woven of cotton, the "fibres of which 
under the microscope are very tortuous, and resemble those of Gossypium 
hirsutum." It would seem therefore that the cultivation and manufacture 
of cotton in the New World was very likely coeval with the similar use of 
it in India. The dress of the Incas or sovereigns of Peru was composed 
of cotton of many colors spun and woven by the "Virgins of the Sun." 
When Cortez conquered Mexico in 15 19, Mexicans had no textile fabrics 
except those made from cotton, nor had they flax, or silk, or wool. Cortez, 
fired with enthusiasm at the beauty of the hangings and garments presented 
to him by the natives of Yucatan, sent home to his emperor, it is recorded, 
"counterpanes," "under-waistcoats," "carpets," and "handkerchiefs." 
Particularly are noted a variety of mantles, some of which were chequered 
and figured in various colors, the outer side of the garment bearing long 
nap, like a shaggy cloth. Obiardo Barbosa, of Lisbon, visited South Africa 
in 1 5 16, and found the natives wearing cotton, and as early as 1590 cotton 
was imported into London from the Bight of Benim. 

In England no cotton was woven at this period, the small quantity 
used for candlewicks, etc., being brought either from Italy or the Levant. 
In 1560, however, England imported a small quantity of cotton and seemed 
desirous of competing in its manufacture: in 1585, a fresh impetus was 
given to this ambition by the advent of Flemish refugees, who sought in 
England a refuge from the cruel religious persecutions to which they had 
been subjected in the Netherlands. 

In a poem entitled "The Processe of the Libel of English Policie," 
published in 1430, mention is made of cotton. Hakluyt mentions "cottoft- 
wool" as being brought "in tall ships of London" from Cyprus and 
other ports in the Levant. Cotton was imported from Antwerp, also, in 
1560. In the "Treasures of Traffic," which was published in 1641, the 
author, Lewes Roberts, says of the Manchester manufacturers, — "They buy 
cotton wool in London that comes first from Cyprus and Smyrna, and at 
home work the same, and perfect it into fustians, vermilions, dimities, and 
such other stufifs, and then return it to London." In Fuller's "Worthies of 
England," mention is made of Humphrey Chetham, the celebrated founder 
of the Blue Coat Hospital and Library at Manchester, as being engaged 
in the manufacture of cottons, especially of fustians "then in almost gen- 
eral use throughout the nation." so that fustians must have been made in 
Manchester long before the publication of Lewes Roberts' book. Calico 
printing was begun in England in the latter part of the seventeenth cen- 
tury. In the "Daily Advertiser," of September 5, 1739, was published an 


article which says: "The manufacture of cotton, mixed and plain, is 
arrived at so great perfection within these twenty years, that we not 
only make enough for our own consumption, but supply our colonies and 
many of the nations of Europe." Sir Edward Baines' "History of Cotton 
Manufacture" furnishes the following table of imports of cotton into 
England in the infancy of the cotton manufacture, and shows how trifling 
was the vaunted prosperity of the cotton trade, as compared with the 
operations of to-day. 

Quantity of Cotton Wool Imported into England. 

Year. Pounds. 

1697 1,976,359 

1701 1,985 

1710 715 

1720 1,972,805 

1730 1,545.472 

1741 1,645,031 

1751 2,976,610 

1764 3,870,392 

As Great Britain was the latest among the nations to adopt the 
manufacture of cotton, in which she has long led the world, so the United 
States was the last to enter the list of the cotton-growing nations of which 
she has long been the foremost. (See Roper: History of Cotton Production 
in the United States, Ibid.) 

In 1738, began the marvellous inventions which have had so large a 
share in contributing to the commercial prosperity of the manufactures of 
both England and America. 

In that year. John Kay, a native of Bury in Lancashire, invented the fly 
shuttle and introduced it to the woollen trade; but it did not come into 
general use in the cotton trade until 1760, in which year Robert, son of 
John Kay, invented the "drop box." The next invention to be recorded 
was of stupendous importance, and practically revolutionized all former 
methods in the fabrication of textiles. In England, the gravest impediment 
in the manufacture of cotton had long been the impossibility of obtaining 
yarn in sufficient quantities to keep the looms of the weaver busy. TKe 
spinning at that time was all done by women in the homes, by means of a 
hand-wheel, fashioned after the old Indian wheel, which had been intro- 
duced into Europe early in the sixteenth century. Spinning by this one- 
thread wheel was a tediously slow process, and though wheels were turning 
from morning to night in thousands of cottages, they could not keep 
pace with the demand. The cotton was converted into yarn by two 
processes, roving and spinning. The spinner took the short, fleecy rolls, as 


they came from the hand cards and applied them successively to the 
spindle. With one hand she caused the spindle to revolve ; with the other, 
she drew out the cardings, which, receiving a slight twist from the spindle, 
were converted into thick threads, called rovings, and wound upon the 
spindles so as to form caps. In the next process, the roving was spun 
into yarn, the operation being similar, but the thread was drawn out finer 
and received much more twist. So slow an operation was necessarily an 
expensive one; and was a grave obstacle in the establishment of the new 
manufacture. The spinners' and the weavers' minds were full of it, and 
there were many fruitless experiments, no doubt, before the solution of 
the difficulty was obtained and a machine was invented by means of which 
twenty, fifty, a hundred, or even a thousand threads could be spun at one 
and the same time by a single pair of hands. This was prior to Sir Richard 
Arkwright's patent, and was the invention of one Lewis Paul, of Birming- 
ham, whose roller machine for spinning was patented in 1738. Claims 
were later made by the sons of his partner, John Wyatt. (See sketches of 
Paul and Wyatt, Vol. II. of this work.) Sir Edward Baines, in his valuable 
work, the "History of Cotton Manufacture in Great Britain," gives the full 
text of the Letters Patent, and that document proves beyond a doubt that 
the mode of spinning by rollers was invented fully thirty years before 
Arkwright took out his patent for a similar machine. The "spinning 
engine," as it was called, was set up in 1741, in a large warehouse, near 
the well in Upper Priory, Birmingham. It was propelled by two or more 
asses, walking round an axis. Another manufactory was established at 
Northampton, which was moved by a water wheel ; the machines consisting 
of several frames, bearing 250 spindles and bobbins. The ultimate failure 
of these enterprises was largely due to want of experience in the owners ; 
but for which the quickening of the cotton industry would have been 
accelerated by thirty years. 

In 1748, the process of carding, which hitherto had been effected 
by stock cards was facilitated by the invention of rotary cards, for which 
in that year Mr. Lewis Paul, the patentee of Wyatt's Spinning Machine, 
took out a patent. In 1758, he took out a patent for the spinning machine, 
an improved type of the model of 1738. 

One of the very early improvements made in the carding machine was 
a feeder in 1772 by John Lees. Of the crank and comb, Hargreaves was 
the original inventor, though this contrivance was embodied in Arkwright's 
carding machine. 

About the year 1764, a poor weaver named James Hargreaves, who was 
employed in a cotton mill in Lancashire, first made a machine in that 
county which spun eleven threads. It is said he discovered the principle 
of his machine by the accidental overturning of a spinning wheel. At 
first he kept the machine secret, and his family spun weft from it for his 
own weaving. The secret was, however, discovered and a mob broke 


into his house and destroyed the jenny and most of the furniture, and he 
himself was so persecuted that he was obhged to fly the country. He 
retired to Birmingham in 1768, where he entered into partnership with 
Thomas James, and they built a small mill. In 1770, Hargreaves obtained 
a patent for the jenny, but before leaving Lancashire he had built a few 
of the jennies for sale and its importance being recognized by manufacturers 
and weavers alike, it was brought into gefieral use. So confirmed, however, 
were the prejudices of the spinners, that "a mob arose and, scouring the 
country for several miles around I'lackburn, demolished the jennies, the 
carding engines, the water frames and every machine turned by water or 

One Thomas Highs, a reedmaker of Leeds, in 1769 invented a water 
frame, which it was claimed later was the prototype and model of later 
machines, and it is claimed he also invented a spinning-wheel, which 
antedated that of Hargreaves. 

In 1768, Richard Arkwright, having completed a model of the 
"spinning engine" and being devoid of means to carry out his invention 
to a practical issue, repaired to his native Preston, and applied to a friend 
for assistance. This friend, Mr. John Smalley, entered into partnership 
with him, and fearing that the riots which took place in Blackburn on the 
invention of the spinning jenny would be repeated, Mr. Arkwright, ac- 
companied by Mr. Smalley, went to Nottingham, and there was introduced to 
Mr. Samuel Nud of that city, who was in partnership with Mr. Jedediah 
Strutt of Derby, that patentee of the stocking frame to whom, we must 
not forget, Samuel Slater, of Rhode Island, was apprenticed. 

The roller-spinning frame was now patented (1769) and was greatly 
improved later by Arkwright, who like all the early inventors of machinery, 
encountered the animosity of his fellow-manufacturers in various ways, 
though he was the most successful of his class. He and his partners, Nud 
and Strutt, erected a mill at Nottingham, which was driven by horses ; but 
this power proving too expensive, a much larger mill was built by them 
at Cromford in Derbyshire, the motive power being furnished by a water 
wheel, and from this circumstance the spinning machine was called a 
water frame. 

Before these two important inventions of the spinning jenny and the 
water-frame, the chief obstructions and impediments of the cotton manu- 
facture vanished. The machines not only spun more yarn, but they spun 
better yarn. The new water-frame produced a hard, firm thread, adapted 
for warp; therefore linen warp, which had been everywhere used, was 
abandoned, and goods were for the first time woven entirely of cotton. On 
the other hand, the jenny was peculiarly adapted for spinning weft, so 
that the two machines did not conflict, but were brought into use together, 
and finer and more delicate fabrics were introduced, especially calicoes 
imitated from the Indian article of that name. The spirit of invention 


was now aroused into marked activity, and much experimentation evolved 
various improving devices in the new machines. But the opposition en- 
countered by the machines, owing to the ignorance and prejudice of the 
workmen, caused the impetus imparted to the trade by the new machine to 
be followed by a lull, and the imports of cotton into Great Britain did not 
exceed 4,764,589 pounds a year up to 1775. 

On the i6th of December, 1775, Mr. Arkwright was granted another 
patent for a series of machines, which comprised the carding, roving, and 
drawing machines, all used "in preparing silk, cotton, flax and wool for 
spinning." Yarns were now produced far superior in quality to any before 
made, as well as lower in price, and a mighty impetus was given to the 
cotton manufacture. Weavers could obtain an unlimited quantity of yarn 
at a reasonable price, and cotton fabrics could be sold lower than ever 
before; the price of the manufacture being still further lowered by the 
use of cotton warps in place of linen. The demand for them consequently 
increased, and numerous spinning mills were built to supply the requisite 
amount of yarn. Arkwright's fame filled the land and capitalists flocked 
to buy his machines. He and his partners spent upwards of £30,000 on 
their buildings in Derbyshire, and he also built a very large and costly mill 
in Manchester, and a business was formed which employed upwards of 
5,000 persons, with a capital, on the whole, of not less than £200,000. 

The factory system in England took its rise from this period. Up to 
this time, the manipulation of cotton had been effected almost entirely 
in the houses of the workmen; the hand or stock cards, the spinning-wheel 
and the loom requiring no more floor space than could be afforded in a 
cottage. A spinning jenny of small size also could be, and often was, used 
in the same way ; but the water-frame, carding engine, and other machines 
now brought out by Arkwright in a finished state, required not only a certain 
amount of floor space, but their weight necessitated that they should be 
placed in strong buildings, and they required the strongest impelling force 
then known; namely, that of water. 

The machinery called for a further division of labor than was requisite 
in the primitive state of the manufacture ; it was found expedient to utilize 
the power obtained from each water-wheel by carrying on the numerous 
operations of an extensive manufacture in one building; these and other 
considerations led to the introduction of the factory system, and mills were 
erected at many points where water power was accessible. 

Arkwright was making a large fortune, not only by his patents, but 
by the various manufacturing enterprises in which he had a share, when 
several persons, believing that he was not really the author of the inven- 
tions by which he was profiting, ventured to set up similar machines without 
leave or license from him. He therefore in 1781 instituted nine actions 
for infringement, one only of which came to trial, that against Colonel 
Mordaunt. This action was for the infringement of the second patent for 


the carding, drawing, and roving machines, and the patent was set aside. 
He made an effort to regain this second patent with the result that his 
claims to priority of invention were disallowed and the patent was annulled 
in 1785, the patent for the spinning machines having expired in 1783, and 
the surprising amplification of the manufacture which almost immediately 
followed, proved that the nullification of this patent was of the utmost 
national advantage. 

Arkwright undoubtedly possessed inventive talent of a very high order, 
but the splendid achievements in the line of invention attributed to him, 
even to the present day, belonged in great part to others less successful 
than he; in appropriating them as his own, he "acted dishonorably and left 
a stain upon his character which the acknowledged brilliance of his talents 
cannot efface." (See Sir Edward Baines' "History of the Cotton Manufac- 

During the years 1774 to 1779, Samuel Crompton was busy inventing 
the spinning mule, which superseded the spinning jenny and to some extent 
the water-frame also. No patent was taken out by the author of this 
admirable machine, it became public property, and while many were en- 
riched by it he remained a poor man, his only reward being $5,000, awarded 
him by act of Parliament in 1812. 

The first self-acting mule was invented .somewhere between 1780 and 
1790 by Mr. William Strutt, of Derby, son of Mr. Jedediah Strutt, but for 
some reasons it did not come into successful operation. Mr. Kelley, i» 
1792, made a self-acting mule. Later on, several mechanics in England, 
Scotland, France and America, invented devices to render mules self-acting, 
none of which were absolutely successful. But in 1825, Mr. Roberts of the 
firm of Sharp, Roberts & Co., machinists, Manchester, invented a self-acting 
mule for which a patent was granted, a second one for an improved 
machine being granted in 1830. This last mule approached very near 
perfection and came rapidly into use. 

Such wa'^ the efficiency of the mule that at first it seemed probable that 
the water-frame, like the jenny, would fall into disuse ; but a little later on, 
when the power-loom came into being, it was particularly desirable to 
have twist for warps of the wiry smoothness which the water-frame pro- 
duces, and the improvements which were effected in that machine enabled the 
manufacturers to sell the low counts of water-twist yarn cheaper than the 
mule-twist. The improved machine was called a throstle; and the im- 
provement lay chiefly in the simplification of the gearing. Further 
improvements, which largely increased the velocity of the machine, were 
made by American machinists in later years. About the year 181 7, the 
fly-frame came into being, and this was followed by the tube-frame ; Mr. 
Henry Houldsworth was the patentee of the former in 1825, the tube 
frame being invented in America and patented in England by Mr. Dyer, 
of Manchester, in 1825. 


We have followed the gradual evolution of spinning machinery to 
the first quarter of the nineteenth century, and must now retrace our steps 
in order that we may contemplate the further extension of its usefulness 
by the adoption of one of the most mighty impelling forces known to man, — 
Steam. Had not this discovery been made, the building of mills in 
Lancashire, the birthplace of the cotton industry, must have ceased when 
all the available water-power had been utilized. 

The honor of first applying steam as a mechanical power has generally 
been ascribed to the Marquis of Worcester ; but that ingenious and eccentric 
nobleman's recognition of the immense power of steam was anticipated 
nearly fortv years before the publication of his work, the "Century of 
Inventions," in 1663, in which he describes his experiments and their results. 
As early as 1615, Solomon de Cans, engineer to Louis XIH, in a book 
published in that year propounded the raising of water by steam as a 
philosophical principle. In 1630, a patent was granted by Charles I, to 
David Ramsaye, a groom of the privy chamber, for nine articles of inven- 
tion, of which two appear to indicate the original of the steam-engine; 
namely, "To raise water from low pits by fire," and "to raise water from 
low places, and mynes, and coal pits by a new way never yet in use." But 
it was not until July 25, 1698, that a patent was granted to Captain Savery, 
of Cornwall, for a steam-engine, which was considered so important that 
an act of Parliament was passed, "for the encouragement of a new 
invention by Thomas Savery, for raising water, and occasioning motion 
to all sorts of mill work, by the impellant force of fire." Before he obtained 
his patent, Savery had erected sundry steam-engines to pump water out of 
Cornish mines, and had published a description of his engine in a work 
entitled "The Miner's Friend," in 1696. This engine was extremely 
defective from the fact that it caused an immense waste of both steam and 
fuel, and was so limited in its capabilities that it could only be used in 
certain situations. Thomas Newcomen effected a considerable improvement 
in it, and he and Savery obtained a joint patent for the new engine in 1705. 
Mr. Brighton, in 1717, simplified the movements of the machine without 
altering its principles; and from that time until 1769, little change was 
made in it. And now came James Watt, a native of Greenock, who had 
qualified as a maker of philosophical instruments in London and Glasgow, 
and who settled in the latter city in 1757. He was appointed an instrument 
maker to the LTniversity and there became acquainted with Dr. Black, who 
about that time published his important discovery of latent heat. His 
study of this doctrine led Watt to make the prodigious waste of heat in 
the steam-engine the subject of his serious contemplation. In 1763, he 
was called in to repair a small working model of Newcomen's steam-engine. 
Its defects were apparent to him and he at once set about to repair them, 
for he perceived the prodigious c-apabilities of steam, if it could only he 
properly applied. After years of patient labor, experiments so costly that 


his means were almost exhausted, he succeeded in developing the steam- 
engine into the most valuable instrument for the application of power that 
the world has ever known. It is worthy of note that his patent for "lessening 
the consumption of steam and fuel in fire engines," should have been taken 
out in the same year as that of Arkwright for spinning with rollers, namely, 
1769. This first patent did not include all Watt's improvements in the 
steam-engine; in 1775, he entered into business with a Mr. Boulton, an 
enterprising man of wealth who had. great mechanical talent, and having 
made further improvements in the steam-engine, Parliament in that year 
passed an act vesting in Mr. Watt "the sole use and property of certain 
steam-engines (or fire engines) of his invention, throughout His Majesty's 
dominions," for the term of twenty-five years. He took out three later 
patents in 1781, 1782, 1784, for further improvements. 

The first steam-engine made for a cotton mill, by Boulton and Watt, 
was set up in the factory of Messrs. Robinson, at Papplewick, Nottingham- 
shire, in the year 17S5. Messrs. Arkwright and Simpson had put up an 
atmospheric engine in their cotton mill at Shude Hill, Manchester, in 
1783; but not until 1789 was the first steam-engine used in that town for 
cotton spinning built for Mr. Drinkwater by Boulton & Watt ; Sir Richard 
Arkwright first a<lopted the new invention in a cotton mill in Nottingham, 
in 1790. In Glasgow, the first engine for cotton spinning was set up for 
Messrs. Scott and Stevenson, in 1792. The spinning machinery had created 
the cotton industry ; the steam-engine fostered it and extended it far 
beyond the limits it could have attained had it been restricted to the 
motive power attainable before the birth of steam-power. 

But the inventive genius of those who sought to advance the cotton 
manufacture was not exhausted by these splendid efiforts, and we must next 
note the improvements brought about in the loom itself and in the methods 
by which its operations were conducted. In 1695, a loom moved by water 
power, was made by M. de Gennes, which is described in the Philosophical 
Transactions of the Royal Society for 1678, as "a new engine to make linen 
cloth without the help of an artificer," but it did not come into use. 
Prior to 1765, a swivel loom was invented by Vaucanson, and in 1765, a 
weaving factory was built by Mr. Gartsi,de, probably fitted with those 
looms ; but no real advance was made, as each loom required a man to 
work it. In 1765, the Rev. Dr. Edmund Cartwright, of Kent, invented 
a power loom and attempted to manufacture with it; but in this he was 
unsuccessful. He spent a large fortune, which he had inherited from his 
father, in his efforts to make practical use of his loom and certain carding 
machines which he had invented, and his circumstances became precarious. 
At this juncture. Parliament, in 1809, came to his assistance with a grant 
of £10,000 as a reward for his ingenuity. 

About 1790, Messrs. Grimshaw, of Gorton, under a license from 
Cartwright, built a weaving room at Knott's Mills, Manchester, and at 


great cost to themselves, endeavored to improve the power loom. Their 
effort was so far unsuccessful that on the burning of the factory, they 
abandoned the enterprise. 

In 1794, a power loom was invented by Mr. Bell, of Glasgow, which 
was unsuccessful. Mr. Robert Miller, of Glasgow, in 1790, took out a 
patent for a machine of the same order, and Mr. Monteith, of Pollokshaws, 
Glasgow, fitted up a mill with 200 of these loom.s, but it was some years 
before the business proved successful. 

The chief difficulty in the effective working of the power loom was 
at last solved by the patenting in 1803, of a dressing machine, by Thomas 
Johnson, who, working under the direction and encouragement of his 
employers, Messrs. Radcliffe and Ross, of Stockport, produced this essential 
accessory and made the use of the power loom possible. In that same 
year, Mr. H. Horrocks, of Stockport, took out a patent for a new power 
loom, upon which he obtained further patents for improvements in 1805 
and 1813. Mr. Peter Marsland, of Stockport, obtained a patent in 1806, 
for a power loom with a double crank, which failed of adoption, although 
it produced very superior cloth. Horrocks' loom is the one which came 
into general use, being a neat, compact, simple machine, very rapid in 
motion. The power loom and the dressing machine came very slowly into 
favor. In 1813 there were but 2400 of the former and one hundred of the 
latter in use, yet this was sufficient to awaken the alarm of the hand-loom 
weavers, who broke the power looms set up at West Houghton, Middle- 
town, and other places. But its great value in course of time was fully 
proven, and' in 1829 there were 45,500 power looms in full activity in 
England, and 10,000 in Scotland, this being regarded as a conservative 

We must note another series of inventions which have multiplied the 
efficiency of the ones already recorded a hundredfold. These are directed 
to the preparatory processes by which cotton is made ready for spinning, 
and to the final and finishing processes after it has left the loom. Snod- 
grass, of Glasgow, in 1800, invented the scutching machine, and in 1814 
the lap machine was introduced by John Crighton, of Manchester, in 
almost the same form in which it exists today, and its inventor also 
effected vast improvements in the methods of opening and scutching. The 
invention and gradual evolution of the carding machine cover nearly the 
whole of the nineteenth century, the first important improvement being 
effected in 1823, and the principle of the revolving flat card was devised 
in 1834, but lay dormant for over thirty years, when it was taken in hand 
and developed in 1857, its usefulness being further extended in 1880 by 
the Messrs. Ashworth, and it became practically the carding machine of 
to-day. The combing machine was first exhibited by its, inventor, Mr. 
Josue Heilmann, of Mulhouse, at the Paris Exposition of 1851. Mule 
and frame spinning have been much simplified by various devices and 


improvements, the first change being made in the Crompton mule 6y 
Richard Roberts, who converted it into an automatic machine in 1835. The 
development in frame spinning has been far greater than that in mule 
spinning; improvement followed improvement until the Rabbeth spindle 
reached what seems to be the practical limit of speed. 

In the loom much has been done in the past decade ; the principal 
difficulty, loss of time in the changing of the shuttles, having been effectively 
removed by the invention of the Northrop loom which has two most 
important improvements, the first of which wholly prevents loss of time 
by stoppage for shuttle changing, and the second, causes the instantaneous 
stopping of the loom if a single warp thread breaks. 

Having followed the great fundamental inventions of machinery for 
cotton manufacture step by step, we can only cursorily mention the fact 
that improvements and new applications of those fundamental principles 
have been made by inventors all over the world, but mainly in England and 
America, during the century and a half that has followed. In the manufac- 
ture of textiles from cotton. Great Britain now leads, Lancashire being 
the greatest cotton manufacturing centre in the world. There were in 
the United Kingdom, in 1905, over 53,000,000 cotton spindles in active 
operation. Cotton manufacturing under the factory system, made possible 
by the inventions of Wyatt, Kay, Hargreaves, Arkwright, Crompton, and 
Cartwright, had its inception in the county of Lancashire. The industry is 
concentrated within a radius of thirty miles around Manchester, the rest 
of the county being mainly agricultural and mining; coal and iron beiiig 
two of the products which have rendered the locality so peculiarly suited 
for a manufacturing centre. At the beginning of the year 1906, there 
were operating in Lancashire 48,322,684 cotton spindles and 684,811 looms. 
Of this number, 2,430,367 spindles and 32,371 looms were put into new 
mills in the preceding year; later in 1906, ninety new mills were put into 
operation, organized, under construction, or projected, to contain 8,026,356 
spindles, 5.937,356 of which consume American cotton, the remainder will 
spin Egyptian. One mill, The Mammoth, has 250,000 spindles. The ex- 
tension of this gigantic industry goes on by leaps and bounds, and 
Lancashire has added 10,000,000 spindles to her productive capacity within 
a few years. During 1906, Great Britain increased her total exports of 
manufactured cotton, $36,600,000. 

During the years 1909-1910. the too rapid increase of mills and the 
short cotton crops in Egypt and America during the former year somewhat 
diminished the prosperity of the cotton manufacturing industry of the 
Kingdom. For 1910 the number of spindles in active operation was 53,- 

As we contemplate the splendid achievements of the early inventors 
of cotton machinery, and their effect upon the manufacturing industry in 
England, we can realize that those of her sons who left her shores to 


venture in the New Wono., were not inactive in the new industry that opened 
such a promising market for their raw material in the way of cotton. 
Spinning and weaving were of course practised in the New World by the 
earliest colonists; but they were home industries, the women spinning the 
yarn from which they wove cloth for their households, at first of wool or 
flax, but later of the cotton which grew so abundantly to their hand in 
the warmer latitudes of their new country. About 1786 came others 
who had knowledge of the new carding, spinning and roving machines, 
but as an embargo was placed upon the exportation of machinery or of 
models or drawings of it, they necessarily had to depend upon their 
memories, which usually proved defective in some vital point, so that 
while copies of the English machines were built at various points by 
different persons, few of them were of any practical value. Some ex- 
ceptions there were, such as the jenny, built after the model of Hargreaves, 
by Christopher Tully, in 1775, which was placed in a building at the 
corner of North and Market streets, Philadelphia, and operated by the 
"United Company of Philadelphia for Promoting American Manufactures." 
In 1786. Robert and Alexander Barr, of Scotland, came to East Bridgewater, 
and built machines for carding, roving and spinning, and the General 
Court grcmted them £200 bounty. Another model was made in 1787 by 
Thomas Somers, an Englishman, who received twenty pounds bounty ; these 
machines were all made for Mr. Orr, of Bridgewater, and remained in his 
possession that all might examine them, but there is no record of their 
practical use. In 1788, a small mill was built at Beverly, Mass., in which 
a spinning jenny, made after a model furnished by Somers, was operated 
by horse-power. About the year 1788, Daniel Anthony, Andrew Dexter, 
and Lewis Peck, of Providence, entered into partnership for the purpose 
of engaging in the manufacture of cotton, and went to Bridgewater to 
examine the model brought by Orr from England ; finding it imperfect, 
they laid their drawings aside for a time, and built a jenny after the one 
at Beverly, the model for which had been furnished by either Leonard or 
Somers. This jenny had twenty-eight spindles, and was finished in 1787, 
and was operated in the market-house chamber in Providence, ancT Joshua 
Lindly, of Providence, constructed a carding machine from the model at Bev- 
erly. They then proceeded to build a spinning-frame from the model at 
Bridgewater ; it was operated by a crank turned by hand, ana was very im- 
perfect. Later came Joseph Alexander (1788), a weaver from Scotland, and 
a loom was built under his direction and set in motion in the market-house 
chamber ; this was the first fly-shuttle ever used in Rhode Island. The spin- 
ning frame, (Mr. Orr's), after being tried for some time in Providence was 
carried to Pawtucket, and attached to a wheel propelled by water, but it was 
too imperfect to be used. Shortly after it was sold to Moses Brown, of 
Providence, as was also a stocking loom brought to East Greenwich by John 
Fullem, a native of Ireland. An attempt had been made to run this ma- 


chinery, by William Almy and Smith Brown, the capital being ftirnished by 
Moses Brown, but it was unsuccessful. 

At this juncture, in a moment auspicious for his own fortunes, and for 
the country to which he took his way, a young man named Slater left his 
natal place, Belper, in Derbyshire, England, and came to New York. It 
must be remembered that at that period an embargo was laid upon the 
exportation of English machinery, while a bounty was given for the 
exportation of manufactured cotton goods. Manufacturers in the United 
States were dependent, therefore, if they wished to use the new machines 
then lately invented in the mother country, upon the memories of those who 
came to her shores, for their reproduction. Samuel Slater brought much 
valuable knowledge, especially of the master machine, the water- frame of 
Arkwright. He had served a strenuous apprenticeship under Jedediah Strutt, 
the former partner of Arkwright, and therefore was thoroughly conversant 
with the machines in all their details, and he was himself possessed of 
much mechanical genius, and imbued with the patience, perseverance and 
industry necessary in .^iuch an enterprise. He obtained employment in 
New York City, but finding no scope for his ability, he wrote to Moses 
Brown of Providence, of whose experiments he had heard, and offered His 
services as manager of spinning. They were accepted, and he went to 
Providence and found the machines worthless. An agreement was made 
whereby he entered into partnership with Ahny & Brown, and then set 
to work to make a series of machines after the Arkwright pattern, whicli 
he successfully accomplished after much labor, and so set in motion the 
first of the series of great factories which to-day constitute the cotton 
industry of Providence. 

After 1790, power looms were introduced, and it seemed as though the 
only obstacle to an unlimited extension of the cotton industry would be the 
impossibility of procuring sufficient raw material, when, in 1793, the 
invention of the saw gin made it possible to clear the fibre of seed rapidly, 
and flooded the market with cotton, to the great relief of planters and 
manufacturers alike, and gave added impetus to the impulse of the new 
and rapid machinery, not only in Rhode Island, but in the States of New 
York, New Jersey. New Hampshire, Connecticut, Maine, Vermont and even 
to some slight extent in the South. The first cotton mill in New Jersey 
was built in 1794 at Paterson ; New Ipswich, N. H., 1804; Union Village, 
N. Y., 1804; Pomfret, Conn., 1806; Brunswick, Me., 1807; North Benning- 
ton, Vt., 181 1 ; a second mill at Fall River in 1812; in 1815, the power loom 
in connection with power spinning was introduced by Francis C. Lowell, 
at Waltham, Mass., that being the first cotton factory to carry on in one 
establishment all the processes involved in the manufacture of the finished 
product from the raw material. The progress of the business of cotton 
manufacturing was thereafter continuous in the Northern States; in the 
South there has been more fluctuation, mills were built in Wilmington, Del., 


in 1795; James Island, S. C, 1797; in 1809, there were six small horse- 
power mills; in Petersburg, Va., there was one; and in Nashville, Tenn., 
one; the Bolton factory was built at Upton Creek, Ga., in 181 1; a mill 
near Lincolnton, N. C, 1815; Covington, Ky., 1828; FHnt River, Ala., 
1832; New Orleans, La., 1838; Natchez, Miss., 1844; Cave Hill, Ark., and 
at Huntsville, Texas, in i860. Slave labor, however, was not adapted to 
the factory, and the Civil War completely stultified the industry: in the 
period of rehabilitation which followed, it dawned upon the intelligence 
of the planters that the manufacturing, as well as the growing of cotton, 
would ensure the prosperity of the Cotton Belt and the contiguous States, 
and the spindle and loom have found an abiding place beside the cotton 
gin in the cotton plantations of the South. At first, the mills were gradually 
refitted with the latest improved machinery. A great proportion of the 
mills built in the past decade are quite equal to those at the North ; in 
fact, many improvements are there found which do not exist in the North. 
The first factory operated solely by electricity, without shafting or belts, 
was located at the South. The growth of the industry in the Southern 
States was fairly continuous during the last ten years of the nineteenth 
century. Both North Carolina and South Carolina, spin more than half 
the cotton grown within their limits, and after a phenomenal growth during 
more than twenty years, the enlargement of old mills and the building of 
new mills is still going on. There were twenty-eight new mills built in 
the Southern States in 1910 in which 214,028 new spindles, and 3,752 
looms were set in operation. 

Notwithstanding the amazing progress of the cotton industry in the 
Soutliern States, the largest and densest concentration of cotton manu- 
facturing in the United States is in Southern New England, as it ever has 
been since the days when Samuel Slater set in motion the first water-frame 
in Pawtucket, R, I., in 1791. 

In the American State papers (Finance, Vol. Ill) a list is given of 
the mills existent within thirty miles of the town of Providence, R. I., in 
November, 1809. They are enumerated in the order of their establish- 
ment; twenty-seven mills were in operation with 20,046 spindles "now in 
operation," and having besides 14.494 unemployed spindles ; there were 
also fourteen other mills all established in 1809, and evidently not yet in 
operation, having 23,000 spindles; the total did not greatly exceed the 
capacity of one Fall River mill. 

The total number of cotton spindles in operation in the ITnited 
States during the year 1910 were 24,192,359 ring spindles and 4,996,586 
mule spindles, making a total of 29,188,945, which includes all spindles 
using cotton, as well as those in cotton mills only. 

The exports of manufactures of cotton from the United States in 1910 
amounted to the value of $33,398,672. The home consumption is very large ; 
as an exporter of manufactured cottons, the United States ranks third. 


The imports of goods in the same year amounted to the value of $66,473,- 


In the manufacture of cottons, Germany ranks third, its production 

being excelled only by the United Kingdom and the United States, and 
next to Great Britain, it is the greatest exporter of cotton goods in the 
world. Its progress in these lines has been very rapid; in 1887 the total 
number of spindles in the empire was 5,054,795, which consumed 1,006,983 
bales of cotton, and in 1910 the number of spindles had increased to 
10,200,000, with a consumption of 1,660,000 bales of cotton. The number 
of looms in operation in 1910 was estimated as 231,199; the average spin- 
ning mill has 26,500 spindles, and the average weaving mill 364 looms. 

Although cotton manufacturing is an old industry in Germany, it was 
not until 1879 that the modern German cotton industry commenced; and not 
until 1889 did the export business attain large proportions; since that 
time it has steadily increased, until Germany occupies the second position 
as an exporter of cotton goods. 

The goods exported are chiefly textile specialties, such as knitting, 
embroidery, braiding, hosiery, gloves, etched lace, edgings, braids, etc. 
The knit-goods industry is one of the most important lines of the export 
trade and its steady growth accounts for the increase of her shipments of 
cotton manufactures to the United States within a few years, the export 
trade of the Empire in this line having doubled. The goods manufactured 
are largely of a cheap grade, in the production of which Germany uses a 
vast amount of cheap cotton. Next to Japan, she is the largest importer 
of Indian cotton ; she also imports large quantities of cotton waste and 
of lint. In 1907, her imports of cotton amounted to the value of $127,- 
765,064. In 1907, Germany also imported over $29,000,000 worth of cotton 
manufactures, of which the principal item was fine yarns for use in the 
making of laces and embroideries; the bulk of the yarn imported (in 
1907, it was 71,464,700 pounds out of 88,381,282) comes from Great Britain, 
with small quantities from Switzerland, France and India. 

The manufacture of cotton waste into a great variety of finished 
products is quite an industry in Germany. Not only do the mills manu- 
facture the waste from the German cotton mills, but they also import cotton 
waste from all parts of the world. In many cases the goods manufactured 
from this waste goes back in the shape of coarse towels, scrubbing cloths, 
dish rags, blankets, etc. In 1909 the value of cotton manufactures imported 
into Germany amounted to the sum of $64,349,488, while her exports of 
the same amounted to $95,524,870. 

The growth of the cotton manufacturing industry in Italy has been 
very rapid during the past quarter of a century. There are in Lombardy 
about five hundred mills, that being about sixty per cent of the mills in Italy. 
The number of looms for the entire country is (exclusive of hand-looms) 
about 15,000 with 5,000,000 spindles, employing 300,000 people, the 


weaving machinery being nearly all English. The total amount of the raw 
cotton imported into Italy is computed at 700,000 bales, 100,000 of which 
are from India ; 500,000 from the United States ; and 30,000 from Egypt. 
This amount is on the increase, as are the exportations of manufactured 
goods. Turkey, Roumania, Bulgaria, Egypt, South America, India and 
the Philippines are the principal foreign markets for the Italian export 
trade. Milan is now one of the great cotton textile markets of the world. 
During 1906 she sent to the United States cotton fabrics to the value of 
$45,000, and cotton waste worth nearly $120,000; to the Philippine Islands, 
$100,000 worth of textiles. The centre of the cotton textile trade is a few 
miles north of Milan at Busto and Gallarate, where there are about 
150,000 looms (this being exclusive of hand-looms) ; there are 5,000,000 
spindles in operation, with 300,000 operatives. 

Italian hand-made laces are manufactured at Cantu, a place which 
lies a few miles north of Milan. Seven thousand persons are employed 
in this industry, "point Venice" being so popular both at home and abroad 
that the supply is inadequate for the demand. The real Venetian lace is 
if course made of pure linen yarn. The total value of manufactured 
cotton exports for the first nine months of 1906 was $15,750,000. 

In Italy cotton was first manufactured in the fourteenth century. Daru, 
in his "History of the Republic of Venice," mentions it briefly, as do 
several other writers; but it seems to have been of small importance, and it 
is doubtful if the cotton goods made were not mingled with wool; those 
made entirely of cotton being brought to Italy and France from Syria and 
Asia Minor. The value of the cotton goods exported from Italy in 1910 
was $25,646,333 ; and of those imported the value was $7,250,834. 

The cotton-manufacturing industry in France is very extensive, nor 
is it confined to one locality, being found in thirty-three of the Departments. 
Before the loss of Alsace, 6,500,000 spindles were in motion. In 1895 the 
number was decreased to 4,600,000, but it has increased since then, and 
in 1901 Mr. Gaston Beaumont gives the number of spindles in motion as 
5,000,000. The principal centres of production are the Nord, Normandy, 
the Eure, the Loire, and the Vosges. Since the annexation of the Upper 
Rhine, Normandy has become the chief seat of the industry, and produces 
more than one-third of the cotton manufactures of France, Rouen being 
the great industrial centre from which port most of the exportations to 
foreign countries and to the French colonies in Asia and Africa are made. 

The development of the manufacture of cotton in France dates from 
the seventeenth century, when the raw material was introduced into 
that country for the first time in sufficient quantities to give rise to an 
industry. It is, however, mentioned in the archives at a much earlier date, 
and according to those of the Seine Inferieure and of the customs at 
Dieppe, it was of cotton that candlewicks, gloves, and caps were made, in 
Dieppe in 1302, on which there was a tariff of ten per cent. In 1541 


and '42, there is an entry of fifteen and a half bales of cotton coming from 
Portugal, and of a dozen bales coming by way of England. At the close 
of the seventeenth century, the industry assumed a certain importance, 
mainly because of the new machinery invented about that time in Great 
Britain. In 1900 there were 5,500,000 spindles in active operation in 
France, and since then the industry has continued to grow, the number of 
active spindles in 1910 being 7,100,000, with a consumption of 951,000 bales 
of cotton. 

France now ranks fourth among the European countries in the manu- 
facture of cotton goods, and takes third rank as an exporter. In 1910 
the exports of cotton goods from France were valued at $64,619,295 and 
the imports at $13,624,804. 

Cotton manufacturing in Switzerland has been almost stationary for 
the past ten years. The coal and cotton is all imported and most of the 
textile machinery is made in England, while all of the lace machines are 
made at home. Much of the help in the mills is Italian and German. The 
mills are scattered, there being no great manufacturing centres as in other 
countries. The factories average 22,000 spindles apiece, or 300 looms. 
Hand-looms are a thing of the past, though lace is still to some extent a cot- 
tage industry. In textiles, the Swiss stand in the foremost rank for the pro- 
duction of fine goods. There are four yarn mills, having over 50,000 spindles. 
The President of the Swiss Cotton Manufacturer's Association gives the 
following figures for 1908: Spindles, 1,499,170; twister spindles, 117,782; 
with 2,342 operatives; and 22,709 looms, with 13,854 operatives. Forty 
per cent of the cotton used is Egyptian, and the remainder American, 
with a small percentage of Indian. The cotton imported into Switzerland 
in 1906 was : 

American 30,111,268 pounds 

Egyptian 19,766,133 

Indian 2,271,222 " 

Other 22,502 

The total amount of textiles imported from Switzerland in 1906 
amounted to the value of $41,000,115. 

Cotton manufacturing is the leading industry of Austria, and is 
steadily becoming more imjxirtant. The imports of raw cotton into 
Austria-Hungary in 1907 amounted to about $50,000,000, of which sixty- 
seven per cent was supplied by the United States. On January i, 1907, 
there were 3,512,122 spindles in operation, to which about 600,000 were 
added during the year, making the total over 4,000,000 spindles, mostly 
mule spindles. In 1910 there were in Austria-Hungary 4,643,000 spindles 
in active operation. 


The mills are mostly private concerns and are small. There are only 
twenty-two mills which operate over 50,000 spindles each, though the 
newer mills are much larger. Bohemia now contains about sixty per 
cent of the mills in the country. The centre of the Bohemian cotton 
industry, which practically means the centre of the cotton industry of 
Austria, is Reichenberg, and the towns adjacent to this place are rapidly 
becoming mill centres. The largest weaving mill has 2,397 looms ; it is 
situated at Grunwald, in Bohemia. About one-third of the 650,000 bales 
of cotton imported into Austria comes from India, and it is mixed with 
American cotton. In Hungary, the business of manufacturing cotton is 
as yet in its infancy, and the government is offering many inducements to 
hasten its growth. Rozsahegy is the main cotton manufacturing centre 
and owns half the cotton spindles. The largest company is established in 
that town, the "Ungarisch Textilindustrie Aktiengesellschaft," which was 
founded in 1894. It has two spinning mills with 50,000 and 54,000 spindles 
each, a total of 104,000 spinning spindles; 7,000 twister spindles; 1,250 
ordinary looms ; and 900 Northrup looms. The next largest mill is at 
Budapest, and has 13,732 spindles and 340 looms. The present consumption 
of cotton is about 50,000 bales a year. Coarse goods are chiefly produced ; 
the finer goods being sent to Bohemia to be bleached. Most of the mill 
machinery is English. The hand-loom is still in use and the weavers use 
15,000,000 pounds of bundle yarn yearly, part of which is supplied by 
Hungarian mills and part imported. The skilled help in the Hungarian 
mills is mostly Austrian. In. 1907 there were in operation in Hungary 200,- 
000 cotton spindles. The exports of cotton manufactures of Austria- 
Hungary for 1910 amounted to $I3,.?57,962, and the imports to $12,449,783. 

Of other European countries, Belgium had in 1910 1.322,000 cotton 
spindles, and in 1909 exported cotton manufactures to the amount 
of $54,004,530; the importations of those goods for the same year amount- 
ing to $49,209,711. Spain has 1,853,000 active spindles; Portugal, 476.- 
000; the Netherlands, 426,000; Sweden, 377,000; Greece, 9,000; Denmark, 
83,000 and Norway about 74,000. 

The leading cotton manufacturing districts of Russia are Moscow, 
with about 5,000,000 spindles; the Baltic Provinces, with about 1,800,000; 
and Poland, with about 1,250,000. During the past twenty years a notable 
growth in this industry has been achieved, the number of spindles having 
increased 120 per cent during that period. In 1900 the cotton spindles 
in active operation numbered about 7,500,000, and in 1910 had increased 
to 8,250,000. In 1909 cotton manufactures were exported from Russia 
to the amount of $10,689,328, while the importations amounted to $14,- 


Concerning the condition of the cotton trade in India in the first 
decade of the twentieth century, we cull much valuable information from 
the official report of Mr. W. A. Graham Clark, special agent of the Depart- 


ment of Commerce and Labor. India, besides being a great cotton-produc- 
ing country, is also a great cotton manufacturing country, and a large 
exporter mostly of yarn, much of which is later re-imported in the shape of 
cloth. The amount of cotton yarns spun in British India and the native 
states in 1906 was : 

Nos. I to 10 166,066,232 pounds 

" II " 20 .' 359.363.974 " 

" 21 " 30 105,779,111 " 

" 31 " 40 15,607,009 " 

" above 40 i, 139.477 " 

And in the same year she used 726,695,323 pounds of imported yarn. 

The first spinning mill in India was established in 1817 on the banks 
of the Hooghly, near Calcutta, but it passed out of existence after a few 
years. The first cotton factory in India dates from 1854, when a Parsee 
merchant, named Cowasji Davur, built a small mill at Tardes, near Bombay. 
All the mills are patterned after the English type, and are filled with 
British machinery. The principal mill centres are Bombay, Ahmedabad, 
Calcutta, and Cawnpore, but the industry is spreading out and many 
mills have been built also in the native states. There are 217 mills in 
India, with 25,279,595 spindles and 52,668 looms, the largest mill being 
the Jacob Sassoon mill at Pard, near Bombay, with 92,840 spindles and 
1,810 looms. The next largest number of spindles is 86,040 in the 
Bengal mill at Calcutta, while the largest number of looms in a single mill 
is 2,015 i" the Century mill at Bombay. We must not forget, while men- 
tioning the manufacturing resources, the 2,700,000 hand weavers, who con- 
sumed in 1906, 264,292,492 pounds of cotton yarn, to which must be added 
the hand-spun yarn which never finds its way into either the market or 
the mill ; this averages about 325,000 bales, or 13,000,000 pounds, which 
gives nearly 400,000,000 pounds of yarn used by hand-loom weavers. A 
leading Indian authority estimates that the production of native hand 
looms amounts to 1,650,000,000 yards annually. 

In 1906, India exported yarn to the amount of $46,738,000. The export 
of Indian piece goods is very mUch smaller than that of the yarn, but 
it is increasing. On coarse insized goods, the hand looms of India have 
practically a monopoly. In fine goods, they do not begin to compete with 
England, and the present competition is confined to medium heavy goods, 
such as T cloths, long cloths, sheetings, and the coarser grade of dhooties. 
India's best cloth market is in East Africa, next comes the Straits Settle- 
ments, then China, Ceylon, Turkey, and the Philippines. The cloth exported 
to the last-named country consists mostly of "Madras goods." In 1906, 
India shipped more cloth to the Philippines than did the United States. 


The manufacture of cotton is one of the largest and most promising 
industries in Japan. The mills are well built and stocked, mainly with 
English machinery, and the English methods of preparing the cotton are 
followed. The operatives are mainly women and girls. The first cotton 
mill in Japan was organized in 1868 by Prince Shimadzu, at Kagorhima, in 
the province of Satsuma. This mill contained 6,000 spindles, all the ma- 
chinery being imported from England by the prince. In 1887, there were 
twenty-one mills with 74,120 spindles; and in 1905, fifty cotton mills were 
in operation with 38,494 looms and 8,645,863 spindles, to which were 
added during the trade boom of 1906-7, 467,100 additional spindles. The 
Kanegafuchi Spinning Company is the largest in Japan and operates 218,- 
080 spindles and one hundred looms. No statistics are available as to the 
number of spindles and looms in Japan. There are a good many hand- 
loom factories, containing looms up to one hundred. These are employed 
in the weaving of fine muslins. The exports are on the increase to an 
appreciable extent; in 1905, Japan exported 267,114 bales of yarn, much of 
which goes to China. The exports of cloth are rapidly increasing, and 
Japanese goods are familiar in the Orient ; while there is a slight decrease 
in the exportations of yarn, owing to the increased demands of the 
home industry. 

China, in 1910, had seventeen mills, 2,200 looms and 463,948 spindles, 
all occupied in manufacturing goods for home consumption. 

Latin America contains 307 cotton mills which are situated as foUovvs : 

Countries. Mills. 

Brazil 137 

Mexico 139 

Peru 7 

Colombia 5 

Venezuela 2 

Argentina 6 

Guatemala I 

Chile 3 

Ecuador 4 

Uruguay 3 

Total 307 1,834,528 64,877 

There are no cotton mills in Cuba, Hayti, Dominican Republic, Sal- 
vador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay or Bolivia. 
The capital invested in the industry is probably about $140,000,000. 

The mills are mainly one-story only. There are some few Northrup 
looms made under the English patent, but most of the machinery is 
English, and the mills follow the English customs in most respects. 























Brazil's methods in cotton manufacture are crude and costly. The 
amount of middle grade goods sold is small ; the fine fabrics and better 
grades are imported because the wealthy classes will have them at any 
price; the cheaper and coarser grades are made at home. Most of the 
mills arc in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. The cost of transporting 
the raw cotton to the mills is excessive, as it is carted, the vehicles being 
small and the cotton poorly baled and bulky. Labor is generally inefficient 
and power costly, coal being imported for all purposes. Yet the cotton 
milling business is successful, owing to the excessive import duties, which 
protect the mill owner at the expense of the consumer. The cotton 
goods imports of Brazil have been $15,000,000 to $16,000,000 for some 
years back, and in 1906 the United .States' share in this trade was $590,007. 

Brazil is the most important cotton manufacturing country in Latin 
America, and its mills turn out over 40,000,000 dollars worth of cotton 
goods. These arc mainly gray goods and coarse, colored cottons, though 
there are seven print mills with thirty printing machines. Several of the 
larger mills make white shirting, muslins, lawns, etc., of fine quality. 
About half the mills are run by steam power; about a fourth are run by 
water power, and the remainder, which includes most of the larger mills, 
are run by electricity. The Mexican output is mainly coarse goods of nar- 
row width, but about half a dozen mills that now make goods of medium 
fine grade, including white shirtings, muslins, organdies, fine prints, napped 
goods, handkerchiefs, napkins and towels, which compare favorably with 
those imported. 

Peru makes no prints, but, in addition to gray cloth, makes some 
bleached goods. Columbia, Venezuela and Argentina make gray sheeting, 
to which the latter countr}' adds drills, duck and a small amount of colored 
goods. LTruguay makes duck, coarse sheeting, khaki, denim, plaid flan- 
nelettes, bath towels, and a few fancy woven goods. In Chile are manu- 
factured both cotton and linen goods, ginghams, stripes, colored flannels, 

There is one mill in Central America with 6,000 spindles and 150 looms, 
making gray and colored goods. 

There is but one cotton mill in the Philippines, which is situated 
at Manila, It is owned by an English importing house, uses English 
machinery, and is operated by Englishmen. The cotton used is chiefly 
American, which is mixed with one-fourth native. The mill makes its 
soft waste into candle wicks. The machinery consists of an opener and 
picker and one lapper; there are thirty-two cards, draw frames and 
fly frames, 10,000 spindles and 220 loooms, a few of which are dobby 
looms. The product is mostly coarse white shirtings with some convict- 
stripe cloth, and a few looms on chambray. Considerable hand-loom 
weaving is done in the country districts of the Philippines, and some 
really fine work is done. The annual imports of yam are valued at from 


$750,cxx) to $1,000,000, in addition to that made at the mill in Manila and 
by hand-spinning. Much of the native weaving is done with fibres other 
than cotton. The quantity of yarn and thread imported into the Philippines 
is steadily increasing. In 1903, it amounted to $641,164, and in 1906 had 
risen to $1,092,563. Yarn and thread are classed together, so it is impossible 
to particularize as to the quantity of each, but yarn undoubtedly prepon- 
derates. Over half of this comes from Great Britain, with Japan next; 
then Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Spain, India and China, with 
smaller quantities from other countries. The greater portion of the yarn 
is shipped in 400-pound bales, containing forty bundles of ten pounds 
each. The finer and fancy yarns are shipped in bales and boxes of various 

The possibilities of the trade in cotton fabrics in the Philippines are 
immense, the imports in 1906 amounting in value to $2,146,964. These con- 
sisted of closely-woven cloths, loosely-woven cloths, wearing apparel, car- 
pets, yarn and thread, quilting and piques, velveteens and corduroys, tulles 
and laces, knit fabrics, etc. 

— t: o 



The hand-combing and carding of wool and cotton must of necessity 
have been one of the primal domestic arts, since without it there could 
have been no weaving of cloth. The operation is, in fact, pictured upon 
those earliest records of the industry and ingenuity of man — the Egyptian 
tablets. But though various minor improvements and modifications were 
made from time to time in the operation of combing, it was not until 
the eighteenth century that any attempt was made to invent machinery for 
this purpose. 

The hand-comber, under the old system, employed two combs (see 
Plate 4) ; one of these a "pad" comb being affixed to a post, at a height 
convenient for the comber, by means of an iron rod fastened into the post. 
This raw wool having been submitted to the treatment necessary to pre- 
pare it for the operation, was "lashed" into each comb placed upon the pad. 
The combs, being charged with wool, were placed in the "comb-pot" to be 
heated, the comber meanwhile preparing handfuls of wool for his next 
charge. The workman then placed one comb upon the pad and with the 
other in hand began the combing operation by passing the teeth of one 
comb through the wool upon the other until the fibres of each became 
perfectly free of short wool or noils, the latter being left embedded in 
the comb heads. 

The teeth of these combs, as may be seen (Plate 4), were 
pointed and tapering, arranged in three rows, the outermost row of the 
teeth being longer than those in the middle row which again were longer 
than those in the inner row. The stumps of these teeth which were of steel, 
were fastened about one-third of an inch apart, in a wooden stock cov- 
ered with horn, and having a short handle. The operation was usually begun 
with a comb bearing only two rows of teeth, and to comb gradually 
from the tip of the wool up as a woman combs her hair, and was finished 
with the closer and finer comb. The short, flocky wool left in the comb 
after the comber had detached the combed and cleaned "tops," was, under 
the name of noils or noyles, set aside for the blanket or coarse cloth trade. 

The very earliest English patent relating to wool-combing was that 
accorded to Isaac Mills, of Bellerton, in Somersetshire, in the year 1723, for 
"an instrument for heating combs for combing and pressing wool." Though 
the invention of Isaac Mills bore no reference to combing machinery, it 
throws light upon the methods of wool-combing as they existed at that date. 
Having, as he represented in his application, "been bred up in and followed 


the trade of wool-combing and pressing for twenty-five years," he goes on 
to explain that "the usual way of method for kembing of wooll was by a fire 
made in a dry pot, the fire being open to the kembs, which did often neal 
the kembs and burn the wooll." It was further stated that for the pressing, 
the planks or iron plates were heated by a fire open to them, which often 
burned the planks and heated the iron plates so unequally that it frequently 
"burned the goods, to the great loss of the tradesman and discredit of the 
woolen manufacturer." His invention, calculated to remedy these defects, 
he describes as follows : "Two instruments of iron, to be used in the 
said trade of wool kembing and pressing, which are cast in such a form 
and contrived in such a manner, that a fire being made in the body of the 
instrument of iron for kembing, the kembs receive the heat from the same 
in such an equal proportion as neither to neal the kembs nor burn the wooll ; 
and that for the pressing, the planks or plates being placed in the body of 
the other iron instrument, and a fire being made to encompass or surround 
the same, will heat the planks or plates in so true a degree as wholly to 
prevent the burning of the goods, and the great loss frequently sustained 
by the traders in the woolen manufacture thereby." 

It was, however, left for that marvellous inventor. Dr. Edmund Cart- 
wright, to make the first practical attempt to solve the great problem of 
wool-combing by machinery, and though many inventive minds bent their 
energies to the task of its ultimate and practical elucidation, to him belongs 
the merit of creating the germ of all subsequent machines for the comb- 
ing of wool; for the leading -principle of Cartwright's machine finds repre- 
sentation even in those of inventors who followed their own special lines 
and who were ignorant of his wool-combing achievements. (See Plate 4.) 
The wool-combing machine of Dr. Cartwright was even more original in 
its conception than that of his power loom, for in the latter case there was 
already in use a machine for weaving, cumbrous in its operation and slow 
in its motion, it is true, but which had performed its task with more or 
less perfection for thousands of years. In this case, it was different; 
a machine for the purpose of combing wool was undreamed of as yet ; there 
was no intermediary operation between the simple process of hand-combing 
and the complex machinery now to be applied to the same purpose. We 
can present to our readers no more interesting description of the evolution 
of this machine than that afforded by the inventor himself in an article 
contributed to a scientific periodical of his day, a part of which is here 
quoted : 

"This machine is, I believe, the first of the kind ; at least, all former 
attempts (if there have been any) must have proved abortive; no wool was 
ever known to have been combed any other way than by the close and 
expensive process of hand labor. I obtained my first patent for this 
important invention on the 27th of April, 1790. In consequence of some 
additional improvements, I obtained a second patent on the nth of De- 


cember in the same year. But it was not until nearly two years afterward 
that my machine was brought to its present state of simplicity and per- 
fection, when I took out a third patent, dated May 15, 1792. The wool, 
for particularly nice work, goes through three operations ; otherwise, two 
are sufficient. The first operation opens the wool, and makes it connect 
together in a rough sliver, but does not clear it. The clearing is per- 
formed by the second, and, if necessary, a third operation. A set of 
machinery, consisting of three machines, will require the attendance of an 
overlooker and ten children, and will comb a pack, or 240 pounds in twelve 
hours. Machine-combed wool is bettter, especially for machine spinning, 
by at least twelve per cent, being all equally mixed, and the slivers uniform 
and of any required length. On the first introduction of this machinery, it 
was found, when not carefully attended, to produce a greater proportion of 
noil and pinion than good hand-combing, but in its present improved state 
it makes much less than any hand-combing whatever. The advantages of 
machine-combing arise not merely from the saving of expense ; yarn spun 
from it has a decided superiority, especially for curious purposes, such as 
superfine hosiery, etc. At Messrs. Davison & Hawksley's mill in the 
neighborhood of Nottingham, where this machinery is made use of, yarn is 
spun of quality which it was thought no mill spinning could ever have ar- 
rived at. In justice, however, to the spirit and ingenuity of those gentle- 
men, it must be added, that their spinning machinery is supposed to be 
upon a very superior construction. Besides the above mill, my invention 
is already introduced into many others, and in all probability, as trade 
revives on the restoration of peace, will be universally adopted." (See 
Plate 4.) 

The machine received the sobriquet "Big Ben" (after a celebrated 
prize fighter of that day), because the action of the crank lasher resembled 
the motions of a pugilist's arm. Like all other primal machines, the wool- 
comber met with opposition from some, was imitated by others, with little 
benefit to its inventor, and greatly to the detriment of its successful intro- 
duction into practical manufacturing; consequently, though embodying the 
principles of all future machines of the same character, Dr. Cartwright's 
machine did not fulfil the expectations of its inventor and others, nor for 
many years afterward was there a machine upon the market which was 
capable of clearing the wool as successfully as it could be done by the 
human hand. In 1793, a certain William Soplis obtained a patent for a 
series of combs and combers, an ingenious invention which met with little 
encouragement. The combs in this machine had curved teeth, and were 
affixed to arms and combers which when in action turned toward the 

In 1793 also made his initial appearance an inventor who later became 
prominent in this field, Mr. John Hawksley, who, with Henry Wright, 
applied for a patent in regard to machinery "for combing and preparing 


fibrous materials for 'spinning.' " This machine consisted of an upright 
shaft revolving forty times a minute ; a comb wheel with three rows cJf teeth 
on each arm ; a combing cylinder with three rows of teeth, the wool 
being drawn from the cylinder by means of wheels and conducted by 
rollers into a can or basket ; a feeding frame consisting of a fly with 
brushes and rollers, "to lay the wool close to the teeth of the cylinder," a 
pair of blast bellows for the purpose of conveying hot air to the wool, 
and to lay it ; a circular brush which took the noils off the teeth ; close to 
the brush was a second row of teeth to take the noils from the brush as 
it revolved. 

Forming a portion of Hawksley and Wright's 1793 patent was a 
second combing machine which consisted of a "straight range of combs 
in three compartments, and connected by a hook or catch at the top, 
moving in a slide or groove, and made to remove or take off after they 
had passed 'the long cogged wheels, when they would have got quit of 
the wool.' A rack which had a very slow, sliding motion was moved by a 
pinion, two cogged wheels drew the wool from the comb teeth, against 
which were placed two conducting rollers. The motion of the straight 
range of combs being slowly progressive, it followed that when these had 
advanced the length of one compartment, that part was taken away and 
discharged of its noils, and then passed to the other end of the machine 
on an inclined plane or otherwise, and fixed in the vacancy, and so on 
alternately, by which means a perpetual sliver of wool was produced." 

In 1795, a method of ."opening the staple and bringing it into a 
proper state for lashing upon a comb" was patented by John Passman, and 
in the same year one Anthony Amatt received Letters Patent for a ma- 
chine which successfully carried out the idea of working the hand comb by 
mechanical means. According to its inventor, this machine was upon 
"entire new principles for combing wool and heckling flax and hemp," 
and might be worked "by water, steam or horse mills, or by any other 
moving power." The patent covered three distinct machines for filling, 
combing and drawing off. Later inventors paid much attention to this idea 
of Amatt, and improvements upon it were patented by James Noble in 
1834; Donisthorpe & Rawson in 1835 and 1840; by Collier and several 
others ; but although these successive efforts brought the principle of the 
mechanism to the highest degree of perfection," the machines required 
so many hands to attend them and caused so great an amount of waste 
as to render them very ineffective when compared with the best and 
newest machines. 

A patent was taken out in 1794 by Mr. John Hawksley for a further 
improvement in wool-combing machinery, the principal features of which 
were: A circular revolving comb-pot to heat the combs, a "lasher or 
layer-on of wool" on the combing machine ; also a socket or holster in 
which to place the combs in their respective compartments in "a readier 


manner than theretofore used," for drawing off the wool from the machines. 
Thus, with more or les$ important improvements chiefly erfected by Mr. 
Hawksley at the close of the eighteenth century, Cartwright's combing 
machine remained a beacon indicating the course to be pursued by future 
inventors toward success in this line, and the woolen industry was for 
many a long year to depend upon the skill of the hand-comber for the 
bulk of its prepared material. 

Having recorded the achievements of the earlier inventors of wool- 
combing machinery, we now come to the transition period during which 
the old method of hand-combing gradually yielded place to the perfected 
wool-combing machinery. The change was gradual and the history of it 
is interesting. There were in hand-combing three operations, and these 
processes must have their counterpart in any machine that combs wool; 
more than this, as with hand-combing, some descriptions of fibrous sub- 
stances could not be perfectly cleaned, even with two or three combings, 
and the top had to be carefully picked by hand before the final impurities 
could be removed ; so the greatest difficulty with which the inventors had to 
contend was that of attaining as perfect a combing of the middle portion 
as of the ends of the fibre, and it was long before this difficulty was 
overcome satisfactorily, and in the later machines in addition to the three 
processes of the earlier machines and of hand-combing: namely, i, a feed- 
ing apparatus : 2, a working comb ; 3, a drawing-off movement ; there is added 
a fourth, the combing of the middle portion of the fibres by means of an 
intersecting comb." 

In 1805, James Noble obtained a patent for a machine for "discharging 
a wool comb or combs by separating the tear from the noils, drawing 
what was commonly called a sliver or slivers from the comb or combs, 
after or before the combs were worked or the wool was combed upon 
the same, and for other useful purposes." This invention seems to have 
borne no fruit, and the same may be said of those patented by Mr. 
Noble in 1833, 1835 a"^ 1846. In 1871, Mr. George Gilpin obtained 
Letters Patent for a machine for combing and preparing wool, consisting of 
a framework upon which was mounted "four rings of iron, with six 
arms, each mounted upon iron spindles placed parallel to each other. Upon 
each ring four small standards were screwed to suppport the ends of 
wooden bars fixed parallel to each spindle, forming a frame to these bars, 
and to these were attached the combs. These wheels and bars were dis- 
tinguished as the revolving comb frames, and the stationary and the 
sliding frame. 

At this juncture came an important development in the Collier 
machine, patented in 1814 by James Collier. In his specifications he claimed 
to prevent loss and unnecessary labor upon "a substance which has always 
been considered the staple produce of this country, separating each fibre 
of wool, etc., so as to make them follow a direction parallel to each other, 


and, by not holding or retaining them longer than is necessary to straighten 
the fibres, they slip through a number of points or teeth, so as to separate 
them from each other without breaking or otherwise injuring them." He 
employed in his machine "a small steam boiler to introduce steam into 
the inside of a taking-up roller, which was constructed of metal and made 
hollow, for the purpose of receiving the steam." 

The next machine of importance in the progress of wool-combing ma- 
chinery was one after the Collier model. It had new and extensive im- 
provements, and was patented by Mr. John Piatt, of Salford, in 1827, and 
was for many years known as the Piatt & Collier machine, which, though 
more largely used by spinners than any of its predecessors, and capable 
of producing good results on certain classes of wools, was, in comparison 
with modern machines, very ineffectual, since it produced a very large 
amount of noils, and it was impossible to comb the middle portion of the 
wool at all. It is, however, extremely interesting as being a distinct ad- 
vance in the right direction. See James' "History of the Worsted Man- 
ufacture" for a full description of this machine, which is too lengthy for 
insertion here. 

Many and varied as had been the efforts of inventors to improve 
upon the principles of Cartwright's machine, it is to the inventive genius 
of Mr. Donisthorpe that the world is indebted for the practical wool- 
combing machine of modern times ; many improvements have, no doubt, been 
made in this species of machine since his time, yet he it was who first 
made the positive success of the wool-combing machine an accomplished 
fact. George Edmund Donisthorpe was born at Market Bosworth in 1810; 
he early showed inventive genius, and at the age of fifteen he invented 
an improvement in the stocking frame which was universally adopted and 
became very valuable. In the year 1835 he was associated with Mr. S. 
Cuiiliffe Lister in certain improvements in wool-combing. He then applied 
all his energies to the purpose of making the combing machine of practical 
utility, and in 1840 took out a patent for further improvements. Two 
years more of incessant labor followed, and in 1842 Mr. Donisthorpe 
obtained Letters Patent for a combing machine of the "Cartwright order 
in which many valuable improvements were for the first time produced." 
To quote from his specifications, these were as follows: i, teeth set at a 
coarser gauge at the end where they begin to work the wool and of a finer 
gauge where the teeth penetrated closer up to the head of the comb contain- 
ing the wool ; 2, the combination of working combs with combs which 
move in a circular or endless course ; 3, an improved arrangement for 
filling the combs with wool ; 4, in applying steam or hot water to the heads of 
combs placed on a revolving axis, where such combs had a movement to and 
from their axis of motion, in addition to their rotation, round such an axis ; 

5, a method of using drawing rollers having an axis only at one end, and 

6, the use of two or more rotary combs with a moving, curved or endless 


comb. In 1843 ^^ took out an additional patent for three further im- 
provements. He then entered into partnership with Mr. S. Cunliffe Lister, 
who was first attracted into the field by the sight of Mr. Donisthorpe's 
machine of 1842, and he bought the patent. 

To relate the history of mechanical wool-combing in its proper sequence 
we must mention here the invention of Josue Heilmann, the progenitor of 
the embroidery machine. In 1841, Mr. Heilmann, who knew of and had 
seen in operation at Malmerspach the Collier wool-combing machine, ar- 
riv^ed at the conclusion that a different system of machinery would be 
required for the manipulation of cotton, in which he was more interested. 
He is said to have discovered the principle which made his invention suc- 
cessful while watching his daughter comb her long hair. He applied 
himself to the task he had undertaken with such ardor that his first model 
was finished in six months, and in the presence of Messrs. Hartman, Liebach, 
Bourcart and Schlumberger he operated it successfully upon samples of both 
wool and cotton. This model is preserved in the Industrial Museum at 
Mulhouse. Thus was the problem of combing cotton by machinery finally 
solved. Heilmann's machine not only combed that material with a per- 
fection that had never before been attained, but by the use of certain 
modifications it was capable of being applied to all other textile materials. 
This greatest invention of Heilmann was his last. "Its scope was so ex- 
tensive and its principle so effective that it has been considered worthy 
to rank with Jacquard's famous loom. For cotton it was intended to 
supersede beating by hand and beaters, and to sort the filaments and re- 
unite those of equal length ; for wool-combing it aimed to supersede hand- 
combing, as well as the wool-combing machines then existing; for the 
floss of silk it would do away with the cards and combing by hand; and 
for flax and hemp he also hoped to obtain a more perfect method. In Heil- 
man's machine the first operation, the feeding of the slivers to be combed, 
was accomplished by means of a feeding apparatus and a nipper; this 
nipper was the most essential point of the whole machine, and, like other 
important improvements in machines for specific purposes, it was made and 
applied by other inventors concurrently with Heilman, Mr. Lister and Mr. 
Donisthorpe, who in England were working indefatigably toward the pro- 
duction of a perfect wool-combing machine. Mr. Lister having purchased 
^r. Donisthorpe's patent rights, at first alone and afterward in con- 
junction with Mr. Donisthorpe, he labored late and early to make the 
latter's machine of practical value, and in 1843 ^^- Lister succeeded at 
combing in Mawningham the first fine wool that was ever combed by ma- 
chinery, and so successful was the operation of the machine that before 
the end of the year Mr. Lister received orders for over fifty machines from 
two of the largest spinning firms in the country. For many years, Mr. Lister 
commanded the wool-combing trade of Great Britain, and he received a 
royalty of one thousand pounds for each machine, which is said to be 


the largest patent right ever before paid. The three things which it was 
requisite that Lister and Donisthorpe should bring about were: To make 
a machine that would comb perfectly; to prevent clogging, and to reduce 
the proportion of waste or noils accruing in the operation. There was 
no machine then existent that met these requirements ; but by successive ef- 
forts they finally produced the "nip" machine in which the tuft of wool 
"was drawn by a nipper through a gill comb." In their machine the wool 
was drawn through the teeth of the comb horizontally; while Heilmann 
used a circular carder and drew the teeth through the wool in a circle. 
However, Heilmann's English patent was taken out in 1846, while Lister 
and Donisthorpe first made use of the nip principle in 1850, and not until 
1 85 1 was their machine more nearly perfected. So it comes about that 
the French are disposed to undervalue Mr. Lister's achievements, and in 
France and Germany, Heilmann is looked upon as the only originator of 
the "nip" system. It did not supplant Lister's wool-combing machine in 
England. Six Lancashire firms paid the sum of $30,000 for the English 
right of Heilmann's machine for combing cotton, and a Leeds firm paid 
the sum of 20,000 pounds for the use of the same for flax, while Mr. 
Lister purchased the English rights for wool ; the superiority of the 
Lister and other wool-combing machines being proven by the fact that even 
after the expiration of Heilmann's patent the trade continued to pay a roy- 
alty of 1,000 pounds per machine to Lister. 

We now come to an epoch in the wool-combing industry which brings 
us abreast with the condition of the industry as it is to-day. About 1846, 
Mr. Isaac Holden, who had been making investigations in the line of wool- 
combing, became associated with Mr. Lister, and in 1848 they formed the 
firm of Lister & Holden with a factory at St. Denis in France, and in 1848 
also they took out a patent for a square-motion wool-combing machine which 
was necessarily very imperfect, but successive improvements were made 
until 1856, when Mr. Holden took out a patent for a machine which embodied 
the perfection of his idea of a square-motion wool-combing machine, the 
beauty of its work rendering it pre-eminent for the classes of wool upon 
which it was employed. From this time on minor improvements were con- 
tinually efifected. Mr. Holden was the first to use washing operations 
for wool, and he was the first to use the important process of carding 
as a preparation for combing at Cullingsworth in 1837. 

We now arrive at the production of the Noble machine for which 
letters patent wr-re obtained in i^^S- since when continuous inventions of 
more or less importance have been applied to the Noble machine, which is 
thus described : "It is, in brief, merely dabbling a lock of wool on to two 
sets of pins placed close together, then parting the two sets so that a 
portion of the wool adheres to each, afterward drawing the wool thus 
drawn to make the combed top. The arrangement of the various parts is 
somewhat more complicated than in the nip comb, though the relative 


adjustments are not so delicate." In Europe, the three machuiei which 
rule the wool-combing trade are : The Square Motion, the N'.tble and the 
Heilmann "Nip." The square motion is in general use in France, and is, 
of coarse, in operation at Isaac Holden & Sons' extensive works at Brad- 
ford; the Noble is the machine most widely adopted in England, and the 
Heilmann possesses the field in Germany. In spite of all improvements, 
each machine has its own peculiar drawbacks and defects. The Noble 
machine can only deal with prepared and not with carded wool, etc. The 
wool-combing machine has -proved so valuable to the textile industries of 
Europe and America that those most prominent in its gradual development 
deserve all honor and admiration. In the long Hst that might be wiritten 
of those who have done service in this cause those of Cartwright, Heilmann, 
Donisthorpe, Lister, Holden and Noble stand out most prommently. The 
list would be too long did we notice all who contributed to the perfecting 
of these machines, the history of which has been more fully dwelt upon 
in works solely devoted to that purpose. In America, we search the 
records of the woolen industry in vain for an earlier mention of wool- 
combing machinery, and find none until 1845, when we read of the New 
England Worsted Company at Saxonville, running sixteen sets of cards and 
twenty combing machines. This is due to the fact that the worsted industry 
is younger here than in foreign countries and in comparison with them only 
partially developed. There was no worsted manufacture in the United 
States until 1842; and as late as i860 it was practically confined to three 
mills, that is, outside the carpet mills, which do not count in this particular 
instance, since carpet yarns and loosely twisted woolen yarns for knitting 
are carded alone. The procedure in preparing worsted yarn, for which 
long-stapled wools are mainly used, is entirely different. Worsted yarn 
which is made from wool fibres brought as far as possible into a level 
parallel condition is manufactured by one of two methods. In the first, the 
long yarn is drawn, gilled and combed ; in the second, the medium and short 
stapled wools are first carded and afterward combed. 

The mills mentioned were the Pacific, the Hamilton Woolen and the 
Manchester Mills, which were established before the wool-combing ma- 
chinery was brought to perfection ; but they gradually introduced the new 
machines, and before the close of the Civil War a number of them were in 
operation in this country, and conditions had arisen under which the mak- 
ing of many lines of worsted goods was possible ; since then the growth of 
the industry has been very rapid in the United States, so that in 1870 the 
wool-combing machines had increased to the number of 261 ; in 1880 to 515 ; 
in 1890 to 839; and in 1900 to 1,451. 

Very little worsted machinery has been made until recently in this 
country, the bulk of it being imported from England. A feature of the 
English wool-combing industry — namely, its specialization — has been in- 
augurated, to a certain extent, in this country by one of our largest mills. 


In England it is a survival of the days of hand manufacture continued 
on the introduction of machinery as being the most convenient and economi- 
cal system of manufacturing. Thus the enormous quantity of wool which is 
there woven into worsted goods passes through a few wool-combing estab- 
lishments. In Yorkshire there are but about sixty combing establishments 
which prepare wool for hundreds of worsted and woolen mills ; at Bradford 
the firm of Isaac Holden & Sons owns two immense combing plants, and also 
one at Rheims and one at Croix, near Ronbaix, in France. It has been offi- 
cially stated that two-fifths of all the colonial wool sold in London is combed 
by this firm. On the continent the Antwerp top-market is an outlet for an 
immense quantity of tops, which the enterprising Belgians prepare and 
comb from burry Argentina and other defective wools. 

Realizing that the cheapest and most perfectly combed wools were pro- 
curable only when the manufacture was specialized on a large scale, one 
of the foremost woolen manufacturing firms in New England, the Arling- 
ton Mills, began the production of " tops," for which they find a ready sale. 

The combing machine is also applied to the preparation of cotton ; 
Heilmann's machine being invented with that end in view, and as each 
combing machine has a capacity of two and a half cards, it will be seen 
that the advent of combing machinery greatly facilitated the cotton in- 
dustry. When Heilmann's machine first came into use in 1850 it was said 
to be a comber for short fibres. This arose from the fact that no attempt 
had been made to comb cotton before that, but only the long wool fibre, and 
when the machines were set to combing Egyptian cottons of one and three- 
eighths inch staple, it was thought that this was combing the shortest cotton 
it would pay to comb. A demand arose in the hosiery trade for very 
regular and very clean yarn of coarse counts, and this primarily suggested 
the combing of cotton five-eighths to one and one-eighth in length, which 
is what is meant by short cotton. With this the Heilmann machine was 
incompetent to deal ; first, the diameter of the detaching roll is too great 
to deal with such short fibres, and second, on the Heilmann comber it is 
impossible to get a satisfactory piecing with stock shorter than one and 
one-eighth inches, and it fails entirely below one inch. In fact, though 
the Heilmann cotton combing machine had remained without a serious 
rival until recently, and though the work done by it is admittedly excellent, 
the use of it was restricted to the finer brands of cotton spinning, as it has 
long been conceded that its production was small, that the piecing and 
overlap fall short of perfection, and that it is only effective when treating 
long cotton. 

The Pinel-Lecoeur comber was invented by Hetherington to meet these 
difficulties. This machine, while it reduced the waste very largely and made 
a fair piecing with five-eighth inch Surat cotton, was not altogether satis- 
factory for three reasons : First, the production was no greater than that 
of the Heilmann, and, although it made a better piecing in appearance, the 


sliver was not amalgamated at the piecing and drawn together, but simply 
overlaid. Second, the waste was still too great, causing undue expense. 
Third, the machine was extremely complicated and necessarily difficult to set. 

In the United States, combing machines, for use in the preparation of 
cotton, were first installed at the "Berkley Mills," Berkley, R. I., about 
1875, where Edward Kilburn, desirous of producing finer goods than had 
previously been made in this country, put in a set or two of combers manu- 
factured by Parr, Curtis & Company, of Manchester, England ; the Ponemah 
Mills, of Taftville, Conn., followed this example, as did other mills during 
the next few years. 

The first combing machines made in this country were of the Heilmann 
pattern, and were built by the Providence Machine Company, Providence, 
R. I., in 1877, for the Elizabeth Mills, Hills Grove and Greenwich, R. I., 
and the Merrick Mills, Holyoke, Mass. 

Later on, combers made by John Hetherington & Sons, Manchester, 
England ; Dobson & Barlow, Bolton, England, and Plat Bros., of Oldham, 
England, were imported by different mills in New England. Some time 
about 1885 to 1890, John Hetherington & Sons brought into this country 
the Pinel-LeccEur comber described above, some of which vVere put into 
the Hadley Mill, Holyoke, Mass., now owned by the American Thread 
Company. These machines failed to give satisfaction and were finally dis- 
carded by all who had used them. Several other combers were invented 
about this period, but the only one to come into this country would seem 
to have been the Alsatian, which was built at Alsace, France, and was im- 
ported by Stoddard, Haserick & Richards, of Boston, who are still the 
agents (1911) for this machine. This Alsatian was specially designed for 
the combing of short staples, for which there was an increasing demand; 
it was a single-head comber, with one combing cylinder and a top comb 
of the original Heilmann principle; but, owing to an improved napping and 
piecing mechanism, it was enabled to hold, comb and piece a heavy lap, 
which gave it a larger production than that of the standard Heilmann type 
comber, built by the English firms, but the quality of the work was never 
considered equal to that produced by the original Heilmann type machine, 
because of the extremely small combing surface; but, although this ma- 
chine has been superseded by superior combers, a great many of this type 
were sold and remained in use in 1911. 

About 1890, Harry Lever, a former fitter for John Hetherington & 
Sons, conceived the idea of combing cotton by an entirely new principle, 
being financed by Mr. Redmond, of the Arlington Mills, in Lawrence. He 
built what was known as the Redmond-Lever comber, and four of the first 
machines of this type were installed in the Howland Mill, No. 2, New Bed- 
ford, Mass. This comber was designed for the handling of shorter staples 
with a large production, and had a detaching mechanism which advanced 
the lap to the cylinder intermittently, the cylinder being composed of three 


small nippers that closed on the tuft advanced by the detaching mechanism 
in turn as the cylinder revolved. Just before these nippers closed on the 
tuft, the needle segment on the cylinder combed the end nipped by the 
nipper, and as the tuft was carried forward by the cylinder it was combed 
by the top comb, and after passing the top comb it was pieced to the tuft 
which had gone before and drawn through the rollers called the piecing 
rollers, from thence into a conductor or cylinder pan up to the table or 
silver plate in the usual way, and through a draw box, as in the Heilmann 
type comber. This was the second comber that was built in this country, 
and was really an American invention ; but it was never completed. 

About 1895 the Mason Machine Shops, of Taunton, Mass., designed 
and built a comber which was almost an exact counterpart or duplicate of 
the Heilmann comber, and they have perhaps a hundred of these machines 
in active use to-day. About the same time the Mumford comber, built by 
Glabasch & Mumford in (Germany, was brought to this country, and was 
strongly recommended as a high-production comber for short staples. The 
Mason Machine Shops secured the agency for this machine and a license to 
build it in America. This comber had a detaching mechanism which de- 
livered the cotton to the cylinder intermittently, with a nipper separate 
from the cylinder, somewhat like the Heilmann comber, which held the cot- 
ton while the cylinder combed the tuft, and directly over the top of the 
cylinder there were two piecing rollers which revolved in the piecing seg- 
ment after the combing of the tuft, which advanced the tuft combed to 
the opposite side of the cylinder, where it was nipped again, and the rear 
end of the tuft was combed by the same combing cylinder in the revolu- 
tion of the cylinder. This machine was considered a failure, and of those 
installed in this country few, if any, are in operation. In 1897 the Whitin 
Machine Works, of Whitinsville, Mass., built a comber which was an exact 
duplicate of the Heilmann type, and their first machine was installed at the 
Paul Whitin Mfg. Co., Northbridge, Mass., and proved so successful that 
in 1900 they equipped one department of their works for the manufacture 
of this comber, and the first eighteen were built for the New York Mills 
at New York Mills, N. Y. This type they continued to build until 1905. 
The standard Heilmann comber up to that period was a six-head comber, 
running a lap eight and three-quarters wide, with the exception of a few 
machines that were built by Piatt Bros., Oldham, England ; John Hether- 
ington & Sons, Manchester. England, and Dobson & Barlow, Bolton, Eng- 
land, which used a lap of the following widths: eight and three-quarter 
inches, ten and one-half inches, twelve inches. These machines were built 
in six and eight heads, but were not universally adopted, owing to imper- 
fections caused by vibration. 

Previous to this, Messrs. Dob.son & Barlow had produced the Double 
Nip Comber, which was considered a high-speed comber, the claim being 
125 nips per minute instead of eighty to eighty-five, as in the single nip 


machines. John Hetherington & Sons also secured letters patent on a double 
nip comber. A few machines of this type were shipped to New England, 
principally those of the Dobson Barlow make; but their defects were such 
as to prevent their adoption, the extreme vibration making it impossible to 
retain the settings, and in designing the machine two needle segments had 
been added to the cylinder, which reduced the combing surface from seven- 
teen to thirteen rows or needles. 

Next came the Nasmith comber, invented by John Nasmith, of Man- 
chester, England. This machine was to some extent of the Alsatian type. 
In it the piecing principle was somewhat like the Mumford comber, and it 
retained all the best points of the Heilmann, while its defects were elimi- 
nated ; it had a maximum speed of ninety-five nips a minute, combing a 
medium-weight lap; that is, an increase of about fifty per cent, in weight 
of lap over the Heilmann type comber. In 1901-02 a few of these Nasmith 
combers were brought into New England mills, and were later taken out 
and replaced with an improved Nasmith machine, which, in 1904, were 
replaced by the Nasmith Patent Comber, built by John Hetherington & 
Sons, Manchester, England, imported by S. C. Low, of Boston. This ma- 
chine occupies the same floor space as the Heilmann, and its production is 
double that of the latter at the same speed, and it combs without undue 
waste all staples from seven-eighths to two inches, making a perfect piecing 
with the shortest fibres, and it does fine medium and coarse combing. "In 
all combers, except the Nasmith, the piecing consists simply of laying the 
tops of one lot of fibres over the tails of the previously detached series, 
the overlap being about one-half of an inch on long cottons, and with short 
cottons no sliver can be made that will hold together along the table. But 
the nature of the piecing in the Nasmith is quite different, there being not 
only a long overlap, much exceeding the length of the staple on the short 
cottons, but the ends are thoroughly amalgamated by being drawn in while 
the overlap is being made. This does away with the serious difficulty of 
manipulating the combed slivers at the subsequent operations, and makes 
such operations quite normal in character, causing neither excessive waste 
nor stoppage." 

So successful did this comber prove that, in 1908, 2,000 of them had 
been placed upon the market, over 500 of them being in various mills in 
America. Meanwhile, the Whitin Machine Company, recognizing the fact 
that there was a growing demand for a higher production comber, that 
would deal with shorter staples, set themselves to meet it by producing a 
comber in which the vibration would be greatly lessened. First they built 
an eight-head comber, running an eight and three-quarter lap ; this fell short 
of what the manufacturers required, and it was improved to an eight-head 
comber, using a ten and a half lap. One hundred and sixty of these last 
machines were installed in the Manomet Mill No. i. New Bedford, Mass., 
eighty machines were put in the Kilburn Mills, New Bedford, Mass., and 


loo additional combers were built and placed in small lots in various mills 
throughout New England. In the Manomet Mills Texas cotton one and 
one-sixteenth staple and seven-eighths cotton were both successfully manipu- 

In the fall of 1904 the experimental force of the Whitin Machine Works 
turned their attention once more to the improvement of the Heilmann type 
comber, working on the plan of improving the machine by diminishing the 
vibration without interfering with the principle of the Heilmann comber, 
and six months later they placed upon the market the result of their labors, 
the Whitin High Speed Comber, built in eight heads, using a twelve-inch 
lap, the machine occupying the same floor space as the eight-head comber 
using a ten and one-half inch lap. The new machine had a minimum speed 
of 125 nips per minute, and an exactly proportionate production of two 
and one-half times that of the standard six-head, eight and three-quarter lap 
Heilmann comber, while the quality of the work remained the same. The 
arrangement of the feeding, piecing, nipping, combing and detaching opera- 
tions is the same as in every Heilmann single-nip comber, the vibration of 
the comber being overcome in the following different ways : (1) By elimi- 
nating entirely the rocking motion of the nipper frame and fixing it in 
the correct position for combing. (2) The lifting mechanism of the top de- 
taching rolls is eliminated and the top roll is raised and lowered for piecing 
by a bevel on the cylinder shaft segment, this motion being much more 
positive as the roll is raised up gradually instead of being dropped. 3. A 
tension device is appplied to the brass detaching rolls to prevent skipping. 
4. The most important improvement is that the actuating mechanism of the 
lower detaching and piecing rolls is designed so as to use two notched 
wheels instead of one as heretofore, with their accompanying internal gear. 
One of these notched wheels is working through the movement of the actu- 
ating cam on the cam shaft, while the other notched wheel is resting, to take 
its turn the following nip and so on. Thus, to drive the drawing-off 
rolls there are supplied two actuating mechanisms, each one of which runs 
at one-half the speed it formerly did with the same number of nips." These, 
with some few minor changes, produced a comber which met the require- 
ments of the trade, and in 1910 the Whitin Machine Company had built 
and put upon the market over 2,500 combers. The Whitin High Speed 
Comber is also built in England by Messrs. Howard & Bullough, of Accring- 
ton, for use in that country and on the continent. The high quality of the 
product is maintained, the loss is minimized and a high grade of yarn from 
short staple can be produced at less cost to the manufacturer by this ma- 
chine. One of the principal points of interest to the mill owner was the 
fact that he was enabled to equip his mill with an adequate combing plant 
without excessive cost, owing to the increased production of the machine, 
a consideration which was augmented in 1908, when it became necessary 
for the manufacturer to employ shorter staple. The Whitin high speed 


comber also met successfully the necessity for a system of semi-combing 
to take the place of double-carding, which had been used to some extent 
in New England mills. The double-carding of fibre weakened the stock, 
which was considered defective, and of course this placed again before 
the manufact!irers a vcr^' interesting proposition, as in the semi-combing of 
staple, instead of double carding it the manufacturer was able to use 
one-sixteenth shorter staple, which saved from one to three cents per pound 
in the cost of his raw stock. The Whitin High Speed Comber also met 
the demand of the manufacturer for a machine that would reclaim long 
fibres from the waste made by carding and combing in the ordinary fine 
mill ; where combing and carding were done in a mill, it would decrease 
the waste account from twelve to fifteen per cent.; where carding only was 
done, there would be a decrease in the waste account of about three per 
cent, and this saving was of vast moment to the manufacturer because of 
the high price of staple cottons used in a fine mill and the immense quan- 
tity of stock used in a coarse mill. 

We now come to the second division of our subject — namely, carding. 
The hand card was really more in the nature of a brush having wire in- 
stead of bristles. The old hand cards were made of wood and were usually 
about one foot long by five inches broad, having a handle about in the 
middle, and were covered with card clothing, the latter being composed of 
thin leather into which was inserted a great number of short wires about 
one-half an inch long; the wires being bent at a point about midway from 
the point of their insertion, in order to give them a certain degree of elas- 
ticity, while the points were ground to a certain shape, in order that their 
purpose might be effected. The process consisted in holding one of the 
cards stationery between the knees of the carder, who, after filling it with 
as much wool as could be conveniently worked, brought the points of the 
other card into contact with those containing the wool ; the second card 
being held so that its points were turned in the direction opposite to those 
of the wool-filled comb, the operation being continued until the different 
lengths of wool fibres were sufficiently opened and mixed, after which the 
two cards were held in a vertical position ; they were then operated in a 
gentle manner, with the teeth of the two cards all pointing in the same 
direction, until the carded wool was made into a roll equal to the length 
of each card which was now ready for the spinning wheel ; such was the 
modus operandi of hand cards. It is said that stock cards were first ap- 
plied to the preparation of cotton in England in 1739. 

The first improvement effected in carding consisted in making one of 
the two cards a fi.xture and increasing its size so that the carder, having 
spread the cotton or wool upon it, might use a card double the size of the 
old cards and do twice the amount of work. "The process was further 
facilitated by suspending the movable card by a pulley from the ceiling, 
with a weight to balance it, so that the workman had only to move the 


card without sustaining its weight." These were called "stock cards" and 
were first applied to the manufacture of woolens. John Wyatt spoke of the 
carding of cotton with stock cards in 1739. The invention of spinning ma- 
chinery now made it necessary to impro\e and facilitate the methods of 
preparing the fibres to be spun, a need that was met in part by the applica- 
tion of the rotary principle to carding by Lewis Paul, the inventor of roller 
spinning. The patent which he took out August 30, 1748, includes two 
machines for acccomplishing the s^ame purpose; the one a flat, the other a 
cylindrical arrangement of card,> The same specification applies to both : 
" The said machine for carding of wool and cotton, etc., does consist and 
is to be performed in the manner following, to wit : The card is made up 
of a number of parallel cards, with intervening spaces between each, and 
the matter being carded thereon is afterwards took off each card separately, 
and the several rows or filaments of wool or cotton so took off are con- 
nected into one entire roll." Of the two machines the second was the more 
important, consisting, as it did, of "a horizontal cylinder, covered in its 
whole circumference with parallel rows of cards with intervening spaces, 
and turned by a handle." Beneath this cylinder was a concave frame, 
hned internally with cards, exactly fitting the lower half of the cyHnder, 
so that when the handle was turned the cards of the cylinder and of the 
concave frame worked against each other and carded the wool." This un- 
doubtedly bears resemblance to the modern carding cylinder, except that 
in the modern machine the concave frame is placed over the cylinder instead 
of under, as in Paul's machine, which had a contrivance for letting the con- 
cave part down by a lever and pulley and turning it round, that the carded 
wool might be easily stripped off, which was done "by means of a stick 
with needles in it, parallel to one another, like the teeth of a comb." An 
ingenious device was introduced for the purpose of forming the cardings 
into a perpetual strip; this consisted of a flat, broad ribbon, extended be- 
tween two short cylinders, which wound upon one cylinder as it unwound 
from the other. The carding being placed on the ribbon, the turning of 
one of the cylinders wound the ribbon and carding upon it and thus formed 
it into a roll ready for the spiiming machine. Admirable as was this in- 
vention, it was defective in several important points ; the cylinder had no 
feeder, the cardings were taken off separately by a movable comb, and the 
perpetual carding was produced by joining short lengths by the hand as we 
have described, where now a comb attached to the cylinder, and constantly 
worked against it by a crank, brings it off the machine in a continuous roll. 
After the breaking up of Wyatt and Paul's establishment at Northamp- 
ton, the machine was brought and set up in Leominster and was applied 
to the carding of wool for hats and later on was taken to Wigan, in Lan- 
cashire, in 1760, and there applied to cotton, Mr. Peel being one of the 
first to adopt it. The first improvement in the carding machine was the 
fixing of a perpetual revolving cloth called a feeder, for which improve- 


ment a patent was taken out by John Lees, a Quaker of Manchester, in 1772. 
Arkwright claimed numerous important improvements in this machine later, 
many of which were sharply contested by contemporary inventors. 

But though many of the improvements were really effected by him, 
and though, in some large measure, the perfection of the carding engine 
into a complete and beautiful machine which has proved incapable of im- 
provements up to the present day was due to him, the leading principles 
of it were really due to other and less fortunate inventors. When Ark- 
wright took out his patent for carding, he also included in it machines for 
drawing and roving. In December, 1775, Mr. Arkwright took out a fur- 
ther series of patents for carding, roving and drawing machines, all to be 
used "in preparing silk, cotton, flax and wool for spinning." 

The first carding machine in use in the United States was built by 
Arthur Scholfield, who came from England in 1789 with his brother John 
and went to Byfield, near Newburyport, Mass., where they constructed 
the first carding machine for wool that was operated in the United States. 
Later, Arthur removed to Pittsfield, Mass., where, in 1800-1, he built a 
carding machine and set up for himself as a woolen manufacturer, and 
also as a builder of carding machinery, as may be seen from an advertise- 
ment which appeared in a Pittsfield paper in 1806: "Double-carding ma- 
chines, made and sold by A. Scholfield for $253 each, without the cards, 
or $4CXD including the cards. Picking machines, $30 each." Carding ma- 
chines made by him were set up in Lenox in 1806, and in Williamstown in 
the same year, and in Cheshire in 1807. Mr. Scholfield also introduced the 
carding machines into Connecticut, New Hampshire and other states. 

It is now necessary to give an account of the inventions and improve- 
ments during the next century of an industry in which Americans were 
from the first pre-eminent — namely, the manufacture of card clothing. As 
early as the period of the Revolutionary War there were in existence sev- 
eral manufactories for the making of cards. Daniel Anthony had one at 
Providence, R. I. The colony of Connecticut, in 1775, granted a loan of 
$1,500 to Nathaniel Niles, of Norwich, to enable him to carry on the manu- 
facture of fine iron wire for card teeth. Iron at this time being very costly 
and hard to procure, Jeremiah Wilkinson, a hand cardmaker of Rhode 
Island, set to work to make tacks for clothing by cutting them from sheet 
iron with a pair of shears and hammering heads on them with a vice. 

One of the earliest inventors of a machine for the manufacture of card 
teeth was Oliver Evans, of Philadelphia ; his business was that of making 
card teeth by hand, and he contrived an ingenious machine capable of mak- 
ing 1,500 teeth a minute; he met with so little encouragement, however, that 
he sold his machine and plans to other parties. Other improvements de- 
vised by him for pricking the leather and cutting, bending and setting the 
teeth he abandoned in discouragement, but they were taken up by others 
and formed the basis for subsequent patents. 


Giles Richards, who built a factory near Windmill Bridge, Boston, is 
supposed to have applied Evans' inventions to machines which he worked 
by a windmill. One of these machines tended by one man would cut and 
bend the wire for 240 cards in twelve hours. This factory was inspected 
by Washington during one of his Eastern tours. There were at that time 
900 persons employed in the mill, where they made 63,000 pairs of cards 
per annum. President Washington, writing of these machines in 1789, de- 
scribes them as "e.xecuting every part of the work in a new and expeditious 
manner, especially in cutting and bending teeth, which are done at one 

The machine of Chittenden, of New Haven, produced about 1784, took 
the wire from the coil, cut it into teeth and gave them "the first or double 
bend." It made S6,ooo teeth in an hour and was very likely utilized by 
Mr. Richards in conjunction with the machine of Evans. Mark Richards, 
brother of Giles, was engaged extensively in the making of cards near 
Faneuil Hall, Boston, in 1794; there was also a factory operated by Amos 
Whittemore which supplied four-fifths of the cards made in the state. 

In 1785 Edmond Snow began the making of hand cards at Leicester, 
Mass. ; this was the foundation of an industry which later brought com- 
mercial prosperity to the town. One of the greatest obstacles with which 
Samuel Slater was confronted in 1789 was the difficulty of obtaining suffi- 
cient properly made card clothing for his carding machinery. Fortunately 
at this juncture he met Phinrey Earle, who, since 1786, had been engaged in 
the hand-card business at Leicester, Mass., and engaged him to make the 
card clothing for the machines. In order to comprehend the difficulties of 
this new and untried experiment, we shall describe the usual method of 
making card clothing at that date, in order that we may contrast it with 
the requirements of the new venture. A strip of leather was taken, four 
inches wide and fifteen to twenty inches long and ruled off into quadri- 
lateral sections. "Two holes were made at a time at the intersection of the 
lines by a dcuble-needled pricker and the two-pronged staples which had 
been previously bent in a machine were inserted into the holes one at a 
time by hand. The second bend in the staple then being made, the card 
was tacked on a board ready to be used for carding either wool or cotton. 
Now for Mr. Slater's cards : strips eighteen by four inches were cut from 
sheets of calfskins; one hundred thousand holes were then pricked with 
the implement made for that purpose, and the teeth, which had been made 
by machinery, were put in by hand. The teeth in these cards were set 
diagonally, which suggested to Mr. Earle the invention of a machine for 
pricking "twilled" cards, for which he obtained a patent, December 6, 1803. 
Mr. Earle at first used calfskin, but later adopted cowhide, which was 
especially tanned for the purpose ; still later many other materials were used, 
and in a modern and well-equipped card manufactory all kinds of card 
clothing are manufactured and used, including oak and hemlock tanned 


leather, a dozen varieties of rubber-faced card clothing and a dozen or 
more varieties of cloth card clothing, and the iron wire teeth set by hand 
have been superseded by soft steel wire in about twenty sizes ;' hardened 
and tempered steel wire, in a dozen different sizes, as well as tinned wire 
and brass wire in dififerent sizes. But we must retrace our steps to speak 
of others prominent in the growth of the carding industry. Eleazar Smith, 
of Walpole, conceived a machine for making cards that would combine the 
operations of bending the teeth and pricking the holes in the leather. Many 
of his experiments wer« made under the patronage of Mr. Hale; but, after 
1784, he was emploved in the card works of Giles Richards & Company 
and remained with them nearly two years, during which time he effected 
several improvements in card-setting machinery. He then, under his own 
roof, began to work upon his "grand machine to stick cards." Those in- 
terested in card clothing visited him from time to time, and in the simplicity 
of his heart he explained to them the details of his machine now nearing 
completion. "It consisted of an iron bedplate, twenty-four inches square, 
with wrought-iron posts for the centre and working parts." He had suc- 
ceeded in making it prick the leather, make the teeth and set them in 
straight and was about to apply his ideas in putting on the second bend to 
the teeth, when he heard of the patent granted to Amos Whittemore in 1797. 
The man who had been his most frequent visitor and had followed him in 
all the workings out of his machine had forestalled him. A disappointed and 
broken-hearted man, he never recovered from the blow. 

Mr. Whittemore was a 'jkilled mechanic and possessed of great inven- 
tive faculty, and he probably had his own well-laid plans for the perfect- 
ing of his own machine, and had he not so constantly visited the workshop 
of a rival as skilled as he, but handicapped by poverty, more honor could 
have been accorded him for the invention of a machine that was a splendid 
specimen of "construction, precision of movement, rapidity of performance 
and perfection of execution, it must be studiously examined to be justly 
appreciated, and its complicated performance can be compared with nothing 
more nearly than the machinery of the human system." 

In i8og the patent was renewed by Congress, the vote on the petition 
being fifty-five to eighteen. Other inventors have since made valuable im- 
provements in card-making machinery ; namely, Elliott, Lamb, Porter, Sar- 
gent, Coates, W. B. Earle, Addison and Oliver Arnold, Ballard, Ainsworth, 
McFarland, Conklin, Prouty, Woodman, etc. 

The most prominent of the American inventions relating to the card- 
ing machine itself is that of John Goulding, which marked almost as great 
an advance in woolen manufacture as the spinning jenny itself. The Gould- 
ing machine was first introduced about 1824. Prior to this invention the 
rolls issuing from the carding machines were limited to the breadth of the 
card, the ends of the roll being spliced together by hand or by means of 
the billy. With the latter Goulding dispensed entirely, and so managed to 



accomplish with four machines what had formerly been done with five. 
His machine afforded an endless roll or roping, and lessened the cost of 
production, while increasing the quality and quantity. After 1830 no new 
sets of cards were started on the old plan of manufacturing. The forty- 
inch cards began to come into use about this time ; in the old carding engines 
the width was twenty-four to twenty-six inches, a few being twenty-eight 
inches wide. The speed of the machine was also accelerated from seventy- 
five revolutions a minute to eighty-five and one hundred. In England the 
cylinder cards are preferably used, while in America the flat revolving card 
is most in vogue. (See Plate 4.) 




Spinning as an art cannot be traced to its earliest conception, as it 
dates back of all existing records and traditions. The mummies of Egypt 
confront us wrapped in linen of superior texture, and in every nation the 
first advance toward civilization began with the use of woven fabrics. 

The production of cloth of any kind requires the production of yarn 
in advance. Spinning is the art of producing yarn, and consists in methods 
of twisting vegetable or animal fibres into a continuous thread. This 
invention has been discovered at different times by every intelligent race, 
and Columbus, when first landing on American soil, found the natives 
clad in cotton cloths. 

To-day in difl'erent sections of the world every step in the development 
of the now nearly perfect spinning machinery may be found in actual use 
— the native Mexican, with her distaff, toiling not many miles distant from 
the Rabbeth spindle in a cotton mill. Whether the latter will stay in use 
as long as its older rival time alone can determine; but there is no question 
but that it has already twisted more yarn, in its thirty years of existence, 
than the distaflf in its thousands. 

The amount of human labor saved by modern invention in this line 
is enormous. The prime necessities of life are food and clothing; and, 
although no development of inventions is likely to increase the capacity of 
a man's digestive apparatus, the amount of cloth he uses increases with his 
purchasing power. This is an industry which affects every class of people. 
It furnishes employment for men, women and children, who in turn 
consume its product. No other industry can have a greater interest for 
the mass of the people, and the development of few others can affect them 
to the same extent. 

When the spindle was first used is unknown, but the spindle and distaff 
are mentioned in the earliest references to mechanical art. 

Spinning for many centuries was done by what is known as the distaff, 
which was simply a short stick, on one end of which the raw material was 
placed, while the other was held under the arm, thus leaving the hands at 
liberty, one to draw the material and the other to manage the spindle. The 
accompanying spindle was a stick, perhaps a foot in length, having a slit 
or catch in the top, and a whirl of wood or metal at its lower end. The 
yarn being held by the slit, the spindle, suspended in the air by the yarn. 


was rotated by the right hand to put in the twist, the yarn being wound 
upon it as fast as a length was spun. 

In 1530, the spinning-wheel was introduced into Europe. It was made 
after the spinning-wheel which had been in use in India from immemorial 
times. The spinning-wheel about the time of Henry VIII was used in 
almost every household in England. Every young woman, whatever her 
position in life, was taught to spin with this machine ; hence the origin of 
the term "spinster," as applied to an unmarried female. (See Plate 5.) 

The spinning-wheel was a horizontal spindle, rotated by a band from 
a large hand wheel, the yarn being drawn through the fingers of the 
operator, as before. 

A hand spinner with a spinning-wheel was said by Mr. Chauncy Smith, 
in his "Influence of Inventions on Civilization," to be able to spin a single 
thread about four miles long per day, or eight skeins. This I believe to be a 
very high estimate; but, assuming its truth and calling a day twelve hours, 
each spindle in a Rabbeth frame on 30's yarn would spin about the 
same amount, and, if the yarn were coarser, more. And so spin six 
times that amount at a cost of one and one-tenth cents per week for labor. 
Even the Hindoo spinner, at five cents a day, would make the labor cost 
thirty times as much with the spinning-wheel as it costs in one of our 
modern frames at the rate of wages paid in American factories. One 
spinner, tending a thousand spindles, does the work of more than a thousand 
spinners with the old-fashioned spinning-wheels not much more than a 
century ago. 

Early in the eighteenth century experiments looking towards a more 
rapid production of yarn began to be frequent, the first practical invention 
for this purpose being a roller spinning machine, made by John Wyatt 
and patented by his partner, Lewis Paul, in 1738, the principles of this 
machine being embodied in Arkwright's patent of 1769. 

In 1767, James Hargraves invented the spinning jenny, which v/as 
practically the application of the spinning-wheel principle to a number of 
spindles, together with a reciprocating motion of the spindles to and f'-om 
the point where the material is delivered, as in the mules of the present 
day. The spinning, as in the nnde of today, was intermittent, rather than 
continuous. (See Plate 5.) 

In 1760, Richard Arkwright invented the first continuous power spin- 
ning machine, which was intended, as stated in his specification, "to re- 
ceive its motion from a horse." This was a flyer structure, on the 
general principle which continued in use for nearly a hundred years, It 
is in use to-day to a limited and constantly diminishing extent. 

These machines were received with great disfavor by the people, 
who thought they saw their occupation gone if one spinner could do the 
work of a large number; and at one time preconcerted mobs broke up all 
the spinning machines in Leicester having more than twenty spindles each. 

PLATE V— Spinning 

1. Early Method. 

2. From 14th Century M. S. 

3. Roman Spinning. 

4. Then and Now. 

5. Slater's First Spinning Frame. (Now 
m the National Museum, Washington, 
D. C). 

6. Spindle. 

7. hiand Mule Spinning. 

8. Power Mule Spinning. 

9. Ring Spinning. 



No more absorb illustration could be given of the foolishness of the op- 
position of labor organizations to labor-saving improvements. The demanil 
for labor has probably been as much increased by the invention of the 
"spinning jenny" as the cost of cloth has been diminished by it. 

The Arkwright machine was called the "water frame," from the fact 
that, although the first ones were driven by horse-power, it was later on 
driven by water-power. This machine was gradually perfected, and became 
known as the "throstle" or "flyer frame." It underwent various modifica- 
tions, and became the standard machine for spininng warp all over the 

In this machine the sliver, passing from the drawing rolls to the 
bobbin, passed around the arm of a flyer, which was revolved some three 
or four thousand times a minute, thus giving twist to the yarn. The 
bobbin received motion from the flyer through the yarn, and had a speed 
equal to that of the flyer, less the number of revolutions required to wind 
the spun yarn upon the bobbin. Inasmuch as the system of spinning with 
a flyer had been used with a form of hand wheel known as the '^Saxony 
spinning-wheel," that does not constitute the chief element of Arkwright's 
invention, but the system of drawing the fibre by rolls driven at different 
speeds, which is the universal custom at the present day. 

Two kinds of flyer frames were in general use — the live spindle-flyer 
and the dead spindle-flyer. The live spindle-flyer moved with the spindle, 
and the bobbin rested upon a drag carried by the traverse or copping rail. 
The dead spindle-flyer, an American invention, took its upper bearing in 
a plate above the spindles, and its lower bearing upon the dead spindle 
itself. The bobbin rested on a washer on the deah spindle, and revolved 
with it. The principle of spinning was the same. The yarn was wound 
upon the bobbin by the falling behind of the latter in speed, as compared 
to the speed of the flyer. 

The flyer frame made strong and satisfactory yarn ; but, owing to the 
rapid revolutions of the flyers through the air, a great deal of power was 
consumed, and the speed was limited to about 4,000 turns per minute, 
owing to the tendency of the flyers to spread. The dead spindle-flyer was 
the one most extensively adopted in this country. 

In the year 1779, Samuel Crompton, of Lancashire, England, invented 
the spinning mule. His first machine contained only forty-eight spindles. 
The principal feature of his invention was the movable carriage, by 
means of which the action of the left arm and finger and thumb of the 
spinner on the ordinary spinning-wheel, were reproduced. (See sketch of 
Samuel Crompton, Ibid.) 

In the year 1828 the first patent that I find on a ring-spinning frame 
was issued to Mr. John Thorpe, of Providence, R. I. A few years later, 
patents on ring frames were issued to Mr. Samuel Brooks, of Baltimore, 
Maryland, and to Mr. George H. Dodge, of Attleboro. Massachusetts 


Evan Leigh, in Ins "Modern Cotton Spinning:,"' says that ring spinning 
was 5aid to have been invented by Mr. Jencks, of Tawtucket, Rhode Island. 
There seems to be no certainty on this point ; but whoever the inventor was, 
he certainly has conferred a great benefit upon the human race. (See 
Plate 5.) 

In the ring spinning frame the flyer is dispensed with, and the bobbin 
is carried with the spindle, and at the same speed. On the traverse rail is 
fastened a flanged ring, which is made as hard and as smooth and as 
nearly round as possible. On this ring is sprung a small piece of steel 
wire, bent in a half circular form, with the ends turned in, called a "travel- 
ler." The yarn, in going from the rolls to the bobbin, passes through this 
traveller; and the drag, or winding on, is obtained by the falling behind of 
the traveller in speed, as compared with the speed of the spindle and the bob- 
bin. Different travellers are used for different sizes of yarn, and the yarn 
may be wound more or less compactly upon the bobbin by varying the weight 
of this traveller, and thus increasing the drag and the friction on the ring. 
The ring and traveller have a reciprocal vertical motion, and wind the 
yarn as fast as it is spun in layers upon the bobbin.. The revolution of 
the spindle gives motion to the thread attached to the bobbin, and through 
that to the traveller. 

The speed of the spindle and bobbin are greater than the speed of the 
traveller by the number of times that the yarn is wound around the bobbin. 
The amoi-int of twist i-i the yarn is equal to the number of revolutions of 
the traveller while a given length is being spun. 

By doing away with the flyer, the power require 1 to drive the machine 
was greatly reduced and the speed increased, so that the frame as a whole 
was much more effective. It was rapidly introduced in America, until in 
i860 the larger number of spinning frames in use were ring frames. The 
flyer as still largely run on coarse work, and some mills were equipped 
with the Danforth or cap frames. 

Manufacturers were divided in preference between what was known 
as a positive drive spindle, which carried a loosely fitted bobbin by a pin, 
and the spindle with taper blade, which carried the bobbin by frictional 
contact. Each form had its advantages; but the tapering spindle, carrying 
the bobbin by frictional contact, became, ten years later, the standard 

At this time the ordinary weight of the spindle varied from twelve to 
sixteen ounces, and the most rapid speed was 5,000 revolutions per minute. 
At this speed from seventy to a hundred spindles were ordinarily run 
by one horse-power. (See Plate 5.) 

During these ten years successful efforts were made by various 
builders, particularly by Mr. John C. Whitin, of the Whitin Machine 
Works, and Messrs. Fales & Jenks, of Pawtucket, Rhode Island, to 
reduce the weight of the spindle, and consequently the power required to 


drive it. The spindles were reduced in weight to eight, and in a few cases 
even to six, ounces, with some saving of power ; but the speed could not be 
increased, as the lighter spindles sprung in rapid revolution more tlian the 
heavier ones before used, and were more likely to throw ofif bobbins in 
spinning. The twelve-ounce common spindle was the best of that type for 
durability and steadiness of running. 

In 1871, an invention in spindles was patented by Mr. Jacob H. Sawyer, 
then agent of the Appleton Mills, at Lowell, which entirely revolutionized 
spinning, and was one of the most important inventions of the time. 

He conceived the idea of chambering out the bottom of the bobbin, 
and carrying the bolster up inside, thus supporting the load which the 
spindle had to carry near its centre. This change in support of the spindle 
enabled it to be greatly reduced both in weight and diameter of bearings, 
and the saving in power was enormous. The steadiness of running was 
also materially increased by the location of the upper bearing, and this 
enabled the speed of rotation to be increased also. 

As the speed which the spindle would bear was at this time the limit 
of the production of the frame, an increase in capacity for speed in the 
spindle meant a corresponding increase in the production of the machine. 

While with the common ring spindle the speed was usually about 5,500 
turns a minute, with the Sawyer spindle it was raised to 7,500 
turns per minute. At the same time a horse-power would drive about 175 
Sawyer spindles at the higher speed, while it would drive only about one 
hundred common spindles at the lower speed. 

This increase in production and saving in power, together with many 
other incidental advantages, caused the very rapid introduction of these 
machines. Over 3,000,000 were sold in the ten years succeeding their 
invention, when this spindle was superseded by one of even greater capacity. 

During these ten years, the Sawyer spindle underwent considerable 
modification and improvement. Mr. George Draper, and others connected 
with him, corrected the faults one by one, until the Sawyer spindle in the 
latter years of its extensive sale seemed to have reached mechanical per- 
fection. It was far better calculated for rapid revolution than any spin- 
ning structure ever before made, though not equal to the various forms 
of the Rabbeth spindle now in general use. 

In the year 1878, after long experimenting, Mr. Francis J. Rabbeth 
placed on trial his so-called "top" or "self-centring" spindle in the shop of 
Messrs. Fales & Jenks, of Pawtucket, Rhode Island. 

The particular features of this so-called "top" spindle were : First, the 
sleeve whirl ; second, a loose bolster, supported in a tube which held both 
bolster and step bearings, and formed an oil reservoir to lubricate them ; 
third, the elastic packing, ordinarily composed of woolen yarn, which 
surrounded this bolster, shown in the cut at D ; fourth, the flat top step, on, 
rather than in, which the rounded bottom of the spindle moved with the 


bolster: fifth, the snout oil chamber, wliich ensures a better supply of oil, 
and keeps the reserve at a higher level than any other form yet tested. 

The spindle was called the "top" or "self-centring" spindle, on the 
theory that the spindle acted like a top, and found its centre of rotation 
under an unbalanced load. This theory has since been discarded by experts, 
it now being thought that the advantages of the Rabbeth spindle are 
derived, first, from the cushioning effect of the loose bearing; and second, 
from the additional cushioning effect of the packing interposed between 
the bolster bearing and the surrounding case, both taken in connection with 
a sleeve whirl surrounding the tube containing the bearings. The spindle 
does not centre itself, but runs out of centre with less jar and vibration 
and heat, and thus is enabled to bear a greatly increased speed, and to 
run with less power. 

Various modifications of the Rabbeth spindle have gone into extensive 
use — the Whitin, the McMuUan and the Sherman being the principal 
varieties. The great difference between them and the Rabbeth lies in the 
elimination of the packing and the positive restraint of the bolster from 
turning. The Rabbeth spindle, in a modified form named the "Draper," 
from the author of this article, is one in largest use to-day. 

The gain to the community from the development of spinning since 
the day of the distaff is so great as to seem impossible. 

Twenty-five million of the various types of the Rabbeth spindle have 
been sold in this country, and must be substantially all in use. Allowing a 
spinner to a thousand spindles, there are twenty-five thousand spinners 
employed in running these spiiidles to-day. To spin the same amount of 
yarn on spinning-wheels, which are a step ahead from the distaff, would 
require the labor of more than twenty-five million spinners, or probably 
one-third of all the men, women and children in the country, three hundred 
days each year. In fact, it is doubtful if our entire working population, 
outside of those engaged in the production of food, could provide our 
present consumption of yarns with the tools of one hundred and fifty years 
ago. The same comparisons could be made abroad with similar results in 
all the machine-using countries, but I have not room to enlarge. 

I will, however, make a brief calculation of the value to this country 
of the spindle inventions adopted since the year 1870, — calling the speed 
of the then common spindle five thousand, — a high average, — and that of 
the Rabbeth, nine thousand, though many of them are run more rapidly. 
The production per spindle has increased more than the increase in speed, 
but I will base my figures on the difference in that factor alone. 

Twenty-five million Rabbeth spindles will produce as much yam as 
forty-five million of the spindles of 1870. It follows, therefore, that had 
the improved spindles not been introduced, twenty million more common 
spindles would have been required to produce the yarn now spun in this 
country. The cost of spinning frames to-day, including floor space occu- 


pied and plant for shafting, heating, Hghting, belting, etc., would not be 
less than $4.50 per spindle. At this figure, therefore, the saving in plant 
has been $90,000,000. 

Further, the old spindles, at 5,000 turns, required as much power as 
the latest Rabbeth at 9,000, so that the power required to drive 20,000,000 
spindles has been saved. At one hundred spindles to the horse-power this 
would amount to 200,000 horse-power, which, at $20 per horse-power — 
a very low estimate — would make a saving of $4,000,000 each year. 

Again, owing to the better running of these spindles, they require 
no more attention at the high speed than the common spindles at the low 
speed. The labor cost for spinning, including all employees from the 
spinner to the overseer, is not less than sixty cents per spindle per annum. 
The labor cost saved yearly, therefore, is $12,000,000. 

Capitalizing these gains at ten times the yearly saving, and omitting 
minor advantages, the annual gain to the community from spindle improve- 
ments introduced since 1879 '^ shown by the following figures: 

Saving of Machinery $90,000,000 

Saving of Power 40,000,000 

Saving of Labor 120,000,000 

Total $250,000,000 

And this is the saving in this country alone on the machinery now in use. 

The tendency of the United States is to use ring rather than mule 
spindles, which are used only for those classes of yarn w^hich cannot be 
produced by ring spindles. The number of active ring spindles in the 
United States for 1910 was 24,192,359 ring and 4,996,586 mule spindles. 
In the United Kingdom the ratio is inverted, and only about twenty per 
cent of the total number are ring spindles. 




Before the beginning of history, when the primitive man or woman 
drew out the fibres of wool, or goat hair, and twisted them between the 
fingers and first made a cord, the necessity of forming some kind of a 
package could have resulted only in three generally different characters 
of bundles or packages. Naturally the first disposition of the material was 
to fold it in coils, forming what is now termed a "hank." Later, collecting 
the first short coils into a mass and then winding thereon in different 
directions a ball would have been formed, and in process of time some 
more daring innovator than his fellows bethought himself of a rigid 
core upon which to wind the material, taking a stick and laying the yarn 
coil after coil, spool fashion, or else in the manner called ball fashion. 

It was undoubtedly much later in the development of the art that a 
considerable advance was made which consisted in laying the yarn in 
successive coils one above the other, so as to build up a generally sym- 
metrical mass with flat ends, and, so far as we have any evidence upon this 
point, this was only done as late as the time of the later Fiji Islanders, who, 
after an indiscriminate winding of the cords into a cylinder, finally disposed 
it with the outer coils alternating cross-wise, forming an ornamental ex- 
terior which corresponded to the single ornamental layer of cross-coiled 
strands which they laid upon their oars and spears to secure a better hand 
grasp thereon. 

With the introduction of machines for winding threads, yarns, ropes 
and cords, the coils of different kinds were laid more regularly, yet it is 
a surprising fact that so far as the structure of the packages themselves 
were concerned there was practically no radical departure fiom the pre- 
historic methods of building the packages until within the past fifteen years. 

While the structure of the modern packages has thus assimilated 
those of prehistoric times, the advance in the character of machines for 
winding was for a time rapid, and resulted in such modifications of the 
forms of the packages as were embodied in spooling, in the products of 
spinning machines, and in warp windings for looms, etc. 

The machines which were developed for these purposes may be divided 
generally into four classes — that is, reels, spooling machines (including 
those which would wind cops for spindles), baling machines, and those 
which, for distinction, are now termed "warp winding machines," which. 


however, frequently include what might more properly be termed "spooling 
machines," but which are more properly confined to that class of machines 
which lay the thread in cross winds or reverse coils, building up a generally 
cylindrical package with substantially flat ends. 

The reels of the present day have all the general characteristics of those 
made first, and while the ancillary details of the spooling mechanisms have 
gradually improved until a modern thread spooler possesses almost a 
mechanical brain, yet the same elemental devices pertain to all of the 
spooling structures so far as the mere deposit of thread in the building up 
of the cop is concerned. It is in the apparatus for balling and for cross- 
winding, or building up cops without the use of spools, that the greatest 
structural changes have taken place and that the greatest advance has been 

While a great number of inventors have contributed to the general 
advance in the art, the larger portion have followed along fundamentally 
accepted lines, each adding his quota of improvements, but the result has 
been that by far the larger portion of such improvements have related to 
minor structural details, and a reference to comparatively few of the 
earlier structures is sufficient to illustrate t!ie more prominent features of 
departure from the earlier existing forms. 

Practically all of the improvements that have been made in these 
different classes of packages and machines for making the same have 
been embodied in letters patent, more generally in Great Britain and the 
United States, and a fair understanding of the development and progress 
in the art can well be had from an investigation of a few of the more 
prominent patents relating to the respective classes. In view of the fact 
that, so far as reels are concerned, there is no substantial difference 
between those of the earliest and those of the latest forms, it is not 
necessary for us to give this matter special consideration, but the remaining 
three classes are detailed below : 

Balling Machines. — While many of the machines which deposit the 
thread or yarn upon spools, and sometimes so as to form cylindrical pack- 
ages, are recognized as coming technically under the term "balling machines," 
we consider that properly this class of machines embodies only those where 
the thread or yarn is crossed at different angles and built up upon a grad- 
ually expanding core .so as to form an approximately spherical package. 

The general characteristic of balling machines has been an inclined 
spindle, and a yarn carrier rotating about the spindle in plane at an angle 
of the axis thereof, which axis is changed from time to time, so that the 
cord is carried practically in circles about a changing axis. 

One of the first illustrations of such a construction is in Young's 
British patent 12,353, of 1849, which shows a scries of inclined spindles, 
the cord carried by flyers and the spindles carried by a swinging frame. A 
similar construction is shown in later patents. 


In United States patent to Billings 165,978 the parts are so driven 
that the inner layers of the ball are wound with considerable intervals 
between them, the outer layers being laid in close proximity, thus securing 
an elastic package. 

In Mitchell's United States patent 408,842 is described a ball which 
is wound with a regulated proportion between the speed of the spindle 
and that of the guide. By this means an irregular honeycomb spherical 
structure is secured, and, so far as we are aware, this is the first attempt in 
connection with any kind of winding to secure a symmetrical disposition of 
the coils throughout the entire body of the package. As a result of the 
timing of the parts, however, the package varies in character from the 
centre outward. 

In ^Mitchell's United States patent 408,842 is described a ball which 
is bviilt up by first winding a short rounded body portion upon the spindle, 
the coils being laid in circles crosswise and gradually increasing the length 
and diameter of successive layers. An attempt was made in this case to 
secure a structure in which one layer was deposited upon and practically 
covered the other, but it is evident from the reading of the specification 
that no such result could be secured by the method described. 

In Hetzel's United States patent 501,186 the cord is laid by a flyer 
upon a rotating spindle in circles at an angle to the spindle, first in one 
direction and then in another with the object of building up a nearly 
cylindrical ball. 

Such cylindrical balls have now became known through the use of 
such apparatus as is described in the aforesaid patent and that of Good, 
730,635, but are distinguished from warp-winding cylinders in that the 
cord is laid in circles including and passing around the ends of the package, 
especially at the surface, although there are many varieties and modifica- 
tions. Practically all that is done at the present day in connection with this 
class of winding diflfers but little except in details of mechanism from the 
structures in use at the beginning of the last century. 

There is one class of wind which differs in a degree from either the 
ball wind or the warp wind, and that is a wind laid by carrying the yarn 
in circles first in one direction and then in another, crossing the yarn upon 
a card or substantially flat holder. This character of winding was made by 
hand for many years, and was especially common in packages of different 
kinds made in Germany. One of the first illustrations of this mode of 
winding is in Spach's British patent 14,343, of 1885. The machine had 
a vertical rotating shaft which supported an inclined rotating spindle, with 
a stationary guide in a fixed position at one side. This machine is notice- 
able from the effort that was made to secure a particular progressive 
relation of movement between the rotation of the spindle carrying the 
card and the vertical rotating shaft carrying said spindle, with the view 
of attaining a somewhat symmetrical character of wind. An apparatus for 


a similar cliaracter of flat wind was patented by Hargreave, in United 
States Letters Patent 245,373. In this a rotating spindle carried the flat 
card and the guide was at the end of a rod, which reciprocated in a block 
supported by trunnions, which also permitted the rod to vibrate so that 
the guide end travelled in an approximate circle, the guide being movable 
upon the rod so as to progressively travel from the package. The result 
was the cross-wound package upon a flat card similar to the Spachs' 

A subsequent patent to Spach, No. 15,385, of 1885, showed a similar 
support for a bobbin or tube upon which the flyer deposited the yarn in 
cross coils. 

Another character of wind which was not a warp wind, and only approx- 
imately a bail wind, and intended especially for use for the bobbins of 
sewing machines, was quite extensively wound, beginning about 1890, at the 
Willimantic I,inen Company's Mills in Connecticut, and which is also 
illustrated in British patent to Lawson, 1,003, of 1862. This wind was built 
up by a reciprocating guide opposite a rotating spindle and the mechanism 
was so timed that the thread was laid first in a ring midway between the 
ends of the tube upon the spindle and as the cop increased in size the 
width of the mass of material gradually increased until it was of the 
length of the finished cop, the surface longitudinally being almost semi- 
circular, and then gradually flattened until the package finally produced 
was cylindrical. In this cop each coil at the surface portion extended in 
a circle from one corner of the cop diagonally to the opposite corner, the 
outer layer being at a reverse angle to .the under layer. 

Warp Wind. — A warp wind a^ applied to a cop upon a tube or f|uill may 
be said to embody generally the laying of the thread or yarn helically first in 
one direction and then in another through the medium of a rotating spindle 
or holder carrying the cop tube and a reciprocating guide. 

In the earliest machines that were used for this purpose the spindle 
supporting the cop tube was positively driven at a uniform speed and the 
guide reciprocated at a uniform speed, building up what might be termed 
a cross-wound cop, and sometimes the guide was operated so that the 
cop would have substantially flat ends, or at others the extent of recipro- 
cation of the guide would be reduced to impart conical ends to the cop, 
and at others the guide would be reciprocated opposite the conical base 
of a cop tube and gradually moved forward longitudinally so as to build 
up the cop lengthwise. All these different modes of operation were set 
forth at an early date in the Willis British patent 14,151, of 1852. 

In the Smith & Rowclifl' British patent .3.585, of 1861, the spindle was 
positively driven and the guide reciprocated, but carried a multiple of 
threads and the package was built up upon a spool. 

In Combe's British patent 1,241, of 1867, a cross-wound cop was built 
up by the reciprocation of a guide opposite a rotating vertical spindle. This 


guide was at the end of a pivoted arm swinging at one side of the cop, 
and the spindle, instead of having a given number of rotations to each 
reciprocation of the guide, had a varying speed, so that its rotation was 
diminished as the cop was built ; the result of the course being that the 
cop varied in character from the centre to the exterior. 

An illustration of common form is in Rosskothen's United States 
patent 400,118, which particularly describes a cop built up in the irregular 
cross-wind manner, the number of turns in the helix laid upon the core 
diminishing as the size of the cop increases. 

In the first machines the cop spindles were directly, and positively 
driven, but a friction drive was subsequently employed. As shown in 
Harter's British patent 6,976, of 1836, the end of the spool or spindle rests 
on a driving disk and is rotated thereby and this arrangement is to be found 
in later patents. Soon, however, it seemed to have been considered prefer- 
able to drive the package itself, instead of its spindle, thereby enabling 
each spindle to operate independently, the packages resting upon rotating 
rolls or drums and the spindles upon which they were wound sliding 
vertically or radially in respect to the driving shaft or drum in parallel side 
grooves. As early as 1770, Crawford in his British patent 974 describes 
a series of drum-driven bobbins on each of which the yarn is laid, all of 
the guides carried by a reciprocating bar. In Cheatham's British patent 
596, of 1869, there is described a balling machine, but it also shows a 
guide reciprocated by a heart cam, and a spindle driven by a drum on which 
the spindle lies building up an open cross-wind package with flat ends. 

United States patent to Hanson, No. 353,745, subsequently issued, 
shows substantially the same mode of winding, the spindle being carried 
by a frame pivoted at one side, so that the spindle could rest upon 
the face of the driving drum. 

United States patent to Ashworth, 285,203, also shows a common 
character of apparatus extensively used where the spindles are guided 
between vertical guides so as to rest directly on the driving shaft, and the 
guides opposite the several spindles are carried by a reciprocating bar, 
producing a cross-wind. 

We might refer to various other drum-driven apparatus, as for 
instance Hill & Brown's in British patent 5,532, of 1883; Knowles' British 
patent 10,065, of 1888; and Foster's United States patent 459,039. 

The cops thus built have not always been cylindrical, for by the use 
of a conical holder resting upon a drum and adapted to swing away from 
the latter a conical cross-wound cop may be built up, an illustration of 
this being in Broadbent's United States patent 493,970. 

A somewhat peculiar package and apparatus is set forth in Miller's 
United States patent 443,103, where there is a rotating spindle and a 
reciprocating guide, which, however, has also a progressive movement 
longitudinally of the spindle and gradual increases in extent of reciproca- 


tion, the result being that the cord is wound between heads upon the 
spindle in a series of conical spool-wound layers, gradually increasing in 
length until the diameter of the cop is attained, and then progressively 
laid of the same length until the requisite length is attained, after which 
the length of the layers is gradually reduced, so that the final result is a 
cylindrical spool -wound package in whicli the layers coincide with cones 
instead of cylinders. 

The above epitome is far from being exhaustive, or even full, and 
only in a fragmentary way sets forth some of the main differences between 
modes of winding and machines prior to the year 1900. 

About that date Mr. Simon W. Wardwell produced a package and used 
a method of operation and apparatus involving practically a new principle 
of construction in the building up of cops. This principle consisted in a 
predetermined fixing of the position of every coil to be laid in the cop, 
and in laying each coil positively and with certainty in its place, and form- 
ing a cop consisting of a succession of cylindrical layers, each layer 
consisting of crossed helices with the coils side by side and the same in 
number in each layer. In the prior art practically all of the cops or 
packages had been built up either from a central short core, gradually 
increasing in length as the cop increased in size, or from successive cross 
coils of uniform length laid indiscriminately, sometimes more regularly 
than at others, with the disadvantage that the pressure of the outer coils 
resulted in indenting and creasing the yarn ; the packages were lacking in 
solidity and uniformitiy; the yarn would not deliver uniformly, but one 
coil would catch upon another as the yarn was drawn off, and with other 
defects well known to those skilled in the art, and the Wardwell wind was 
soon recognized as embodying very substantial and radical improvements 
over all that preceded it. In the Wardwell cop the yarn or thread is laid 
to all intents and purposes as compactly as in a spool wind, but without 
the necessity of using heads upon the bobbins. Each layer is so smooth and 
solid that there is no indent of the yarn or thread of the subsequent layers, 
and the delivery, which can take place from the end of the cop, results 
without any retardation or catch of one coil upon another, and is as free 
in this respect in the first layer inside the cop as it is in the outer layer. 
The original character of the Wardwell cop can be understood from the 
claim which was allowed by the Patent Office upon a reissue of the 
Wardwell patent (necessitated from a too vague description in the original 
patent) which was granted only after a most searching investigation, and 
after the production by parties in litigation of everything that could be 
set up against the Wardwell method of winding. The said claim is as 
follows : 

"The within described systematic method of cop-building, consisting, 
first, in definitely placing thread upon a holder in a helix extending 
irom end to end, in the position on said holder it is to occupy in the 


finished cop; second, in bending the thread at each end to form an abrupt 
bend which occupies a position circnmferentially beyond that at the opposite 
end ; third, returning the thread in a reverse heHx to the opposite end and 
crossing and tying down tlie thread of the first hehx at one or more points 
between the ends of the cop; fourth, carrying the thread, at each end, with 
an abrupt bend over the portion previously laid at a point circumferentially 
different from that at which the helix started at that end; fifth, continuing 
these operations to lay the helices in contact with each other progressively 
on the core until the core is uniformly covered, forming a single layer 
of two thicknesses of thread consisting of crossed helices ; sixth, building 
successive layers upon the first, all having the same number of turns in 
the helices as the first, thereby forming a cop of the desired length 
and diameter, consisting of superposed similar layers of thread, each 
layer uniformly covering the layer below, and each composed of series of 
superposed crossed helices, each extending from end to end of the cop, 
the helices successively bent back at the ends at different points circum- 
ferentially, substantially as described." 

The Wardwell fundamental method of winding has been embodied 
not only in cylindrical cops but in tapering cops and in cops of the 
character used for shuttles of looms, where the coils are conical and lay 
one forward of the other. 

The various forms and styles of cops in which the invention of Mr. 
Wardwell has been embodied have necessitated very many modifications 
of the forms and arrangements of his winding apparatus which has been 
brought to a most perfected state and which constitute the subjects of a 
large number of Letters Patents. 

The essential characteristic, however, of all of the apparatus is that 
in addition to the reciprocating guide eye, which is always maintained in 
contact with the point where the thread is to be laid on the rotating 
spindle or mass, means are provided whereby there is added to the 
movements requisite to laying a helix of any determined number of coils 
such a precise, definite and calculated additional movement as will insure 
that each coil shall be laid in place parallel and alongside of an adjacent 
coil. All parts of the apparatus work with the utmost precision. There is 
no factor of chance of accident in the lay of the coils of thread or yarn, 
which cannot be said of any other system of winding except in the ordinary 
spooling, and each rotation of the thread or yarn is laid positively and 
fixidly in the groove it is to occupy in the completed cop. 

Spool Machines. — These machines may be placed in two groups : The 
first including the various types of machines by which the yarn is wound in 
substantially concentric coils on .spools having flanges at right angle with the 

In this type of machine, which is in general use in cotton mills for 
transfer purposes, the yarn guide moves slowly from end to end of the spool. 

PLATE VI— Winding 

1. liiiiun Wuiiling. 

2. Primitive Method of Winding. 

3. Primary Winding Illustrating 
"Universal'' Principle. 

4. Primary Winding Showing Accuracy 
of Adjustment, 
the 5. Multiple Yarn Winding for Wire 


6. First Universal Machine. 

7. Conical Package of Knitting Yarn. 

8. Twine Package for Shipment. 

9. Quill for Narrow Loom Shuttle. 
10. Bobbin for Broad Loom Shuttle. 



SO timed with reference to tlie rotation of the spool that the coils of yarn 
lie approximately side by side, the flanges being relied upon to prevent them 
from falling over the end. This type of machine is very simple in con- 
struction and, although manufactured in many forms of structure, has not 
been improved radically in principle since its earliest introduction into cot- 
ton mills. 

When adapted for winding from skeins, the spool is generally driven 
inductively so that any e.xcess pull on the yarn from tangling of skein will 
stop the rotation of the spool, and thus avoid breakage of the yarn. 

In winding several yarns on one spool, to be used as supply for a twister, 
each yarn passes through its individual guide to the spool with a drop wire, 
which stops the spindle when the end of the yarn runs out or when the 
yarn breaks. 

The Eo)'d spooler was the earliest adaptation for this purpose, and in 
this structure the cylinder of the spool rested upon the rotation drum ex- 
tending between the flanges ; this system of friction driving giving a regu- 
lar and constant speed to the yarn when being drawn on to the spool as the 
rotation of the spool decreased in speed as the mass of yarn was built upon 
it. Several other machines have since been built upon this principle which 
are in general use. 

The Combe's Patent was probably the first attempt made to secure a 
self-supporting package in the form of a cylinder with flat ends, the change 
from the previous construction being that of reducing the rotation of the 
driven spindle in proportion to the growth of the cop. The transition from 
this structure to that of the friction drum was natural. The practical in- 
troduction of what is termed "drum-winding" dates from about this time, 
and was embodied in a variety of machines, varying somewhat in structure, 
but all built upon the same principle; that is, the rotation of a drum upon 
which the cop rested, the drum and thread guide being driven at a regular 
speed the cop rotating slower and slower as it increased in diameter, con-- 
stantly changing the ratio of coils on the surface. At certain intervals, 
when the ratio of rotation of the cop to the guide was regular, such as two, 
three or four to one, there would appear on the surface oi the cop cross- 
ings of the yarn, which, as they approached the exact ratio, would lie closer 
and closer, and having passed the given point would expand, thus giving 
the appearance termed ribbon wind, the cop at these points being packed 
closer, and the friction being applied in contact with the ribbon instead of 
being distributed over the whole surface of the cop would, in some classes 
of material, produce injurious results. In later types of friction or drum 
machines special mechanism has been introduced to overcome this defect, 
and by constantly changing the ratio produced a more uniform distribution 
of the coils. 

Previous to Hill & Brown's Patent the friction or drum type of ma- 
chine was constructed with the thread guide some distance from the sur- 



face of the cop and reciprocated by special mechanism. The Hill & Brown 
invention departed from this structure and introduced an angular slot in 
the drum, extending from N to M, through which the yarn was threaded, 
thus operating as a cam to force the yarn from end to end of the traverse 
at each evolution of the drum. Machines constructed upon this principle 
have been widely used in mill practice, as a much higher yarn speed was 
secured than by structures using the reciprocating guide. Their use has 
been largely confined to Great Britain and the continent of Europe, as the 
mill requirements in the United States are such that the machines have not 
met with a ready introduction here. 



The art by which threads or yarns of any substance are interlaced so 
as to form a continuous web is perhaps the most ancient of the manufactur- 
ing arts, since clothing must always have been a primal necessity to man. 
A knowledge of weaving seems to have been inherent to a slight extent in 
all races, and to have developed as they emerged from savagery, beginning 
with the plaiting of rushes or other fibrous materials into mats and aprons, 
followed by rudely woven cloths. A piece of flaxen cloth, plaited rather 
than woven, was found in the lake dwellings of Switzerland, which is sup- 
posed to have been made by prehistoric man in the Stone Age; and in 
various ethnographical museums may be found specimens of the handiwork 
of peoples who lived in those portions of the globe which were unexplored 
a few centuries ago, and which were quite unknown to the ancients. Nearly 
all these races when first visited by civilized man had more or less knowl- 
edge of weaving and spinning, mat-making, plaiting and net-making. For 
any advance in these arts beyond the most rudimentary knowledge. Western 
peoples are wholly indebted to the ancient civilizations of the East, where it 
had passed to a rare excellence in the most primitive times, thousands of 
years before the inhabitants of Europe and of Britain had so far emerged 
from savagery as to clothe themselves in the skins of wild animals, or to 
dye and stain their bodies with the juices of plants, in default of other cov- 

We find allusions to the loom and its product in the most hoary records 
of antiquity. In the early part of the nineteenth century certain inscrip- 
tions were discovered near Adon, on the coast of Hadramant (Arabia) 
which the scientists declare take us back to the time of Jacob, about five 
hundred years after the flood, and about 2,655 years B. C. These records 
are said to restore to the world its earliest written language, and were first 
deciphered by the Rev. C. Forster, of Great Britain. In the longest inscrip- 
tion, which consists of ten lines engraved on a smooth rock, forming one 
side of the terrace at Hisn Ghorab, is this sentence: "We walked with slow, 
proud gait, in needle-worked, many-colored silk vestments, in whole silks, 
in grass-green chequered, and damask robes — woven on the loom." 

The honor of inventing the arts of weaving and spinning was ascribed 
by the ancients to divers personages who existed in the age of myth and 
fable, which would seem to indicate that from immemorial times they had 
been practised by the women of the different nations. Thus the Egyptians 
credit Isis ; the Assyrians, Scmiramis, their queen ; the Greeks, Minerva ; 


the Mohammedans, a son of Japhet; the Chinese, their Emperor Yao, and 
the Peruvians, Mama Oella, wife of Manco Capac. Tradition also ascribes 
it to Naamah, sister of Tubal-Cain. The simplest and earliest form of weav- 
ing was thus accomplished : A number of parallel threads, called the 
warp, were attached to a horizontal beam and drawn taut by weights at- 
tached to their lower ends. In the early Greek loom, each warp thread had a 
separate weight. The threads of the warp were interlaced at right angles 
to those of the weft, and the combination of the two formed the web. The 
threads of the weft were wound round a bobbin made to revolve inside a hol- 
low boat-shaped case of wood, pointed at both ends to facilitate its easy 
passage between the threads of the warp, the thread passing out through a 
hole in the side of this primitive shuttle; a reed divided the warp into two 
sets called leaves, the first one and then the other of the leaves were pulled 
forward and a plain, interlaced web was woven. Later, two shuttles were 
introduced, containing threads of different color, and striped or checked 
cloth was produced. In wall paintings brought from Thebes, which date 
from 1600 B. C, upright looms, similar to the one just described, are de- 
picted as they are in earlier ones from Beni Hassan. A strikingly similar 
loom is represented on a Greek vase of the fifth century B. C., with a 
picture of Penelope and Telemachus. The weights used on these looms in 
ancient Greece consisted of clay whorls, or cones, pierced and decorated with 
simple paintings. Dr. Schliemann found 22,000 of these cones on the plains 
of Troy alone. In Scandinavian countries the use of weights continued 
up to modern times. 

The Indian loom, which dates from prehistoric times and which is still 
in use in most parts of India, consists of two bamboo rollers, one for the 
warp and the other for the web, and a pair of geer. The shuttle performs 
the double office of shuttle and batten, and for this purpose is made like 
a large netting needle, and of a length somewhat exceeding the breadth of 
the piece. (In variants of this loom, the shuttle is sometimes of a small 
size and is thrown.) This apparatus the weaver carries to a tree, under 
which he digs a hole large enough to contain his legs and the lower part 
of the geer. He then stretches his warp by fastening his bamboo rollers at 
a due distance from each other on the turf by wooden pins. The balances 
of the geer he fastens to some convenient branch of the tree over his head : 
two loops underneath the gear, in which he inserts his great toes, serve 
instead of treadles; and his long shuttle, which also performs the office 
of batten, draws the weft through the warp and afterwards strikes it up 
close to the web." (See Plate 7.) The method of weaving figured Indian 
muslins is thus described in a work published for private circulation in the 
nineteenth century. 

"Two weavers sit at the loom. They place the pattern drawn upon 
paper, below the warp, and range along the track of the woof a number of 
cut threads equal to the flowers or parts of the design intended to be made. 


and then with two fine-pointed bamboo sticks they draw each of these 
threads between as many threads of the warp as may be equal to the width 
of the figure which is to be formed. When all the threads have been 
■brought between the warp, they are drawn close by a stroke of the lay. 
The shuttle is then passed by one of the weavers through the shed, and 
the weft having been driven home, it is returned by the other weaver. The 
weavers resume their work with the bamboo sticks, and repeat the opera- 
tion with the lay and shuttle in the manner above described, observing 
each time to pass the flower threads between a greater or less number of 
the threads of the warp, in proportion to the size of the design to be 
formed." In this simple manner and with the simplest of weaving ap- 
paratus, the delicate, as well as the elaborate productions of India, have 
been woven from time immemorial. "A specimen of Mulmul khas (muslin 
made for the king), says another writer, "measuring ten yards by one 
yard, contained 1,800 or 1,900 threads in the warp. It weighed three 
ounces, two dwt. fourteen grains troy. It is so fine as to pass through the 
smallest ring. Price, 100 rupees, or $50. Another specimen, as wbrn by 
native dancers and singers, measuring twenty yards by one yard, had 1,000 
threads in the warp, and weighed eight and one-half ounces." 

On the American continent, the Peruvians as well as the Aztecs and 
the Mexicans of ancient times possessed from prehistoric times a knowl- 
edge of the art of weaving. At Tarapaca, in Peru, in 1874, a mummy was 
dug up, and with it was cotton twine and a woven bag. These were found 
beneath the volcanic formation called Chuco, which is itself of vast 
antiquity. Under the Incas, the Peruvians made woven goods from the 
fibre of the maguey, as well as woolen cloth for their own use, and vicuna 
cloth for the Inca. Vigona wool was wrought into shawls, robes and 
other articles of dress for the monarch, and into carpets, coverlets and 
hangings for the imperial palaces and the temples. The cloth was finished 
on both sides alike ; the delicacy of the texture was such as to give it the 
lustre of silk. The Peruvians produced also an article of great strength 
and durability by mixing the hair of animals with wool." (Prescott.) 
The Chileans manufactured woolen cloth for garments, using the spindle, 
distaff and loom, and the women were apt at the art of embroidering 
in 1535, when Almagro invaded Chili. The Aztecs, or Ancient Mexicans, 
were skilled in weaving cotton into webs of every degree of fineness, and 
made a peculiar cloth, both warm and beautiful, by weaving into their 
cotton cloth the hair of rabbits and other animals. 

An instance of the universal knowledge of weaving among all peoples 
is given by a writer who accompanied the troops in the Ashantee War. He 
says: "The Fantee weaver uses a loom of a very primitive construction, 
but is marvellously quick at his work, throwing the shuttle from side to 
side with his hands, and working the treadles with his toes. The thread 
used is extremely fine, and of the brightest colors, but the pattern is not 


of a very elaborate nature. The material is very dear, being a dollar a 
yard, at least double the price of English fabric, but is very strong and 
lasts much longer." 

The materials used in weaving comprise : first, animal fibres : the tran- 
sitition from the wearing of the skins of animals to weaving their sheared 
fleeces seems a natural one, and as the wealth of nomadic peoples con- 
sisted largely of their flocks and herds, there was naturally no lack of 
material. Among these animal fibres are sheeps' wool, camels' hair, goats' 
hair, beavers' wool and silk, which is first mentioned by Aristotle, and the 
fibres of the pinna, a shell-fish found near the shore of South Italy, Sicily, 
Corsica and Sardinia. This curious bivalve fastens itself to the sand by a 
tuft of silken fibres, and these fibres were woven by the natives of Tarentum 
into stockings and gloves, which were said to preserve the wearers from 
the effects of damp. 

Then come the vegetable fibres, flax, cotton, maguey, sisal hemp and 
the fibrous portions of various plants of the agave family. 

The minerals follow, gold being by far the most largely used from 
the very earliest times to the middle ages, being particularly characteristic 
of Oriental customs. Silver also was used, though to a more limited 
extent. There are frequent allusions to the use of gold in Holy Writ: 
Moses describes the method hy which it was prepared for the loom: 
"They did beat the gold into thin plates, and cut it into wires to work it 
in the blue, and in the purple, and in the scarlet, and in the fine linen, 
with cunning work" (Exodus xxxix. 3). A modern writer affirms that 
he saw in Rome a sample of cloth in which the wire was as fine as No. 
205 (this is an English number and may diflfer from the American modern 
way of numbering) of the cotton yarn of to-day. 

Virgil writes that Dido the Sidonian, in Trojan times, wove a garment 
with gold, and also that one was woven by Andromache. Herodotus 
mentions a tunic made in Greece as being "all made of silver and wonderful 
in its texture." The Persians in very ancient times made shawls of purple 
interwoven with gold. A very costly cloth of gold was called by the Romans 
"attalica," after Attains. The C?esar Cestus, who died about the middle 
of the first century before Christ, left orders in his will that his body 
should be wrapped in certain pieces of attalica ; but as this was forl>idden 
by a sumptuary law, his heirs sold the attalica, and with the proceeds 
had two colossal bronze statues made, which were set outside the tomb, 
C. Cestus being buried in the exisiting pyramid in Rome. The feet of 
one of these statues have been found, with a pedestal on which are inscribed 
the facts above related; the size of the statue attests that the attalica 
must have been worth a very large sum. The Chinese also used gold 
in their silken materials, which in mediaeval times were imported into 
the West of Europe, and sometimes used in churches, etc. In classical 
times, attalica and other gold stuffs were made of solid gold wire, made 


as Moses describes, and masses of this fine gold wire have from time 
to time been found in the tombs of Egypt, Greece and Etruria, the 
metal having lasted long after the rest of the materials had perished beyond 
a trace. The grave of the wife of Honorius was opened in 1544, and 
thirty-six pounds of gold thread were taken out of it and melted. 

Another mineral used by the ancients in the loom was asbestos, 
which is mentioned by Strabo as being used to make the funeral shirts 
of kings. A piece of asbestine cloth was found in a tomb at Puzzuolo in 
1633, and it is preserved in the Barberini Gallery. Another piece was 
found in a marble sarcophagus in a vineyard n mile without the Porta 
Major, at Rome. It was about five feet wide and six and one-half feet 
long, and contained the skull and other burnt bones of a human body. 
It is preserved in the Vatican Library, and is thus described by one who 
saw it: "It is coarsely spun, but as soft and pliant as silk." In Cyprus 
and Arabia asbestos was spun and woven into socks and stockings and 

Allusions to the loom and its products occur frequently in Holy 
Writ: Pharoah arrayed Joseph in "vestures of fine linen," and we must 
not forget that Joseph, when sold by his brothers, wore a "coat of many 
colors," which had awakened their envy. The directions for the furnish- 
ings and hangings of the Tabernacle show that the Jews had acquired 
the very highest degree of excellence in the arts of weaving, embroidering 
and coloring. The figures of the Cherubim must have been woven, since 
in curtains of the width described it would have taken an age to embroider 
them by hand. They manufactured to a great extent fabrics of blue, 
purple, fine linen and goats' hair (Exodus 36: i, 2), and the allusions to 
lace (Exodus 28: 37 and 30: 21, 31) show that they were skilled in the 
art of lace-making. Some of this knowledge was doubtless acquired 
during their sojourn in Egj'pt. We learn, however, from the Old Testa- 
ment that the Israelites from the dawnings of history had been proficient 
in the inventive arts and skilled in mechanical occupations ; they "were 
filled with wisdom of heart to work all manner of work of the engraver, 
and of the cunning workman, and of the embroiderer in blue, and in 
purple, in scarlet, and in fine linen, and of the weaver; even of them 
that do any work, and of those that devise cunning work" (Exodus 35 : 35). 

Although Herodotus visited Egypt about 450 B. C, and describes 
much of the manner of life of the Egyptians at home and abroad, he 
singularly enough makes no further allusion to the loom than this : "Other 
nations in weaving shoot the woof above; the Egyptians, beneath." 

The ancient Egyptians were also skilled in the production of lace and 
net, the designs and figures of which were very elaborate. The prophet, 
in his denunciations of the Egyptians, particularly threatens the flax and 
lace manufacturers : "Moreover, they that work in fine flax and they 
that weave networks shall be confounded" (Isaiah 19: 9). 


Some of the cloths wound around mummies were woven with stripes 
of contrasting colors, as blue and fawn. A scarf is in existence bordered 
with seven stripes of blue, the broadest at the edge of the selvage being 
half an inch wide, followed by five very narrow ones and terminated 
by one an eighth of an inch broad. 

The operations of the Egyptians were not confined to flax, however; 
they wove wool, cotton and silk, and their figured materials were very 
beautiful and eminently artistic. Specimens of the linen woven by the 
ancient Egyptiains are preserved in the British and other national mu- 
seums, some of these being nearly four thousand years old. Several of those 
in the British Museum are extremely fine and have the appearance of being 
woven from thread about loo hanks to the pound, with 140 threads to 
the inch in the warp and 64 in the woof, this peculiarity of weave being 
noted in all the specimens of mummy cloth. 

Insignificant indeed are these examples when compared with those 
we find noted by the oldest historians or mentioned in Holy Writ, almost 
incredible stories being related in regard to the fineness of their linen. 
Herodotus mentions a pallium sent by King Amasis H (572-528 B. C.) 
to the Spartans which was made of yarn containing no less than 360 
threads ; figures were woven on this garment, partly of cotton and partly 
of gold thread ; the same historian mentions a wonderful pallium sent 
by the same king to the Shrine of Athene at Lindus. The Egyptians 
also wove carpets quite like the modern Brussels and tapestry. Toward the 
close of the nineteenth century, a large quantity of woven materials were 
found in the tombs at Panapolis in Middle Egypt, which apparently dated 
from the fourth to the seventh century A. D. In the earliest of these, 
the designs were purely classical, while the later ones appear to be 
Coptic vestments and are decorated with rude figures of Saint George 
and other Oriental Saints. The figure drawing of these fabrics is rude, 
but the decorative value is very great; they are specimens of true tapestry 
weaving, the weft pattern being in brilliantly colored wools on a flaxen 

The Phoenicians were renowneo for their skill in the manufacture of 
textiles. Especially were they famed for their purple linen made at 
Tyre and Sidon. Babylon was celebrated for its shawls, and Carthage, 
Sardis, Miletus and Alexandria were all seats of textile manufacture 
in the time of Herodotus. 

Assyria, too, was far advanced in the textile arts; for though no 
specimens of the productions of Assyrian looms remain, some idea of 
their work may be gathered from the sculptured wall-reliefs from Nineveh, 
which are now in the British Museum. The garments of Asur-banipal are 
covered with delicate geometrical patterns with highly decorative borders 
of lotus and other flowers. On the enamelled wall tiles from the palace 
of Rameses II, at Tel-al-Yahudiga (fourteenth century B. C), still more 


magnificent stuffs are represented as being worn by Assyrian captives, 
the woven patterns being minutely reproduced in their different colors, 
and the Assyrian design of the sacred tree between two guardian beasts 
is represented on the most minute scale with great fidelity. 

The textiles wrought in Spain under the Mohammedans though bearing 
real or imitation Arabic characters and other sign marks of Saracenic 
influence, had yet some distinctive features of their own. The designs 
were almost alwa)'s some combination of geometrical lines, reticulations, 
conventional flowers, the crescent moon being infrequently figured. The 
colors were usually a fine crimson or a deep blue with fine-toned yellow 
as a ground. The gold used in their textiles was parchment cut into 
thin strips after being gilded with gold leaf. 

Free from Saracenic control, the Christian Spanish weavers covered 
their cloth with birds, beasts and flowers ; but the fine crimson coloring 
was still a distinctive feature. Spanish velvets were chiefly made in 
Andalusia; they were remarkably fine and distinguished both for their 
deep, soft pile and their glowing ruby tones. 

The history of the Sicilian loom is most interesting and varied. The 
Mohammedans imparted to the people of Sicily the art of manufacturing 
garments from cotton and how to rear the silkworm and spin its silk. 
Sicilian designs show also the Saracenic influence; from the Mussulmans, 
they must have obtained their knowledge of the fauna of the vast continent 
of Africa, the giraffes, antelopes, gazelles and lions, the parrots of India 
and the cheetahs of Asia ; thus the first textile period of Sicily shows not 
only beasts and birds, but also Arabic words of greeting mingled with the 
flowers and foliage. As will be shown later on, when the Moslems had 
been driven out by the Normans, many of their weavers must have 
remained in Palermo, for their teachings in design and weaving were fol- 
lowed for several centuries afterward. 

Our knowledge of early Greek textiles is largely dependent on the 
descriptions given by various classical authors, though there are a few 
remaining specimens, one of which, a remarkable specimen of tapestry 
from a tomb in the Crimea, is alleged on the highest authority to date 
from the fourth century before Christ. The poems of Homer resound with 
descriptions of ^voven stuffs of the most magnificent description, both as 
to material and design, used both for dresses and for hangings. In the 
Odyssy (225-235), he describes a cloth of purple wool with a hunting 
scene in gold thread woven by Penelope for Ulysses. Many of the 
Greek vases have representatives of rich woven dresses. One of these, 
an amphora in the Vatican, shows Achilles and Ajax engaged in a game 
resembling draughts. This vase dates from 460 B. C, and a rather later 
example in the British Museum shows a splendid figure of Demeter clad 
in a pallium covered with figures of chariots and winged horses. In 
later times, we read of magnificent peploi woven to cover or shade the 


statues of the deities at the famous shrines of Delphi, Olympia and 
at Athens and the treasuries of most Greek temples contained immense 
stores of rich woven stuffs. Euripides describes with glowing commen- 
dation a peplos belonging to the temple of Apollo at Delphi, on which 
was represented the firmament of heaven, with Apollo Helios in his chariot, 
surrounded by the chief stars and constellations. Weaving among the 
early Greeks and also the Romans was a distinct trade, carried on in 
towns specially devoted to manufacture, yet every considerable domestic 
establishment, especially in the country, contained a loom, together with all 
other necessary apparatus for the production of woolen cloth. When the 
farm or estate was sufficiently extensive, a portion of the house or palace, 
called the "textrinum,'" was devoted to the purpose, and the work there 
was carried on by female slaves under the superintendence of the mistress 
of the house and her daughters. 

The Romans, under the later Republic and under the Empire, pos- 
sessed immense stores of the most magnificent textiles of every description. 
Among those wjas the splendid collection of tapestry which, as well as 
the other art treasures owned by that monarch, Rome inherited from 
Attains II of Perganum (second century B. C.). From the same monarch 
the very costly cloth of gold called "attalica" received its name. Mettellus 
Scipio bought hangings from Babylon for which he paid 800,000 sesterces, 
and similar pieces were bought by Nero for four millions of sesterces, 
(about $16,800). Virgil tells of woven tapestries used in the theatres 
on which were depicted the figures of Britons ; and many others represent- 
ing classical themes are mentioned by contemporary writers. 

Although by many it has been supposed that the ancient Britons had 
no knowledge of weaving, specimens of coarse cloth, resembling baize, have 
been found in ancient British barrows, and Boadicea is said to have worn 
under her mantle of fur a motley tunic of many colors, which was 
probably of native manufacture. Still the knowledge was primitive and 
Britain was indebted to the Roman conquest for her early progress in 
textile manufacture. The Romans under Claudius (10 B. C — 54 A. D.) 
established factories at Winchester and other places for the making of 
cloth for their armies and of sailcloth for their navy, and Britons wiere 
presumably instructed by them in the art and employed in these factories, 
for it had advanced to considerable importance at the Anglo-Saxon period. 
Spinning was the occupation of the Anglo-Saxon ladies, and after the 
cloth was woven they embroidered it with great skill, using colored silk 
and gold and silver threads. Their work was celebrated on the continent 
and was called English work, as in previous times a similar fabric was 
styled Phrygian. King Edward the Elder sent his "son to scole and his 
daughter to Work wole,"' that is, to learn to spin and perhaps weave wool. 
The Anglo-Norman ladies were also proficient in what were then considered 
domestic arts ; and tapestry, which adorned the walls of baronial castles. 


was, in all probability, made by the ladies of the household. William of 
Malmesbury says : "The shuttle is not filled with purple only, but with 
various colors, moved here and there among the thick-spreading threads, 
and by the embroiderer's art they adorn all the woven wprk with various 
groups of figures." An ornamental cloth called baudekin was made, 
which for a long time was highly esteemed. A few specimens of Anglo- 
Saxon and Anglo-Norman weaving and embroidery still exist ; of the 
latter, perhaps the best known is the famous Bayeux tapestry, which until 
lately was believed to have been worked at least in part by Matilda. 

Much cloth of an ordinary kind for the habiting of the people must 
have been made during this period, for long before the conquest the 
weavers of London had formed a corporation or guild, the first of its 
kind in England, and shortly after guilds were also established at Winchester 
and Salisbury. These guilds had no right of incorporation and paid 
fines or taxes to the king for the privilege of making cloth. 

At the inception of the Anglo-Norman period, the craft of weaving in 
England received a stimulus from an unexpected quarter. 

The woolen manufacturers of Flanders are said to have been estab- 
lished about the middle of the tenth century during the years 958 and 960, 
and so noted did they become for their skill in cloth making, that one, 
writing of them, says : "It seemed in them to be almost a gift or instinct 
in nature." To these able craftsmen England is greatly indebted for her 
knowledge of the art of weaving. During the reign of William the Con- 
queror (T027-1066) an inundation in Flanders drove numbers of these 
artisans to seek refuge in England under the protection of William, who 
had married their countrywoman, Matilda of Flanders. He settled them 
at Carlisle, but the ill will of their neighbors involved them in so many 
broils that Henry I removed them to Ras, now a part of Pembroke, where 
their posterity can be recognized to this day. The cloth industry appears 
to have been exceedingly prosperous in the reign of Henry I. One of the 
foremost of the manufacturers was Thomas Cole, the rich clothier of 
Reading, "whose wains filled with cloth crowded the highway between 
that town and London." It is recorded that Henry gratified Cole by fixing 
the set measure of a yard, his own arm being the standard thereof. 

But wool was not the only material woven by the looms of that time. 
The linen manufacture was well established in Norfolk in 1307. Aylesha, 
in that county, was particularly noted for its flaxen fabrics, and "the 
Aylesham Linens," "Aylesham Weaves" and the "fine cloth of Aylesham" 
are frequently mentioned in old records. 

It was in the reign of Edward III that the woolen manufacture 
became firmly established in England. To foster it the king forbade the 
exportation of wool and the importation of foreign cloth, and proclaimed 
"that all cloth-workers of whatsoever country they be, which will come 
into England, Ireland, Wales and Scotland, within the king's power, shall 


come safely and surely and shall be in the king's protection to dwell in 
the same lands, dwelling where they will, and exercise their trade;" "by 
which," adds the historian, "many were drawn, so was it the principal 
cause of advancing that most beneficial trade." The king became surety 
for the immigrants until such time as they were established in their occupa- 
tion. Many Walloons availed themselves of this invitation, to the great 
betterment of the industry. But all were not of the king's mind, and the 
foreigners met with hostility. In 1342, the magistrates of Bristol per- 
secuted Thomas Blanket and some other citizens who had set up looms 
in their own houses and hired Flemish weavers to make woolen cloth. 
Thomas Blanket, whose name was applied to the article made by him, ap- 
pealed to the king, who wrote to the corporation : "Considering that the 
manufactures may turn out to the great advantage of us and all the people 
of our kingdom, you (the mayor) are to permit the machines to be erected 
in their houses at their choice, without making on that account any re- 
proach, hindrance or undue exaction." The benefits conferred upon the 
country by Edward were long remembered. When once the great value 
of the woolen manufacture became known and understood, England became 
very jealous of anything that might be detrimental to its progress, and 
laws were frequently passed preventing the exportation of wool. Accord- 
ing to Fuller's Church History, the different branches of the manufacture 
settled at the following places: 

Berkshire, cloth ; Devonshire, kersey ; Essex, Colchester sayes and 
serges ; Gloucestershire, cloth ; Hampshire, cloth ; Kent, Kentish broad- 
cloths ; Lancashire, Manchester cotton ; Norfolk, Norwich fustians ; Somer- 
setshire, Taunton serges ; Suffolk, Sudbury bayes ; Sussex, cloth ; Wales, 
Welsh friezes; Westmoreland, Kendal cloth; Worcester, cloth; Yorkshire, 
Halifax cloth. 

Many of the manufacturers became quite renowned in their day and 
their memories still live. The encouragement of Edward HI may be 
regarded as the first important step taken for the permanent establishment 
of the manufacture of textiles in England. In the reign of Richard II 
(1379) the foreign workmen had become so numerous in England that 
places were set apart for their meetings, and the king, who delighted in 
the rich products of their looms, had a coat of gold interwoven with precious 
stones. While the English were laboriously acquiring their fundamental 
knowledge of the art of weaving, in the countries of Europe and Asia was 
transpiring a brilliant era of artistic achievement in textile art, of which it is 
proper here to give some brief account. The Moslem influence predominated 
during the inception of this era, which was followed by a decline of artistic 
weaving and the growth of the modern system of manufacture. 

Byzantium from the sixth to the thirteenth century was the capital 
of all the industrial arts, and her influence on art during that period is 
particularly obvious in textile manufactures. By her the arts of ancient 


Greece and Rome were fused and mingled with the artistic skill of Egypt, 
Assyria, Persia and of Asia Minor. The introduction of silk into Europe 
in the reign of Justinian, and the enduring nature of that material, has 
afforded us many specimens of the skill of the weaver of the times. In 
the tombs of Charlemagne and other kings silken stuffs were found which 
showed a certain class of designs much used in Byzantium. In the time 
of Justinian, some of these designs were of a composite character, mingling 
the figure subjects of Rome with the stronger decorative beauty of the East. 
Chariot races in the circus, consuls and emperors enthroned in state, glad- 
iatorial fights with lions, and other classical subjects occur, arranged in 
medallions or wreaths, set in close rows so as to fill up the ground. Again, 
mixed with these classical scenes, are designs of purely Assyrian origin, 
such as the sacred tree between two guardian beasts, closely resembling the 
designs of 2000 B. C. The production of these rich fabrics was not con- 
fined to Byzantium, but was carried on in many of the cities of Greece ; 
notably, in Corinth, Athens and Thebes, which were especially famed for 
their silk textiles. 

From the sixth to the twelfth century Persia also, as well as Syria, 
produced woven stuffs of a most costly and magnificent description, master- 
pieces of textile design. From the eighth to the tenth century, names of 
the Caliphs and Arabic sentences from the Koran were introduced freely 
with the most artistic effects. 

And now followed .Sicily's second period. In the twelfth century an 
impetus was imparted to the industry in Sicily, which legend ascribes to 
Roger of Sicily, who made a raid on the shores of Attica, took Athens, 
Corinth and Thebes, and carried a number of the most skilled weavers of 
those cities to Palermo, where he enabled them to found the royal factory 
for silk weaving and which flourished for about two centuries. A large 
number of examples of the beautiful fabrics then produced in Sicily still 
exist, masterpieces of the textile art. One of the earliest of these is a 
piece of silk stuff in which the body of Saint Cuthbert at Durham was 
wrapped when his relics were translated in 1104; Western and Oriental 
designs are mingled in the figures woven upon it; birds and conventional 
ornaments of purely Eastern style with designs taken from the late Roman 
mosaics. This specimen was found on the opening of Saint Cuthbert's grave 
in 1827, and is preserved in the library of Durham Cathedral. The Sicilian 
silks of the twelfth to the fourteenth century were largely used for ecclesias- 
tical purposes. Designs were sometimes introduced into these fabrics, such 
as the Assyrian sacred tree and sham Arabic letters, which seem to indicate 
a desire that they should pass for the genuine product of Saracenic looms. 
But these masterpieces of textile art have never since been rivalled either 
in richness of coloring or beauty of design, which were further enriched 
by the skillful application of gold thread. 

Sicily's third is quite her own peculiar style. At the close of the 


thirteenth and the beginning of the fourteenth century, she struck into a 
hitherto unknown path for design, and added to the Eastern elements 
the emblem of Christianity, the cross in various forms, sometimes in the 
shape of four V's so placed as to form the symbol. Her weavers partly 
discarded the fauna of the East and wove odd compounds, such as an 
animal half elephant, half griffin, winged lions, floriated crosses and harts 
and demidogs with very large wings and extremely long manes floating 
behind them, and they drew the swan in graceful lines. The Sicilians 
evinced in their fabrics their love for certain plants and flowers. The 
curled parsley leaf in its natural green was a favorite design, as well as 
the graceful leaves and tendrils of the grapevine. 

In this period also the Sicilians were wont to introduce heraldic 
devices, such as wyverns, eagles, lions rampant, and grififins, and another 
peculiarity was the use of two dominating colors, murrey for the ground 
and green for the pattern, but, alas, this was also a period of deterioration 
for their bold-spirited designs were too often thrown away upon stuffs 
of a very inferior quality, in which the gold, if not base, was scanty, while 
the silk was sure to be mingled with cotton. The looms of Lucca, Florence, 
Genoa, Venice and Milan all won repute and acquired a good trade for 
their velvets, their figured silken textiles and their tissues of gold and 
silver; yet there was a provincial style in the fabrics of these states, which 
told from whence each piece had come. The cloths of gold and silver 
woven in Lucca were in great request during the fourteenth century, es- 
pecially in England for ecclesiastical purposes. Exeter and York cathedrals 
in particular possessed fine specimens of this cloth among its vestments. 
Lucca was probably among the first places to weave velvet. Genoa, so 
celebrated for her velvets, must have early encouraged the silk industry; 
for a description of the earliest pieces of Genoese silk known are to be 
found in the inventory of the costly vestments, belonging to Saint Paul's 
Cathedral in 1295; from which it is inferred that the Genoese cloths 
must have resembled those of Lucca and of Sicily. Genoa is celebrated 
for her rich velvets, both plain and artistic. Some of the latter were raised 
or cut, the design showing in a pile standing well up in a plain silk 
background ; others had a velvet ground with the pattern raised in a double 
pile, velvet upon velvet. 

Venice was more original in her choice of designs and did not, like 
her sister cities, follow to any extent the Oriental patterns of beasts and 
birds. She wrought for church use square webs of crimson ground on 
which she figured in gold or in yellow silk subjects taken from the New 
Testament or the persons of saints or angels. Some very beautiful speci- 
mens of this Venetian web have as subjects the coronation of the Virgin, 
the Resurrection of the Lord, etc. ; these designs bear so remarkable a 
likeness to the woodcuts done in Venice in the fifteenth century for religious 
books that "one is led to think that the men who cut the blocks for the 


printers also worked for the weavers of \'enice and sketched out the draw- 
ings for their looms." (Daniel Rock, D. D.) In the fifteenth century Ven- 
ice produced good damask, usually decorated with historical designs; there 
is also little doubt that she too produced velvets like those mentioned above. 
She was celebrated for her lace and Venetian linens. 

The weavers of Florence held foremost rank among the weavers of 
Northern Italy in the fourteenth century. Her diapers, some of which are 
in the South Kensington Museum amply attest her skill. Ecclesiastical webs 
woven in Venice display great taste in design and wonderful power in gear- 
ing the loom. But of her velvets, Venice had unquestionable reason to be 
proud. Henry VII bequeathed to Westminster Abbey a suit of vestments 
"to be made at Florence in Italy." 

Milan, though nowadays famed for her beautiful silken fabrics of all 
sorts, was not in mediicval times .so famous for the productions of her looms 
as for her armour; still, during the fifteenth century, rich-cut velvets were 
made there, specimens of which are still in existence ; she wove also laces 
of the open-tinsel kind for liturgical as well as secular purposes. 

In the fabrics of the loom gold was used very effectively and liberally 
throughout the middle ages, cloth of gold being employed for ecclesiastical 
and royal purposes. Westminster Abbey still possesses a cope woven of 
pure gold, dating from the fifteenth century, the brilliancy of which is perfectly preserved. 

Mention has been made of the superior skill of the Flemish in the mak- 
ing of woolen cloths. We must add that they were equally renowned for 
the magnificence of their tapestries, and in the fourteenth century Flanders 
produced enormous quantities of woven stuffs. It is recorded that the 
weavers of Ghent occupied twenty-seven streets; in 1832 there were 50,000 
weavers in Louvain, and the number at Ypres was still larger. 

In the latter part of the fifteenth century Bruges became conspicuous 
for the excellence of its silken textiles, and the satins of that town were 
in great use for church garments ; her damask silks wiere especially in de- 
mand. Nor did Flanders need to fear comparison of her velvets with those 
of Italy; for magnificence of coloring and rich softness of pile those prod- 
ucts of her looms were unsurpassed. Her block-printed linens were re- 
nowned in the fourteenth century, while in the fifteenth the reputation of 
Ypres, for her linens, rivalled that of Bruges for silks. 

In France, as in England, the women of the thirteenth century wove 
on small looms in their household, narrow webs of plain and ornamental 
fabrics. The earliest damasks of her looms date from the fifteenth cen- 
tury. Her velvets were satisfactory, and cloth of gold very good. Some 
very beautiful specimens of fine linen came from the looms of France as 
early as the thirteenth century. 

The manufacture of silk and ribbon had so advanced in England by 
1455, that an act prohibiting the importation of those articles was passed on 


the petition of certain silk weavers. In 1473 cloths of gold and silver were 
manufactured in London, and the woolen manufacture not only fully fur- 
nished the home demand, but provided a large amount of goods for ex- 
portation. The cloth industry languished somewhat in the reign of Henry 
VII, who invited numbers of the best weavers of cloth from the Nether- 
lands, which imparted new vigor to the industry. In the reign of his suc- 
cessor, Henry V'lII, broad looms were introduced for the weaving of broad- 
cloths. John Winscombe, better known as "J^ck of Newbury," was the 
first to introduce them. This worthy was long considered the greatest 
clothier in England ; he had a hundred looms in his house, each managed 
by a man and a boy. About this time tapestry weaving, so long neglected, 
was re-introduced by William Sheldon, and maps of Hereford, Salop, Staf- 
ford, Worcester, etc., were woven under his direction and are now in the 
Bodleian Library. 

Shakespeare makes frequent mention of weavers and the exactions that 
were put upon them. The passage in Henry VIII, where Woolsey is charged 
with taxation, refers to this period. Thus the Duke of Norfolk states: 

'"Not almost appears, 
It doth appear; for upon these taxations 
The clothiers all, not able to maintain 
The many to their longing, have put off 
The spinsters, carders, fullers, weavers who. 
Unfit for other life, compelled by hunger 
And lack of other means, in desperate manner 
Daring the event to the teeth, are all in uproar, 
And danger serves among them." 

The next important event which had a bearing upon the progress of 
the art of weaving in England was the influx of refugees from the Nether- 
lands, who were driven from home by the religious persecutors of the Duke 
of Alod. It is highly probable that the draw loom for damask weaving 
was introduced into England by them. At any rate they greatly benefited 
the communities in which they settled by their superior knowledge of the 
craft, and James I gave encouragement and protection to such of them 
as suffered from the jealousy and animosity of the English weavers. In 
1753 great perfection was attained in the weaving of wrought velvets, 
branched satins and other kinds of curious silk stufifs, and bombazines were 
first made in Norwich. The following looms v^'ere exhibited in a pageant 
which passed before Queen Elizabeth, at Norwich, in 1578: "Looms for 
worsteds, for russets, for darnix, for mockads, for lace, for cafTa and for 
fringe ;" and the art of weaving sailcloth for the navy was introduced in 
the following year. 

In, 1642 a curious pamphlet mentions the fact that cotton "fustians. 







O nt 


vermilions, dymities and other such stufifs" were woven in Manchester. In 
1676 the "Dutch engine loom" was introduced into London from Holland. 
In 1678 M. de Gennes presented his model of "a machine for making woolen 
cFoths without the aid of a workman" to the Royal Academy. In 1685 the 
Revocation of the Edict of Nantes sent 75,000 French refugees to England, 
many of whom were silk weavers who settled in Spitalfields, where velvet 
weaving was introduced in 1686. 

It is not necessary that we should in this article give a technical dis- 
sertation on the art of weaving as practised in modern times ; we have not 
the space to do justice to so weighty a subject, nor do our readers require 
such information ; but in order to properly set forth the gradual evolution 
of the art towards the perfection of modern methods pnd results, we will 
briefly mention the principal innovations, so far as they relate to the loom, of 
that brilliant era of inventions which had its inception in 1718 and which 
re\olutioni7ed the weaving and kindred industries and led to the establish- 
ment of the modern factory system. In this era America participated at first 
imitatively, later on taking a leading part in the invention and applica- 
tion of new princi])les and devices to those already existent. It is neces- 
sary, therefore, at this point, that we should retrace our steps and give 
some account of the previous state of the art in the British colonies in 
North America. The colonists naturally brought with them the domestic 
arts of spinning and of weaving. In every household it had been the prac- 
tice for the women of the family to prepare and spin the wool and flax 
for domestic purposes, and to weave woolen and linen cloths for the wear 
■of their households. Among the immigrants to the New England colonies 
were no doubt many of the weaving trade; and in the year 1638 came a 
little company of these from Rowley, in Yorkshire, and settled about six 
miles from Ipswich, in Massachusetts, calling the place Rowley. At their 
head was the Rev. Ezekiel Rogers, a non-conforming minister, whom they 
had followed when he was ejected from his parish. They established them- 
selves in the manufacture of woolen cloth, that having been their former 
occupation, and to them, in 1643, came John Pearson from Lynn and es- 
tablished the first fulling mill in this country. During the Protectorate of 
Cromwell many of the exiles returned to England and there was a greatly 
diminished intercourse by vessel with England, which necessarily caused 
the supply of fabrics from the mother country to decline. Consequently, 
steps were taken by the General Court of Massachusetts for the fostering 
of the textile industry so far as it related to the weaving of cotton, linen, 
and woolen cloth, and bounties and other encouragements were given to 
those who were willing to set up their looms. It is recorded by the Friends 
who settled Salem, Burlington and other towns in the province of West 
Jersey that "they soon commenced the manufacture of cloth," and an Eng- 
lish writer, in 1697, mentions that they made "very good serges, druggets. 


crapes, camblets (part hair) and good plushes, with several other woolen 
cloths, besides linen." 

To Philadelphia, from CTcfeld on the lower Rhine, came immigrants 
who were weavers and who soon acquired a high reputation for their linen 
fabrics. John Goodson, writing from Philadelphia to Friends in England, 
in 1690, says: "There are three wool weavers that are entering upon the 
wool manufacturing in that town, besides several in the country ; and five 
miles off is a town of Dutch and German people that have set up the linen 
manufactory, which weave and make many hundred yards of pure, fine 
linnen cloath in a year." J. Leander Bishop, in his "History of American 
Manufactures," says that the price for weaving linen in 1688 wlas "ten 
or twelve pense per yard, half a yard wide," which leads us to understand 
that the linen was woven not only for domestic purposes, but as a mer- 
chantable commodity. In 1699 a law was passed prohibiting the exporta- 
tion of wool or woolen manufactures from the English plantations in 
America. In 1705 Lord Cornbury. then governor of the Province of New 
York, in a report to the British Board of Trade, said : "I am well informed 
that upon Long Island and Connecticut they are setting upon a woolen 
manufacture, and I myself have seen serge made upon Long Island that 
any man may wear. Now, if they begin to make serge, they will, in time, 
make coarse cloth and then fine. How far this will be for the service of 
England I submit to better judgment," etc. 

Caleb Heathcote, a member of the Council, wrote also to the Board of 
Trade: "They were already so far advanced in the art of weaving that 
three-fourths of the linen and woolen used was made amongst them, espe- 
cially of the coarse sort ; and if some speedy and effectual ways are not 
found to put a stop to it, they will carry it on a great deal further, and, 
perhaps, in time, to the prejudice of our manufactories at home." 

A letter referring to the same subject, written in 1715, gives us a little 
further insight into the state of the industry at that date: "Nine years 
before, the great scarcity and dearness of woolen goods, which sold at two 
hundred per cent advance, had forced them to set up a very considerable 
manufactory, still in being, for stuffs. Kerseys, Linsey Woolseys, flannels, 
buttons, etc., by which the importations of these colonies had been decreased 
fifty thousand pounds per annum." 

The historian Bishop writes : "The descriptions of cloth made at this 
time in America were almost exclusively the stout and coarser kinds of 
mixed fabrics, into which linen and hempen thread largely entered as a 
material. Cotton was regularly imported in small quantities, chiefly from 
Barbadoes, but occasionally also from Smyrna and other places to which 
trade extended, and was made into fustians and other stuff with linen 
thread. The linens made at that time were for the most part of quite a 
coarse texture. The kerseys, linsey woolseys, serges and druggets consisted 
of wool, variously combined with flax or tow, and formed the outer clothing 


of a large part of the population during the colder seasons. Hempen cloth 
and linen, of different degrees of fineness, from the coarsest tow cloth to 
the finest Osnaburg or Holland, constituted the principal wearing apparel, 
outward and inward, at other times. The inner garments and the bed and 
table linen of nearly all classes were almost entirely supplied from the 
serviceable products of the household industry. As the implements of manu- 
facture were then comparatively rude, and many modern processes of manu- 
facture and finish were as yet unknown, the fabrics made, whether linen 
or woolen, were more remarkable for service than for elegance. 

The material was mostly grown upon the farms of the planters, the 
breaking and heckling being done by the men, while the carding, spinning, 
weaving, bleaching and dyeing were performed by the wives and daughters 
of the planter. The beauty and abundance of the stores of household linen 
were an object of laudable pride and emulation with all thrifty families. 
In 1718 some Protestants in the North of Ireland sent an address signed by 
319 persons to Governor Shute, of ]\Iassachusetts, and receiving a favorable 
answer they embarked with their wives and children in five ships for Bos- 
ton. Some of these settled on a grant of land near Nuffield in 1719, and 
in 1722 gave the town the name of Londonderrj'. These people were trained 
weavers and had brought their looms and spinning wheels, and at once pre- 
pared to engage in the manufacture of linen. They grew their own flax, 
and the linen fabrics woven by them were so superior that imitators sold 
their wares as being of "Derry make." 

Such was the state of the weaving industry in the colonies up to the 
time of the invention of the fly shuttle by Mr. John Kay, of Colchester, in 
1733 This gentleman had already effected various improvements in dress- 
ing, batting and carding machines, and various improvements in looms, 
among them that of substituting blades of metal for strips of cane for the 
construction of the reed or sley, which became known as "Kay's reeds." 
He now produced an improvement which ultimately proved of vast im- 
portance, and which is to-day a part of every power loom — namely, the 
fly shuttle, which enabled one man to work the broad loom which had 
before required two, one at each side of the loom, the shuttle being thrown 
alternately from one to the other. When the fly shuttle was first intro- 
duced, it was intended to use one shuttle only ; but later on an improve- 
ment was effected by Robert Kay, the son of John Kay, who invented the 
"drop box," by means of which three or more shuttles could be used for 
the dift'erent colors. (See Plate 7.) 

Prior to the invention of the Jacquard loom and other automatic ma- 
chines, the weaver was compelled to make use of a variety of more or less 
complicated contrivances in order to successfully produce figured or orna- 
mental fabrics. The ingeiuiity shown was often very great. Machines 
there were, it is true, which lent their aid to the hand-loom weaver in the 
production of figured cloths previous to the adoption of the Jacquard ma- 


chine, one of which, the draw loom for weaving damask, was introduced 
into England about 1567 by the Dutch and Flemish weavers, who fled to 
various countries and established this branch of weaving. The draw loom 
is supposed to have been used in Damascus, and a knowledge of it carried 
to Europe by the Crusaders. The Chinese have a rude description of draw- 
loom in which the draw-boy stands upon the top of the loom to pull up 
the neck cords. A weaver's assistant under that name was employed in 
England, also until the invention of an automatic device for the same pur- 
pose, called the draw-boy machine, which performed the same service more 
perfectly, because of its automatic regularity and the impossibility of its 
drawing the wrong threads as the draw-boy was apt to do. Several per- 
sons have received credit for this innovation, but Joseph Mason, who in 
17 — patented an engine, "by the help of which a weaver may perform the 
whole works of weaving such stuft'e as the greatest weaving trade of Nor- 
wich doth now depend upon, without the help of a draught-boy, which en- 
gine hath been tryed and found out to be of great use to the said weaveing 
trade,"' was undoubtedly the first inventor. In 1779 William Cheape pat- 
ented a plan to dispense with the draw-boy machine by drawing down the 
simple cords which were placed over his head and to hold each cord in a 
notch while he worked over the treadle. 

The "Dutch engine," or ribbon loom, which was invented in Dantzic, 
Germany, about 1575 to 1589, deserves especial notice as being the first suc- 
cessful power loom known to modern manufacture; it was also called the 
swivel loom. Prior to its invention ribbons were woven in small looms, and 
only one ribbon was woven at once ; by means of the swivel loom it was 
possible to weave eight to ten or thirty to forty ribbons at one time. This 
loom was known in Ley den m i62r, and its invention is claimed for that 
place; at any rate its use was prohibited, as it was in Dantzic. The State's 
General renewed the prohibition in 1639, and the use of the loom was pro- 
hibited in Nuremberg and in the Spanish Netherlands in 1664. In 1676 it 
was prohibited at Cologne, and a prohibitive act was passed in regard to it 
by the Council of Frankfort. The Council of Hamburg ordered one of 
these looms to be burnt, and Charles \T ordered the prohibition to be re- 
nev>ed in 1719, though the measure was strongly opposed by some of its 
mercantile advocates. Saxony revoked its prohibition in 1765. In 1676 the 
"Dutch engine loom" was introduced into England from Holland, and from 
that time on improvements were made in it both in England and France, 
so that a century and a half ago and long before Dr. Cartwright's time, 
the swivel loom had been made self-acting, all the principal operations of 
the loom being automatic; the shedding of the warp, throwing the shuttle 
and beating the weft together were effectually accomplished by means of 
cranks, tappets, etc., almost as at the present time. 

In 1745 we have the first accoimt of any improvement in swivel looms 
in the si)ecif'cations of a patent granted to John Kay, the inventor of the 


fly shuttle, and John Stell; the patent is dated from 1745, No. 612, for a 
loom for weaving tapes, the specification is of interest as containing what 
is perhaps the first mention of tappets as applied to a successfully working 
loom. "The new invention to be added to the Dutch engine or loom now 
used for working the before-mentioned goods in narrow breadths is by 
fixing in the lower part of said engine or loom a rowler beam, or round 
piece of timber, that passes through the length of the said engine or loom 
and turns round upon its axis at each end, and at a certain distance from 
one end of the said rowler or beam is fixed a pin made of wood or iron, 
the said rowler or beam being in part enclosed in a second or other hollow 
rowler, which moves or slides in a loose position upon the first-mentioned 
rowler or beam, and is at pleasure fixed to the first by means of a notch 
that receives the aforesaid pin, and is, by a tender or handle, capable of 
being moved to and again, or to the right hand and left, which motion, the 
first rowler or beam being supposed to turn round, sets the said engine or 
loom to work or stoppeth it at pleasure. 

"There are likewise fixed in the sliding beam or hollow rowler, at 
proper distances, sundry tapits, which, when the said two rowlers or beams 
turn round, perform the office of treading the necessary treadles and move 
the batten or lath, and, by the help of the other piece of timber or part of 
the machine fixed upon the aforesaid batten or lath, in the form of the 
letter T or angle, which plays upon an axis at the centre of the top or 
head, and by two treadles annexed to the extremity of each uppermost 
angle, the aforesaid tapets, laying hold and treading down the treadles afore- 
said and throws over the shuttles to the right hand and left by means of 
the lowermost or third angle, being annexed to a certain part of the said 
engine or loom, called a driver, and is further assisted by a balance or 
weight, and the batten being stuck to the piece or web by a weight or spring 
closeth the shoot and completes the work, and the said engine may go 
or be worked by hands, water or any other force." In Kay's specification 
there is no mention of the bar which may have been added by Vaucanson, 
the first mention of it being in Diderot and d'Alembert's Encyclopedia, 1762. 
Sir Edward Baines, in his "History of the Cotton Manufacture," mentions 
a swivel loom invented by Vaucanson, and in 1765 a weaving factory, built 
by Mr. Gartside, was filled with swivel looms ; but whether these were 
McKay and Stells or \^aucanson"s is indeterminate. At any rate, the bar 
or swivel loom can hardly be regarded as any other than the first successful 
power or automatic loom. Minor improvements have since been made, 
such as the employment of different tiers of shuttles, but none of these im- 
provements afifect in any way the principle of the loom. The ribbon loom 
may be regarded as "a series of distinct looms, mounted within one frame, 
each having its own warp and cloth beams, heddles and shuttle, but all 
worked by one set of treadles and with a single batten. The Jacquard ap- 


paratus and the drop-box arrangement for changing shuttles have been 
applied to this valuable machine. 

Mr. Thomas Morton, of Kilmarnock, Scotland, invented a barrel or 
cylinder loom for fancy vv^eaving. The improvement consisted of the use 
of a barrel or cylinder, "on the surface of which the figure or pattern to 
be produced in the cloth is arranged in relief, precisely the same way as 
tunes are disposed on the barrel of the common organ, or on that of a musical 
box, by inserting wire staples or wooden pins and the barrel being placed 
upon the top of the loom ; these staples actuate other suitable mechanism, 
and thus the pattern is formed upon the cloth. 

But the most important and ingenious appliance that has ever been 
adapted to weaving was in course of evolution ; a machine by means of 
which it has become possible to produce the most intricate and extended 
patterns with the same certainty and with almost the same rapidity as plain 
cloth — namely, the Jacquard loom. Although the germ of the idea had been 
conceived by Bouchon, who, in 1728, patented in France the application of 
perforated paper for working the draw loom, and by Falcon, who, in 1728, 
substituted a chain of cards to turn on a prism or cylinder in lieu of the 
paper band of M. Bouchon, and by M. Vaucanson, who, in 1745, applied 
the griflfe to M. Falcon's invention and placed the apparatus on the top 
of the loom in the position it now occupies in the Jacquard loom, still, the 
credit of making the machine of practical utility and of introducing it to 
the world is due to Joseph Marie Jacquard, of Lyons. M. Jacquard be- 
gan his experience in 1801 at the request of Napoleon, and when first in- 
troduced in France the machines met with much opposition ; they were dis- 
mantled and burned : but after some years the inventor had the satisfaction 
of seeing the merits of his loom fully recognized. (See Flate 8.) 

In 1816 Mr. Stephen Wilson introduced the Jacquard loom into Eng- 
land, and he is credited with having effected several improvements in it. 
Before a Lords' Committee on the silk trade, in 1823, Mr. Wilson said: "If 
I am not too sanguine, my idea of this machinery is that it is of as much 
consequence to the silk manufacture as Arkwright's machine was to the cot- 
ton, and that it will supersede a great many of the machines now in use." 
The general efficiency of this loom has from time to time been greatly augu- 
mented by scientific and practical weavers both in America and Europe. In 
1822 the Jacquard loom was first set up in Coventry, England; in 1823 there 
■were five of these looms in that town; in 1832 there were 600; and in 1838 
2,228. The Jacquard loom has in the progress of manufacture been ap- 
plied to various purposes, notably to the making of lace, of counterpanes, 
and so forth. It is very simple in its construction and almost unlimited in 
its extent and scope, and well deserves the high estimation in which it has 
ever been held. Some noted examples of early work done by the Jacquard 
were the weaving of Queen Victoria's coronation dress, in which thirty 
colors and as many shuttles were used ; and a night shirt for Pope Boniface, 


in the production of which 276 shuttles were employed ; the pattern dis- 
played correct likenesses of 276 heretics, each suffering under some species 
of torture different from the others ; signs which must have produced a 
garment variegated in its effect, but terrible to contemplate or to wear. 
More happily inspired was a still more extraordinary specimen of silk weav- 
ing, executed by Didier, Petit & Co. This was a portrait of Jacquard, rep- 
resenting him in his workshop, surrounded by his implements and engaged 
in the construction of the machinery which thus rendered its testimony to 
the genius of its inventor. This work, entitled, "Hommage a J. M. Jac- 
quard," was woven, "says one who saw it," with such truth and delicacy 
as to resemble a fine line engraving. In 1803 Messrs. Norris & Co. exhibited 
at the International Exhibition a Spitalfields loom, weaving a rich damask 
from a design by the late Owen Jones. There were 29,088 warp threads, 
the design, when woven, being twenty-eight inches long and requiring 9,312 
cards, weighing five and one-half hundredweights for its formation. To 
cut these cards, the design on ruled paper measured sixteen feet by nine 
feet three inches. Portraits and pictures have frequently been produced of 
such artistic character that they had all the appearance of fine engravings. 

Another very interesting piece of weaving on the Jacquard was de- 
signed by a Mr. Balfour and manufactured by the Messrs. Dewar at the 
Bothwell factory, Dunfermline, about fifty years ago — namely, the "Cri- 
mean Hero Tablecloth." A cloth of this pattern was exhibited at the dis- 
play given by the textile Exhibitors' Association in Mechanics' Hall, Boston, 
in 1909. 

"The designing and executing of the work occupied about eight months 
and occasioned an outlay of nearly $'3,000. The cloth is composed of the 
finest linen warp and white silk weft, six and a half yards in length and 
three in breadth ; but w|hen woven for sale it would consist of linen only. 
The pattern consists of a beautifully elaborate leafy scroll-work for border, 
in which, at proper intervals, are inserted twenty-four faithful portraits. 
In one border is Her Majesty Queen Victoria in the centre, and on either 
side are the Prince Consort and the Duke of Cambridge. In the other end 
border is the Emperor Napoleon in the centre, and on either side is the 
Empress Eugenia and Prince Napoleon. In the centre of one of the side 
borders is placed the King of Sardinia, and on either side Bosquet, Brown, 
Florence Nightingale, La Marmora, St. Arnaud, Dardigan, Raglan and 
Bruat. In the other side border, the Sultan in the centre, with Omar 
Pasha, Williams, Canrobert, Evans, Campbell, Pelissier, Lyons and Simp- 
son on either side. Each portrait of the sovereigns is surmounted with 
their respective armorial bearings, placed towards the middle of the cloth ; 
and alternately with these are trophies containing the names of the chief 
battles with their dates, and in the centre of the cloth there are magnificent 
trophies illustrative of the fall of Sebastopol, with the motto "Deus proteget 
justitiam" and the date, 8th September, 1855 ; the ground around all of 


these being interspersed with the stars and orders of the different sov- 
ereigns, etc., etc. 

"An idea may be formed of the extent of the design when it is men- 
tioned that there were 50,000 cards and seven 600-cord Jacquard machines 
employed in forming the pattern on each loom. These machines are re- 
quired to be kept in operation at the same instant, and the whole was put 
in motion by a single movement of the foot. The web was 1,600 threads 
in the reed, equal to 4,800 threads per yard, or a total number of 14,400 
in the breadth of the cloth." 

Much more of vast interest might be written in regard to the capabili- 
ties of the Jacquard machine, but we must now give some account of the 
development of machines for automatic weaving. The application of power 
to the weaving of ordinary webs developed along a different line. So early 
as 1678 a machine for making "linen cloth without the aid of a workman" 
was invented by M. de Gennes, a French naval officer, and was figured 
and described in the French Journal des Scavans. M. Vaucanson's loom of 
1745 embodied several improvements on that of De Gennes and fore- 
shadowed the Jacquard; in fact, had M. Vaucanson been acquainted with 
the fly shuttle, which was then known and used at least in England, he 
would no doubt have come down to fame as the inventor of both the power 
loom and the Jacquard. "This loom is of full size and is now carefully 
preserved in the Conservatoire des Arts et Metiers, at Paris. It not only 
is provided with his improvements on M. Ponchou's invention, by which 
he "suppressed altogether the cumbrous tail-cards of the draw loom and 
made the loom completely self-acting by placing the pierced paper or card 
upon the surface of a large pierced cylinder, which travelled backwards and 
forwards at each stroke and revolved through a small angle by ratchet work. 
He also invented the rising and falling griffe and thus brought the ma- 
chine very nearly resembling the actual Jacquard, but it contains a friction 
roller taking-up motion. These two inventions are now in common use." 
The next attempt to produce a power loom was made by Robert and Thomas 
Barber, of Nottingham, who took out a patent in 1774, No. 1083, for "Ma- 
chinery for preparing, spinning and weaving fibrous substances," etc. In 
this loom the "picking shafts, with the sticks, cams and studs, are arranged 
the same as in the most approved modern looms, although they act by wind- 
ing up and releasing springs as in some excellent looms now in use." (Bar- 
low's "History of Weaving.") But it does not seem that this loom ever 
came into practical use, and, although from time to time power looms made 
their appearance, the practical adoption of machines for automatic weaving 
was deferred for upwards of forty years. But a great step towiirds the 
application of a motive power to weaving had been accomplished by the 
invention of the fly shuttle and the addition of the "tappet shaft" to the 
Dutch loom, and the spinners could not supply yarn in sufficient quantities 
to keep the looms running. The demand led to the grand series of inven- 


tions used in spinning, and so amply was the deficiency supplied that it was 
soon evident that the weavers would be unable to keep pace with the pro- 
duction of yarn. But necessity was ever the mother of invention. In 1784 
Dr. Edmund Cartwright, a learned divine, as well as a scientific agricul- 
turist, was led, in a conversation with some Manchester gentlemen, to con- 
sider the idea of inventing what he termed a "weaving mill." We will give 
the account of his procedure in his own words, as given in a letter to his 
friend, Mr. Bannatyne: "Some little time afterwards a particular circum- 
stance recalling this conversation to my mind, it struck me that, as in plain 
weaving, according to the conception I then had of the business, there could 
only be three movements, which were to follow each other in succession, 
there would ne little difficulty in producing and repeating them. Full of 
these ideas, I immediately employed a carpenter and smith to carry them 
into effect. As soon as the machine was finished, I got a weaver to put in 
the warp, which was of such materials as sailcloth is usually made of. To 
my great delight a piece of cloth, such as it was, was the product. As I 
had never before turned my thoughts to anything mechanical, either in 
theory or practice, nor had even seen a loom at work, or knew anything 
of its construction, you will readily suppose that my first loom was a most 
rude piece of machinery. The warp was placed perpendicularly, the reed 
fell with the weight of at least half a hundredweight, and the springs which 
threw the shuttle were strong enough to throw a congreve rocket. In short, 
it required the strength of two powerful men to work the machine at a 
slow rate, and only for a short time. Conceiving in my great simplicity 
that I had accomplished all that was required, I then secured wliat I thought 
was a most valuable property by a patent — 4th of April, 1785. This being 
done, I then condescended to see how other people wove, and you will guess 
my astonishment when I compared their easy modes of operation with mine. 
Availing myself, however, of what I then saw, I made a loom, in its gen- 
eral principles nearly as they are now made. But it was not until the year 
1787 that I completed my invention, when I took out my last weaving patent, 
August first in that year." (See sketch of Dr. Cartwright, Ibid.) 

In 1786 the inventor had established a weaving and spinning factory 
at Doncaster, in which free scope could be given to every description of 
mechanical experiment, but after spending thirty thousand pounds in the 
enterprise, he was compelled to abandon it in 1793. In 1791 Dr. Cartwright 
contracted with Messrs. Grimshaw, of Manchester, for the use of four hun- 
dred of his looms. A mill was built for the purpose, and twenty-four of 
the machines were set to work, but shortly afterwards the factory was 
burned down, it is supposed by a mob. To this unfortunate circumstance 
Dr. Cartwright ascribed the origin of his misfortune, for he became unable 
to prevent the infringement of his patents. His loom even then contained 
many features which were highly ingenious, though quite impracticable as 
he developed them, but which have since been brought to perfection by more 


practical inventors. One of these was a device for the automatic stopping 
of the loom on the breaking of a warp thread, and the principle upon which 
the contrivance is based is now applied to the warping frame. In his various 
patents he described a method for stopping the loom on the breaking of a 
weft thread, and also let-off and take-up motions for the warp and cloth 
beams. But so manifold were the imperfections and crudities of the Cart- 
wright loom that (we quote Mr. G. C. Gilroy) "it is certain that this ma- 
chine would have long since passed into oblivion had it not been for the 
improvements made upon it by other men of genius." Inventors who fol- 
lowed the doctor confined themselves to motions that were absolutely neces- 
sary, but, even so, it took twenty years of untiring effort to prove that the 
power loom possessed any advantages over the hand loom. Many of these 
attempts proved impracticable, being worked by a crank, as Richard Gor- 
ton's, 179T, and Stephen Dolignon's "loom to weave by a machine rocking 
to and fro by gravity." 

Some that were more successful were : Andrew McKinlock's power 
loom, which, with the assistance of a carpenter and clockmaker, he set up 
in Glasgow in 179.V This machine was propelled by hand power, and he 
later built forty of the machines, in which he had made some slight im- 
provements. These same looms were working at Pollockshaws and Paisley 
in 1845, when the inventor was still living at the age of eighty-five. Also 
Robert Miller's power loom, long known as the "wiper loom," from the 
circumstance that the picking and treadle motions were worked by cams 
which were called "wipers," and for which he obtained a patent in 1796. 
Mr. Monteith erected two hundred of the^e looms at Pollockshaws in 1801. 
Then, in 1803, William Horrocks invented a loom which afterwards came 
into very general use. Mr. Horrocks was accused of having appropriated 
a take-up motion embodied in a hand loom invented by Mr. Radcliffe in 
1802, and which was known as the "Dandy loom;" the motion, in fact, was 
one embodied in Vaucanson's invention of 1745, had they but known it. 

In 1805 a large power-weaving factory was erected by James Finlay 
& Co, at Catrine in Ayr.shire. Indeed, power looms were being set up every- 
where, and by 1813 there were 2,400 power looms in operation in Great 
Britain, but hitherto they had shown no advantage over hand looms, and by 
some it was predicted that they would never prove of any service. The 
weaving of textile by machinery was, however, progressing towards ulti- 
mate success, and in 1820 it was estimated that there were 12,150 power 
looms in operation in England and 2,000 in Scotland. A little over fifty 
years later the number had increased to 700,000. 

Meanwhile, in the colonies, the art of weaving was progressing stead- 
ily. Most of the early immigrants being mechanics, a fair proportion of 
them were necessarily weavers or fullers, and we find records of the early 
establishment of small centres of the weaving industry. In 1767 we learn 
that 17,000 yards of cloth were manufactured in East Hartford, Conn., and 


in the same year they were making broadcloth, serges, tammys, shalloons, 
camblets, figured stuffs, etc., at Scitiiate, Mass. 

In 1764 a society was formed in New York, styled : "The Society for 
the Promotion of Arts, Agriculture and Economy," the object of the society 
being "the encouragement, to the utmost, of the manufacture of linen." 
From its inception, the society ofl'ered premiums for both the raw and manu- 
factured goods. 

Silk goods were not manufactured for sale, but they were woven for 
home use by several ladies ; the stuffs, however, for lack of proper knowl- 
edge of the preparation of the raw material, were crude, being fuzzy as 
well as stiflF. "In 1770 Mrs. Susanna Wjight, at Columbia, Lancaster 
County, Pa., made a piece of mantua, sixty yards in length, from her own 
cocoons, and it was afterwards worn as a court dress by the queen of Great 

In 1775 a society was formed in Philadelphia, having for its object 
the promotion of the weaving and spinning industries ; and a factory was 
established for the production of woolen and cotton cloths, which was 
closed in September, 1777, when the British occupied Philadelphia. On the 
evacuation by the British troops, the buildings and machinery lay idle for 
some time and were later put into operation by Samuel Wetherall. Such 
was the state of the weaving industry in 1776. The patriotic spirit of the 
people soon, however, gave an impetus to the infant industry, and woolen, 
cotton and silk mills sprang up everywhere. 

In 1812 Thomas R. Wililiams, a watchmaker of Newport, set up his 
first power loom in the factory of Rowland Hazard, in Newport, R. I. ; this 
was "a rotary loom for weaving boot, suspenders and girth weribing." But, 
although Mr. Taft, in his "Notes," says of them: "It is most probable 
that they were the first power looms successfully operated in America," we 
have the evidence of Air. Isaac Hazard that they were "so imperfect that 
they did not make the web eqtial to that produced by hand, and the business 
did not succeed." Improvements in machinery were, however, constantly 
being made in looms, this being the experimental stage of power weaving 
both in England and America. 

In the year 1810 Francis Cabot Lowell visited the factories of Eng- 
land arid Scotland with the purpose of studyinig the methods employed there 
and also the machinery. Mr. Lowell returned to America with his notes 
and drawings in 1812 and began the construction of a power loom, in which 
he was aided by Patrick Jackson. The first Lowell loom Was operated by 
means of a crank turned by a man. The next three years were spent in per- 
fecting a loom for which a patent was issued to Lowell and Jackson, Feb- 
ruary 23, 1S15, and the looms were ,«et up in the factory of the Boston 
Manufacturing Company at Waltham, Mass. A subject for constant in- 
vention in the new power looms were the temples, it being a matter of great 
importance to make the temples automatic. Dr. Cartwright was the first 


to attempt to accomplish this; he apphed to his loom (1786) temples closed 
by a spring and opened by the motion of the treadles. In 1805 Thomas ■ 
Johnson, the same who was employed by Mr. Radcliffe, obtained a patent 
for rotary temples formed like bevelled wheels, with pins in the edges to 
hold the cloth distended; in 1816 Ira Draper, of Weston, Mass., also in- 
vented a rotary temple, which was patented January 7, 1816; he obtained 
a patent for improvements upon it in 1829. These temples came quickly 
into general use in this country, and the Draper Company now furnishes 
practically all of the loom temples used in the United States. 

In the following year, 1816, the power loom was introduced into Rhode 
Island by William Gilmour, a machinist from Glasgow, Scotland. He was 
employed by Judge Lyman to construct a power loom for the Lyman Cot- 
ton Manufacturing Company. This was the loom invented by William 
Horrocks, of Stockport, England, and was first patented in 1803 and then 
improved and re-patented in 1805 and 181 3; it was known in this country 
as the "Scotch loom." Twelve of these looms were put into successful 
operation in the Lyman Mills in 1817. Judge Lyman's policy in regard to 
this loom was unusually liberal; he allowed the use of all his drawings by 
other mall owners, the result being that power looms were rapidly introduced 
into all the cotton mills of the country. As a mark of gratitude to Gil- 
mour for the introduction into this country of the power loom, the cotton 
manufacturers of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut subscribed 
$15,000 as a purse for him. 

From this time on the wo.olen and cotton weaving industries of the 
United States progressed rapidly towards the high standing they possess 
lo-day. A loom for the production of figured fabrics was the next hugely 
important addition to textile power machinery, for up to this time power 
looms had produced only plain fabrics. In 1837 came to these shores from 
the cradle of the cotton industry, Lancashire, England, one William Cromp- 
ton, by trade a weaver, by genius an inventor, who, at the suggestion of 
his employers, Messrs. Crocker & Richmond, Taunton, Mass., and aided 
by their American enterprise, produced at their mills a power loom for 
weaving figured cotton fabrics, for which he obtained a patent in 1839. 
It was the finst of its kind in the world ; and when, at the suggestion of Sam- 
uel Lawrence, of the IMiddlesex Mills, Lowell, he applied the principle of 
his loom to the weaving of fancy worsted cassimeres, material which had 
never before been produced on any but hand looms, the importance of his 
contribution to the textile art was enhanced beyond estimation. The looms 
were manufactured principally at Worcester, Mass. On the lapse of the patents an extension of them was granted for seven years to the in- 
ventor's son, the late George Crompton. In 1S56 an open-shed loom was 
invented by Lucius J. Knowles, and forty years later the Crompton- Knowles 
Loom Company was incorporated. (See Plate 8.) 


Furnished throiigli the courtesy ot Crompton & Knowles Loom Works. 



Space will not permit us to mention the improvements that have from 
time to time been attempted or perfected by numerous inventors since the 
invention of the power loom by Dr. Cartwright; probably the most im- 
portant that has been effected since the weft-fork (Clinton & Gilroy) and 
grid-stop motion, the automatic let-off motions and parallel shuttle motions 
is that embodied in the Northrup loom — namely, a device for changing fill- 
ing in the shuttle, with which was incorporated a warp stop-motion. This 
was the invention of James H. Northrup, an Englishman who came to the 
United States in 1881. Mr. Northrup, who had previously invented the 
Northrup Spooler Guide, first produced a shuttle-changing device and ap- 
plied it successfully to looms of the Draper Company at Hopedale, Mass. 
His idea of changing the filling instead of the shuttle began to take shape 
in 1889, and under the auspices of the Draper Company he continued his 
experiments and brought his idea into practical shape in April, 1890, when 
a completely new loom was devised, incorporating his new improvements 
and various others, and the Northrup loom has since taken a leading place 
both at home and in many foreign countries. American inventors have 
been particularly prolific in the production of many kinds of devices for the 
improvement of textile machinery. 

The weaving of silk was attempted between 1828 and 1844 by the 
Mansfield Silk Co., but these etiforts resulted in failure. This, however, 
was retrieved by their successors and others, so that in 1850 there were, in 
various parts of the United States, sixty-seven establishments reported as 
manufacturing silk goods, and America is now (1911) the second country 
in the world in the production of woven silk materials. One striking feature 
of this industry is the marked increase in the use of power looms and the 
decrease in that of hand looms. Credit is due to the silk manufacturers 
of the United States for being the first to produce silk taffetas by power 
looms, an innovation which was so successful as to be copied later in 
Europe ; the importance of this improvement is shown by the fact that one- 
half the product of the silk looms in the United States come under the head 
of "taffetas." 

The application of electric and pneumatic power to looms will properly 
be treated of in the article specially pertaining to machinery. The art of 
weaving has now become so systeipatized that we are apt to regard it as 
a mechanical operation rather than as an art. Perfect as are the materials 
put out from the factories of to-day, they cannot excel the products of the 
looms of the ancients, nor those of the middle ages, and with some of them 
they cannot even compare. In this utilitarian age, however, quantity as 
well as quality is a desideratum. 

A notable exception in this respect must however be made in regard 
to Japan, where the textile art acquired a very high degree of perfection 
ages ago. In old Japan, it was the custom for each noble to have his 
private looms for weaving brocades for the wear of himself and his fam- 


ily, and also the less costly fabrics in which his retainers were clothed. The 
robes manufactured for the Court at Kyoto and Yedo were supplied only 
by the imperial looms. The common fabrics, such as towels and dusters, 
often displayed very artistic designs — a flight of birds, a branch of blos- 
soms, etc. Japan has made immense progress in the textile art during re- 
cent years, and in no branch of applied art does her decorative genius show 
to better effect than in her textile fabrics, and, unlike other ancient nations, 
the art of weaving has not fallen into decadence in that country. The wpven 
and embroidered stuffs of Japan have always been beautiful, but in former 
times, with the exception of hangings for the temples and for the drapings 
of festival cars, few pieces of size or splendor were produced. But of late 
years, arras of immense size, showing remarkable workmanship and 
grand combinations of colors, are now manufactured at Kyoto. Kawashima, 
of that place, inaugurated this new departure by reproducing a gobelin, but 
it may now be safely asserted that no gobelin will bear comparison with the 
pieces produced in Japan. The fashion of weaving, which has been in 
use for three hundred years, is called "tsuzure-ori" or "linked weaving;" 
the cross threads are laid in with the fingers and pushed into their places 
with a comb by hand, very little machinery being used. The threads ex- 
ten3 only to the outlines of each figure, so that every part of the pattern 
has a rim of minute holes, like the pierced lines between postage stamps, 
the effect bemg that the design seems to be suspended in the ground. A 
recent example of this nature required two years of incessant labor, with 
relays of workmen working steadily throughout the twenty- four hours. This 
piece, manufactured by Kawashima's weavers, measured twenty by thir- 
teen feet, and we quote the following description of it. "It represented the 
annual festival at the Nikko mausolea. The chief shrine was shown; the 
gate and long flight of stone steps leading up to it, several other buildings, 
the groves of cryptomeria that surround the mausolea, and the festival 
procession. All the architectural and decorative details, all the carvings and 
colors, all the accessories — everything was wrought in silk, and each of 
the 1,500 figures forming the procession wore exactly appropriate costume. 
Even this wealth of detail, remarkable as it was, seemed less surprising than 
the fact that the weaver had succeeded in producing the effect of atmos- 
phere and of aerial perspective. Through the graceful cryptomeria, dis- 
tant mountains and the still more distant skies could be seen, and between 
the buildings in the foreground and those in the middle distance atmos- 
phere appeared to be perceptible." The fabric next to tsuzure-ori, in deco- 
rative value, is that styled yuzen birodo, or "cut velvet." Dyeing by the 
yuzen process is quite modern. The design is painted on the fabric, after 
which the latter is steamed and the picture is ultimately fixed by methods 
which are kept secret." Silken fabrics are preferred for this style of deco- 
ration. When cut velvet is the material, the yuzen process is supplemented 
by the work of the cutter, whose tool is a small, sharp chisel wlith a V-shaped 



point with which he carves into the pattern as though he were shading the 
lines of the design with a steel pencil, the edge of the tool never being al- 
lowed to trespass upon a line "which the exigencies of the design require 
to be solid. The veining of a cherry petal, the tesselation of the scales of 
a carp, the serrated edge of a leaf, these remain intact, while the leaf itself, 
or the scales of the fish or the petal, have the threads forming them cut, 
so as to show the velvet nap and to appear in soft low relief. The elaborate 
and microscopically correct pictures produced by the yuzen process are bet- 
ter displayed on silk crape or habutaye. The rich-toned, soft plumage of 
birds, or the blending of the colors in a branch of chrysanthemums or 
peonies cannot be produced with like fidelity on the unequal surface of 

A very interesting survival of the mediaeval style of weaving still exists 
in Sweden and other Scandinavian countries, and table covers, counterpanes 
and articles of dress are woven by the peasantry in a simple but highly deco- 
rative way, many of the patterns being of great artistic beauty. 



There is great uncertainty as to the origin of the art of knitting by 
hand : the period, the country, and the author of the invention are not 
known beyond a doubt. Some authorities claim Scotland as the birthplace 
of this industry at a date somewhat earlier than 1500. There is no historic 
mention of the art until the time of Henry IV and it was first named in 
an act of Parliament in the reign of Henry VII; and in seven following 
Acts, knit hose, caps, and also hosiers were mentioned ; the latter might, 
it is true, have been the fashioners of the earliest hose, which were made 
of cloth sewn to the proper shape. Knitted hose cannot, however, have 
come into general use, or perhaps the common woolen hose was too coarse 
for the king's wear, for it is on record that Henry VIII himself wore hose 
fashioned from woven materials, "except there came from Spain, by great 
chance, a pair of silk stockings." This circumstance and the fact that 
Sir Thomas Gresham presented the young King Edward VI with a pair 
of silk stockings which probably came from the same country, gave rise to 
the idea that the art originated in Spain or that the Spaniards might have 
acquired it from the Moors. But as knitted woolen caps were commonly 
worn in England in the reign of Henry VII, and there is no evidence 
that the Spanish stockings worn by the succeeding monarchs were knitted, 
the preponderance of evidence still remains in favor of Scotland. Then 
again, Stowe, the historian, states that "in 1564, one William Riley, 
apprentice to Master Thomas Burdett, having seen in the shop of an Italian 
merchant, a pair of knit worsted stockings from Mantua, borrowed them 
and made a pair exactly like them, and these are said to have been the 
first stockings of woolen yarn knit in England ;" but it is said that worsted 
stockings were made at that time in England, and that they were very 
likely silk stockings which young Riley imitated and which were worn by 
the Earl of Pembroke. 

In 1560, we are told of Elizabeth, that "Mrs. Montague, her highness's 
silk-woman, presented the queen with a pair of black silk knit stockings, 
which after a few days' wearing pleased her highness so much that she 
sent to Mrs. Montague for more. The queen, who was not ignorant of 
the attraction of a smart-looking foot and ankle, liked them so that she 
would not henceforth wear any more cloth hose," and we learn that in 
1578, at the pageant exhibited to Queen Elizabeth at Norwich, were 
portrayed: "Looms for worsteds, for russets, for darnix, for mockads, for 
lace, for caffa, and for fringe ; and upon the stage at one end stood eight 


small women children spinning worsted yarn, and at the other end many 
knitting worsted hose." 

About 1589, an invention truly wonderful considering the state of 
manufacturing at that period was produced by William Lee, a curate in 
the parish of Calverton, about five miles from Nottingham. This was a 
stocking frame, which was probably the first automatic machine for the 
purposes of manufacture. 

Mr. Lee was engaged for about three years in perfecting his invention, 
with the assistance of his brother and some skilled artisans of Nottingham, 
and in the year 1589, it was completed and was put into operation and 
worked for about two years. But becoming aware of a prejudice against 
it, he removed it to London, where it was set up in Bunhill Fields, St. Lukes. 
Here Mr. Lee met with varying success, and as he had expended the 
greater portion of his patrimony and even endured much privation while 
employed upon his loom, in order to secure some profit from it he endeavored 
to obtain a patent for it from Queen Elizabeth, who went to his lodgings 
accompanied by Lord Hunsdon, and there saw it worked by Lee or his 
brother. She was disappointed when she found it knitting coarse Worsted 
instead of silk hose and refused to grant the patent, although urged to 
do so by Hunsdon. 

In 1598, Mr. Lee succeeded in making a machine that produced silk 
stockings. His friend. Lord Hunsdon, dying, Lee fell into deep melancholy, 
and being invited to France by the minister of Henry IV, he went, taking his 
machines with him. Before he could establish himself in business, the 
king was assassinated and Lee died in Paris, in 1610. His brother, James Lee, 
who was at that time in Rouen, where they intended to carry on the 
manufacture, went to Paris and found that his brother was dead and buried. 
He returned to Rouen and with the seven workmen who had gone over 
with the machines, he recrossed to London. One of the looms, however, 
was left at Rouen with two of the workmen who desired to remain there, 
hoping to profit from Lee's privilege. One of these men soon died, the 
"other worked on his unimproved loom for forty years." 

The looms brought back to London were set up in Old Street Square, 
and formed the foundation of the "London Hosiery Manufacture." The 
machines in a short time were sought after and sold, and Mr. James Lee 
went to Nottingham, where he went into partnership with one of his 
brother's old acquaintances, named Aston, and began to make new frames 
in 1620, when Aston made a very important improvement in the machine 
by dispensing with a set of "sinkers." 

In 1 62 1, the Venetian ambassador in London paid Mr. James Lee 
five hundred pounds, for a machine, and the release of an apprentice to go 
with it. But the Venetian smiths were unequal to the business of building or 
even repairing a stocking frame, and the enterprise failed. From this time 


forward, the business of stocking weaving rapidly extended, London, 
Godalming and Nottinghamshire being the chief centres of the industry. 

A union was formed early in the seventeenth century under the title 
of the London Framework Knitter's Company, for regulating wages and 
opposing knitters who had failed to serve an apprenticeship. In 1640, 
there were at Nottingham two master hosiers who purchased country-made 
goods, the machines being leased by the knitters and the work done in 
their cottages. The manufacture spread, and silk, worsted and cotton 
hose were made also in Leicestershire and Derbyshire. Much prejudice 
existed against machine-wrought hose, but in spite of this the trade grew 
and prospered. Owing to their grievances against a stocking maker, 
named Pickards, the "London Knitters' Company" applied to Cromwell 
the Protector for a charter; alleging that "Pickard taught his art to 
anyone for money; made under-fashioned and unsound hose; and of 
slightly twisted yarns." The Charter of Incorporation was granted in 
1657, and it empowered the company, "to make laws consistent with the 
custom of London, of which city they might choose any citizen as a 
member ; might levy fines by distress, and search for and prove any frame- 
work knitted goods; and if found ill-made or of deceitful stuff, cut them 
to pieces." It was also ordered that no frames should be exported. Every 
stocking maker was to become a member of the company or pay five 
pounds weekly until he did so. A second charter with extended powers was 
granted to the company by Charles II in 1660, and yet a third in 1686, 
which extended all previous and some further powers to Ireland, where 
many frames were at work. More than four hundred frames having been 
exported, a fine was levied on the removal of one without notice, and all 
were numbered, which stopped the exportation. In 1695, there were 1,500 
frames in and near London. In 1727 there were 2,500 frames in and 
around London and 55,000 in the provinces. But many of them were 
unemployed, a circumstance which was largely due to the taking of an 
undue number of apprentices. A man in Nottingham had on an average 
twenty-five apprentices, and did not employ a journeyman for a period of 
thirty years. Cartwright, who had twenty-three, and Fellows, who had 
forty-nine apprentices, removed their frames from London to Nottingham 
in 1 7 10, in consequence of frame-breaking having taken place in London. 
The London Company fined Cartwright one hundred and fifty pounds and 
Fellows, four hundred pounds, and on their refusal to pay, their machinery 
was sold ; but the legality of the proceedings being disputed, the authority 
of the company was overthrown by a committee of the House of Commons 
in 1753. ^s tending to a monopoly hurtful to trade, and the rulings of the 
company had effect only in London. 

In 1730, the first stockings of cotton yarn were made. Up to the 
year 1750, no attempt had been made to add machinery to the stocking-frame 
"50 as to vary the face of the web, but in that year a sliding tuck pressure 


was applied. Hand knit-ribbed hose were much worn because of their 
closely fitting the leg, and efforts to produce this ribbing effect on the 
stocking-frame were unsuccessfully made by several. Woolett, a hosier 
at Derby, brought this question to the notice of his brother-in-law, Jedediah 
Strutt, who added to the Lee stocking- frame an apparatus termed the 
"Derby rib machine." in which the principle was introduced of "operating 
upon any one or more of the loops or meshes of a web, by the addition of 
an independent selecting apparatus." The importance of this new device 
was not recognized at first, its simplicity and the ease with which it could 
be applied to the stocking frame prevented its full merit from being 
discerned, but it contained the fundamental principle of all subsequent 
methods for alternating or altering the course of threads at work on either 
lace or hosiery machinery, and consequently the face of the webs and texture 
of patterns introduced into them. 

This new and ingenious device did not require any alteration of Lee's 
stocking- frame; it was wholly and simply an addition to it. The Derby rib 
machine consisted of an apparatus constructed of iron, in which needles like 
those in the ordinary frame were placed perpendicularly, so as to enter 
between the horizontal ones of Lee's frame. This apparatus is hung on 
jointed arms in front of the frame, and by its swinging motion the needles 
of the new machine are caused to "enter between the old ones, penetrating 
only those loops which are to form the ribs ; and these, passing under their 
beards, are reversed, and then pressed again, passing over the needle heads 
with the other loops, but with the visible parts of the ribbing loops turned 
the other way. The ribs may be varied in width from one and one, i. e., 
every other loop, as in sock tops, to any number required by the weavers." 

Patents were granted to Woolett and Strutt in 1758-9, and their 
business grew very rapidly. The success of the invention, when its 
advantages began to be fully comprehended, was such that it incited other 
ingenious men to effort, and numerous further inventions were the result. 
Many of these were really infringements and actions were brought with 
success against associations of hosiers, and the patent rights were secured. 
Strutt's principle of control and selection, variously modified and applied, 
produced in succession the knotted, twilled, stump, mesh, and point net 
machines. "In the warp frame," writes W. F. Felkin, in his history of the 
Hosiery and Lace Manufacture, "where no weft thread is used, but each 
warp thread loops sideways on its neighbor, every needle, in its wide 
horizontal range, can be similarly selected and governed in its action. Thus, 
not only did fancy hosiery modifications cause a large and growing 
increase of production, but all the machine-wrought plain and fancy lace 
manufacturers of England and the Continent owe their rise and much of 
their extension and value to the example set in the added mechanism of 

In 1764, Morris and Betts obtained a patent for making a machine 


fixed to a stocking-frame, eyelet holes or net work, having an additional 
row of frame tickler needles. The new device was in reality the production 
of Butterworth, a stocking weaver at Mansfield, who was robbed of the 
fruits of his talent and labor by those who pretended to aid him. 

Mr. Crane, of Edmonton, in 1775, effected a most important modifica- 
tion of the stocking- frame — namely, the application of a warp to the 
stocking-frame — this invention gave rise to numerous devices and applica- 
tions for the production of fancy webs and patterns. Among the various 
modifications of the stocking-frame for the purpose of producing open or 
figured work, perhaps that best worthy of mention is the device of William 
Dawson, a framework knitter of Leicester, who conceived that "the edge 
of a wheel might be notched in such a manner that when rolled over the 
parts controlling the figure it would act upon them accordingly and produce 
a similar effect to the use of pegs in a barrel organ." The wheels were 
well adapted for circular machines and are to this day known as Dawson's 
wheels. This clever inventor patented in 1791 "a machine for making all 
kinds of hosiery." When the patent expired he craved an extension of it, 
which, being denied him, he took his life. Else and Hammond eliminated 
the tuck presser and substituted therefor a sliding needle bar and a side 
motion for which they received a patent; then in 1769, R. Frost produced 
a figured net on a stocking loom by a device which will be later explained 
in the article pertaining to lace. Ross produced in 1767 a velvet pile on 
the frame by cutting rows of slack loops; Crane patented in 1769, a method 
of producing handsome brocades using a cylinder roller and drawboy in 
selecting the needles. In 1771 and 1776, March and Horton took out 
patents for knotted hosiery and double-looped work. This was the invention 
of Horton, who was perfectly acquainted with the mechanism of the stock- 
ing-frame, and seeing a workman making a tuck stitch diamond on the hand 
of a glove, he proceeded to use Lindsey's tickler frame on Else's plan 
with his own adjustments. He improved his machine in 1776 and obtained 
another patent. "He succeeded in knotting every loop of the web, thus 
making an elastic and sound fabric that would not rive when the thread 
was broken." This hosiery came greatly into demand and was largely 
used for over half a century, being a most excellent and durable article. 
Napoleon's colleague. Consul Lebrun, constructed one of these frames for 
making fine knotted hose at his stocking factory in France, and in 1795 
one thousand frames barely supplied the demand for it in England. 

In 1776, Brockley, a poor Nottingham stockinger, devised an imitation 
of Horton's knotted hosiery; these goods were called twilled, and as they 
were non-elastic soon passed out of use, but he is said to have "effected an 
important alteration in the web ; which was made with a silk web outwards, 
by carrying a cotton thread behind, thus making it a double-looped fabric, 
known as platted work ; and so long as the back was of twister two threads 
cotton yarn, the articles wore well." The machines gave employment to 


many persons, until the fancy for platted work passed away. Robert Ash 
patented in 1781, a plan for making "fastened platted work," which was 
an elastic twilled fabric. In 1790, an improvement on Ash's invention was 
patented by one Hague. This was called the mesh machine. The goods 
made on these machines were called elastics. In 1784, Webbe, of Birming- 
ham, patented a simplification of the Derby ribbing frame; three hundred of 
these machines were worked for some years at Banff with great profit. 
Rhamboldt took plans of this machine to France where many machines were 
constructed after it. 

In 1788, Holland, a London hosier, obtained a patent for the manu- 
facture of fleecy hosiery vests and drawers, as being medicinally beneficial. 
In 1790 and 1792, he took out further patents, and his house had a celebrity 
among medical men and the public at large. 

There were no further improvements of any importance up to the 
year 1800. In spite, however, of the various improvements which had been 
effected in the stocking frame, wages remained moderate; efforts were 
made by the Midland Stocking Makers' Mutual Protection Society (which 
had been formed in 1777) to confine the employment of girl and boy 
apprentices within proper limits, and they were influential enough to elect 
a Mr. Abel Smith, as member of the House of Commons for Nottingham, 
and in 1778 a petition to the House from the frame-workers asking for 
an act to regulate and settle wages which was voted down. A further 
reduction being threatened, the bill was again presented and again rejected, 
which was the signal for riots at Nottingham, frames were broken, homes 
mobbed, the Riot Act read, and the military called out, and these riots were 
repeated continually within the next few years. 

Trade revived somewhat at the close of the war with the American 
Colonies, and the wages in the hosiery business increased. At this time, 
there were in the United Kingdom 20,000 stocking-frames. In 1812, the 
number of frames had increased to 29,632 in Great Britain and 13,189 on the 
continent. A demand for knitted hose, underdrawers and gloves for the 
army, which arose in the early part of the nineteenth century, gave relief 
to the trade; but it was so small as to be almost ineffectual; the harvests 
had for several seasons past been bad and "work at any price" was 
demanded by thousands of suffering knitters, and frames were again broken, 
one thousand in and around Nottingham alone. Bills for the relief of 
the stockingers passed the Commons, but were rejected by the Lords, and 
further riots broke out followed by strikes and by great misery among the 
stocking weavers ; this continued for some years. 

An impulse was given to the trade at Leicester by the application of 
Dawson's eccentric wheels which enabled the manufacturers to produce 
innumerable articles from stout woolen webs for breeches, pieces and 
gloves, braces, cravats, and sashes, to the finest and lightest fancy silk or 
cotton tissues and nets ; woolen and cotton socks had begun to be made in 


that city in 1810, woolen shirts became an important item there in 1815; 
and cotton and spun silk drawers and vests at Nottingham, and they have 
been largely manufactured there up to the present time. 

In 1816, Sir M. I. Brunei, whose attention had been drawn to the 
manufacture of hosiery and lace, so that he was well acquainted with the 
machinery employed in it, invented a round stocking frame so devised as 
to employ no one of Lee's instruments except the needle; it embodied Lee's 
principle, it is true, but was altogether different in construction and use. It 
is a circular machine, small enough to be attached to a lady's work table, 
produces a seamless sack ; and can make the loops of stockings faster than 
the eye can follow it, and was destined to become one of the cheapest and 
most effective looms the world has ever seen. Brunei called his machine 
the "tricoteur" and was granted a patent for it in 1816. The diameter 
of the circle round which the needles are placed may be made large enough 
to knit a circular web of any size, even a carpet. The work is continuous 
and therefore expeditious, the first row of stitches being made like those 
in the ordinary knitting frame. From 1825, strenuous and persistent effort 
had been applied to adjust hosiery machinery so as to be run by rotary 
hand power. This having been successfully accomplished, the application 
of steam power followed and the factory system was established. As 
progressive steps leading to the perfection of the wide frame, the industry 
is indebted to the machines constructed by Warner, 1829; Mather, 183 1 ; 
Foote, 1835 ; Cope, 1836; Coteman, 1837. Luke Barton's and Paget's rotary 
modifications of the Lee Fran'te being worthy of especial mention. 

The thread carrier, a necessary appliance for increasing the speed of 
all wide frames was the invention of one of two stocking weavers. Sadlers 
and Roe; or was possibly the work of both. The course of invention in 
regard to the knitted goods trade has been arduous and costly, and it is 
impossible to give in detail the many inventions that have been claimed ; 
we will mention only the more striking modifications. Thornton took out 
three patents for coarse looped work, which was a very close imitation of 
hand-knitting, and was continuously in good demand. 

The tumbler needle, a most curious and useful invention, was one of 
several patented by Townsend, who was originally a frame knitter, and 
then a hosier at Leicester, England, and eventually in the United States", 
where he was eminently successful. The invention "consisted in affixing 
on the frame needle a small moving pin, hinged just so far from the hook 
as that its point may reach the hook, lying in a spoonlike indent ; and, when 
reversed backwards, may lie in a groove, pointing towards the stem of the 
hook." This instrument is used largely in England, France, Saxony and 
the United States. In 1854, Mine, and Mundella, with, L. Barton, took 
out a patent for a wide ribbing machine on which ten hose could be made 
at once, an immense increase in production with a corresponding decrease 
in labor and expense. One of the first attempts to render the stocking- 


frame capable of automatically widening or narrowing as necessity arose 
was that of F. W. Mowbray, of Leicester. 

In 1858, a citizen of the United States, W. C. Gist, took out an English 
patent for a circular machine, "to be supplied by any number of feeders up 
to eight," where only one had been worked before. By this means, striped 
work including sixteen colors may be made at once, and produce on a head 
of four inches diameter or twelve inches round three hundred and fifty 
courses a minute. This patent right was purchased by Hine, Mundella & 
Company, and a modification was at once introduced which rendered Gist's 
valuable machine simpler and less expensive. Thomas Thompson who 
(against the adverse claims of Pepper, an American inventor, and Appleton, 
an Englishman) claimed to be the first to adapt the circular frame so as 
to produce ribbed work, upon examining Gist's machine, saw the way to 
improve it by using in lieu of the ordinary needle the tumbler needle, 
invented by Townsend. This improvement was not patented. 

In 1834, an American knitting machine, which had none of Lee's parts 
in its construction, was introduced into Manchester, England. The frame 
made ten or twelve hose at once. Very hard twisted durable materials 
were used on these frames ; they were of coarse gauges, and produced 
excellent imitations of the best hand knit work, being more regular in 
texture; in 1845, there were six of these frames in operation. These were 
called "Wild" machines, probably from the name of their inventor. 

The McNary Knitting Machine Company, of Williamsburg, Pa., took 
out English patents for improvements in knitting machines in i860. These 
machines knitted at the rate of two pairs of complete stockings in nine 
minutes. An English patent was taken out in 1863 by Mr. J. G. Wilson, of 
New York, for an improvement in knitting machines. Since that time 
hosiery machinery has been greatly improved and modified by various 
devices and modifications by numerous inventors, both European and 
American. To Germantown, Pa., the German frauen carried their domestic 
industry of the hand knitting of woolen hose, and before 1775 there were 
one hundred and fifty knitting frames at Germantown and in the vicinity 
of the Brandywine; in 1815 the number of these had increased to two 
hundred ; it is not known when or by whom they were introduced there, and 
they were probably used mainly in the homes of the operatives, for they 
do not seem to have formed a part of the cloth and flannel making industries, 
which early became so prominent in Germantown. Various attempts were 
made prior to 1818, to encourage the foundation of the knitting industry 
in various parts of the .States; in 1776, the Committee of Safety appropri- 
ated three hundred dollars as a bounty to Mr. Coxfender, of Maryland, 
Frederick County, if he should establish a stocking factory, and we are 
told that the Society of Arts in New York offered a bounty of ten pounds 
for the first three stocking- frames of iron set up in that year. Neither of 
these bounties were claimed. 


The British government, with jealous anxiety for the welfare of its 
textile industries, had prohibited the exportation of stocking machines and 
a penalty of forty pounds for so doing was in force up to 1780, after that, 
it was increased from time to time until it amounted to a prohibitory duty. 
In 1 818, the penalty of exporting lace machinery was five hundred pounds, 
and could this not be paid by the offender, he was subject to several 
years' transportation. Many of the stockingers and lace weavers who had 
been deprived of a means of earning their livelihood because of the Luddite 
riots, determined to come to the United States and bring their tools and 
implements with them, even though the considerable fines had to be paid. 

The first stocking machine which came to New England was smuggled 
from Liverpool in 1818, and was set up in Watertown, Mass., at a spot near 
the present Etna Mills ; but a part of the machine had been left behind and 
occasioned some delay in its use until new parts had been made. It was 
used for a couple of years in Watertown, and was then taken to Ipswich 
in 1882, by its owners, Benjamin Fewkes and George Warner. 

Lace machines were also introduced surreptitiously into the country; 
the delicate and essential parts of the machine were brought over concealed 
in the personal effects of workmen who had been employed in Heathcoat's 
factories, the bulky parts and framework of the machines being made in 
America from the drawings of skilled machinists, and a factory was 
established at Watertown, Mass., near the Newton boundary in 1820; in 
1824, the machines were removed to Ipswich, and were operated by the 
Ipswich Lace Company; a rival concern was started in 1828 by the New 
England Lace Company, of which Dr. Thomas Manning was one of the 
promoters. This company continued its operations until 1832, when they 
could no longer obtain a supply of thread fine enough for the manufacture 
of lace. Up to that time, thread had been exported from England; the 
British government, finding that machines and workmen had come to this 
country and that lace was being made here, placed a very heavy export duty 
on thread, and allowed the free exportation of lace which killed tRe 
industry here. The Boston and Ipswich Lace Company closed its doors m 
1827; the New England Lace Company, in 1832. 

The lace makers being now out of employment, returned to their 
stocking- frames. Many went to Germantown, Pa., where some imported 
frames were in use and others to Portsmouth, N. H., while some of the 
most skillful remained in Ipswich, and in 1832, two new stocking frames 
were made for Mr. Fewkes, the first made in New England, and perhaps the 
first made in this country, and he established a stocking factory in a small 
shop in Ipswich ; George Warner, Samuel Hunt, Sr., and Charles Bamford, 
Sr., each with two machines also began the manufacture of hosiery in the 
same town. Timothy Bayley, of Albany, it is said, was the first to apply 
power to the Lee frame in this country in 183 1 ; James and Sanford 
Peatfield, of Ipswich, had a rotary warp machine in operation in 1834. 


"The Newburyport Hose Manufacturing Company" is mentioned in the 
census report of 1900, as being the only stocking factory in the United 
States in 1831, and in 1833, there were, as is shown above, four small 
main factories in Ipswich. 

It is almost impossible to give an adequate account of the rise and 
progress of the industry in this country during the first half of the 
nineteenth century, owing to the fact that the knit goods before 1850 
consisted largely of woolens and there were no separate statistics concerning 
them. Suffice it to say that in 1850 there were only eighty-five establish- 
ments in which knit goods were made, using a capital of $554,735, and 
producing goods to the amount of $1,028,102. The growth of the industry 
from these small beginnings during the following fifty years is almost 
marvellous. The census report for 1900 furnished the following facts: 
The capital of the combined concerns had increased from •"?544,735, in 
1850 to $81,860,604; the establishments had increased from 85 to 921. 
In 1900, the total number of spindles engaged in the knitting industry in 
the United States was: woolen, 293,979; worsted, 21,194; cotton, 206,698; 
while the knitting machines numbered 690,047. Later official figures 
show that in 1905 the number of establishments had increased to 1,079, with 
an aggregate capital of $106,663,531. While the number of spindles em- 
ployed in the industry was : cotton, 300,037 ; woolen, 286,661 ; worsted, 

The industry in the South is of very recent origin, dating in fact 
since 1880, when one establishment was reported. In the census of 1900, 
71 establishments were reported, with a production to the value of $5,031,- 
336. Twenty-four of these establishments were in North Carolina; 16 in 
Georgia; 15 in Virginia; 6 in South Carolina; 4 in Tennessee; 2 in W^est 
Virginia ; and one each in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. 

The Western States in the same report made a showing of 129 
establishments with a production amounting to $12,143,150. \\'ith the 
exception of eleven in Ohio and two in Mississippi, all these factories have 
been established since i860. In 1900, Michigan was the most important 
of the Western group, having thirty-two factories with a production of 
$2,791,257. \\'isconsin was second with twenty-seven establishments, pro- 
duction, $2,486,813. Indiana, which stood sixth in point of establishments 
and first in capital, was third in value of products. This state had seven 
factories with a capital of $2,728,306; value of production, $2,242,304. 
Then came Illinois with fourteen establishments and a production valued 
at $2,145,429; Ohio had twenty-four factories and the production amounted 
to $1,576,285. None of the other states in this group reported products 
valued at over $500,000. 

In 1900, the value of the production in this industry in the Middle 
States amounted to $60,473,407, and in New England $17,834,673, which 
was over ten times the amount of the production in i860 and equal to more 


than 82 per cent of the total value of these goods produced in the United 
States. The standing of these States by value of products was as follows: 

New York $35,886,048 

Pennsylvania 21,896,063 

Massachusetts 6,620,257 

Connecticut 4,043,977 

Rhode Island 2,713,850 

New Hampshire 2,592,829 

Vermont i ,834,685 

New Jersey i ,784,148 

Maryland 5I4.093 

Delaware 429.055 

Maine 29,075 

The enactment of the tariff of 1910 caused a large importation of 
automatic machinery for knitting full-fashioned hosiery, that and an in- 
creased demand for seamless hose, an American specialty, caused a decrease 
in the American imports of cotton hosiery, which during the last quarter 
of 1910 were lower than at any other time during the present century. 

Hand knitting is first spoken of in Germany in the middle of the 
sixteenth century. The art was practised in Berlin in 1590. It is not 
known when the first stocking loom was taken to Germany. It seems to 
have been chiefly distributed about that empire by French refugees after 
the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes; at any rate, they carried to Hesse 
the first stocking- frames known there; and at Pausa in Saxony, the parts 
of the machines are called by French names, these frames being brought 
there from Handee, near Frankfort, shortly after the Revocation. The 
first stocking-frame was taken there by a man named Becker, who con- 
structed others of wood; Felkin states that looms were made of that 
material at Olbernheim in the Erzeburge, a district surrounding Chemnitz. 

The growth of the hosiery industry in Saxony was very rapid ; from 
1840 to 1850, the number of looms increased from 20,000 to 30,000; the 
two centres of the Saxony hosiery manufactured on wooden looms. The 
industry in Chemnitz was founded in 1728 by three persons, Roeder, Braun 
and Saur, who transplanted the manufacture of cotton hose, caps and 
gloves to that place in 1765. In 1802, the guild produced more than 
50,000 dozens of hosiery and in 1820 it numbered 1,538 master workmen, 
630 journeymen and 346 apprentices. 

The firm now trading under the names of Gottlieb Hecker and Soehne, 
has been established in Chemnitz for nearly 150 years. 

Up to a very recent time, one-third of the output of hosiery at 
Chemnitz came to the United States. But the increased demand in this 
country for seamless hose, an American specialty, caused a diminution in 


the exports, which fell from $1,666,193, '" the quarter ending March 31, 
1910, to $841,907, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, 1910. 

In Saxony, manufacturing methods were more conservative than in 
England ; there was more opposition to new ideas and to new machinery ; 
for instance, wide hand frames with carriers, making several cleared — i. <?., 
fashioned — hose at once were in full employment in England in 1S50-1, while 
in Saxony they did not come into use until about ten years later. Most of 
the machines brought into use were English. An essential impediment to 
the quick and general adoption of power machines was the non-develop- 
ment of the machine-building industry. 

The production of hosiery in France has attained a high degree of 
excellence. Troyes may be called the Nottingham of France and is the 
principal seat of the cotton hosiery fabrication. Nismes and the Depart- 
ment du Gard generally are the centre of the silk industry. In Paris and 
its environs, most of the fancy goods are made. M. Delarothiere of 
Troyes is one to whom the industry is greatly indebted for many valuable 
inventions. In 1828, he produced a machine which supplied web equal to 
that from the English warp frame. His next invention was a machine 
for making gloves which replaced those which had been smuggled there 
from England. In 1834, he constructed a device for narrowing stocking 
feet without seams. Twelve patents were granted him in France in fifteen 
years and his system of narrowing frames spread over the entire industry 
in that country. The Poron Freres of Troyes introduced English rotary 
ribbed frames. M. Tailbuis patented, in 1862, "a rectilinear knitting-frame;" 
he constructed hosiery machinery after English and French patterns at St. 
Just, and for his valuable efforts in the fostering and improvement of the 
knitting industry was awarded the Cross of the Legion of Honor. 




RIercerization of cotton as now understood and commercially practised 
differs so much from the mercerization of cotton as described and com- 
mercially practised by John Mercer, who in 1850 obtained a patent for Iiis 
process of treating cotton by immersion in a cold concentrated solution of 
caustic soda, or caustic potash, that no one familiar with the results obtained 
then or for over forty years after he made his disclosures would recognize 
these later results as possible of attainment by the process or processes 
publicly known and practised by Mercer and other investigators between 
the years 1844 and 1895. 

The fact that Mercer first discovered, patented, and so disclosed a few 
of the many wonderful effects now produced by the immersion of cotton 
in a concentrated solution of caustic potash, or caustic soda, no doubt justifies 
in the popular mind the application of his name to all subsequent discoveries 
of new effects producible by any modification of his process as described 
and practised by him and other investigators for over forty years ; at the 
same time it seems to be only fair that specifically new effects obtained by 
later investigators should be duly acknowledged in any record purporting to 
give briefly or otherwise a history of the development of the mercerization 
of cotton. 

John Mercer wnas one of the most notable pioneers of the development 
of the cotton manufacturing industry of Great Britain, and his process 
for treating cotton cloth in a concentrated solution of caustic soda or 
caustic potash was probably his most notable discovery. 

His invention as described in his patent application and as further 
elaborated in the trade and scientific literature of his day was for the double 
purpose of shrinking openly woven cloths to give them increased strength 
and closely woven effects and increased affinity for dyes and colors. 

Careful investigation of the development of this process of Mercer 
fails to discover any commercial advance between the results obtained by 
Mercer at the time of his original disclosures and the disclosures of possible 
new effects by Thomas and Prevost, in 1895-8, when the new silk lustre 
effects now so well known were added to those effects previously discovered 
and disclosed by Mercer. 

Horace Arthur Lowe, another distinguished investigator, patented in 
1890 what purported to be an improvement of the Mercer process. This 



patent of Lowe's seems to have been a natural product of the Mercer 
process; but as he confined himself to an effort to regulate by mechanical 
devices the results obtained by Mercer he fell short of the results obtained 
by subsequent investigators. 

Lowe's efforts seem to have begun and ended in the effort to regulate 
results of Mercer, such regulation to be obtained by mechanical devices and 
therefore reducible to controllable and commercial limits. 

Thomas and Prevost, on the other hand, cut loose from all limitations 
of Mercer and Lowe and soon discovered an entirely new product pre- 
viously unknown to either Mercer or Lowe or other investigators, and thus 
added to the industries of the world a new article of commerce, previously 
unknown either laboratorically or commercially, and they alone seem to be 
entitled to the credit of such discovery of the new effects and the new 
article of commerce known as Mercerized Cotton. 

Naturally a discovery of such great commercial value led to disputes as 
to the validity of patents obtained by Thomas and Prevost, and as such 
patents as they did obtain very clearly disclosed the fact that the results 
obtained by Mercer and Lowe formed the basis for their conception of the 
greater discoveries they had made and which are now known to have been 
within the grasp of any intelligent investigator with courage enough to 
begin his investigation of the Mercer process just where Mercer and Lowe 
left off. 

Litigation followed, and because of this litigation a great industrial 
discovery became public property by "due process of law," which in many 
instances has become the modern equivalent of the bludgeon of less law- 
abiding ages. 

The story of this celebrated case is replete with the history of the 
Mercer, Lowe and Thomas and Prevost processes and contains the very 
best history of the mercerization of cotton obtainable at the present time. 

Of course it is too voluminous to be included in this brief story of 
Mercerized Cotton, but all who seek or require more light on this lustrous 
subject are referred to the story as contained in the records of the Circuit 
Court of the United States, District of Massachusetts, Case No. 1458, 
1906, where they will find most interestingly told all the historical facts 
pertaining to the Mercerization of Cotton. 





The famous patent suits in regard to the mercerization of cotton 
developed many interesting questions, among which none was more so 
than, "What is silky lustre?" Whatever Mercer knew more or less than 
that by means of a caustic soda bath he altered the count of a fabric and its 
dyeing qualities, it is certain that Horace Arthur Lowe recognized that the 
question of tension during the caustic treatment was of great importance. 
Thomas and Prevost in their early patents sought to secure the much desired 
silky lustre by heavy tension, and their "extra powerful machines'' were to 
stretch the yarn "until the silky lustre appeared." In order to lose no 
possible advantage they named many reagents to use on the yarn, not 
only caustic soda and caustic potash, but sulphuric acid, aluminum chloride, 
zinc chloride, etc. But silky lustre owes its principal properties to a very 
simple condition. Chevreul long ago described clearly the difference be- 
tween silky lustre and specular, the latter being that of polished metal, while 
the former is due to alternated lines of light and shadow, as for instance 
where light is reflected by a number of polished metal cylinders lying side 
by side which would throw light from certain elements of the cylinders 
while the spaces between would be dark. 

Textile yarns may be brought into this condition so that when properly 
spun and twisted there is a close approach to lustre as compared with yarn 
made of the same fibre but improperly spun and twisted. 

When cotton fibres are treated with caustic soda, there is probably but 
a small chemical change, the cellulose first becoming sodic cellulose, and 
then hydro-cellulose, but there is a tremendous physical upheaval, for if 
left free in the bath, the fibres writhe and twist as if alive. If washed and 
dried, there is a snarly knotted mass which, from the time water is applied, 
requires a relatively strong force to straighten out; but if at the outset 
force be used to keep the fibres straight and parallel, it has been shown 
that this force is only a small fraction of that which will be necessary to 
straighten them out once they have become snarled. The office, then, of the 
tension is not so much to produce silky lustre as to prevent the chemicals 
from destroying that parallelism which makes for the necessary lustre. 

It is quite true that a caustic soda bath removes the natural dull surface 
of the cotton fibre and plumps it out from the collapsed state which is the 
natural one into a smooth cylindrical state. It has been demonstrated ex- 



perimentally that if yarn is so spun that the fibres assume heterogeneous 
positions, as for instance by spinning them on the woolen system, merceriz- 
ing will not make them lustrous. Again in a two-ply yarn, where the doub- 
ling and twisting is to the opposite hand from the original spinning, this 
being the usual way of making the two-ply yarn, upon mercerizing lustre 
results, while if the doubling and twisting be put to the same hand 
as the original spinning, even though the mercerizing be carefully done, 
little if any lustre results. Thus it is to be noted that silky lustre so far as 
mercerizing is concerned depends concurrently upon a chemical treatment 
and the spinning of the yarn. 




The development of the bleaching, dyeing and tissue-printing industries, 
in this country, has been so dependent upon what has been done in other 
countries, particularly in Europe and Great Britain, that in order to give 
the subject proper treatment we must go back to the earliest times. Pre- 
cisely when and where the practice of dyeing and bleaching originated will 
never be known ; but from ancient writings we learn that they both flourished 
many centuries before the Christian era in India, Persia, Egypt, Syria 
and other eastern countries. That the Egyptians were familiar with the 
use of indigo is showin by its presence on mummy wrappings preserved 
in the British and other museums. 

Moses speaks of blue, scarlet and purple fabrics, and Job of the 
colored stuffs made in India and Tyre, and also of washing (the forerunner 
of bleaching) his clothes in a pit with the herb boreth, which is probably 
falworth, common in Judea, Arabia and Egypt. Homer also speaks of 
Nausica and her companions whitening their clothes by stamping them 
with their feet in a pit. 

The dye most particularly referred to by the ancients is Tyrian 
purple, supposed to have. been discovered by the dyers of Tyre. There 
are many and varied hypotheses regarding the nature of the material em- 
ployed, but the most generally accepted is that it was the liquor or juice 
of a certain shell-fish. Many, however, think that this was simply a blind 
to hide the knowledge of cochineal and a suitable mordant. 

The color varied through many tones of purple, and in the time of 
Augustus Csesar a pound of wool dyed with this color brought about 
1,000 denarii or $i6o. Moreover, the wearing of "the purple" by any 
but those of exceedingly high rank was punishable by imprisonment and 
sometimes death. 

The art of dyeing and bleaching became lost to Europe on the fall 
of the Roman empire, and not until the time of Charlemagne did it again 
obtain a foothold in Western Europe. 

The earliest to become prominent in this line were the Frieslanders, 
about the beginning of the thirteenth century, and the Hardenwyk dye 
works are still prominent in Europe. With the outbreak of the Crusades 
and the resulting contact of Western Europe with the Oriental countries, 
the taste for colored garments, obtained in the East, was brought to bear 


upon the Western manufacturers, who had great difficulty in understanding 
the Oriental taste. The exact date of the introduction of textile printing 
into European countries is not known, but it was probably at about this 
period and undoubtedly had its origin in India. It was not practiced, 
however, until the seventeenth century, i. e., commercially. At this time, 
Venice and other republics of the Italian peninsula were leaders in the 
commerce of the world. Manufactures and dyeing flourished in Venice, 
Florence and Genoa. Florence possessed about 200 dye houses in the 
fourteenth century, and from the fact that one of its streets was called 
"Strada de Roccellarii," Roccella Archil was probably one of the chief 
dyewoods employed. In 1429 appeared the first collection of dyeing 
processes ever published. These were printed in Venice under the title 
"Mariegola dell' Arte dei Tintori'' (Manual of the Art of Dyeing), and 
a second edition appeared in 1510. Giovanni Ventura Rossetti published a 
similar work called "Plictho dell' Arte dei Tintori" in 1548. The first 
paper in English on this subject was by Sir William Petty (1623-87) as "An 
Appendix to the History of the Common Practice of Dyeing," and was 
printed in the "History of the Royal Society," by Dr. Spratt (1636-1713). 

When indigo made its first appearance in Europe is not exactly known, 
but during the sixteenth century it was used considerably by the Italians 
and Dutch. It is interesting that the introduction of indigo was stren- 
uously opposed by the cultivators of woad, and at the time of Elizabeth 
was prohibited in England on the ground that it was a "wicked and per- 
nicious drug,", and the act prohibiting its use has never been repealed. 
Similar steps were taken against the introduction of logwood on the 
ground of its being poisonous and not at all fast. 

By the discovery of America in 1492 and the subsequent numerous 
explorations, many new dyestuffs were placed at the disposal of the 
European dyer: notably, logwood, cochineal, annatto and Brazil wood. 

The art of bleaching up to this time had not many milestones mark- 
ing its way to improvement. The ancients were content, from the fact 
that they knew nothing better, to whiten their garments by steeping in a 
"lix ivium" made by extracting wood ashes with water, and the early 
Scotch and Irish similarly used the ashes of seaweed, which they called 

Then came the steeping of linen in lyes, with a subsequent souring 
in sour milk and exposure on the grass for a greater or less period. The 
time required was from four to six months and was applied to linen only, 
cotton being deemed sufficiently white. 

In 1728, James Adais proposed to the Scotch Board of Manufacturers 
the establishment of a bleaching field in Galloway. This was accepted, 
and at the same time $10,000 were offered in premiums for the establish- 
ment of similar enterprises in other parts of the country. 

The Irish method of using kelp was introduced into Scotland in 1732 


by Richard Holden, and resulted in a bleaching field being established at 

During the middle of the eighteenth century bleaching by the foregoing 
process was almost a monopoly in the hands of the Dutch, with Harlem 
as the centre of activity. The bleaching of wool by the fumes resulting 
from burning sulphur was certainly practiced as early as the latter part 
of the seventeenth century, but just when this action was first observed 
the writer has not been able to ascertain. 

Such was the condition of the bleaching industry in Europe at that 
time, and it is very doubtful whether this form of bleaching was conducted 
at all in America on a commercial scale. The first improvement in this 
long and necessarily expensive process was that of Dr. Home, of Edin- 
burgh. This consisted in the substitution of a weak solution of sulphuric 
acid (oil of vitriol) for the sour milk. This reduced the time somewhat, 
but it still took several months, for as yet no substitute for the "grassing" 
had been found. 

This was the only marked advance in bleaching until Scheele's dis- 
covery of chlorine in 1774, of which and its subsequent results we will 
speak later. 

The art of printing textiles was not practiced on a commercial basis 
in European countries until about the middle of the seventeenth century, 
and it then consisted solely of block printing. The method consisted in 
dipping a carved block into a suitably thickened dyestuff solution, and 
then making an impression of the block upon the fabric to be printed. 
This necessarily required an enormous amount of time, especially when 
five or six colors were required. This gave rise to the invention of the 
perrotine in the middle of the eighteenth century. The perrotine was a 
block-printing machine, a description of which cannot be made intelligible 
by writing. Let it suffice to say that it did not meet with general acceptance. 

The perrotine gave way to the cylinder printing machine, invented by 
a Scotchman named Bell, in 1783, and first used successfully in the plant 
of Messrs. Livesey, Hargreaves, Hull & Co., at Morney, near Preston, 
England. Cylinder printing is now generally practiced in Europe and 
America, block printing being still used in India, China, Japan, and in 
Europe and America only for novelties. (See Plate 10.) 

Let us now return to 1774. In this year Scheele, a Swedish chemist, 
discovered the gas which is named chlorine. He noticed that the cork 
in the vessel containing the gas turned a very pale yellow, and with that 
observation dismissed the subject. 

In 1785, Berthollet, the distinguished French chemist, published an 
article on chlorine and pointed to the possibilities of the gas for the 
bleaching of textiles. During the next two years (1786-1787) James 
Watt practiced the use of chlorine at the bleaching field of his father-in-law, 
a man named MacGregor, near Glasgow, and not long after this the 


method was used at Aberdeen by Gorden, Barrow & Co., and at Man- 
chester, England, by Thomas Henry. 

The chlorine was employed in the form of a solution of the gas in 
water, and in many cases had disastrous effects upon the w.ork people. 
■Consequently, it fell into disuse until it wSs found that the gas could 
be absorbed in alkalies, such as soda and potash lyes, giving efficient 
bleaching action without injurious effects on the operatives. 

The use of chlorine compounds revolutionized the cotton and linen 
bleaching industry, reducing the time required from four months to two days. 
In 1798, Charles Tennant, of Glasgow, took out a patent for the use 
of chlorine absorbed in lime water; but the patent was nullified on the 
grounds that it included the use of lime for "bucking," as the preliminary 
treatment with alkaline liquors was termed. Although lime had been 
used previous to this time, it was in an entirely different manner. 

In 1799 (April 13), Tennant was granted a patent for the preparation 
of solid "chloride of lime" or "bleaching powder," the process consisting 
in saturating slaked lime with chlorine gas. 

Until today, this is still the most important compound employed in 
the bleaching of vegetable fibres. 

Let us now turn to America. In the earlier days of colonization, 
from the nature of things, much time could not be spent in the development 
of manufactures. However, as the questions of safety and government 
liecame less urgent, the minds of the people turned to the production of 
clothing, household articles, etc., which hitherto had to be obtained in the 
greater part from the mother country. 

The colonial policy of England did not coincide, however, with the 
desire of the colonies to enter the manufacturing field. The English view 
of the situation is expressed as follows: "The original intent of planting 
those colonies, viz., to be a benefit to their mother country, to which they 
owe their being and protection." Lord Sheffield said that "the only use" 
of the colonies was a monopoly of their trade ; and Lord Chatham de- 
clared that "the British colonists of North America had no right to 
manufacture even a nail or a horseshoe." 

The English policy was to keep the colonies in a state of dependence 
upon the mother country for their clothing, tools, furniture and all other 
manufactured articles. A law passed in Virginia, in 1684, to encourage 
textile manufactures, was promptly annulled in England, and in 1731 the 
carriage of woolens and hats from one colony to another was prohibited 
by law. The colonies mtist buy everything from England and sell only 
to England. In consequence of this, they were compelled to buy more 
than they could sell, and by 1771 they were practically in a. state of financial 
ruin. The effect of the English policy was that many of the colonists 
took to wearing leather garments for the reason that they couldn't afford 
to buv woolens. 


The women wore leather underskirts, and, with the exception of the 
sheets, bedding consisted almost solely of leather and furs. The women 
gradually learned to spin and weave, and, as public manufacture was pro- 
hibited, these operations were usually carried out in private households. 

In 1765, a society was formed in New York to encourage the manu- 
facture of woolens, and homespun cloths became the fashion. It is at this 
time that the first mention of dyeing in America occurs, and although no 
names or dates are given, it is stated that each village had its own dyer 
and fuller. The colors were poor and nearly all ran. This would serve 
to indicate that those employed in this branch were novices, as there were 
plenty of fast colors known to the initiated. This is one of the reasons 
why the Continental Army presented such a bedraggled appearance during 
the Revolutionary War. 

In 1774, a linen printing establishment was started in Philadelphia by 
John Walters and Thomas Bedwell, with the announcement that "a single 
gown may be printed, waistcoats, chair-bottoms, etc., in durable colors." 

As a result of the -War of Independence, factories began to gradually 
spring up all over the country, but they were necessarily small and far 
apart, on account of the poverty of the nation. In 1779, John Hewson 
and a man named Long started a linen and calico-printing plant in Phila- 
delphia, and in 1789, with a loan of 200 pounds from the state, were 
able "to enlarge and carry on the business of calico printing and bleaching 
within the state" (Pennsylvania). "General Washington was accustomed 
to point with pride to the domestic fabrics on the person of Mrs. Wash- 
ington, from the establishment of Mr. Hewson." 

The first mention of cotton manufacture refers to a mill established 
at Beverly, Mass., in 1787, but it is highly probable that bleaching and 
dyeing were not carried on in connection with it. 

In 1789, the Manufacturing Committee of Pennsylvania held its 
first sale of printed cottons, etc., and John Hewson was elected printer 
to the society, and in this year the first plea was made for a protective 

About the middle of the eighteenth century a Turkey-red dye works 
was established at Rouen, France, by a company of Greeks, and in 1765 
the French government caused the method of operation to be published. 
Toward the end of the eighteenth century a Turkey-red dyehouse was 
established at Manchester, England, by a M. Borelle. In 1783, a Frenchman 
named Papillon established a similar plant at Glasgow, and Mr. Wilson, 
of Ainsworth, established one at Manchester, having obtained the process 
from the Greeks of Smyrna. Papillon was employed by Messrs. David 
Dale and George Mcintosh^ and their successors have carried on the business 
for more than three-fourths of a century. In 1803, the process was made 
public, and gradually passed into other countries. The exact date of its 
introduction to America is doubtful, but was probably between 1815 and 

PLATE X— Printing 

1. I'rimitive Hand Printing" 

Filling in. 

3. Printing, Twelve Colors, 



1820. This method seemed only applicable to cotton yarn, but in 1810 
cloth itself was first successfully dyed with this color at the works of 
Messrs. Koechlin, in Mulhausen, Germany. 

In 1775, Edwin Bancroft made public the dyeing value of quercitron, 
and obtained from the Parliament of England the exclusive right to its 
importation for six years. The use of madder, which, before the introduc- 
tion of alizarin, in 1868, Was a most valuable dyestuff, appears to be very 
ancient, having been employed by the ancient Egyptians, Hindoos and 
Persians. Its first European cultivation was probably in Spain, having 
been introduced by the Saracens. It was grown in Marseilles in 1287, 
but not extensively until about 1660-70. ISIadder cultivation in England 
was never very successful, although it was attempted in 1624 and later in 
1670, premiums having been ofliered by the London Society of Arts to en- 
courage its growth. 

In 1791, the General Assembly of Connecticut granted permission to 
a man named Fitch to build a dam and mill at Stamford. Shortly after 
this the property changed hands, and in 1796 the new owlners started 
cutting and grinding logwood. A few years later they began to make 
log^vood extract, and about 1800 built a new mill nearby the old one. In 
1844, the business was incorporated under the laws of Connecticut as the 
Stamford Manufacturing Company, which name it still retains. This is 
the earliest record the writer has been able to obtain in reference to dye- 
stuff manufacture in this country. 

In the year 1803 a calico printing plant was established in German- 
town, Pa., by a man named Stewart, and another in the same year by 
Thorbourne, at Darby. Pa. 

In order to acquire some idea of the extent of cotton spinning in 
the United States at the beginning of the nineteenth century, and which 
naturally had a promising influence on the dyeing, bleaching and printing 
industries, we find: In 1804 there were four cotton mills in successful 
operation; in 1807 there were fifteen; in 181 1 there were eighty-seven. 
In 1815 Rhode Island was the centre of the industry, and between 1806 
and 1814 Massachusetts had granted charters to fifty cotton mills. In 
1813 New York chartered fifteen and there were five in Paterson, N. J., and 
eleven in Baltimore, Md. ; yet up to this time the cloth was made at home 
on hand looms. 

The production of more material increased the demand for bleached 
and colored fabrics and resulted in the increase of the number of bleach- 
eries, dyehouses and print shops. 

George S. White, in his "Memoirs of Samuel Slater," states that' 
"bleaching, calenderings, etc., were introduced at great expense, in Provi- 
dence, by Dr. Bowen, w^here the water is well adapted, and there is now 
(1836) a bleaching and beetling establishment called by his name. The 
bleaching business is now very extensive in the United States and they are 


becoming more perfect in process, as more attention is paid to every de- 
partment in preparation for calico printing. Rhode Island appears to be 
in advance in the bleaching business, both for quality and quantity of its 

In 1809, Messrs. Thorp, Siddall & Co. established a print and bleach 
works between Germantown and Branchtown, Pa., on the cylinder-printing 
system which had been invented by Bell. In this year Siddall brought 
machinery and engraved rollers from England, and in October of the fol- 
lowing year (1810) the first lot of calico printed by the new system was 
put upon the market at Philadelphia 

The year previous to the establishment of the Thorp, Siddall Co., 
i. c, 1808, the process of engraving the copper print rollers by means of 
a die was invented in England by Jacob Perkins and introduced the same 
year by Joseph Lockett, who was engraver to the calico printers of Man- 
chester, England. 

The new printing process was considered wonderful. One man and 
two boys were able to print 10,000 yards of cloth and 50,000 handkerchiefs 
in a single day. 

Two or three years after this, about 1812-13, cotton and linen goods 
were first dyed in the piece for various uses. In 1809, James Madison 
wore a black broadcloth suit made and dyed in this country. In June, 
1810, Benjamin, Charles, Elisha and Olney Dyer, together with Charles 
Warburton, "an experienced Workman from England," formed a joint stock 
partnership, under the firm name of the Providence Dyehouse Company, at 
Providence, R. I. They did a business in dyeing yarns, accepting their pay 
entirely in yarn, which yarn they afterward put out to weave, giving 
"great encouragement for weaving fine numbers." (See sketch of Provi- 
dence Dyeing and Bleaching Company.) 

In the year 181 1, Hercules Whitney and Henry Hoppin bought from 
the widow of William Smith, an Englishman, the patent rights to a friction 
calender, dated 1805, and did business under the firm name of Whitney & 
Hoppin. In 1815, together with James B. Mason, Benjamin and Charles 
Dyer, Benjamin and Thomas C. Hoppin, they formed the Patent Calendering 
and Bleaching Company, buying in also a patent on a press. In the year 
1814 Whitney & Hoppin had, with Edward Mason, Jr., and Daniel Bates, 
purchased from Oliver Evans, of Philadelphia, a Columbia steam engine 
for running their finishing works, and in December, 1815, the two com- 
panies were amalgamated as the Providence Dyeing, Bleaching and Calen- 
dering Company, with the addition of Smith Bosworth as a partner, he 
becoming the first agent of the company. The company is still in existence 
(191 1 ), and has a complete record of its stockholders from 1815 and the 
original partnership agreements of all three companies and also the permit 
from Oliver Evans to run his engine, which is a record of great interest 
and merit. 


In the year 1816 Messrs. Reynolds and Innis made dyestuffs (un- 
doubtedly grinding of woods and preparation of extracts is meant) at 
Poughkeepsie, New York, being the second firm on record in this particular 

During the later years of the eighteenth and the beginning of the 
nineteenth century, Samuel Wetherill carried on the art of dyeing of 
woolen goods, also fulling and and chemical manufacture in South Alley, 
Philadelphia, and laid the way for the present white lead manufactory 
controlled by his descendants. After the War of 1812, fresh impulse 
was given to manufactures of all kinds, and in 1820 the Boston Manufac- 
turing Company established a bleaching and dye works at Waltham, Mass., 
which continued under that name until 1901, when the name was changed 
to the Waltham Bleachery and Dye Works. 

In 1823, James Bolton, Samuel Pilling and Peter H. Schenk, of Bron.x- 
dale, New York, established a dyeing, bleaching, printing and finishing plant 
at this place, which is still in existence (1911), being known as the Bronx 
Company, New York City, having from the time of its organization been 
a family concern. 

In 1826, the Hudson Calico Printing Works of Marshall, Carville and 
Taylor were established at Stockport, N. Y., with one machine, small dye- 
house and bleach-house, and other necessaries for finishing. They printed 
300 yards per day, and carried on both block and cylinder printing. In 
1836, they had three printing machines made in England, a dyewood 
grinding mill and a madder dyehouse 286x50 feet, the largest of its kind 
ever built, and at this time employed 200 men. 

In 1827, the Cocheco Manufacturing Company was incorporated by 
John Wheeler, Moses Paul, Matthew Bridge, George Bond, Ed Bourne, 
Patrick T. Jackson, Edward H. Robbins, Jr., and Samuel Torrey as a 
print works. In 1909, the plant, then consisting of cotton mills, print 
works and a velvet mill, was absorbed by the Pacific Mills, of Lawrence, 

Bleaching by manual labor was carried on until 1828, when Mr. 
Bentley, of Pendleton, England, attempted to introduce machinery to take 
its place. Mr. John Graham, of England, also did much to bring the 
bleaching process to its present state. 

In 1829, Thomas Hunter began the practice of calico printing in 
Philadelphia, and in 1832 he started the operation of a copper roller ma- 
chine, the roller having been engraved by Matthias Baldwin, of locomotive 
fame. Baldwin became associated with David H. Mason in 1825, when they 
formed a partnership for the purpose of engraving rollers for calico 
printers, and were the first to carry on this art in America. They soon 
increased their business, and started the manufacture of printing ma- 
chines and drying calenders for wool, cotton and silk materials. On 


Thomas Hunter's death in 1848, he was succeeded by his sons, John 
and James. 

Watson, in his "Annals of Philadelphia," states that in this city in 
1827, $228,000 worth of indigo was used and that there were about 200 
dyers who received on the average of S5.00 per week in wages. 

In 1830, the plant known as the Allen Printing Company was founded 
by Governor Philip Allen. From 1901 to 1907 the plant was leased to a 
private company and later went into the hands of Jesse ATetcalf Company, 
of Providence, R. I., and so passed out of existence as a bleachery. 

In 1831, Joseph Bancroft started the manufacture of cotton goods at 
Wilmington, Del., and some years later, the exact date not being known, 
the dyeing and finishing end of the business was established and is still 
flourishing. In this year (1831), according to the Memoirs of Samuel 
Slater, the printing of calico in this country was greatly improved. 

On the 13th of January, 1833, the State of Massachusetts granted 
a charter "that Jonathan Derby, John Clark and Augustus H. Fiske, their 
associates, successors and assigns be and they hereby are made a corporation 
by the name of the 'Lowell Bleachery,' for the purpose of bleaching, color- 
ing, printing and finishing cotton and woolen goods, etc." The original 
capital was $25,000, which was gradually increased to $400,000 and after- 
ward reduced to $200,000; in 191 1 is still doing business under the original 

Browning & Bros., in 1834, started the manufacture of dyewood ex- 
tracts in Philadelphia, being probably the first in this locality to follow this 
work, and in the same year the American Printing Company was established 
by Holder, Borden and others at Fall River, Mass., with four machines and 
a weekly output of 2,000 pieces. The plant was gradually increased, and 
in 1880 M. C. D. Borden bought the property of the Fall River Iron Works 
and used the liberal charter for the consolidation of several large cotton 
mills. Mr. M. C. D. Borden, by purchase, became the sole owner of the 
American Printing Co. in 1886, which, taken together with the above-men- 
tioned mills, is said to be the largest manufacturing plant under one owner- 
ship and management in the world, and at the present day the printworks 
print about 600 miles of cloth per day and put upon the market some 3,000 
new patterns each year. 

In the year 1834 John Large established the Summerdale Print Works, 
and in 1836 the country boasted the following bleacheries: Ten or twelve in 
Pennsylvania; Phillip Allen's, at Providence, R. I.; Sprague's, at Crans- 
ton, R. I. ; Crawford /Mien's, at Pawtucket, R. I. ; one at Lowell, Mass. 
(Lowell Bleachery) ; one at Taunton, Mass.; one at Dover, N. H. ; two at 
East Madden (probably R. L) ; two or three in New Jersey. 

The bleaching was generally carried on in connection with calico print- 
ing, and the year ending April, 1836, shows a record of 120,000,000 yards 


The so-called "American Process" of calico bleaching was introduced 
in 1837, though just why it is given this name is not very clear. It con- 
sisted of the following operations, which are still followed, with minor 
changes, to this day : 

(a) Singeing, (b) Gray washing, (c) Boiling with lime, under pres- 
sure, (d) Treatment with weak acid (gray sour), (e) Boiling with resin 
soap, under pressure, (f) Boiling with soda ash, under pressure, (g) 
Treatment with bleaching powder solution (chemick). (h) Treatment with 
weak acid (white sour), (i) Rinsing in clean water, (j) Drying. 

It was in this year (1B37) that Smith Gray founded what is at pres- 
ent known as the S. Gray Company, at Walpole, Mass. — for the purpose of 
bleaching and dyeing cotton yarns and thread — with an original production 
of 1,000 pounds per day. This has increased to 10,000 pounds per day. 

The first manufacture of bleaching powder in this country was con- 
ducted at Bridesburg, Pa., by Charles Lennig, in 1847. The production of 
this substance has increased enormously, and in 1898 the Dow Chemical 
Company at Midland. Mich., and the Mathieson Alkali Works at Niagara 
Falls, N. Y., began its manufacture from electrolitic chlorine. It is, how- 
ever, still imported in large quantities, the amount in 1900 being 136,403,151 
po'.mds, valued at .$1,464,019. 

In the year 1847, also, Elijah Upton and T. W. Walker established the 
Danvers Bleachery and Dye Works at Peabody, Mass., then known as South 
Danvers. This plant was in operation under the old name as late as 1908- 
1909. It has, however, recently been absorbed by the Naumkeag Co., of 
Salem. Mass. 

In the following year, that is, 1848, William Simpson, Sr., established 
a bleaching and calico printing plant at Falls of Schuylkill, Pa., and m 1876 
the plant was transferred to its present location at Eddystone, Pa., and be- 
came known as The Eddystone Manufacturing Company, and at present 
is one of the largest plants of its kind in this country. In 1849 we find 
another pioneer in the dyestuff field in Alexander Cochrane, who started 
to make indigo extract at Lowell, Mass., and in 1850 W. P. Uhlinger, of 
Philadelphia, began the manufacture of hydroextractors. Also, in 1850, 
the Eagle Mills were established in Columbus, Ga., and from the out- 
set did their own dyeing and bleaching. During the Civil War these mills 
were operated by the Confederate government for the manufacture of uni- 
forms, and in 1865 were burned by General Wilson, of the Federal Army, 
after the Battle of Columbus, on the ground that they were Confederate 
property. During the period of reconstruction, the mills were re-built 
(1866-67), and from the nature of their previous destruction and reorgan- 
ization were named the Eagle and Phenix Mills. It may be of interest to 
state that these were the first cotton mills in the wprld to be completely 
lighted by electricity. In 1852 The Tolhurst Machine Works were estab- 
lished at Troy, N. Y., and built their first old-style under-driven hydro- 


extractor in October of 1878. This machine was termed self-balancing. In 
1885 William H. Tolhnrst was granted a patent right on the "Tolhurst Self- 
Balancing Extractor." 

During the early 50's delaines were being largely imported, and con- 
stituted one of the chief forms of low-grade dress goods. In 1854 the Pacific 
Mills, of Lawrence, Mass., first put their products on the market, and at 
that time, under a low tariff, English printed calicos and delaines came into 
keen competition with the home product, causing a sharp conflict for the 
control of the market, which resulted in a victory for the American manu- 

From the earliest time, up to the year 1856, dyers and printers were 
limited to the colors derived from minerals, woods and certain insects. In 
1856 Sir William H. Perkin discovered that a violet coloring matter could 
be made artificially from aniline, which is one of the products derived from 
coal tar. This he called Mauveine or Perkin's Violet. This discovery was 
destined to revolutionize the whole dyeing industry, and other discoveries 
followed each other in amazing rapidity, of which we will give a brief ac- 
count later. 

In 1858 or i860 Chas. G. Sargent began the building of his drying ma- 
chines for raw stock. These were platform or table dryers, and Mr. Sargent 
had a patent for blowing air, hot or cold, up and down through the stock on 
the .screen. This patent made a very broad claim and covered practically 
the whole principle. 

Later the Sargents conceived the idea of building a drier in which the 
stock could travel from one end of the machine to the other, and in 1883 
Mr. F. G. Sargent conceived the idea of a travelling wire cloth belt for con- 
veying the material through the chamber while being acted upon by a circu- 
lating current of heated air. 

This was the beginning of the Sargent Automatic Dryer, which, in 
1892, was changed from a one-apron to a five-apron dryer. Five aprons 
being found unnecessary in 1895, the three-apron dryer was adopted. 

With the outbreak of the Civil War, the cotton industry in the United 
States was sadly affected, owing to the cutting off of the supply of raw 
material ; but the woolen industry received great impetus, owing to large 
government orders. So great were these that many cotton mills undertook 
the manufacture of woolen materials. 

Harvey and Oliver Arnold, however, reversed the old adage "in time of 
war prepare for peace." In 1862 they built a print works at North Adams, 
Mass., trading as Harvey .Arnold & Co. In 1S76 a new company, including 
the two Arnolds, was incorporated as the Arnold Print Works and their 
products are known throughout the country. 

Like the Arnolds. Richard Greenwood and William Bault established 
a dye and bleach works at Philadelphia in i86/^, and are now doing business 
under the name of the Globe Dve Works Co. 


In 1867 John H. Foster and the late Thomas Firth established a dye 
house in Philadelphia which gradually increased until, at the present day, 
it is, in the estimation of many, the largest of its kind in that city. In the 
following year (1868) the Newburgh Bleachery was established at New- 
burgh, N. Y.. and in 1869 Forsyth and Fisher established the Elm City 
Dye Works at Westville, near New Haven, Conn., which concern, after 
several changes, became the Pond Lily Co., the Forsyth family having 
always been in connection with the plant. 

It was in the latter part of the 6o's that the coal tar colors began to 
come into this country, and in 1871 Messrs. Wm. Pickhardt and Kuttroff 
introduced the products of the Badische Anilin-und Soda Fabrik, of Lud- 
wigschafen, Germany, and at about the same time Messrs. Rumpf and Lutz 
imported the products of Meister, Lucius and Brunnig, of Hoecst, Germany. 

In 1872 Spencer Borden started the Fall River Bleachery, at Fall River, 
Mass., which has since quadrupled in size, and in the same year Jacob Weid- 
mann established a silk dyeing plant at Paterson, N. J., which is now (in 
191 1 ) the largest plant in the world, dyeing skein silk exclusively. 

In 1875 ^- Klipstein first imported dyestuffs made by Bindschedler and 
Busch, of Basle, .Switzerland, who later combined with other factories and 
took the name of the Society of Chemical Industry in Basle. 

The followmg year, 1876, Mr. William J. Matheson became the Amer- 
ican agent for the products of Leopold Cassella and Co., of Frankfort, 
Germany, and introduced their products to American dyers. 

Turkey red oil, well known to all d3'ers and printers of cotton goods, 
was manufactured in this country as early as 1876 by the Walpole Dye and 
Chemical Works, at Walpole, Mass. Mr. Lane, of the firm of Bosson and 
Lane, was then superintendent of the works, and recalls the old method 
which consisted in using five-gallon crocks, a large number of which were 
required to get out much of a production. Each crock was surrounded by 
circulating cold water to prevent too great a rise in temperature during 
the process. It often ha])pened, however, that, even with the greatest care, 
much of the product would be spoiled. Messrs. Bosson and Lane state that 
they now produce batches of 300 gallons, and, by exercising great care, have 
comparatively little trouble in maintaining uniform quality. Mr. Lane states 
that he thinks the Walpole product was the first marketed, though many 
old Scotch dyers claimed to have made Turkey red oil in this country for 
their own use before it became an article of trade. 

On the 7th of February, 1877, Edward E. Poor, Chas. A. Denny, James 
L. Morgan, James L. Morgan, Jr., John M. Goetchins, Edward L. Kalb- 
fleisch, George P. Slade and T. Morgan Slade organized the Passaic Print 
Works at Passaic, N. J. Mr. Poor was the moving spirit from its incep- 
tion, and was still associated with it until his death in 1900. The present 
treasurer doio), Edward E. Poor, was ]\Ir. Poor's oldest son. 

In 1878 The Actien-Gesellschaft fur Anilin Fabrikation, of Berlin, 


Germany, introduced their dyestuffs into tlie United States, Messrs. Henry 
A. Gould & Co., of New York City, being their agents. Later, the Boston 
Dyewood Company took the agency, and later the New York and Boston 
Dyewood Company, which is now the American Dyewood Company. Since 
March, 1899, however, these products have been handled by the Berlin Ani- 
Hnc Works. 

One of the iirst, and by far the largest manufacturers of artificial dye- 
stuffs in this country, is the Q. V. Schoellkopf, Hartford & Hanna Com- 
pany. The works were established in 1879 by the late Jacob F. Schoell- 
kopf, his sons, Jacob F., Jr., and C. P. Hugo Schoellkopf, at Buffalo, N. Y., 
as the Buffalo Aniline Works, the object being the manufacture of coal 
tar dyes and intermediate products to serve as raw materials for other in- 

At this time peroxide bleaching was just coming before the public, and 
the first to manufacture hydrogen peroxide in this country was the Oak- 
dale Chemical Company in 1881. The chief drawback to the new bleach was 
its price, and it was but little used, although its value as a bleaching agent 
was realized until the introduction of sodium peroxide, of which we will 
speak later. In this year W. H. I^orimer Sons Co. established in Phila- 
delphia, Pa., a dyeing, bleaching and mercerizing plant. In 1882 Kalle & 
Co., A. G., dyestuff manufacturers, of Biebrick, Germany, became repre- 
sented in this country by Messrs. Herlein & Kupferberg, and in 1883 their 
representatives were Messrs. l.eisel and Holbach, which firm became Leisel 
and Georgi in the latter part of the same year. In 1884 Kalle & Co. be- 
came established in this country under their own name. 

Previous to 1882 the products of the St. Denis Dyestuft" and Chemical 
Company, of Paris, France, were handled in this country by A. Porrier. 
In that year A. Porrier and G. Dalsace consolidated, forming the St. Denis 
Co., with Mr. W. J. Miller as the representative in charge. Previous to the 
consolidation, Mr. Porrier was rei)resented in New York by Mr. John D. 
Wade; in Philadelphia, by Messrs. Andreykovicz and Dunk, and in Bos- 
ton by the Boston Dyewood Co. In 1884 Mr. Walter F. Sykes succeeded 
Mr. Miller, and has since held the sole agency in this country for the St. 
Denis products. 

In this year Ludwig Sjiistrom established a dyeing plant at Lawrence, 
Mass., in a small wooden building with 1,800 square feet of floor space, from 
which has grovvTi the Lawrence Dye Works Company, with, in the year 
191 1, two and one-half acres of floor space. This company claims to be the 
only one in the country capable of handling practically all classes of textile 
fabrics, yam, slubbing and rawstock, in the bleaching, dyeing, printing and 
finishing processes, the capacity being four to five million yards of cloth and 
two million pounds of yarn or rawstock per annum. This is surely progress. 

In 1885 Messrs. Mather & Piatt, Ltd., of Manchester, England, intro- 
duced their "Mather Patent Kier" for the boiling out and bleaching of cot- 


ton cloth. Three were put in use the first year, and in 1901 there were 
sixteen in operation in the United States. By this invention, the time of 
changing three and one-third tons of cloth in a particular operation was 
reduced from several hours to ten minutes. Until 1897 these kiers were 
made to stand fifteen pounds pressure per square inch, but since then they 
have been built to work at forty pounds pressure per square inch. 

In 1886 The Auger and Simon Dyeing Co. was established at Pater- 
son, N. J., as a silk dyeing plant, and in the same year Leonard Weldon, 
of Amsterdam, N. Y.. put upon the market a machine of peculiar design 
for the dyeing of yarn, and a similar machine was marketed two years 
later by Klauder Bros., of Philadelphia. In 1890 a consolidation took place, 
and the Klauder-Weldon Dyeing Machine Company was formed. Many 
other firms make dyeing machines, but this one is mentioned for the reason 
that it was one of the first and also because of its peculiar style and gen- 
eral applicability. 

Up to the present date there have been approximately 3.092 patents 
taken out in the United States for processes and machines for bleaching and 
dyeing, printed copies of these patent papers being valued at $154.60. Need- 
less to say, we will not go deeper into this subject. 

We have referred above to the introduction of peroxide bleaching and 
its chief drawback. Hamilton Y. Castner discovered a practical process for 
the production of sodium peroxide on a large scale, and patented the same 
in April, 1893. From that time, until 1896, this article was imported from 
England, where it was being manufactured ; but, in that year, the Niagara 
Electro-Chemical Company had finished a factory at Niagara Falls for the 
manufacture of sodium peroxide under Castner's patent. Thereafter it could 
be sold at a much lower price, and, as a consequence, the price of hydrogen 
peroxide was considerably reduced also, so that, from 1896 on, bleaching 
with peroxides assumed commercial importance. In June, 1899, five dyeing, 
bleaching and finishing plants were incorporated as the United States Fin- 
ishing Company ; the various plants and their dates of establishment being 
as follows : 

Pawtucket Branch 1836 

Norwich " ' 1840 

Silver Spring '' 1864 

Passaic '• 1869 

Sterling " 1880 

Another product which has been advocated especially for the dyeing 
of acid colors is formic acid. The first importation of this acid for com- 
mercial use was made on January' 20, 1902, but time alone will tell how 
far it will replace sulphuric or acetic acids for this purpose. 

To even mention the plants of more recent establishment would neces- 


sitate more space than the writer is permitted to use for this article, and 
many firms who are adding to the history of bleaching, dyeing and print- 
ing of textiles, and by their brains and energies bettering their respective 
branches, and who have been courteous enough to give me information re- 
garding their origin, must pass unnoticed for this reason. 

The introduction of coal tar colors has done so much for the advance- 
ment of the dyeing and printing of textiles that a brief chronological ac- 
count of the growth of the industry will not be out of place at this point. 

As early as 1771 Woulfe prepared picric acid from indigo and nitric 
acid, and in 1S34 Runge discovered aurin. Neither of these were made com- 
mercially, however, at this time on account of the cost of the materials. 
1856 — Mauveine discovered by Sir. Wm. H. Perkin. 
1857 — Mauveine manufactured by Sir W. H. Perkin & Sons at Greens- 
ford Green, near London. 
1858 — Magenta discovered by Natanson. 
1859 — Magenta manufactured by Verguin, in connection with Renard 

Bros., at Lyons, France. 
i860 — Rosaniline blue discovered by Girard and de Laire, of France. 
1861 — Methyl violet discovered by Lauth. 

Phosphine discovered by Nicholson. 
1862 — Water or Nicholson's blue discovered by Nicholson. 

First artificial green dye discovered by Cherpin. Called alde- 
hyde green. 
1863 — Hoffman's violet discovered by Hoffman. 

Aniline black discovered by Lightfoot. 
1864 — ]\Jartius yellow discovered. 
1865 — Bismarck brown discovered by Martius. 
1866 — Methyl violet made commercially by Lauth and Ch. Bardy. 

Iodine green discovered by Kiesser and replaced aldehyde green. 
Bismarck brown manufactured. 
1867 — Methyl violet made by Poirrier and Chappat and replaced Hoff- 
man's violet. 
First soluble Induline prepared by Coupler. 
1868 — IMagdala red discovered by Clavel. 

Alizarine prepared by Graebe & I^ieberman. 
1869 — Alizarine manufactured by Graebe, Lieberman & Perkin. 

Gallein and Ceruleine discovered by Baeyer. 
1873 — Methyl green discovered by Wischin and replaced iodine green. 
Cachou de laval ; first sulphur dye prepared by Croissant and 
1874 — Eosines introduced by the Badische Anilin u. Soda Fabrik. 
1875 — Alizarine orange introduced by the Badische Company. 
Chrysoidine discovered by Caro. 


1876 — Chnsoidine manufactured by Williams, Thomas & Dover, of 
Orange, No. i and No. 2, discovered by Roussin. 
Griess and Witt independently prepared the Tropseolines. 
1877 — Orange, No. i and No. 2, manufactured by A. Poirrier at Paris. 
1877 — Lancaster yellow discovered by Griess and manufactured by 
Joseph Story of England. 
Methylene blue introduced by the Badische Company. 
1878 — Fast red A discovered by Caro. 

Alizarine blue and Malachite green also introduced. 
Ponceaux and Bordeaux introduced by Meister, Lucius and 
Brunnig, of Germany. 
1879 — Napthol yellow S discovered by Caro. 

Biebrick scarlet discovered by Nietzki. 
1880 — Baeyer completed his synthesis of indigo. 
1881 — Resorcin brown discovered by Wallach. 
1882 — Alizarin blue S introduced. 
1883 — Carbonyl chloride first used in dyestufif manufacture by Caro 

and Kern, resulting in discovery of Crystal violet. 
1884 — Congo red the first direct dyeing cotton color put upon the 

market. Discovered by Paul Bottiger the year previous. 
1885 — Naphthol black, the first satisfactory azo black prepared by Hoff- 
man & Weinberg, of Germany. 
1887 — Primuline, the first developed cotton dye, discovered by Green. 
Acid magenta and acid violets discovered by Caro. 
Alizarine black introduced by the Badische Company. 
1888 — The Oxazines and Rhodindulines introduced by Fischer and 
Alizarin green introduced by the Badische Company. 
1889 — Gans discovered Diamine black RO, the first direct cotton black, 
which was followed by the Columbia blacks. 
Diamond black discovered by Baeyer and which was the first 

after-chromed black. 
Formaldehyde applied to the preparation of dyes by Meister, 
Lucius and Brunnig, resulting in New Fuchsine, the acridine 
and pyronine dyestuffs. 
1890 — Neumann's synthesis of indigo. 
1891 — Hoffman & Daimler prepared the first direct dyeing cotton green 

— namely. Diamine green. 
1894 — Oxamine dyes introduced. 

1896 — Vidal black, and the commencement of the sulphur dye industry. 
1897 — Indigo made commercially by Heumann's process by the Bad- 
ische Company. 
1901 — First of the Indanthrene dyes introduced. 


Sulphur colors have gained great importance since 1896, when Vidal 
published his process, and are now manufactured by nearly all dyestufi 
establishments. Since the beginning of the twentieth century many valuable 
colors have been put upon the market, among which may be mentioned the 
Algole colors, the Helindone colors, the Acid Alizarines, the Anthracene 
Chromate and the Ciba colors. 

In the last twenty years various types of machines have been devised 
for the dyeing of rawstock, yarn, cops, tops, etc., most of them based, how- 
ever, upon the same principle — namely, keeping the material stationary and 
circulating the liquor, either by pressure or by partial vacuum, and Messrs. 
Jackson and Hunt, of England, have patented a kier by means of which 
cotton cloth may be passed through the various bleaching operations in the 
open width. 

Perhaps the greatest benefit derived from the development of the dye- 
stuff industry is the calculation of dyes and dyewares on the percentage 
basis, all amounts being reckoned as a certain percentage of the weight of 
the material to be dyed. The old methods of "Bucket and Scoop" have 
passed away, except in a few old-fashioned establishments. 

The bleaching, dyeing and printing of textiles in America have de- 
veloped remarkably in the last century, but though the number of establish- 
ments and the quality of the production have greatly increased all the great 
improvements in processes, the discovery of new classes of dyestuffs and 
their modes of application are of foreign origin. 

To Germany, in particular, are we indebted for most of the dyeing 
processes in use for artificial colors. To England we are indebted for 
bleaching powder, the first artificial dyestuff, and for the roller printing 
machine, and to France for the first sulphur dye. 

There are many reasons for this, among which may be mentioned the 
high price of alcohol in the United States, large amounts of which are nec- 
essary for the manufacture of dyestuffs, and the comparatively recent real- 
ization by the textile trade of the value of the chemist. 

A comprehensive view of our growth in the bleaching, dyeing and 
printing of textiles may be had from the following : 


Year. No. Establishments. Capital. 

1850 104 $4,818,350 

i860 124 5,718,671 

1870 292 18,374,503 

1880 igi 26,223,981 

1890 248 38,450,800 

1900 298 60,643,104 

1905 360 88,708,576 


Chemicals and Dyewares used in all Textile Industries, 1890-1905. 

1890. 1900. 1905- 

Independent Estimates $8,407,693 $10,667,621 $10,587,319 

Gen. Tex. Estab 11,278,970 14,724,952 16,095,300 

Total >;i9,686,663 $25,392,573 $26,682,619 

Cotton $4,266,773 $5,718,107 $4,573,375 

Wool and Worsted 5,889,612 7,983,684 9,177,681 

Hosiery and Knit 564,053 1,023,161 1,677,252 

Silk 55^,.532 666,992 

Figure:^ taken from TJ. S. Census, 1905. 

The United States, however, is still a very young country, and we look 
forward to as great a development in the preparation, coloring and print- 
ing of textiles as there has been in many of the other important industries 
of our country. 




In the consideration of the history of the development of the art 
of dyeing and the growth of the dyestuff trade and industry, we find the 
subject naturally divides itself into three parts in which the conditions differ 
widely. These eras may be called : 

I. The Era of Localized Dyeing. 

II. The Era of Exploitation of Natural Coloring Matters. 
III. The Era of Synthetic Dyestuffs. 

The first era comprises the whole historical account of the subject 
previous to the development of foreign commerce, succeeding the dis- 
covery of America in 1492. During this period, so far as we know, the 
methods of coloring textile fabrics, as well as the composition of the 
fabrics themselves, was limited by the local conditions — that is, to such 
dyestuffs as were conveniently at hand, for it was impossible to transport 
the raw materials any distance, and, therefore, whatever coloring matters 
or dyestuffs were at hand were used. 

This condition caused some of the most pronounced and brilliant 
shades to be called by the geographical names of the localities where pro- 
duced, as, owing to the lack of dyestuffs or other necessary material, they 
could not be produced in other localities. 

Some of the names are still in vogue at the present time. How many 
people using the term "Turkey Red"' think that it has any relation to the 
country at the eastern end of Europe, and that originally all of it was dyed 
there. Tyrian Purple is another, this color being dyed from the coloring 
matter from shell fish found on the shore of the Mediterranean Sea. The 
name "Indigo" has a more remote descent from India, but the connection 
is the same, all these being brilliant colors produced in some far-off country 
and imported at great cost. 

II. The Era of Exploitation of Natural Dyestuflfs. — In the century im- 
mediately following the discovery of America, foreign commerce by means 
of ocean vessels was most successfully developed, and communication 
established between countries before either unknown or seldom visited. 
This led to the exchange of products, and what effect this had on the 
manufacturing industries of Europe can be seen both in the legislation of 
the time and the country of origin of many of the raw, materials. When 
the importation of the new, foreign dyeing materials began to affect local 


industries, relief was sought by legislation, and the importation of both 
indigo and logwood was prohibited in England. 

In furnishing a supply of new materials the then recently discovered 
Americas were probably the most important source. During the time 
covered by this period, America had furnished logwood, originally 
campeche wood, the most important of the natural dyewoods, Brazil wood 
and peachwood of the redwoods; quercitron and fustic of the yellow dye- 
woods, and of the animal dyestuffs, the cochineal bug. Indigo-bearing 
plants had also been discovered, and the Central and South American 
indigoes became well known articles of commerce. 

At the same time the East Indies and Africa furnished camwood, 
sanderswood, sapanwood and turmeric. All these, in addition to the already 
known madder, alkanet, young fustic, weld Persian berry and indigo, gave 
the dyer a very full assortment of dyeing materials. With the exception 
of indigo, all these dyestuffs required the use of metallic salts to develop 
the color or bind the color to the fibres. These assistants came to be known 
as mordants. 

This may therefore be called the Age of Mordant Dyestuffs, and the 
dyeing operations were of a complex nature. This led to many so-called 
secret processes, the materials used and methods of handling being guarded 
most carefully from .business rivals. In some cases they became a family 
heritage, being handed down from father to son, great care being taken that 
the knowledge should remain solely personal information, and this in many 
cases resulted in ultra-conservatism, and stifled efforts that would have 
been exerted in the line of practical improvement. Novelties were naturally 
looked on with suspicion, and new methods, if generally known, were not 

The colors resulting from the fact that these natural dyestuffs were 
mordant colors and required more or less careful treatment in their produc- 
tion, were generally considered "fast," in the sense of the term as now 

The development of the indigo trade during this period is also 
notable. At first coming from the East or India, the Europeans had made 
use of its coloring principle in preference to woad grown in their own 
countries, and then, when it was found in America, it may be said to have 
been generally distributed throughout the world. The basic principle of its 
application has ahvavs been the same, that is, its transformation into soluble 
indigo white and then re-oxidation into the insoluble blue color. The means 
of bringing about the formation of indigo white during this period are very 
curious. All sorts of mixtures were used, some causing fermentation and 
others, in later years, producing reduction. 

Toward the close of this development of the art of dyeing, the consump- 
tion of these natural coloring matters increased to such an extent that great 
efforts were made to extract and concentrate the coloring matters into a 


more convenient form. This was done so effectively that the original 
forms of the dyewoods were replaced by extracts of varying degrees of 
concentration with all the properties preserved and the disadvantageous 
impurities of the original dyeing material removed. This form may be said 
to represent the highest development of the natural dyestuffs. 

III. The Era of Synthetic Dyestuffs. — Before, however, the natural 
dyestuff industry had reached its culmination, certain influences were at 
work, which in a comparatively short time were destined to practically cause 
its extinction, for with the advance and development of the science of 
chemistry during the nineteenth century, came the investigations into the 
nature of the dyestuffs and coloring matters in common use, and in 1856, 
the discovery of Sir William Perkin, that a very brilliant coloring matter 
could be made by chemical methods from coal-tar, marked the beginning 
of the synthetic dyestuff industry. This color known as mauve, the subject 
of the first coal-tar color patent, was the first of an ever-increasing number 
of dyestuffs, which at that time were particularly attractive to the public, 
on account of their previously unattainable brilliancy of shade and to the 
practical dyer, on account of their ease of application on the fibre. 

The discovery of mauve, Hoffman's violet, and similar colors, resulted 
in a broadening of the investigations, and in 1858, Griess discovered the 
diazo reaction, as it is termed, which is the basis of the largest group of 
synthetic dyestuffs. The first of these introduced commercially was amido- 
azo-benzene, manufactured by Sampson, Maule and Nicholson, in 1863, and 
in the same year in England, Lightfoot discovered the method of dyeing 
vegetable fibres with what is known as "aniline black." While his method 
of application has been altered and improved, this black has come to be 
considered the standard for cotton blacks and all other blacks are still 
considered inferior. 

While the coal-tar color industry was yet in its infancy, in 1868, Graebe 
and Liebermann made a discovery that was in its results a very serious 
attack on the use of natural dyestuffs. This was the synthesis of alizarine 
from anthracene in coal-tar. Alizarine was at that time obtained from 
madder root, and was the most important of the natural red dyestuffs. Tfie 
result of this discovery in a short time was the production of alizarine on a 
commercial scale from anthracene, and this soon reduced the trade in 
madder and its preparations to practically nothing; thus changing the com- 
merce of many countries by contracting the demand for an important 
natural product, "Madder-red" continued to be known for some time, but 
the actual product used was derived from coal-tar. 

In the experiments with anilines and anthracenes and other derivatives 
from coal-tar, it was found that by a process of building up, other coloring 
matters could be obtained, some similar in nature, others differing widely 
from the original material. With this encouragement always present, the 
list of new dyestuffs grew steadily from year to year. The fluorescein colors 


were introduced in 1874, three years after the discovery of the parent body. 
In 1877-8 the sulphonated azo colors were placed on the market, opening 
the large field of acid dyeing wool colors. Many additions were continu- 
ously made to each of the known groups of colors, but in 1884 a new and 
very important addition appeared. 

Up to that time nearly all the colors required a mordant in dyeing 
vegetable fibres not containing natural tannin. Either the fibre had to be 
prepared with tannin, or alum, or some other metallic salt had to be used 
in the dyebath, but in that year Boettiger produced Congo red, which dyed 
unmordanted cotton in a bath containing common salt only. Other dyestuffs 
belonging to this group appeared rapidly, and at the present time the 
"Tetrazo Dyestufi's," ''One-Dip Colors," or whatever else they may be called, 
outnumbered those of any other class. 

Closely allied to these are the colors which are developed on the fibre. 
The first of these, primuline, apeared in, 1887. Their advantage consists in 
their comparative fastness to the processes of manufacturing. Under this 
head may also be classed the insoluble azo colors, which are also formed 
directly on the fibres. These were first put on the market in a workable 
form in 1889, although the method had been suggested before. These colors, 
with many additions and improvements, have been found to be of great 
utility in the lake and pigment trade. 

In 1873, 3 mysterious dyestufif, commercially known as "Cachou de 
Laval," appeared. It was made by heating various organic substances with 
sodium sulphide. This, while used for dyeing in a small way, was little 
thought of until 1890, when the first sulphur blacks, made from coal-tar 
derivatives, as raw materials, appeared. The production of these bodies led 
to serious investigation of the possibilities of sulphide combinations and 
the practical results can be seen in the large consumption of sulphur or 
sulphide colors at the present time. 

The colors during the first period of production of aniline dyestufifs 
were noted especially for their brilliancy of shade and ease of application, 
but after the novelty had worn of¥ it became necessary for them to meet 
competition in the shape of the older natural coloring matters. Most of 
them, when combined with suitable mordants, gave shades which, while 
not as brilliant as the "aniline" colors, were much more permanent. This 
led to the development of colors that would compare favorably with, or 
excel the natural dyestufifs in regard to fastness. It was noted from the 
first that the anthracene derivatives, as a rule, were faster than those from 
aniline, and therefore, with the increasing demand for fastness, greater 
attention was paid to the anthracene compounds, and this resulted in a full 
line of dyestufifs, available either for mordant, acid, or vat dyeing, all 
remarkable for their resistance to injurious influences. 

Many of these are products of the last ten years. With the develop- 
ment of the fast colors among the synthetic dyestufifs, the decline in the 


consumption of natural dyestuffs, even for special purposes, began, and 
with each step in advance of the one, the other receded. One-dip cotton 
colors of sufificient fastness and with simple methods of dyeing, soon re- 
placed logwood blacks and slates, and the introduction of chrome developed 
blacks for wool, with much greater fastness to light, left little room for its 
use on that material. Slowly, at first, but later more rapidly, the most 
important of the natural dyestuffs lost ground, so that at the present time, 
"as fast as logwood black" has no commercial meaning. 

During all the changes involving the other colors, one natural dyestuff 
held its place without question, and while many substitutes were proposed, 
none were of any material use. But the synthetic dyestuff manufacturer 
solved the problem at last, in the same manner as in the case of madder. As 
early as 1880, a process had been invented by Dr. A. Baeyer. for the 
tynthesis of indigotine from Toluene, but for years this was found to be 
commercially unprofitable, until a new process was introduced by Heumann 
in 1890, using benzine and naphthalene, as raw materials. Before this 
method was technically successful, the Farbwerke of Hoechst, perfected a 
method for the use of the original ortho-nitro-benzaldehyde process, and 
started the manufacture of synthetic indigotine, commercially, in 1896, while 
the Badische Aniline and Soda Fabrik, at the same time used Heumann's 
process. It was soon after discovered that the addition of sodium amide 
increased the yield of indigotine in the Heumann process, making it satis- 
factorily economical, and at last the synthetic dvestuff makers were able to 
dislodge natural indigo with indigo made synthetically from coal-tar. 

As soon as the manufacturer was in a position to compete commercially 
with the natural product, the market for the natural product fell off and 
is growing smaller from year to year. At this time it can be said that there 
is no market for the natural product, except where manufacturers are ultra- 
conservative and in countries where it is indigenous. The total consumption 
annually in tJie Ignited States is about 1,500,000 pounds of 100 per cent 
indigotine. This may be said to be the commercial end of the natural 
dyestuff as applied to textile fibres, and their use practically goes out with 
the nineteenth century. The twentieth century, so far as we can now fore- 
see, will be one of synthetic dyestuffs. 

The synthetic dyestuff' industry originated in England, as the names 
of the early colors indicate, but as technical education advanced more rapidly 
in France and Germany, it was transferred successively to those countries. 
At the present time, most of the manufacturing is in German hands, as 
most of the works in other countries are subsidiaries of the German works. 
As all these employ large corps of research chemists, the industry is steadfly 
developing and advancing, and the era of synthetic dyestuffs, in which we 
now live, is bound to produce coloring matters, the application of which will 
be of benefit to consumers as offering advantages in cost, or in fastness. 




To properly understand the causes of the slow development of this 
industry in the United States, it will be advisable to give a short sketch of 
its inception and progress in Europe up to the present time. 

Though Perkin began the manufacture of coal-tar dyes in England, 
in 1857, they were first produced on a considerable commercial scale in 
France, and at a later date, their manufacture was taken up in Switzerland 
and Germany. But while the growth of this new industry was not extra- 
ordinary in the first named countries, the history of it in Germany reads 
like a fairy tale. One can truthfully say that Germany's greatness and 
present supremacy in the chemical arts, dates from the time it actively 
engaged in the production of coal-tar dyes. From practically nothing in 
1862, the value of the output of the German factories had risen to $6,000,000, 
in 1874; to $12,500,000 in 1882; to $17,000,000 in 1890; and to over 
$50,000,000 in 1907. This in the face of the fact that the products were 
net only vastly improved in quality, but also very materially cheapened in 
price (magenta from three dollars per pound to sixty cents ; aniline blue from 
eight dollars per pound to seventy cents). 

Germany has a capital of at least $100,000,000 invested in the industry 
which gives employment to fully thirty thousand hands directly, and to at 
least as many more indirectly. The amount of chemicals and other materials 
consumed by this industry is simply stupendous, one factory alone using 
300,000 tons of coal annually, and producing for its own consumption 150,- 
ooc tons of sulphuric acid, besides enormous quantities of other mineral 
acids and heavy chemicals. The main reason for this wonderful growth in 
Germany, was probably the judicious co-operation of theory and practice, 
the working together of factory and university, which in no other country 
was carried out to the extent it was in Germany. During this period of 
rapid development, it is obvious there could be no surplus of scientific or 
expert manual help to start factories of a similar nature in America. All 
the chemists that graduated from German universities, and who had chosen 
this branch of chemistry as their specialty, immediately found remunerative 
employment in one of the home factories. No one thought of leaving the 
"Fatherland" and seeking his fortune elsewhere. 

These conditions, however, changed radically about the year 1880. The 


universities and chemical schools had continued to turn out coal-tar chemists 
in increasing numbers and the home factories were finally no longer able to 
take care of all of them, and naturally they looked around for other fields 
of operation. 

At this time the United States apparently presented an inviting field. 
The consumption of colors was already large and constantly increasing. 
The import duty at that time was thirty-five per cent ad valorem, and fifty 
cents per pound specific, which, taking into consideration the low prices the 
■dyes had reached, was ample protection. There were, as yet, no colors 
produced in this country, if one excepts the magenta turned out by the 
now extinct Albany Aniline Color Works. They produced a small quantity 
of poor magenta in a very crude way and had been doing this for ten years 
without attempting to enlarge by adding new colors to their product. As 
stated above, America presented an inviting field and during the years i8Sb 
and 1883, no fewer than nine different plants for the manufacture of coal-tar 
dyes were established. The prospect of becoming independent of other 
nations for our supply of these important colors was bright indeed, until 
the passage of the Tariff Act of July i, 1S83. This act abolished the 
specific duty of fifty cents per pound; leaving ad valorem duty of thirty-five 
per cent on coal-tar colors or dyes, and twenty per cent on coal-tar prepara- 
tions not colors or dyes. This left a net protection for the colors of 
nominally fifteen per cent, but it will appear later that even this meagre 
protection was completely neutralized through various circumstances. 

The evil effects of this adverse tariff legislation showed itself almost 
immediately. No new factories were started, and within one year after the 
new tariff took effect, five of those already established were forced to 
succumb and go out of business. The remaining four would have gladly 
followed their example but they had invested large sums of money in plants 
(the Buffalo factory had expended about $500,000 in this way), which 
would not have brought ten cents on the dollar if sold. So they decided to 
continue to operate their factories, hoping for more favorable legislation in 
the future. But thus far they have always been bitterly disappointed. At 
€very tariff revision this industry, which if properly fostered would be of 
such enormous importance to the chemical industry at large, has been 
treated in a most unfair and unkind manner. The parties interested have 
repeatedly asked for an increase of duty, which has as often been refused. 
They have asked for a decrease of duty on raw material, which was only 
partially acceded to in the Dingley Bill. As their raw materials are not 
made in this country, and never will be under existing conditions, it is not 
■comprehensible why this latter request has not been granted. They finally 
petitioned Congress to change the phraseology of the paragraphs referring 
to coal-tar colors and alizarine red, to prevent fraud and misunderstandings 
at the Custom House. But even this just request, which was recommended 


by the Appraisers' Department in New York, was only acceded to finally, 
when the Dingley Bill went into effect. 

It is true the Wilson Bill had placed coal-tar products, constituting part 
of the raw material for the colors, on the free-list, but the duty on the colors 
at the same time was placed so low that it fell short of covering the differ- 
ence in cost of production between here and Germany. It is obvious that 
under such conditions there was no incentive on the part of the American 
manufacturers to increase their plants, and they continued to pursue a 
waiting policy. 

While the Dingley Bill was up for discussion, the American manu- 
facturers of coal-tar dyes asked for free raw materials and a duty of thirty- 
five per cent on the colors. The bill, as finally passed, placed the duty on 
colors at thirty per cent, but, on the other hand, most of the coal-tar products 
used in the manufacture of the dyes were again placed on the dutiable list. 

The Dingley Tariff Bill improved matters to some extent, inasmuch as 
the American manufacturers were now able to at least manufacture without 
loss, those colors for which the raw material could be imported free of duty, 
but for those colors that necessitated dutiable raw material, conditions were 
worse than they had ever been before, in fact to even attempt to make this 
class of colors, was altogether out of the question. The domestic production 
has increased considerably during the last decade, but the increase would 
have been far greater if this industry had received fair treatment at the 
hands of Congress. 

It would seem that if the American chemical manufacturers in par- 
ticular, and the American people generally, realized the importance of the 
aniline color industry, they would positively demand proper protection for 
this industry. One can truthfully say that the chemical industry of no 
country, can become really great unless the aniline color industry is properly 
fostered. This statement is amply proven by the fact that Germany, with a 
highly developed coal-tar color industry, leads in all chemical branches, while 
England and France, who formerly predominated in this field, have fallen 
far behind Germany, and only because they did not keep step with the latter 
country in the development of the coal-tar color industry. 



The cultivation of the flax plant ( Linum usitatissimum), for textile 
purposes, dates from the remotest antiquity. The Egyptians over four thou- 
sand years ago excelled in the art of manufacturing fine white linen, some of 
which was comparable to our silken materials for smoothness and softness, 
and so fine as to be transparent, as is evidenced by the burial bandages of 
King Pepy and King Merere (2530 B. C.) and by a transparent overdress of 
one of the kings of the Sixth Dynasty (1530 B. C.) now in the Berlin 
Museum; in the same place are to be found combs for combing the flax. 
The German writer Seitzen mentions the fact that he had found several 
napkins within the folds of the covering on a mummy and that he had 
them washed several times without injury and used with great veneration 
"this venerable linen, which had been woven more than 1,700 years." 

The Egyptians boiled their flax instead of "retting"' it and afterwards 
hammered it to separate it from the outside; this is depicted on the monu- 
ments of that ancient people; as well as the weaver plying his shuttle to the 
warp of flax, and the peasants cultivating the flax in the fields much as it 
is done to-day. 

From the Egyptians, the cultivation of flax passed to Palestine ; there 
is scarcely a book in the Old Testament in which flax and linen are not 
mentioned. The Greek maidens in the time of Homer, spun the flax and 
wove the linen as those of Egypt had done before them. From Greece the 
manufacture of linen is traced to Rome, and the Romans doubtless carried 
it to the barbaric northern nations, whom they conquered, and in a measure 

The common flax or lint, is an annual ; a native of Egypt, of some parts 
of Asia, and of the south of Europe, not truly indigenous in Britain, but 
now naturalized as it is in many other countries. The universal use of the 
plant in all jiarts of the world is doubtless due to its physical stamina, which 
is of the most enduring and diversified nature ; it grows to great perfection 
amidst the snows and rigors of northern latitudes, and maintains a healthy 
condition in sunnier and warmer climes. (See Plate 11.) 

In the United .States it is grown largely, but merely for the seed and 
oil, the process of its preparation for textile use, which must be done mainly 
by hand, being too expensive and tedious for the American farmer. 

The best flax for the purpose of manufacturing into linen is grown 
in Belgium, where it is extensively cultivated, particularly in Southern 
Brabant, Hainault, and West and East Flanders, where the most beautiful 


flax is spun for conversion into Brussels and Mechlin lace ; that flax grown 
and prepared at Courtrai being particularly desirable. The flax of these 
countries sells at from $350 to $2,000 a ton, while that used for the laces 
mentioned above, has been known to be sold, when hackled, at $20 a pound, 
or nearly $45,000 a ton. At least half of the flax for manufacturing 
purposes is grown in Russia. In India, flax is grown mainly for the seed. 
The flax of New Zealand is a valuable fibre, quite distinct from the common 
flax and is obtained from the leaves of an endogenous, instead of the stem 
of an exogenous plant. Linum usitatissimum is an annual plant and grows 
with a slender upright stem, branched near the top ; the seed is sown in 
April, the plant blossoms in June or July, and the seed commonly ripens in 
September. The fibre of which flax is composed, when examined under a 
microscope, appears to consist of smooth transparent tubes intersected at 
short intervals by joints or knots similar to the bamboo or other reeds. This 
fibre, spun into yarn, is manufactured into linen cloth. 

According to the analysis of Liebig, flax is composed of: 

Carbon 38.72 

Hydrogen 7.33 

Nitrogen 0.56 

Oxygen 48.39 

Ashes 5.04 

The flax being sufficiently ripened, is pulled only in dry weather, the 
stalks being kept even, like a brush, at the root end, and the short stems kept 
separate from the long ones ; on the following day it is "rippled," to take off 
the seeds. The "rippling" machine consists of an instrument like a comb 
with iron teeth, round, smooth and tapering, about twelve inches long, 
fastened into a wooden frame and placed so close that the pods cannot pass 
through. This frame is placed at the end of a plank or long stool on which 
the operator sits. 

The next process is to obtain the fibre free from the woody core or boon 
of the stem ; this operation is called retting, and has to be very carefully per- 
formed. The bundles of flax are steeped in water till the boon begins to 
rot, when it can be readily separated from the fibre. When it has been 
sufficiently steeped, the flax is spread out on the grass to complete the de- 
composition of the boon. In some districts, the practice is to place the flax 
on the grass and allow the dew and rain to "ret" it, which requires a much 
longer time and is not feasible where land is valuable. Attempts have been 
made to remove the fibre by machinery without retting it, but the fibre so 
obtained is inferior in quality. There are several methods which are success- 
fully applied to facilitate the process of retting, by which a much greater 
amount of the fibres is extracted from each ton of straw, with a great gain 
also in the time of preparation. In 1847, Mr. R. B. Schenck, of New York, 


introduced into Ireland a method which, though it was by no means new, 
having been proposed by Professor Schudweiler in Belgium, and tried in 
Holland several years before, and also employed by the Malays and the 
natives of Bengal, was of great service in leading to further experimentation 
and vastly superior results. (See Plate ii.) 

Schenck's method, which is now little used, was to place the flax in vats 
in which it was kept down by means of a strong framework ; water is then 
run into the vats and is absorbed by the flax ; steam is now admitted till 
the temperature of the water is raised to and maintained at about ninety 
degrees Fah. Fermentation sets in in a few hours and is maintained for 
about sixty hours, when the decomposition of the gummy or resinous matter 
in the stalk is completed. The mucilaginous water is then withdrawn from 
the vat, the flax taken out, separated and dried, either in the open air or in 
desiccating rooms, according to circumstances. 

Watt's method, which with the improvements of Pownall, is the pre- 
ferred system, consists of a chamber with a perforated bottom, in which the 
flax is laid ; the top of the chamber is double and is filled with water to act 
as a condenser. Steam is admitted to the case, which frees the flax from 
certain volatile oils. The steam rising to the top of the chamber is condensed 
by contact with it, and falls in showers on the flax beneath. In thirty-six 
hours the flax is taken out, and passed between rollers in the direction of 
its length, which presses out the water and decomposed gum, and splits and 
flattens the straw. Mr. Bower, of Leeds, England, rolled the stalks after 
steeping in cold or warm water, then steeped them and rolled them again. 
The most rapid process is to steep the flax for a short time and then exhaust 
the air from its fibres by means of an air pump. If this process is twice 
repeated, the gelatinous matter is removed in a few hours. The introduction 
of chemicals, to hasten the fermentation, is objectionable because of its 
weakening the fibres. 

The flax prepared by Schenck's method made a coarser yarn than that 
from Watt's, and lOO tons of straw by Schenck's process yielded 5.90 tons of 
fibre; 100 tons of straw by Watt's process yielded 12.20. By Pownall's 
invention, the flax, after steeping, is passed between heavy rollers, after it is 
taken from the vats, clean water being kept flowing over the stems during 
the operation, to remove the gummy matters. 

The flax, when retted and dried, is next passed through a machine 
having numerous fluted rollers, some of which have a reciprocating motion ; 
this thoroughly breaks the brittle wood parts of the stems, and prepares 
it for the operation of scutching, which is now mainly done by scutching 
machines. Brushing machines are sometimes used to finally clean the flax 
before baling it for the market. 

From the earliest period of recorded history up to the eighteenth 
century, the manufacturing of linen was one of the most extensive domestic 
industries of European countries ; it was most largely developed in Russia, 

,„ M.S 

•^ in «5 


23 X 


Austria, Germany, Holland and Belgium, the northern provinces of France 
and certain parts of England, in the northern parts of Ireland, and throughout 
Scotland, the importance of the industry is shown by the special laws made 
in those countries to protect and foster it. Some notable specimens of 
figured-stuflfs such as damasks, made of linen, or of silk and linen, in Spain 
and Italy as early as the fourteenth century, are seen in several industrial 
art museums in England and in Europe. The ground of the celebrated 
Bayeux tapestry, which was made in the eleventh century, is of linen. 
Flanders was celebrated as early as the eleventh century for the weaving of 
table linen, and many Flemish weavers from that time on, settled in England, 
where the linen manufacture was fostered by bounties. 

The first mill for spinning linen yarn by machinery was built in Darling- 
ton, England, in 1787, the machines being the inventions of John Kendrew 
and Thomas Porthouse, who, in 1787, obtained a patent for a mill or 
machine on new principles for spinning yarn from hemp, flax or wool. In 
Scotland, the first flax spinning mill was erected in 1790, near Glarnis, and 
several were shortly afterwards established in Fife. By degrees, these 
machines, crudely imperfect as they were, were developed by innumerable 
improvements and modifications into the perfect system of machinery with 
which the spinning mills of to-day are fitted, though the mechanical devices 
for the spinning of linen were slower of development than those for 
cotton; indeed, the speedy development of the cotton industry had a dis- 
astrous effect upon the manufacture of linen. In 1810, Napoleon, to foster 
the industries of France, oft'ered a million francs to the next person who 
should invent the best machine for spinning flax and almost immediately 
Philippe de Girard patented in France, important inventions for the spinning 
of flax, wet or dry. He failed, however, to receive the promised reward, nor 
was his genius recognized by his countrymen, but be met with more recogni- 
tion abroad, for in 181 5, he was invited by the Austrian government to 
establish a spinning mill at Hirtenberg, near Vienna, which was run with 
his machinery for several years, but was not a commercial success. 

Flax goes to the mills in bales, where it undergoes the operations of 
hackling, preparing and spinning, before it is woven into cloth. 

Hackling, or heckling, the first preparatory process, not only combs 
out and disentangles and lays smooth and parallel the separate fibres, but it 
also splits up and disintegrates the strands of fibre which up to this point 
are agglutinated togetlicr. This, until recent times, was i)erformed by hand, 
and was a very important operation, requiring much skill and dexterity; a 
certain amount of hand heckling is still done in Ireland and on the Continent. 

The general principles of the several machines for hackling are the 
same, though there is some variation in their construction. The machine 
consists of endless leathern sheets moving over rollers placed at some 
distance apart with proper driving-gear. A number of heckle stocks placed 
at regular intervals are fixed on the surface of these sheets or bands, two 


of which are placed opposite to, and so near each other that their respective 
heckle pins intersect where the actual heckling takes place. At this part 
of their course, the sheets move in a nearly vertical direction downward, 
and heckle the flax, which is fixed in a holder and hangs down between 
the sheets. (See Plate ii.) 

Preparing. — The operations in this stage are varied, the object being 
the assortment of the dressed line into qualities suitable for spinning the 
different counts of yarn, and the drawing out of the fibres to a perfectly 
uniform sliver containing an equal quantity of fibre in any given length. 
The "stricks" are first sorted and are then passed to the spreading and 
drawing frames, a series of machines all similar in construction, i. The 
spreading frame, where the flax is formed into a continuous ribbon or 
sliver ; 2, The drawing frames, on which this sliver is doubled and drawn 
out by rollers through travelling gills with steel teeth. There are usually 
three drawing frames, though sometimes four are used, each machine having 
finer teeth than the one before it. The object of this careful process is to 
produce a sliver of uniform size throughout, in which all the fibres are 
parallel. Then follows the roving frame, through which the sliver is passed 
singly. Though similar to the drawing frame, this machine has in addition 
a flyer and bobbin; the former slightly twists the sliver and winds it upon 
the bobbin. 

The rovings are now spun ; the fine yarns being spun wet with water 
at a temperature of 125 degrees F., dry spinning being used for the coarser 
yarns. ( See Plate 11.) 

In weaving, the hand loom is still used in fine linens, though the power 
loom is now universally used for the weaving of ordinary linen goods. 
There are many obstacles to be met in the application of the power loom to 
the weaving of linen — the principal difticulty being the hardness and lack 
of elasticity of the linen wefts, and this and the pertinacious competition of 
the hand weavers delayed the adoption of power machinery for linen 
weaving for some years. The various operations of weaving linen on power 
looms do not differ from those employed in weaving cotton, nor is there 
any significant modification of the machines employed. The yarn is treated 
v/ith flour paste and dried before being wound on the beam. 

Bleaching. — There are in linen, intermingled with the fibres, which 
constitute the thread, minute particles of the woody parts of the flax which 
add greatly to the difficulty of bleaching the fabric ; were it not for these 
fragments there would be no more difiiculty in bleaching linen than there 
is in bleaching cotton. 

The process of bleaching linen consists in steeping it in cold water for 
several hours, for the purpose of removing the flour size used in the 
weaving, after which it is boiled in a large iron vessel heated by steam in 
a weak solution of corbonate of soda, lime water and gum fustic. It is 
boiled under slight pressure for twelve hours in this fluid; then it is 


thoroughly washed and spread out on the grass from five to eight days. 
After two or three such treatments, the Hnen is immersed in a strong lather 
of soap and subjected to the action of two fluted pieces of wood, moving 
in alternate horizontal directions. Then after another boiling and exposure 
on the grass, it is dipped for twelve hours in a weak solution of vitriol. 

The number of the operations varies much according to the kind of 
linen to be bleached, the process being extremely long and tedious. After 
being properly bleached, washed, and dried, the linen is "finished" by 
passing it through a solution of starch which is squeezed out between 
rollers ; it is then put through a heavy calendering machine or beetling mill 
for the purpose of imparting a glossy finish and is then made up into 
pieces for sale. 

Linen is manufactured in most European countries and in Russia; 
France, Belgium, and Great Britain being the principal manufacturing 
centres. France is celebrated for her cambrics and beautiful damasks. In 
the United Kingdom, the finest fabrics are made in Belfast and other places 
in Ulster, and consist of lawn and cambric handkerchiefs, surplice linens, 
printed linen for gowns, damask table linens, shirtings, sheetings, and 
towellings of superior quality. At Dunfermline and other places in Fife, 
Scotland, diaper, towelling, damasks, and plain fabrics of medium weight 
are largely produced. Upholstery linen is made at Kirkcaldy ; similar goods 
are manufactured at Barnsley, in Yorkshire, but Leeds is the chief seat of 
the manufacture in England. Heavy fabrics, such as sailcloth, canvas and 
sacking, are the mostly made in Forfarshire. 

The linen industry has nf^ve*- attained a firm standing in the L^nited 
States. Efforts were made to promote the growth of flax in colonial times 
and to introduce the spinning and weaving of linen goods, but the in- 
vention of the cotton gin by Eli Whitney placed in the hands of the 
American people a fibre that was cheaper, easier to manipulate, requiring 
less care in its preparation, and easier by far to spin and weave than is flax. 
Then America is the home of cotton, and there is no American pro- 
duction of the flax fibre suitable for spinning, nor do the long and tedious 
processes necessary to convert it into a salable commodity commend them- 
selves to the American farmer. The linen industry at the present time 
is not extensive in the LTnited States, still the increase in the past twenty 
years has been great, and there are certain fields of the linen industry 
which American manufacturers occupy to a great advantage ; for these 
branches, they import the flax in bale. There is a large demand for 
linen carpet-yarns; the shoe manufacturing industry of the L^nited 
States calls for an immense amount of linen thread, and in the pro- 
duction of these two articles the American manufacturers are unrivalled. 
The market ia towrls and towelling is practically unlimited, and Ameri- 
can manufacturers are engaging largely in the production of those 
goods. The readjustment of the tariff in 1897, rendered it possible for them 

I go 


to compete with the foreign production by reducing the duty on such yarns 
as are required in these special lines of goods to a revenue basis, and 
increasing the duty on the manufactured articles. Several large cotton 
manufacturing establishments are engaged in this industry and consume 
1,500,000 pounds of linen yarn annually. 

Besides the above there were in 1905, fifteen establishments engaged in 
the manufacture of linen goods with a combined capital of $6,293,878; 
employing on an average, 3,811 persons; value of products, $5,856,388. 



While the term hemp should properly be applied only to the bast fibre 
of the plant Cannabis sativa, it is applied indiscriminately to the fibres of 
widely differing plants ; so generally is this done, that it would often be mis- 
leading to use the word without a prefix, such as Russian hemp, sisal hemp, 
sunn hemp and scores of others that relate to entirely distinct kinds of 
fibres. Cannabis sativa is an annual herb, having angular rough stems and 
altcrnate-lobed leaves; it belongs to the same natural order as the hop, and, 
like it, has both male and female plants, a circumstance which necessitates 
two gatherings of the same crop — the male ripening and dying earlier in the 
season than the female. The height of the plant varies according to the 
season, and, though it sometimes grows about fifteen feet, it com- 
monly is about eight to ten feet high. There is but one species of true hemp 
known, the C. indica and C. Chiensis, owing their differences to climate and 
losing many of their peculiarities when grown in temperate regions. 

Hemp supposedly originated in some part of temperate Asia, spread 
westward through Europe and southward through the Indian peninsula. It 
grows wild to this day on the banks of the Ural and the Volga, extends to 
Persia, the Altai range and Northern and Western China. It is also found 
in Kashmir and on the Himalayas, growing vigorously at an altitude of 
6,000 or even 10,000 feet. 

Hemp has been employed for its fibre from remote antiquity. It is men- 
tioned by Herodotus as growing both wild and cultivated in Scythia, and he 
describes the hempen garments of the Thracians as equal to linen in fine- 
ness; Hesychius tells us that the Thracian women wove sheets of hemp; 
and Moschion, who wrote about 200 B. C, records the use of hempen ropes 
for rigging the ship "Syracusia," built for Micro II. It is of equal antiquity 
in India, having been cultivated there for its fibre as well as for use as a 
drug, while the medicinal and intoxicating properties of the plant have 
probably been known in Oriental countries from the very earliest times. 
An ancient Chinese herbal, part of which is dated 500 B. C, while the rest 
is of a still earlier date, notices the seed and flower-bearing kinds of hemp. 
Hemp is continually referred to as a remedy by early writers, and its use 
for medicinal and dietetic purposes spread throughout India, Persia and 
Arabia in the Middle Ages. In some countries, notably Persia, Northern 
India, Arabia, many parts of Africa and Brazil, the plant is still mainly 
grown for its gum. In addition to the fibre and resin, it yields an oily seed 


used as a food for singing birds, and in very slight proportion as feed for 

Hemp is grown for its fibre in the United States, Italy, Germany. Rus- 
sia, Holland, Htmgary, Turkey, England and Ireland, and to some extent 
in India, and it thrives well in Algeria, the finest being grown in Italy, 
though the Italian is almost equalled by the Russian fibre. Hemp is sub- 
jected to much the same methods of preparation as flax, being broken, 
retted, scutched and combed or hackled. (See Plate 12.) 

Hemp seed was ordered for Plymouth Colony as early as 1629. It is 
chiefly grown in the States of Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee, Ohio, Indiana 
and New York. The production of hemp in the United States reached its 
highest point in the year 1859, the amount raised being 148,986,000 pounds; 
since then it has declined 137.235,370 pounds, the decline during the last de- 
cade being 11,271,370 pounds, or forty-nine per cent. Several reasons exist 
for this declension, among which are the introduction of Manila hemp, the 
large importation of jute, the decline in prices of hard cordage fibres, such 
as sisal, and the use of cotton for twine and yarns. 

Abaca, or Manila hemp, is a structural fibre obtained from the leaf 
sheath of the plant, Musa textilis, a species of the banana family. The 
Musa is quite a large and specialized genus, some of the species compris- 
ing several varieties. The Filipinos divide it into three groups : the plants 
which produce the edible banana of commerce (Visaya sagiry) ; abaca, 
which produces the fibre we are now describing; and the wild banana (pacol), 
which has no defined economic value, though it, in common with all the 
rest of the species, produces a fibre of more or less strength. Abaca is 
indigenous only to the Philippine Islands, and there only has it been suc- 
cessfully cultivated, though it has been introduced into India, Borneo, the 
West Indies, Florida and other parts of the world, the plant itself growing 
fairly well, but the fibre being of an inferior quality. In 1873 't was in- 
troduced into the Andaman Islands with a little better success, the best 
fibre there produced being about equal to the medium from the Philippines. 
Though grown throughout the Philippine Archipelago, it thrives best in 
those provinces where there is an abundant rainfall and a high relative 
humidity of the atmosphere, requiring a uniformly moist and warm climate. 
The first authentic account of abaca in the Philippines is given by William 
Dampier, an Englishman who voyaged among the Philippines in 1686 and 
wrote a full and interesting account of those islands. He mentions "the 
fibre of the banana tree" and the women as wearing scarfs or sashes made 
from it. The fibre was first exported from the islands about the beginning 
of the eighteenth century, but the exports were unimportant until about 1850. 
In 1820 John White, a lieutenant in the American Navy, brought a sample 
of abaca to Salem, Mass., and from 182^ to 1827 the fibre began to be used 
quite extensively in Salem and Bo.'ston. 

The abaca plant grows to a height of fifteen to twenty-five feet, the 


leaves are oblong, and it hears a non-edible fruit, containing seed. Primi- 
tive methods are still in use on the abaca plantations. The trunk of the 
abaca is twelve or fifteen feet long and about a foot and a half in diameter, 
around which are a large number of thick, overlapping layers, each layer 
being the stem or petiole of a leaf. The fibre is obtained from the outer 
portions of these leaf stems. These fibrous strips being removed, are next 
drawn between the edge of a knife or balo and a hard, smooth block. The 
apparatus consists of two uprights set in the ground, to which a horizontal 
pole is affixed with rattan canes. A short, strong knife, with a wooden 
handle, is firmly attached on a pivot or fulcrum to the upper surface of the 
horizontal pole, the handle being attached by a rattan cane to a bamboo 
spring in the roof of the shed or the limb of a tree, under w^hich the opera- 
tion is performed. Another rattan cane is attached to a treadle which is 
worked by the foot of the operator. The spring in the roof above holds 
the knife upon the pole, while the fibre is being drawn beneath it. Pres- 
sure on the treadle releases this and allows a new! strip to be inserted. This 
method is extravagantly wasteful, and, though several attempts have been 
made to perfect machines for doing the work of extraction economically, 
none have as yet proved wholly successful. The introduction of suitable 
machinepi' will do much to increase the abaca industry. (See Plate 12.) 

After being stripped, the fibre is hung to dry upon bamboo poles for 
the space of two or three days, and, when dry, is tied in bundles and con- 
veyed to the nearest market, the exporter sorting it and making it up into 
bales of 275 pounds each. The fibre for the home manufacture of cloth is 
more elaborately treated. Of a glossy white color, light and strong, of 
clean, even texture and eight to twelve feet long, abaca fibre is infinitely 
superior to any other fibre in the making of cordage, particularly for ships' 
ropes, its lightness being a marked feature of its value. Tested against a 
rope of English hemp, both cords being three and one-quarter inches in cir- 
cumference and two fathoms long, the English rope broke under a strain 
of 3,885 pounds, the Manila rope stood a strain of 4,669 pounds before 
giving way In a second tc't of a rope one and three-quarter inches in cir- 
cumference, the Manila rope broke with 1,490 pounds, the English, with 
1. 184. 

A very large percentage of the production of abaca fibre is used in the 
manufacture of cordage, twine, ropes and cables. Immense amounts are 
used in the United States in the production of binder twine, Manila paper 
being manufactured from old disintegrated ropes. In the Philippines, al- 
though a large quantity is used for cordage, its most important use is for 
the weaving of cloth for wearing apparel, for which purpose looms are to 
be found in nearly every town in the islands, the fibres being frequently 
combined with either cotton or silk, the fabrics being of every degree of fine- 
ness. In Europe also, especially in I'rance, many articles of clothing are 
made from abaca, such as shirts, vests, veils, crapes, neckerchiefs, robes and 


women's hats, these goods being highly esteemed both for beauty and dura- 
bility. The fibre is also used for upholstery, packing, brush-making and 

Simn is the fibre of the Crotelaria juncea, a leguminous plant, a native 
of India. It strongly resembles Spanish broom, but is an annual. Sunn 
has long been cultivated in India for its fibre, which is cleared by retting. 
While the fibre is not so strong as that of hemp, good cables, canvas and 
cloth are made of it. Much of it is imported into Great Britain. It is called 
Bengal hemp, brown hemp, etc. 

.Sisal hemp is the fibre of the henequin plant of Yucatan, Agave rigida 
elongata. This plant has been utilized for centuries, having supposedly been 
initiated by the Toitecs in Yucatan about A. D. 1060; but it is only within 
a comparatively few years that it has become of commercial importance. 
In 1783 a commission appointed by the Royal Spanish Navy investigated 
this fibre and reported favorably upon it. In 1839 an association was formed 
in Yucatan to promote the cultivation, but the crude and imperfect methods 
of extracting the fibre at that time prevented the success of the under- 
taking. The movement led, however, to the off'er of a rew^^ard of $10,000, 
Mexican, by the state government to the inventor of a satisfactory ma- 
chine, which resulted in the invention of the "raspador," from which have 
been evolved the improved automatic machines which have made the sisal 
industry what it is to-day. 

From Yucatan, sisal hemp has been introduced into the Bahamas, where 
the industry has attained considerable importance and become firmly estab- 
lished. In 1893. 20,000 sisal plants were imported into Hawaii by the Com- 
missioner of Agriculture and Forestry, and some years later the Hawaiian 
Fibre Co. was founded, and in 1903 it was calculated that there vwre fully 
10,000 acres of sisal under cultivation in Hawaii. The plant has also been 
introduced into the Mauritius, the Caicos Islands, Cape Colony, Natal, Wesf 
Africa, .Australia and India. (See Plate 12.) 

Sisal was introduced into Florida by Dr. Henry Perrine about 1836 and 
'37, and .some was planted at Indian Key and some planted at Biscayne Bay. 
and from this the plant spread rapidly, though little was done until late 
years to promote its cultivation. 

The true sisal plant, Agave rigida sisalana, is a native of Hawaii, and 
has been introduced into the Philippine Islands with very satisfactory re- 
sults. This plant is very closely allied to the maguey of the Philippine 
Islands, which has recently been identified as Agave cantula. One acre will 
yield about 730 pounds of fibre, and its market value approximates that of 
sisal. (See Plate 12.) 

In 1880 there were 165 establishments manufacturing cordage and 
twine in the United States, with a capital of $7,140,475: in 1890 there were 
150 establishments, with a capital of $23,351,883; and in 1900 there were 
105 establishments, with a capital amounting to $29,275,470; in 1905 there 

PLATE XII~Hemp and Sisal 

1. Cutting tlie Hemp. 

2. Breaking the Same. 

3. Hackling. 

4. Stripping and Scraping. 

". Fibres of Hemp and Manila. 

(j. Sisal Field. 

7. Cutting Leaves. 

8. Trimming of Thorns. 

9. Loading Leaves on Cars. 



were 103 establishments, with a capital of $37,110,521 ; the decrease in the 
number of establishments being caused by the frequent consolidation of 
several small plants under one incorporation. 

Sisal hemp and maguey are used in the United States principally for 
binder twine, tarred lath and fodder yarns, and for other cordage purposes. 
In Yucatan and South America sisal is employed in the manufacture of 
saddlecloths, hammocks, girdles, bridles, cordage nets and lines, while in 
the Philippines a great deal of maguey is produced for local consumption. 
The maguey plant was probably introduced into the Philippine Islands from 
Mexico. It is now cultivated in nearly every province of the archipelago. 
The fibre of the plant, which is white and finer and longer than the Hawaiian 
or Yucatan varieties, is obtained from the leaves; it is four to five feet in 
length, more wavy and fluffy than abaca, and also is extraordinarily elastic, 
which renders it of great value when used for cordage liable to be sub- 
jected to a sudden strain. In strength it is superior to sunn or to Russian 
hemp, coir, or jute, but inferior to abaca. The problem now encountering the 
planter is that of machinery for extracting the fibre in an expeditious and 
economical manner, retting now being the most common method of freeing 
the fibre, few of the planters up to now being in a position either to pur- 
chase the proper machines or to use them to advantage. Practically all of 
the Philippine maguey is shipped to Manila and baled on abaca presses 

New Zealand hemp is a fibre obtained from the leaves of the Phormium 
tenax (of the order Liliacea?). It is a native of New Zealand, the Chatham 
Islands and Norfolk Islands, and has been introduced into the Azores for 
economic purposes. The fibre has always been of importance among the 
Maoris as yielding material for clothing, mats, cordage, fishing-lines, etc. 
The leaves for fibre-yielding purposes come to maturity every six months, 
and the crop is therefore gathered twice a year. The material is harvested 
with immense care by the Maoris, only the properly matured fibres being 
selected. These are collected in water, scraped over the edge of a shell to 
free them from adhering tissues, and washed often in a running stream. 
This operation is necessarily very wasteful, and various methods have been 
resorted to for the accomplishment of the same purpose by mechanical means, 
or by retting with alkaline agents, but the quality of the fibre was greatly 
impaired, and no means have as yet been discovered whereby the fibre can 
be produced in the perfect condition in which it is hand-prepared by the 
Maoris. It is a cream-colored fibre, with a fine silky gloss, and is capable 
of being woven into the heavier textures for which flax is used, either alone 
or in combination with flax. It is principally used as a cordage fibre and as 
an adulterant of Manila hemp, being second only to the latter in tensile 
strength, though it is vastly more pervious to the effects of water. It is 
used also for the bands of self-binding reaping machines. 

Jute or Jews' Mallow belongs to the genus Corchorus, eight species of 
which are recognized in India; two of these are extensively and widely 


cultivated and supply the jute of commerce. Both have been introduced 
into the United States. The first of these, Corchorus capsulares, is an annual 
plant, growing four or five feet high. The "seedpods" are short and 
globular, rough and wrinkled." Corchorus olitorius is similar to the first, 
the chief difference lying in the fact that the seedpod is long and cylindrical, 
and of the thickness of a quill. The fine silky texture of its fibre and its 
adaptability for spinning purposes, and also the ease with which it is 
cultivated, have much to do with the popularity of jute. Many of the 
American plants, now classed as weeds, produce stronger and better fibre, 
but their cultivation is as yet experimental. The fibre of jute is em- 
ployed in three forms of manufacture; it is woven into fine and coarse 
fabrics; it is made into fine twines and cordage, and it enters into the 
manufacture of paper in the forms of "jute butts." The chief seat 
of the jute-growing industry is in India, and its manufacture is a very 
important industry in that country. Jute occupies the fourth place in 
the export list of India. In 1862 India exported 10,000,000 pounds of 
fibre and rope, and 300,000,000 yards of gunny cloth, and in the same year 
Great Britain employed more than 30,000 spindles in spinning 80,000,000 
pounds of Indian jute. One factory at Barnagpoor, near Calcutta, annually 
manufactures 30,000,000 pounds of jute. In 1872 the total exportation of 
Indian jute was 700,000,000 pounds, of which Great Britain received up- 
wards of 395,000,000 pounds. In 1894-5 the exports of jute from India 
were nearly 649,000 tons. 

More than half a century ago, some Scotchmen were impressed with 
an idea of the value of jute as a wearing material; they engaged in its 
experimental manufacture at Dundee, and after many repulses and difficul- 
ties were successful in discovering admirable processes of bleaching and 
dyeing the fibre. It is now successfully mixed with cotton, linen and silk, 
and is a material part of twilled stair-carpeting and of low-priced broad- 
cloth. In combination with other textiles, it enters into the manufacture of 
a thousand articles of commerce, it imitates the gloss of linen, the lustre of 
silk, and the splendor of Axminster, Kidderminster, Brussels, and Venetian 
carpets. In 1872, there were in Dundee about one hundred jute mills, 
using more than 180,000,000 pounds of the raw material annually, and in 
1883, the annual value of the flax, hemp, and jute manufactured in Dundee 
had reached the value of $15,000,000. To the jute industry, the city of 
Dundee owes its commercial prosperity and standing. 

In the tenth U. S. census, only four establishments for the manufacture 
of jute are recorded; the number of these establishments in the twelfth 
census being eighteen, with a capital of $7,027,293 ; the annual value of 
their production being $5,383,797. In 1905, there were sixteen establish- 
ments with a capital of $11,019,132. 

The flax, hemp and jute industries are so closely allied, owing to the 
fact that the three materials are often used in the establishments coming 


under either of the single heads that it is necessary to group them for 
statistical purposes. 

The infancy of the cordage industry in the United States was marked 
by no phenomenal growth, though rope-making was undoubtedly one of 
the earlier industries of the colonies. The work in the old rope walks was 
done by hand mainly; later, came horse or water power. After 1830, came 
the evolution of the modern factory, with rapid modern machinery, as in 
kindred industries. The era of the largest mills began in 1878, the manufac- 
ture being largely confined to the different Atlantic seaports, with the 
greatest percentage in Massachusetts. The decline of American shipping 
changed this, and numerous cordage factories sprang up all over the 
country, especially after the great demand for binder twine, caused by the 
invention of the self-binding harvester. 

In 1843, the total amount of Manila hemp manufactured in the United 
States was only 27,820 bales, or 27,511,400 pounds. In 1863, the industry 
had increased to five times its size in 1843, and the War of the Rebellion 
brought a great demand for cordage, so that hemps accordingly advanced 
in price. 

In i860, the first importations of sisal hemp were made, but it rapidly 
became an important factor in the industry and its use rapidly extended in 
the following ratio: 

Years. Tons. 

i860 200 

1870 3.500 

1880 13.000 

1890 34.000 

1895 50,000 

In the cordage and twine factories, the amount of raw hemp and jute 
used in 1900 was as follows: 

Hemp. Amount. Value. 

Manila 123,241,820 $8,916,493 

Sisal 146,352,853 8,827,131 

New Zealand 6,344,371 352,528 


Rough 1,175,605 73,165 

Tow 44,090 1,969 

Line 349,558 25,063 



Rough 3,422,104 256,582 

Tow 305,917 20,969 

Line 296,920 27,752 


Rough 10,871,865 506,767 

Tow 3,011,004 104,660 

Line 1,258,266 63,965 


Butts : 25,767,800 786,967 

Yarns 74,281,100 1,107,899 

Jute 339.051 21,070 

Silk 4,774 24,414 

Yarn 1,100 3450 

Worsted 682 308 

All other materials .... 3,714,812 

Ramie is a plant belonging to the Urticacese or nettle family, which 
from time immemorial has been cultivated in China. It is known to botanists 
as Boehmeria nivea, and is also known as "China grass" and "rhea." It 
has also long been cultivated in Japan, Borneo, Sumatra, Java, and the East 
Indies, and during the last century was introduced into other countries, 
reaching the United States in 1855. 

The plant, when fully grown, is four to eight feet high. It is of 
rapid growth and produces from two to five crops a year without replanting. 
In China and Japan, where the fibre is naturally extracted by hand labor, 
it not only enters into the manufacture of cordage, fish lines, nets, etc., 
but is also woven into the most delicate and beautiful of fabrics. In 
England, France, and Germany, it has been put to the widest range of uses, 
being woven into a great variety of fabrics such as lace, lace curtains, cloth 
or white goods resembling fine linen, dress goods, napkins, table damask, 
table covers, bed spreads, drapery for curtains or lambrequins, plush, and 
even carpets. The fibre is susceptible to dyes of all shades and colors, 
and is sometimes finished with a lustre equal to silk. Its characteristics give 
it first rank in value as a textile substance ; it is the least affected by damp 
of any of the fibres, and is one of the most durable, being three times as 
strong as Russian hemp, while its filaments can be separated almost to the 
fineness of silk. It can be used with silk, wool or cotton, and in certain 
forms of manufacture where elasticity is not essential can be used as a 
substitute for all of these textiles, as well as for flax. It is utilized in the 
manufacture of celluloid with much success and produces superior paper. 

As yet, it has not been grown to any extent in any country except 
China and Japan, owing to the difficulty of decortication. It is asserted that 
the first attempt to decorticate ramie by machinery was made in India, in 



1816, a flax and hemp machine being sent out from England for that purpose. 
Little was done during the next fifty years, but about i860 the subject was 
resumed, and in France many machines have been invented, having the 
decortication of ramie as their object. The Favier machine, the Armand- 
Barbier, the Michotte, the Landtsheer machines are all undergoing experi- 
mentation, as are several American machines. Up to the present, the 
machines have been too costly and too slow in their results to encourage the 
cultivation of ramie upon a great scale. 



The story of the making of rope must needs be almost as old as the 
story of the liuman race. Prehistoric man must have had occasion to use 
cords or lines from the very earliest times, and ropemaking must have 
antedated the weaving of the first textile fabrics. Certain it is that the 
ancient civilized nations were proficient in the art. Upon Egyptian monu- 
ments are depicted various uses of that material, and specimens of Egyptian 
ropes of hemp covered v.'ith woven cotton, ropes of palm fibre, made nearly 
four thousand years ago, ropes of papyrus and ropes of plaited leathern 
thongs are in existence to-day. The Chaldeans, the Assyrians, the Israelites, 
must also have possessed a knowledge of ropemaking, without which no sail- 
ing vessels would be possible. China is known to have made rope at a very 
remote time. 

Herodotus, to whom we are so greatly indebted for our knowledge of 
the manners and custonis of ancient nations, makes numerous references to 
rope. He tells us that Xerxes, when invading Greece (480 B. C), crossed 
the Hellespont on two bridges of boats, which were held together by im- 
mense cables stretched from shore to shore, a distance of nearly a mile. 
There were six of these ropes to each bridge, and they were twenty-eight 
inches in circumference, eight of them being made of flax and four of 
papyrus. The "Syracusia," that famous galley built for Hiero, King of 
Syracuse, by Archimedes (287-212 B. C), was rigged with hempen rope 
from the island of Rhodes. 

Savage tribes, too, all over the world, but more particularly those 
living in the vicinity of waters, have for untold thousands of years pos- 
sessed the skill to make ropes and cords from an immense variety of 
materials, with more or less perfection of workmanship. As samples 
of these may be mentioned the native Peruvians, who use^l among other 
materials one called "totora." The tribes of the South Sea Islands are 
expert at making rope, for which they have abundance of native materials. 
The North American Indians manufactured ropes and cordage from such 
plants as cotton, yucca, agave, dogfanc, nettle ; from the inner bark of 
trees, such as linden, willow and elm ; from the fibrous roots of other 
trees, such as spruce and pine, and from the hair, skins and sinews of 
various animals. The Nootka Indians of Vancouver Island made rope 
for the purpose of harpooning whales from the sinews of the whale, 
bound together with small cord. 

The name rope is applied to all varieties of cordage having a cir- 


cumference of an inch or more. Twisted cordage of smaller dimensions 
is known as cords, twines and lines, all these varieties being composed of 
at least two, and in most cases of many separate yarns. From the 
smallest sizes and kinds to the largest, the whole art of manufacture is 
simply a twisting together by various means the fibres and yams proper 
for the purpose. Modern rope-making requires the use of very strong 
machinery, owing to the comparative coarseness and heaviness of the ma- 
terials used. 

The twisting of the fibres together in a rope is essential, in order 
that by mutual friction they may be held together when a strain is inflicted 
upon the whole ; the application of just the proper amount of twist is a 
matter of considerable importance. It must be sufficient to aflford resistance 
without straining or impairing the strength of the fibre. "The degree of 
twist given to ropes is generally such that the rope is from three-fourths 
to two-thirds the length of the yarn composing it, and the lighter the 
twist, the greater in proportion is the strength of the rope. In a bundle 
of fibres, equal in length and strength, fastened at the ends, each fibre 
will, upon a strain being applied to the bundle, bear its proper share of 
the stress; and the strength of the bundle will evidently be measured by 
adding together the strength of the separate fibres. But if this bundle is 
twisted so as to form a thread, the strain will no longer be equally dis- 
tributed among the fibres, for, by the torsion, the external fibres of the 
bundle will be wound round those that lie nearest to the centre, and in 
proportion to their distance from the heart of the bundle and the amount 
of the twist given, will form spirals more or less inclined from the axis 
of the thread. The external fibres will in consequence be longer than the 
internal ones, and the greatest .share of the strain will be borne by the 
latter. The depreciation in strength from twisting of hard woody fibres 
is greater than is the case with fine, soft, flexible fibres, such as common 
hemp of good quality." 

To obtain the best quality of rope it is necessary to select threads 
of the same thickness, strength, expansion and equal twist. The fibres of 
hemp being ordinarily only about three and one-half feet in length, and 
those of manila from nine to twelve feet, these fibres are necessarily 
overlapped among themselves and compressed together so as not to be 
drawn apart. This is effected by twisting, the fibres being continuously 
drawn out together from a bundle, in the right quantity to produce the 
required size of yarn; the yarns are then put together to form strands 
of the required thickness, three strands being twisted or "laid" together 
to form a "hawser-laid" rope, and three such hawsers forming a cable. 
Four strands laid around a central strand or core form a "shroud-laid" 
rope, the twist in each successive operation being in a different direction 
to that in the one preceding it, so as to preserve as largely as possible 
the parallelism of the fibres. Thus "the prepared fibre is twisted or spun to 


the right hand to form yarn ; the required number of yarns receive a 
left-hand twist to make a strand : tliree strands twisted to the right make 
a hawser, and three hawsers twisted to the left, a cable. 

Nov/ in all the large modern rope manufactories, machinery ac- 
complishes the various operations more expeditiously and perfectly than 
was possible in the old rope-walks, and since machine spinning allows 
the whole length of the fibre to be extended at full length, and the full 
strength of the material to be obtained, ropes made by machinery are 
found to be twenty-four to thirty per cent stronger than those made by 
hand, this being due to the sujierior evenness which ensures an increase 
of tensile strength and pliability. The weight and strength of rope varies 
according to the quality of the hemp of which it is composed. The size of 
rope is designated by its circumference and the length by fathoms. 

The operation of rope-making in the ancient rope-walks was as follows : 
"The hemp being first hackled or combed, the spinner fastened a bundle 
or 'strike' of hemp around his waist, with the bight or double in front 
and the ends passing each other at his back ; a number of fibres were 
attached to the hooks of a whirl ; the spinner then walked backward down 
the rope-walk, paying out the hemp from the skein with one hand, and sup- 
porting the spinning yarn with the other hand, covered with a piece of wetted 
cloth. When the end of the walk was reached, or the yarn was sufficienfly 
long, the end of the yarn was taken off the hook on the whirl and was 
wound on a reel. The next process is warping the yarns or stretching 
them to a given length in order . that they may, when formed into a 
strand, bear the strain equally. It is at this stage that the yarn is tarred 
by hauling it in skeins through a tar kettle. 

"In the next operation, which was technically termed 'laying,' two or 
more yarns were attached to hooks on a whirl, so that when turned the 
yarns were twisted the contrary way to the twist given them in the spin- 
ning. Thus were the strands made, and to make a rope three of them were 
affixed to three hooks at one end, each strand on a different hook, and all 
three strands were affixed to one hook at the other end; the single hook 
twisting one way and the three others the reverse way." 

Such was the state of the industry when in 1642 a rope-walk was set up 
in Boston, only twelve years after the town was founded, when it was in 
truth "rather a village than a town, consisting of no more than twenty 
or thirty houses." Before that nearly every kind of rigging and tackle 
for vessels had been brought from England. 

It is probable that the building of the first ship in Boston, a vessel 
of 160 tons, called the "Trial," inspired our forefathers with the idea of 
fitting the new craft with rigging made in the land of her birth; at any 
rate, at that juncture it was that one John Harrison, a ropemaker of 
Salisbury, England, was invited to come to Boston "on motion of some 
gentlemen of this town." He responded to these overtures and set up his 


rope-walk on land pertaining to his dwelling on Purchase Street, at the 
foot of Summer Street. The "walk" was ten feet, ten inches wide. 
Posts were set up, to which the ropes and cords were suspended, and in 
the open air the work was carried on. Harrison enjoyed a monopoly of this 
business up to 1663, when permission was granted John Heyman to "set 
up his posts," but with liberty only to make fishing lines ; even this license 
being revoked when it was found that it impaired Harrison's means of 
making a livelihood for the eleven persons dependent upon him. Hemp also 
was hard to be procured, which was another reason for circumscribing 
its manufacture. After Harrison's death, rope-walks increased in number, 
and for sixty years there were in the Nortli and West ends some fourteen 
of them, so that in 1793 the industry was thriving, this being partially due, 
no doubt, to the fostering bounty of the General Court. It is recorded 
that in 1794 "over fifty men were employed (in Boston) in this work 
alone;" but, in that same year, seven of the rope-walks were destroyed in 
a great fire, and the selectmen decreed that no more should be built in 
the heart of the town. The work in these ancient rope-walks was mostly 
done by hand, in some cases supplemented by horse or water power; rope- 
makers were legally apprenticed, and there was, as in all the manufactur- 
ing trades, great opposition to the introduction of even the simplest 

But it must not be thought that Boston or even Massachusetts held 
a monopoly of this primitive industry. Rope-walks there were at Nan- 
tucket, three of them; there was one at Newburyport, one at Castine, Me., 
while a large establishment was founded at Portland, Me., by Samuel 
Pearson. His two sons, Samuel, Jr., and George C., learned the business 
with their father and afterwards founded the Suffolk Cordage Company, 
which later became the Pearson Cordage Company, one of the largest 
factories in the country. This Samuel was the author of many inventions 
in rope machines and in regulators for spinning. After his death, his son, 
Charles H. Pearson, who had been identified with his father's business, 
became connected with the Boston Cordage Company, and still later with 
the Standard Cordage Company, now insolvent. In 1810 there were 173 
rope-walks in the United States, and these were scattered all over the 

In 1820 Bourne .Spooner, with Caleb Loring and others, brought about 
the incorporation of the Plymouth Cordage Company, at Plymouth, A'lass. ; 
but it was not until 1832 or 1834 that machines for rope-making were in- 
troduced into Massachusetts, and it was then called "patent cordage" to 
distinguish it from the hand-made product. At first the machines were 
run by water power, but in 1837 the first steam engine was put into the 
Plymouth Cordage Company's mills, and steam was doubtless made use 
of by other companies about the same time. In California the industry was 
established by Mr. A. L. Tubbs, who bought most of the machinery in 


one of the old Boston mills and shipped it to the Pacific Coast, and later con- 
trolled the two or three factories located there. 

But these comparatively modern firms, though springing from the 
ancient rope-walks, as time passed and the industry progressed, were 
doubtless early equipped with all that was best and latest in improved 
methods and machinery, some account of which must be noted here. 

Rope-making, as it was known to our immediate ancestors, had been 
going on for centuries with little or no change up to that period, when 
Dr. Edmund Cartwright invented his "cordelier" in 1792. 

The "Cordelier" was improved and brought to a practical condition 
by Captain Huddart in 1805, and to him is ascribed the honor of many 
devices to further aid in the manufacture of ropes and twines ; but though 
many improved machines have been produced in both America and Europe, 
the fundamental principles were embodied in Cartwright's invention. By 
1820 rope-making machinery was in practical operation in England, though 
hand rope still continues to be made. Even now, though making rope by 
hand is almost a lost art, there are two rope-walks in the United States 
where it is still practised. One of these is at the Navy Yard, Charles- 
town, Mass., which is the only rope-walk owned by the United States 
Government. The products made there are used principally for serving 
wire rope, rigging and other ropes needing protection, and are all tarred. 
The serving cords are, mainly, marline, houseline, hambroline, round line 
and two and three yarn-spun yarns. The manner and process of manu- 
facture differ in no wise from that we have described as being practised 
in the old rope-walks. At the Charlestown rope-walks three kinds of 
hemp are used, Russian, Manila and Kentucky. 

It is forty years or more since hand rope-making was at its zenith 
in the United States. One man can now do the work it formerly em- 
ployed eight men to perform ; that is, one man can attend to eight ma- 
chines, each doing the work of one man. A complete set of rope and 
twine-making machinery in a modern rope factory consists of a heckling 
or combing machine, spreading and drawing frames for line yarns, and 
carding engines and drawing frames for tow. These machines are very 
similar to those in use in flax manufacture, the heavier yarns for rope- 
making being spun upon a gill spinning frame, such as the automatic 
spinner invented by John Goode, of New York City, which embodies a 
self-feeding motion, so that when the amount of material presented to 
the machine lessens, the speed declines, and when it fails, the machine 
stops. Goode also contributed several other important and effective ma- 
chines to the rope-making industry. 

The compound rope machine of Glover & Guiltimans practically gives 
three machines in one, and constructs three-strand ropes up to three and 
one-half inches. "The yarns being wound round on the bobbins in 
suitable numbers, according to the size of the rope to be made, they are 


from each bobbin threaded through a head runner — register plate of six 
holes — and gathered at a die, at which they are enclosed into strands, there 
being a separate die for each of the three strands. The strands being 
formed, they are then threaded through a manhead receiver of three holes, 
and immediately closed at the main closing die into finished rope, the 
finished rope being drawn through the die by means of strong hauling- 
ofTdrums, and ultimately wound on a storage creel." 

In 1878, after the invention of the self-binding harvester, the large 
mills were established. Sewell, Day & Company, who had been in business 
since 1835, built one in Boston, as did the Pearson Cordage Company and 
J. Nickerson & Company; other large factories were those of Weaver, 
Fitler & Company, which later became Edwin H. Fitler & Company, of 
Philadelphia ; Plymouth Cordage Company, Plymouth, Mass. ; Hingham 
Cordage Company, of Hingham, Mass. ; New Bedford Cordage Company, 
of New Bedford, Mass. (this company dated from 1842) ; Baumgardner, 
Woodward & Company, of Philadelphia; J. T. Donnell & Company, of 
Bath, Me. ; William Wall & Sons, of New York City ; Lawrence \\'ater- 
bury & Company, Tucker, Carter & Company, Elizabethport Steam Cordage 
Company, all of New York; Thomas Jackson & Son, of Easton, Pa.; J. 
Rinekes Sons, of Easton, Pa. ; and John Bonte's Sons, of Cincinnati. 
These firms were situated mainly at the Atlantic seaports, but several 
circumstances, namely, the decline of American shipping, the invention 
of wire rope for standing rigging, and the invention of the self-binding 
reaper, with the consequent demand for binder twine, brought about a 
change in the cordage business, and factories rapidly multiplied in the West 
and other agricultural centres of the United States, Akron, Peoria, Manis- 
burg and Xenia taking a very important part in the business. There are 
now cordage manufactories all over the country, Massachusetts and New 
York leading the States in amount of capital employed in this industry. 

The various materials from which rope is made stand in the order 
of their importance as follows: Hemp, which is the product of a plant 
known botanically as canabis sativa. It is an annual native to Asia and 
cultivated in Europe from the earliest historic times as a coarse fibre, fit 
only to make ropes and twine, but for its finer uses was not known in 
Europe until comparatively recent times. History cites as a curiosity 
two chemises made of hemp which belonged to Catherine de Medicis. 
The fibres of hemp, tough, durable and elastic, are admirably suited for 
making cordage and canvas for shipping, and large amounts of it are 
so employed. It is cultivated for this purpose in almost all the countries 
of Europe, Poland and European Russia being the chief exporting coun- 
tries ; French, English and Irish hemp are much esteemed in the marke*:. 
but the quantity grown in those countries is inconsiderable. Italian hemp 
is better known, of which there is a very fine quality known in commerce 
as "Italian Garden Hemp," the fibre of which is eight or nine feet long. 


In Great Britain, the supply of hemp for the great amount of cordage 
there manufactured was largely obtained from Russia until the time of tTie 
Russian War, when the consequent scarcity and the great increase in the 
price of Russian hemp caused the manufacturers to turn their attention 
elsewhere, which resulted in the substitution of better and cheaper fibres 
for the purpose. 

Sunn hemp is the product of a leguminous plant native to India, the 
crotalaria juncea, and is not true hemp (cannabis sativa). Its fibre, of 
which millions of pounds are shipped annually, is the "brown hemp" of 
commerce, and is known as Madras or Bombay hemp, according to the port 
from whence it is shipped. The Bombay hemp is unskilfully prepared and 
is much inferior in wearing properties to that of Madras or Bengal, and 
it is therefore in less demand for shipping purposes. 

American or Kentucky hemp is a true bast fibre, the product of a 
species of the cannabis sativa. Kentucky hemp is coarser and darker than 
Russian or European hemp, and is used chiefly for making various tarred 
goods such as ratline, marline, houseline, etc. The plants are cut and 
spread out to dry and carefully stacked. Later on the stacks are opened 
and the hemp is retted or rotted by the action of the dew and the sun. 
This rots the gum which causes the filaments to adhere, and causes the 
dry, woody part of the stem to fall away during the process of breaking 
which follows. The fibre is then hackled to clean it from fragments ol 
wood, broken fibre and dirt, and is pressed into bales. Hemp was formerl)' 
a very important product in Kentucky, but of late years the industry has 
declined. Manila, confusingly termed "hemp,'' is the fibre of the musa 
textilis, or wild plantain, which has long been used in South America by the 
Indians and natives for the manufacture of rope and cloth. The celebrated 
circumnavigator, Dampier, thus records the process of its preparation in the 
Indian Archipelago over a century and a half ago: "They take the body of 
the tree, clean it of its outward^ bark and leaves, cut it into four quarters, 
which, put into the sun, the moisture exhales ; they then take hold of the 
threads at the ends and draw them out; they are as big as brown thread; 
of this they make cloth." 

In the Philippines, both the plantain and the prepared fibres are called 
by the name given to them by the Spanish, "Abaca." The plants are prop- 
agated from shoots and matured in two or three years, when they are 
tree-like in shape, and fifteen to twenty feet high, the stalk or body of the 
plant being composed of the separate leaf stems or "folds" growing in over- 
lapping layers. The fibre is obtained from the bark of these folds, that of 
the innermost stems being superior in quality and color to that of th? 
outer ones. 

The fibrous strips are then freed from the pulp by means of a knife 
hinged over a block of wood. Should a smooth-edged knife be used, with 
a due amount of pressure, a smooth, strong fibre is obtained ; this operation, 


however, requires more tenacity of purpose and application than ordinarily 
pertains to the native workman, who too often uses a rough-edged knife 
and handles his material slackly, the result being a large amount of inferior 
fibre, which causes much trouble to the manufacturer of rope. The fibre, 
after being scraped, is hung up to dry-, when it is tied up in bundles or 
hanks and carted to market. In the exporter's warehouse, it is sorted and 
graded into bales weighing 275 pounds, and thus it eventually reaches the 
cordage factory. 

There is great differentiation in the quality of Manila, owing to the 
fact that there are more than a dozen difi"erent varieties of the musa 
textilis, and, as we have seen, the material is often injured by lack of care 
in its preparation. Manila having steadily increased in price of late 
years, much adulteration with other fibres and with inferior Manila has 
been practised in order to cheapen the production of rope. However, 
good Manila rope is greatly superior in strength to that manufactured 
from Russian hemp; the best comes from latitudes south of Manila and 
from several islands as far as the tenth degree. The plan now adopted 
in manufacturing rope from Manila hemp may be briefly described: "The 
first floor of the factory is occupied with the dressing machines, three of 
which are cylinders of wood covered with points of iron, two inches in 
length, distant from each other about one and one-half inch. These first 
open the fibre, which then passes to another machine, under a cylinder 
of much larger diameter, of which the points (cards) are smaller and 
placed together. By this the fibre is separated into a finer thread, and 
divested of the woody or refuse particles. 

"After this preparation, the hemp passes between two iron cylinders, 
wjiich compress it very strongly. From thence it is conducted to a smaller 
machine, which gives the first twist, and winds it on a bobbin of about 
six inches in diameter. The dimensions of the cord are increased or 
diminished by means of an iron screw, which adjusts the diameter to the 
hole through which the fibres pass to the required size. 

"The demand for Manila rope is ever on the increase, and immense 
quantities of Manila hemp are constantly shipped from Manila to Europ)e 
and America. The cultivation of the plantain from which it is obtained 
has been largely increased of late y^ars in the Philippines and also in the 
northern part of Celebes and in the Island of Leyti. The greater part 
of the Manila grown in the Philippine Islands is used by the United States, 
though a considerable portion goes to Great Britain." 

Next in importance to Manila is the sisal hemp of commerce, the fibre 
of the Agava rigida, variety sisilana and variety longi folia. The common 
names applied to sisal hemp are henequen or jenequen, sosquil, cabulla or 
cabuya, the latter being the Central American names. The agave is a cactus- 
like plant and is cultivated, to a very considerable extent, in Mexico, par- 
ticularly in Yucatan, the sacci or white agave being the kind principally 


grown in that locality where the development of the henequen industry 
has given rise to great prosperity and progress and has brought about the 
construction of several railways, notably that which runs from Murida to 
the port of Progress. This was the first line, but it soon proved inadequate 
to the demands made upon it in the freightage of the henequen prepared 
for export, and a second line was built, and these two lines are reported to 
be, for their mileage and capacity, the most profitable freight railways in 
the world. When the hemp is taken off the cars at Progress, which has be- 
come quite an important seaport, it is shipped on to steamers of the Ward 
line, which, twice a week, leave there laden with henequen or sisal for Cuba 
and New York, almost the total exportation of sisal being through Progress. 

Agave sisilana has been introduced into Jamaica, where it can be suc- 
cessfully grown. By the native Mexicans the fibre of this plant has been 
used for many centuries for the purposes of manufacturing cordage, mats 
and cloth ; but the demand for binder twine and the employment of Ameri- 
can capital has made the cultivation and preparation of sisal a very important 
industry. Labor-saving machinery in place of hand labor and the rude primi- 
tive methods of the natives have brought the business up to date, and many 
sisal cultivators have made large fortunes within the present generation. 

In propagating the fibre-yielding agaves, the suckers are set out in rows, 
the weeds being cleared out from the field and the plants tended once or 
twice a year. In the fifth year some of the leaves ripen and are ready to 
cut ; then the natives go through the fields and cull these leaves, which are 
the outer ones, free them from their thorny edges and tie them up into 
bundles of fifty, and by means of trains, drawn on portable tracks by oxen, 
convey them to the cleaning mill. The plant continues to afford a supply 
of leaves for a period of from ten to twenty years, when the plant flowers 
and dies. (See Plate 12.) 

The length of the fibre is only about two to four feet ; in color it 
is a yellowish white with sometimes a slight tinge of green. It is harsher 
and less flexible than Manila and apt to show "splints" in the rope. 

In former times the fibre was extracted by the simple and primitive 
maimer of beating the leaf on a block with a club or mallet, and afterwards 
scraping it on a bench or a smooth log or pole with one end on the ground 
and the other breast high. They employed a narrow piece of board with 
a triangular notch in the end, which was brought to an edge, and held nearly 
perpendicular when used. The leaf was laid on the pole, held with one 
hand and scraped with the other. In order to get rid of the gum more 
readily, the beaten leaves were generally soaked either in water or in mud 
till they fermented ; but from the nature of the gum, even a barely appre- 
ciable amount of fermentation stained and weakened the fibres, though the 
steeping materially facilitated the cleansing of them ; indeed, the diflference 
between the two methods then in vogue, that of allowing the leaves to 
ferment and that of at once beating and scraping the fibre from the leaves 


when fresh, was such as to render the fibre obtained in the latter way foui' 
times more valuable than the fibre treated by fermentation. The opera- 
tion is now efi^ected by machinery. The sisal is carried from the fields 
to the cleaner-house, where the pulp is cleaned from the fibre, the bundles 
of leaves being taken up on an elevator and passed along a carrier, which 
feeds them into the machine where they are held in place by a grip- 
chain, while wheels formed for that purpose scrape the fibre from them ; 
as it passes out of the machine it is hung up to dry in the sun, and, this 
being thoroughly accomplished, the fibre is taken to the press and made 
into bales weighing about 350 pounds each. It is chiefly used in the 
United States for binder twine, lath twine and tying cords for all kinds 
of purposes, such as bundling laths, shingles, lumber, kindling wood, leather 
hides, cooperage stock, nursery stock-tying, grain sacks, and bales of tex- 
tile goods, and for further almost innumerable purposes. It is occasionally 
used for the purpose of admixture with hemp for the manufacture of 
second-rate Manila rope when its presence can almost always be detected 
by the appearance of rough fragments or splints ; nor is the rope thus 
adulterated by any means as strong as that made from pure manila. When 
the fibres or filaments are obtained from the outer leaves of the plant 
they are very strong and coarse and well adapted for cables, cordage, ropes, 
canvas, sacking, the warps of carpets and for every description of this 
class of manufactt:res where strength is the main desideratum ; it is also 
more durable than hemp, and ropes made from it are lighter and more 
pliable than hempen rope and do not require tarring, an operation which 
greatly weakens hempen rope. It also bears the alternations of dryness 
and moisture with little injury; the diflference in hygrometric is considerably 
in favor of the agave ropes. "Cables made from this material," says P. L. 
Simmonds, F. R. C. I., a British authority on the subject, "are acknowledged 
by the Admiralty Board to be much superior to those made from hemp." 

All the species of agave yield a white but somewhat brittle fibre 
possessing useful qualities. Ropes are made in the Canary Islands from 
agave fibre. That of agave A.mericanus is mentioned by Humboldt, the 
great traveller, who tells of its strength by describing a bridge where 
the distance of 838 feet was spanned by ropes made of the fibre of this 
plant, which actually formed the groundwork of the roadway of the bridge. 

Pita is the fibre of the Brometia silvestris, which abounds wild in the 
state of Oaxaca. It somewhat resembles ramie, which we will describe 
later; it is, when made into rope, one-sixth lighter than that made from 
hemp, and is therefore greatly esteemed for the rigging of vessels, since 
it causes a sensible reduction in the top weight, and effects a saving in the 
first cost. It has a second merit — that of contracting less than hemp. 
From comparative trials made at the French dockyard, at Toulon, we again 
quote Mr. Simonds: "On ropes made from this fibre and from hemp, 


the following results were obtained, both being immersed in the sea for 
six months and exposed to the atmosphere for the same time:" 

Pita. Weight Hemp. Weight 

supported, lbs. supported, lbs. 

Plunged in sea 3,-^10 Plunged in sea 2,538 

Exposed to air 3,724 Exposed to air 3,022 

Plunged in sea. i,935 Plunged in sea 617 

9,479 6,167 

Alonsieur Chevremont, a noted Belgian engineer, who had closely 
studied the subject, thus wrote: "Ropes made from the pita possess a 
greater average strength by four times than those made from hemp of the 
same diameter and manufactured by the same process. By the operation 
of tarring, ropes of hemp lose nearly a quarter of their strength, while 
rope'^ made from the pita, from their nature are exempt from this operation 
(their natural gum acting in lieu of tar) and their smooth surface protects 
them from wear by friction ; they are employed with the greatest success 
to communicate rotative motion by means of pulleys, and last, for this 
purpose, ten times longer than hempen ropes of the same diameter. They 
have much less rigidity or stifrness, and it is well known that this stififness 
in ropes employed for machinery offers a resistance which must be over- 
come, and therefore acts disadva'ntageously as a loss of power." 

Compared with ropes of hemp, the specific gravity of pita is as nine 
to fifteen. It is therefore easily seen that the ropes must also be lighter 
than hempen ropes, which makes pita rope particularly desirable for use 
in collieries and for other mining purposes. 

Up to the present time there is no machine in e.xistence adapted to the 
preparation of this fibre, and the Mexican Indians obtain it by the most 
primitive methods. Pita begins to produce the second year after its 
planting. The leaves are longer than those of sisal, and as the yield is two 
pounds of fibre from twenty leaves, each six feet long, and there are two 
or three cuttings a year, each plant produces a large quantity per annum. 

Aloe fibre is largely cultivated in Russia, whence it is exported to 
France principally, where it is used for making hats, cordage, paper mat- 
tings, etc. The process of manufacture is simple and inexpensive, the 
machinery being solely an engine of four horse-power, which revolves a 
pair of cylinders on a system of stampers or beaters, while near at hand 
are the metal or stone receptacles, which are used for soaking or washing. 
The leaves which are cut green are passed through the machine and crushed 
without destruction of the fibre; they are then left to soak for six or eight 
hours; at the end of that time the leaves are disintegrated. Thirty leaves 


of aloe, six feet long each, yield on an average two pounds of fibre. This 
is packed at St. Denis in hanks and pressed in sacks. 

Mexican grass or ixtle or istle is the fibre of the maguey manso and 
maguey mexic, and is largely in demand as a substitute for bristles in 
cheap nail and other brushes; it is also used by Americans and Germans in 
the making of cordage and bagging. It also comes into requisition as an 
adulterant of sisal. It is extensively used in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec 
and the higher lands of Mexico. 

Ramie, the fibre of Bcehmeria, a genus of the natural order Urtica 
or nettle family. The Urtica nivea is the species most used ; it is a shrubby 
plant similar to the common nettle, the bast, or inner layer of the bark, 
containing the fibre. It grows naturally and is cultivated in China under 
the name of Schon Ma, and has been used extensively in that country 
for many centuries for the manufacture of ropes, twine, nets, sewing 
thread and cloths. It also grows naturally and is cultivated in Sumatra, 
Java, Siam, Burmah, Assam, the Sunda Islands, Lahore and other parts 
of the East Indies ; it was formerly wholly exported from China under the 
name of Rheaa grass, but it is now. grown in Algeria, Egypt, Cape Colony, 
and in Louisiana, U. S., where it is known by the name given it by the 
Malays — ramie ; also in Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, Brazil, the Sand- 
wich Islands, the West Indies and in the Transcaucasia, but cannot be 
successfully grown in Europe since it requires a warmer climate. 

The strength of this fibre is quite extraordinary, being about double 
that of hemp, which brings it into prominence as a desirable material for 
the manufacture of ropes, cables, twines and thread for which in China 
it has long been the common material. A few years ago the war department 
of France introduced this fibre for the manufacture of cables for war 
balloons and for the making of gunpowder sacks. 

Jute is the fibre of the Corchorus capsularis and C. olitorius ; it is 
largely cultivated in Bombay and is used in the cordage industry, but 
chiefly for bagging and baling. Another Indian fibre, the moorgha or 
marool (Sanseveira zeylanica), is remarkable for its pure white color; 
a line four feet long made of this fibre bore a weight of 120 pounds, when 
a cord, the same size, of Russian hemp broke at 105 pounds. The former, 
after 116 days' maceration, bore a weight of thirty pounds, when the hempen 
rope was completely rotten. Large quantities of the fibrous bark of the 
lime tree are used in Russia for cordage and mat-making purposes, there 
being very extensive forests of the tree in that country. 

Most of the tropical countries abound with valuable textile plants, 
some of which are at present looked upon as troublesome wteeds. Some of 
these are ligneous plants and will produce annually -two crops of shoots 
and require no machinery in the preparation of the fibre for the market. 

Many plants of the Hisbiscus family yield useful fibre ; the natives 
of Australia manufacture durable twine for their nets, etc., from two 


species of this plant. H, hetorophylliis is one of the straight-growing 
shrubs, with strong, fibrous bark, that bear the name of "cordage trees" 
in Tasmania. The inhabitants of Tahiti manufacture clothes, ropes and 
matting from the bark of H. lilaceous. Mahobark Hisbiscus elatus fur- 
nishes a very strong but coarse fibre, largely used by the natives of Demerara. 

In India also many of the malvaceous plants are largely cultivated 
for their fibres, which are highly esteemed for manufacturing purposes. 
Hisbiscus cannabis, which abounds in Coromandel, yields quantities of 
strong and tolerably soft fibres which are used as a substitute for hemp. 
in the Northwest provinces of India it is generally cultivated for cordage. 

Several species of the grass tribe (saccharum) are employed in India 
for making ropes used on the rivers Ganges and Indus. Dr. Forbes 
Watson makes favorable mention of an Indian grass called "mouvy" 
(Saccharun munja) which grows abundantly in the province of Scinde, 
where it is used for making ropes for the native boats on the river Indus. 
The fibre of this plant is strong and good and is exported to England 
from Kurachee. 

Eriophorum cannabinum, a cotton grass growing abundantly in all 
the ravines of the Himalayas, is plaited into the ropes of which the jhoolas 
or rope bridges over the large rivers in India are almost universally made. 

By the North American Indians, twine bags, fishing nets and twines 
are made from the stalks of Apocynum cannabinum and hypericifolium, 
which afiford an excellent substitute for hemp. 

The roots of Butea frondosa and superba are made into strong ropes 
in India, while Sagueras rumphii affords fibre admirably adapted for cables 
and long cordage. In Western Africa the natives make excellent line and 
rope from the leaves of the wine and oil palm (Elais guinsensis). It fur- 
nishing the whole of their fishing nets and lines. In Cape Colony rope 
grass (the various species of Restio) are frequently used for making 

Phormium tenax, or New Zealand flax, is of a different order to com- 
mon flax, which is an exogen, whilst phormium is the product of a lilaceous 
plant, and an endogen. There are several varieties which have long been 
used by the natives of New Zealand for making rope and mats. It 
grows abundantly as a weed in many parts of the colony. It is used as 
a substitute for Manila hemp, largely in the manufacture of cordage, and 
great attention is paid to its cultivation in all parts of the colony, where 
for many years immense quantities have been made into rope, and since 
1864 the exportations have been very large and constantly augmenting. It 
has been introduced into various parts of Australia and has been success- 
fully grown in Ireland, the west coast of Scotland and the Channel 
Islands. The rope made from phormium when untarred will last thirty- 
four per cent longer than manila, but chafes more freely and is more 
susceptible to change of weather. Among the fibrous substances used 


in the East we mention incidentally split rattan cane (calamus), which is 
used for cables, which are extremely strong and durable, and have the 
additional quality of being so light as to swim like cork upon the sea. 
The plait cordage of the gomuti or ejoo fibre furnishes the entire equipment 
of the native shipping, and the large European ships in the East use 
cables made of it, which are noticeable for their tenacity and durability. 

Coir is one of the most approved materials for cables, owing to its 
strength, elasticity and lightness. Salt water affects it very slightly. 
Before the introduction of chain cables, most of the vessels navigating 
Indian seas were furnished with cables made of this material, which is made 
from the fibrous outer covering of the cocoanut. Coir and coir rope are 
shipped from India to the extent of over 10,000,000 pounds annually. 
Ceylon is the principal place of its preparation, but from Cochin comes 
the best quality of yarn, and many thousand hundredweight are annually 
shipped from there. 

Among modern nations cotton was first employed for making rope 
in the United States, though it must have long been used in India for 
cordage purposes. In this country it is made into rope for rigging, tow 
lines, cords, twines, fishing nets, lines, etc. The cotton chiefly used is 
long staple Macon-Georgia, and it is made on special machines. Cotton 
has many advantageous properties when considered in the light of a 
cordage material, being capable of a tighter twist and less susceptible to 
friction than is hempen rope, also it is more pliable and runs more freely 
through the blocks, the fibres being laid together more compactly and 
with greater tension. 

Esparto cordage is made in Spain and largely exported to France, 
Italy, Holland, Portugal, the United States and England, and the Spanish 
marine and mining industries use an immense amount of cordage made 
with esparto, which costs about fifty to sixty dollars a ton. 

Hide ropes are still made to some extent, the operation being pretty 
much the same as that shown on Egyptian tablets dating back many 
thousands of years, the strips cut from the hide being plaited together, 
according to the size of the rope required. The rope is then submitted 
to the action of a solution which has the effect of rendering the animal 
substance soft and pliable and at the same time preserving it. These ropes 
form a good substitute for a chain, and are used for hoisting purposes in 
warehouses and mines. Sailors prefer hide for tiller ropes because it does 
not rattle and is not apt to break so suddenly as a chain. It is also 
preferable to hemp or Manila rope because it is unaffected by humidity 
or extreme dryness ; it is also less cumbersome and lighter, its tenacity 
being tenfold greater. 

At a time when, owing to complications with Russia and a failure 
of the hemp crop, the British admiralty was paying four hundred dollars 
a ton for hemp, Mr. G. W. Binks, a foreman ropemaker in the Woolwich 


Dockyard, invented wire ropes and cordage. Mr. Binks, who had been 
in the employ of the government for thirty years, under its direction made 
innumerable experiments with various cordage ; nothing, however, seemed 
to possess the many excellent qualities of hemp. In his leisure moments 
at home he conceived the idea of twisting together fine wires to form a 
rope, of which he made a specimen and submitted it to the admiralty 
officials, who gave it no approval. Step by step against many adverse cir- 
cumstances, the undaunted inventor worked his way to success, and iron 
wire ropes, first conceived and used for the standing rigging of ships, are 
now put to innumerable uses — ships' standing and running rigging; sub- 
marine telegraph cables, suspension bridges, guide incline, and flat ropes 
for mining purposes, special forms of rope for engineering, pneumatic 
telegraphs, traction ropes for tramways, steel plough ropes, coulippe ropes 
for transport of sugar canes, etc., tent stay ropes, ropes for hoisting 
purposes, tow ropes, endless driving bands, bullock traces, telegraph run- 
ning and stray strand, fencing strand, scaffold ropes, clock lines, clothes 
lines, sash lines, lightning conductors, gilt and silvered cords for hanging 
pictures, and many other applications might be enumerated. These ropes 
are made with hempen cores or without, and a scientist writing of them 
says : "Many considerable steps in modern progress, such as submarine 
cables, suspension bridges, etc., could not have been effected without the 
aid of this principle." The methods and machines used in manufacturing 
this rope are largely similar to those employed in twisting fibres into 
rope. This invention resulted in a decrease in the cordage industry when 
it was adopted for the standing rigging of ships, a decrease which happily 
was more than oflFset by a new demand for binder twine for use in self- 
binding reapers, invented about that time. 

We now come to the statistics of the cordage and twine industries 
of the United States, and we find that in 1880 there were 165 establishments, 
with an aggregate capitalization of i?7, 140,475, with products valued at 
$12,494,171 ; in 1890 the number of establishments had decreased to 150, 
with a capitalization of $23,351,883; value of products, $33,312,559. In 
1900 there was a further decrease of the number of establishments, due no 
doubt, as was the decrease during the previous decade, to the merging of 
several concerns into large corporations; thus in 1900 there were 105 
establishments manufacturing cordage, with an aggregate capital of 
$29,275,470; the product of the manufacture as a whole amounting to 
$37,849,651. During the period from 1900 to 1905, the progress of the 
industry was greater than at any previous time in its history. Capital in- 
creased in round numbers 27 per cent; number of wage-earners, 11 per 
cent ; wages paid, 30 per cent ; cost of materials, 35 per cent, and value of 
products, 35 per cent; so that in 1905 there were 102 establishments with 
an aggregate capital of $48,017,139. 

In 1900 the product of binder twine was 165,609,429 pounds; the 



product of rope 137,516,204 pounds. While in 1905 the binder twine 
manufactured amounted to 191,796,047 pounds and the rope to 200,824,- 
974 pounds. 

It is interesting to note that, in 1824, the Senate of the United States 
passed a resolution inquiring as to the quantity of cordage manufactured 
from hemp of domestic growth that had been used in the American Navy 
since the War of 1812, and elicited the information that only 182 tons 
of Kentucky yarns, and cordage manufactured from Kentucky hempen 
yarns, were contracted for and delivered in 1813 and 1814; namely, "one 
hundred tons of cordage contracted for by Matthew L. Davis to be manu- 
factured from Kentucky hempen yarns and delivered in New York in 1813; 
fifty tons of Kentucky yarns contracted for by Richard Pindell and H. 
Clay, delivered at Baltimore in 1814; thirty-one tons, seventeen hundred- 
weight, twenty-seven pounds of Kentucky yarns contracted for and de- 
livered at New Orleans in 1813 by W. Garret." 

It was found that the discrimination against American hemp was due 
to the practice of dew-rotting the hemp instead of water-rotting. 




A history of the development and manufacture of textile machinery in 
this country would require several volumes to do it full justice. Any 
brief sketch must properly be limited to the earlier and later history, since 
those whose plants have not continued active usually had but little effect on 
the general evolution of the industry. The earlier manufacture of textiles 
in this country was carried on with hand cards, spinning-wheels, jennies 
and hand looms, the earlier ideas all being imported from England. Richard 
Anthony (of Rhode Island) and Daniel Jackson appear to be the first 
textile machinery manufacturers on record, as they made a spinning 
jenny in 1787 containing thirty-two spindles, Moses Brown, an efficient 
financier, of Providence, R. I., becoming interested in an attempt to run 
the same by water power. Early attempts were made to introduce models 
of important inventions from abroad, but the English laws were very 
strict, it being their intent to prevent other countries from profiting by dis- 
closure of their new processes. Tench Coxe, who held government posi- 
tions under Washington and Jefferson, attempted to get a full set of models 
of the Arkwright inventions. They were seized before shipment. Coxe 
then offered a reward in Philadelphia papers for the introduction of the 
improved machines, and it was through a notice of this advertisement in 
an English journal that Samuel Slater was prompted to immigrate. The 
Hon. Hugh Orr, of Bridgewater, Mass., had meanwhile induced Alexander 
and Robert Barr, of Scotland, to come to this country and reproduce 
the English inventions, the Massachusetts legislature in 1786 granting the 
sum of two hundred pounds to assist them in completing the machinery ; but 
their efforts were futile. 

The first cotton factory of record in this country was started in 
Beverly, Mass., in the fall of 1787. Moses Brown was also interested 
in this project. Samuel Slater, financially assisted by the firm of Almy 
& Brown, began the manufacture of the approved English machinery in 
1789, and laid the real foundation for the cotton spinning industry of 
the United States. The word "spinning" is used advisedly, for it was not 
until Francis C. Lowell developed a successful copy of the English power 
loom that the weaving industry of this country was fairly started. In 
1816 it was said that there was hardly a cotton spindle running in the 


United States, since overproduction of the spinning macliinery had glutted 
the market, the hand looms being unable to take care of the product. 

The W'hitney cotton-gin was the first important textile invention 
credited to an American. Eli Whitney's patent was taken out in 1794; 
but there is some dispute as to whether the machine shown in patent of 
Hodgen Holmes in 1796 does not better disclose devices which have been 
successfully developed for commercial practice. It is interesting to note 
that other Southerners were active in machinery lines, the cotton mill of 
Michael Schenck, built at Lincoln, N. C, in 1813, being completely equipped 
with machinery all made at Lincolnton. It is shown by records that this 
shop made picking, carding, roving and spinning machinery. In 1813 
Francis C. Lowell, who had examined power looms in England, started, 
with Patrick T. Jackson, to develop a practical weaving loom. They were 
assisted by Paul Moody, a most efficient mechanic, who later made im- 
portant modifications in other textile machinery. The English double 
speeder was introduced in this country through the efforts of William 
Mowry, who secured access to an English mill, accompanied by a clever 
mechanic named Wilde. English displeasure was manifested by an in- 
fernal machine shipped to this country, addressed to "the person who first 
introduced the double speeder in America." The package slipped from a 
crane on the wharf, exploding without injury to anyone. 

The American citizens who started this great industry in this country 
were undoubtedly urged by patriotic motives ; yet the ethics of their 
associates are somewhat open to question. There is no doubt but that 
we, as a nation, profited against their will from the inventions of men 
who wished to keep their ideas for use by their own countrymen, and had 
there been sufficient and proper patent protection in both countries, they 
could undoubtedly have done so. Those of us who realize the helplessness 
of inventors or introducers when unassisted by capital, can safely credit 
Moses Brown with being the true father of cotton manufacture in this 
country, and make no great mistake in giving second place to Francis C. 
Lowell. The cotton industry depended on the preliminary development of 
the manufacture of the machinery in which they were vital factors. It 
is interesting to note that the descendants of both Brown and Lowell are 
still largely interested in many branches of the textile industry. 

There is little of record regarding the machine shops in which the 
earlier cotton machinery was made, because the machinery was usually 
constructed by the corporations owning the cotton mills, either in the 
basements of the mills or in buildings adjoining. In 1816 a Scotch me- 
chanic, William Gilmour, brought to this country patterns of the most 
recent loom construction. These patterns had been shipped here by way 
of France in small fractional pieces, as small metal ware, requiring much 
of patience and perseverance to rearrange the parts in proper sequence. 
Looms were constructed under Gilmour's supervision and operated at 


Lymansville in 1817. The manufacture was continued by David \Vilkinson, 
who had also forged the iron work and turned the spindles and rolls 
for Slater's first machines. The firm of Pitcher & Guy continued the 
manufacture of Gilmour's looms, together with cards, mules and other 
machinery. It is interesting to note that many of these earlier manu- 
facturers were ancestors of those now most prominent in the textile 
machinery line. Joseph Brown and Otis Pettee took out a patent on a 
speeder in 1813. Ira Draper patented his first temple in 1816. Thomas J. 
Hill was associated with Samuel Slater himself in establishing the Providence 
Machine Company, still active in the trade. The Jenks family, of Paw- 
tucket, have been associated with the manufacture of cotton machinery 
since its earliest introduction, Stephen Jenks manufacturing muskets in 
1775 and forging mule spindles in the same shop as soon as they were 
in demand. Paul Whitin purchased an interest in a shop on the Mumford 
River in 1794, though the actual production of cotton machinery did not 
begin there till about 1830. William Mason built power looms as early 
as 1829. In 1833 li^ brought out his spinning frame, and in 1842 
his self-acting mule. The present plant of the IMason Machine Works was 
started in 1845. The Franklin Foundry Company were building mules as 
early as 1853. William Crompton invented a pattern surface fancy 
loom in 1837. The business was continued by M. A. Furbush and George 
Crompton, who later divided the business, Furbush moving to Philadelphia. 
The Crompton Loom \\'orks later became consolidated with the Knowles 
Loom Works, which also has taken in the Stafford Loom Works, the 
Gilbert Loom Company, and, more recently, the Crompton-Thayer Com- 
pany, thus controlling the greater proportion of the manufacture of fancy 
woolen and worsted looms, carpet looms, etc., and also competing strongly 
in the plain cotton loom field. The Saco Water Power Company, of Bidde- 
ford, Me., now consolidated with the Saco & Pettee Machine Shops, was 
organized in 1841. The Pettee Machine Works were founded by Otis 
Pettee, and that company has built cotton machinery at Newton Lower 
Falls since 1823. The Pettee Machine Works was organized in i88o. 
The Amoskeag Machine Shop, of Manchester, built cards as early as 
1841. The Lowell IMachine Shop was building cards in 1845. The Draper 
industries, though starting with Ira Draper's inventions, were not definitely 
located till after the formation of the Hopedale Community in 1842. The 
Draper Company in 1897 combined the well-known firm of George Draper 
& Sons with the Hopedale Machine Company, the Dulcher Temple Com- 
pany and the Hopedale Machine Screw Company, also taking over the 
American rights of the Northrop Loom Company and the agency for the 
Sawyer Spindle Company. William C. Davol, of Fall River, arranged to 
duplicate the Roberts mule in this country and introduced such machinery 
as early as 1847. Mr. Davol also invented improvements himself in cards, 
spindles and drawing frames. The Kitson Machine Company originated 


with Richard Kitson at Lowell in 1849. The Howard & Bullough, Ameri- 
can Machine Company, started with the formation of an American Com- 
pany by English interests in 1894 to reproduce certain lines of English 

In the woolen and worsted line we have such old-established concerns 
as the Davis & Furber Company, of North Andover, and George S. 
Harwood & Sons. The Lowell Machine Shop has in recent years taken 
up the manufacture of a full line of worsted machinery. The Smith and 
Furbush Machine Company, of Philadelphia, make a very full line of 
woolen machinery. 

In many lines manufacture has been practically consolidated, so that 
one concern produces by far the greater proportion of the product. Thus the 
bobbin industry is now largely controlled by the United States Bobbin & 
Shuttle Co. ; the Emmons Loom Harness Co. controls the largest trade in 
harnesses ; the National Ring Traveller Co. the ring-traveller business, 
and card clothing is largely controlled by the American Card Clothing Co. 
Dyeing, bleaching and finishing machinery are in a field by themselves, being 
supplied by such concerns as H. W. Butterworth & Sons Co., of Phila- 
delphia; Phenix Iron Works Corporation, of Hartford; Philadelphia Tex- 
tile Machinery Co., etc. There are also many concerns who stick to 
their own patent specialties, such as the Barber & Colman Co., of Rockford, 
111., introducing their most ingenious warp tying-in machine ; the American 
Warp Drawing-in Co., operating on an entirely dififerent principle ; the 
Stafford Company, of Readville, who introduce an automatic shuttle-chang- 
ing loom; the American Moistening Co., who supply humidifying apparatus 
for textile mills ; the Dickson Lubricating Saddle Co. ; the Whitinsville 
Spinning Ring Co. ; the Easton & Burnham Machine Co., of Pawtucket. 
who manufacture spooling machinery and spindles; the Universal Winding 
Machinery Co., winding yarn on cones and in conical and cylindrical form by 
patent process ; the Foster Machine Co., also making winding machinery ; 
the T. C. Entwistle Co., making warpers and card grinders ; the Woonsocket 
Machine & Press Co., manufacturing fly frames and wool-spinning ma- 
chinery ; the Metallic Drawing-Roll Co., who introduce a substitute for 
the leather-covered rolls of preparatory machinery ; the Litchfield Shuttle 
Co., of Southbridge, an old-established manufacturing concern ; the D. A. 
Tompkins Co., of Charlotte, N. C, the only Southern manufacturer of cotton 
machinery, and so on through an almost never-ending list, illustrating the 
magnitude of the present industry as a whole. 

The subject of textile machinery in this country cannot be properly con- 
sidered without reference to the importers, since there are certain distinct 
lines which foreign machinery manufacturers control, or in which they com- 
pete successfully with American manufacturers. The leading importers are 
William Firth & Co., Richards, Atkinson & Haserick, Stephen C. Lowe and 
Evan Arthur Leigh. 


In silk machinery, the Atwood-Morrison Company, Stonington, Conn., 
are the largest builders of spinning machinery. Looms are made by manu- 
facturers of looms for other purposes. 

In considering textiles, it is somewhat difficult to know just where to 
limit the industry. As generally considered, it stops when the product leaves 
the mill, yet it really includes any manufacture using yarn or cloth for its 
finished product. The great clothing industry depends on the sewing ma- 
chine, which is a purely American invention. There is a large line of knitting 
machinery used in the manufacture of stockings and underwear. Finishing 
plants and printing plants require machinery of special manufacture. The 
various lines cannot be accurately traced and credited without an amount of 
technicality unnecessary in so restricted an article as this must be. 

The history of American te.\tile machinery naturally includes that of 
many interesting inventions and inventors who were prominent in their 
time, but which have been superseded by others more successful, such as 
Danforth, with his cap frame, which at one time seemed destined to monop- 
olize the cotton-spinning industry, but which is now only used in compara- 
tively minor Applications ; Woodward and Wellman, with their card stripper, 
which has been practically eliminated, owing to the introduction of a dif- 
ferent carding system, etc. There are also many inventors unconnected 
with any manufacturing concern, who deserve w:ell of the world's praise, 
such as Asa Arnold, who undoubtedly invented the differential motion of 
the roving frame ; John Thorpe, who patented the first ring and traveller ; 
Erastus B. Bigelow, who filled an entire mill with looms perfected by his 
own inventions ; 1 homas Mayor, who put the long bolster on the roving 
spindle, and many others deserving of notice, but necessarily overlooked, 
since memory and printed record both have their necessary limitations. 
Such prominent later inventors as Rabbeth and Northrop will receive full 
credit in the chapters devoted to the special divisions of the industry to 
which their inventions apply. 

It is hardly one hundred years since the earlier American mills were 
completely equipped with power-driven textile machinery. While we still 
owe foreigners for many fundamental conceptions, and still frankly copy 
many of their methods — in fact, actually import their machinery complete 
for many purposes — America should be well contented with having given 
to the world the cotton saw-gin, the ring- spinning frame, the sewing-machine 
and an automatic loom. 

The cotton machinery industry has naturally associated itself with the 
larger cotton manufacturing centres; thus, in Fall River, the Kilburn & 
Lincoln Company build many of the looms in use, the Fall River Machine 
Company, however, formerly making spinning and other machinery, being 
now out of business. In Providence and vicinity, including Pawtucket, 
many machine firms started and still continue. One of the earlier pioneers, 
however, the James Brown Company, of Pawtucket, has lately gone out 


of business. At Lowell, Taunton and Biddeford the early shops still 
continue. At Lewiston the former Lewiston Machine Company has been 
disorganized, and at Philadelphia the once well-known Bridesburg Company 
has long since demised. Hopedale and Whitinsville illustrate interesting in- 
dustries, which have each their own town, with company control of locality, 
transportation facilities, etc. While many of the shops control specialized 
or patented features, Draper Company particularly confines its product to 
patented devices ; in fact, this company acquires and controls more patents 
than any concern in any line of business in the country with similar cap- 
italization. There are only two concerns of any nature in the country which 
average to develop or purchase more patents yearly. 

It is mainly through improvement and adaptation to requirements that 
the American industry of textile machinery manufacture has been devel- 
oped : for our great competitor, England, having much greater field for 
introduction, has developed the manufacture of textile machinery to such 
an extent that its cheapness of production is unrivalled, and English ma- 
chinery can be introduced in the United States, in spite of tariff, on account 
of their superior economies, their low-paid labor being prominent as a 
factor. American machinery, however, is particularly adapted to Amer- 
ican requirements, and American improvements have been so protected 
by patents as to eliminate foreign competition in many lines. American 
cotton mills, equipped with the higher-priced American machinery, and 
run with higher-priced labor, do compete in certain markets of the world 
with English cotton mills filled with the cheaper English machinery and 
run by more cheaply paid operatives. Had America the shipping facilities 
with which England is favored, its foreign banking facilities and an even 
chance for competition in foreign markets, we could give it severe com- 
petition in many lines which it now monopolizes. 

In speaking of the development of the textile industry through use 
of American machinery, it is quite natural to quote more largely regarding 
cotton manufacture, since that is not only the chief textile industry, but 
other textile trades have not been as successful in meeting foreign com- 
petition or in providing an individuality in product or process. It is well 
known that the cotton industry in this country owes a large fraction of 
its mills to the financial assistance and the personal encouragement of 
leading machinery manufacturers. Had other textile industries the benefit 
of as strong machinery interests, their history might be different. 

There is hardly an industry of note known to the world where progress 
by invention and use of improved machinery has made such strides as has 
the industry of textiles. The first great change by elimination of labor 
was in the adaptation of steam power, which made power-driven ma- 
chinery possible. It is understood that a cotton-gin of to-day does work 
equivalent to that of one thousand hand ginners. An operative in the 
spinning room of a cotton mill tends from 1,000 to 1,500 spindles, each 


one producing much more yarn than could be spun with the once familiar 
spinning-wheel. It has been figured that with hand loom and spinning- 
wheel, ten operatives, working ten hours per day each, could hardly to- 
gether earn one dollar a month to-day, according to the present market 
value of their possible product. A comparison of means is w|ell shown 
by evidence easily available. The entire textile product of this country 
is produced by less than one per cent of its population, while in Northern 
China it is said the whole population weaves cotton cloth during the 
winter, the hand looms in use yielding so meagre a product per operative. 

Many attempts at introduction of improvements fail because of imper- 
fections in the fundamental conceptions, errors in carrying out conceptions, 
or inadvisability in method of introduction. Thus various lines of manu- 
facture have been started at various times, to meet with discouragement or 
disaster. In spite of promising experiments, the textile trade does not 
yet definitely recognize any acceptable substitute for the saw-gin, in spite 
of its known inefficiency. Cotton bales are still sold in abominable shape, 
and hand pickers are still necessary in the cotton fields. Picking, carding 
and roving machinery were standardized years ago. No one has succeeded 
as yet in increasing the speed of the mule or spinning frame since the 
adoption of the high-speed spindles. The automatic loom is the really 
notable factor in modern development. 

Improved machinery is of vital importance to a prosperous country 
like America, where help is often scarce and labor high-priced. The in- 
ventor and the builder must co-operate to meet the demand, and they must 
be sufficiently appreciated by the m'ill owners, else the fundamental incentive 
will be lacking. 




One of the first practical applications of water power in this country was 
for the old tidal mill on Mill Creek, near Boston. The development of 
this early water power was followed by others, wiierever settlements were 
made and water power was available. Often availability of water power 
determined the location of the early settlement. 

About 1725, the first water power plant was established along tITe 
Niagara River. This power was used to drive a. saw-mill constructed by 
the French, to furnish lumber for Fort Niagara. However, the first 
extensive developments for industrial purposes may be said to have origi- 
nated in the early part of the nineteenth century in textile mill com- 
munities. The development at Lowell, Massachusetts, in 1822, was the 
beginning of rapid strides in this direction. Following closely upon the 
development at Lowell were the ones at Nashua, New Hampshire, in 1823; 
Cohoes, New York, in 1S26; Norwich, Connecticut, in 1828; Augusta, 
Maine, in 1834 ; Manchester, New Hampshire, in 1835 ; Hooksett, New 
Hampshire, in 1841 ; Lawrence, Massachusetts, in 1845, etc. The heads 
under which these powers were developed ranged from 14 to 104 feet. 

For utilizing the energy contained in water in the form of power, 
many difTerent kinds of hydraulic motors have been invented and developed. 
Such a motor usually consists of a wheel which is caused to revolve, 
either by the weight of water falling from a higher to a lower level, or 
by the dynamic pressure due to the change in direction and velocity of a 
moving stream. 

The first practical hydraulic motors used were called water wheels, 
and the first vertical water wheels were called "Float Wheels." 

Their origin can be traced to the Chinese and Egyptians. The 
wheels were suspended over some river, utilizing the energy from the 
river current. These wheels were generally of crude construction, and 
developed but a small portion of the energy of the passing stream. This 
type is by no means obsolete, for it is yet used for minor irrigation purposes 
in all countries. The most important installation of this type in com- 
paratively modern times was that employed to drive the pumps for the 
water supply of London about 1581. 

The next step along practical lines was to confine the flow of water 
from the river, by means of a canal, flume or pipe, and to utilize the 


energy by means of the undershot and overshot water wheels. Both of 
these types of wheels have also been in use for many centuries. As in 
the float wheel, the energy of the water is exerted in the undershot wheel 
through the impact due to the velocity. Although the undershot wheel 
was a decided improvement over the float wheel, its efficiency was only 
from twenty to forty per cent. The development of the overshot wheel 
followed closely upon that of the undershot wheel, and was a great im- 
provement from a standpoint of economy in the use of water. Its efficiency 
ranged from sixty to eighty per cent. In the overshot wheel the energy 
of the w|ater is applied directly through its weight by the action of gravity. 
The overshot wheel, however, required higher heads for its application, 
and in the latter part of the eighteenth century the breast wheel was 
developed, which was especially applicable to small falls, for which the 
undershot wheel had previously been used, but its efficiency exceeded that of 
the undershot wheel, being from fifty to seventy per cent. In the breast 
wheel the action of the water is partly by impact and partly by weight. 

The last three types of wheels were the ones used in the early ap- 
plication of water power in textile mills, and their use soon spread to 
many other industries, especially to grist mills, many of which are still 
in use. 

During the latter part of the eighteenth century many improvements 
were made on the breast wheel, among which should be mentioned that 
of Poncelet, whose improvements, by means of ventilated curved buckets, 
brought the efficiency of this type of water wheel to a point exceeding that 
of the overshot wheel. About this time the fly-ball governor, which had 
been designed and adopted as a governor for steam engines by Watt, was 
applied to the governing of water wheels, and by means of these governors 
the speed of the wheel, under varying loads, was kept sufficiently constant 
for the purposes for which the power was then used. 

These water wheels above described, when well constructed, have 
given efficiencies practically equal to the best modern turbine, but on 
account of their large size, and the serious effects of back water and ice 
conditions, also on account of the small amount of power and slow speed, 
they soon proved inadequate, as the mills and manufactories in which 
they were employed were enlarged with the growth of these industries. 

The first turbines used in this country were of the Fourneyron type, 
developed by M. Fourneyron, in France, in the early part of the nineteenth 
century. By 1840 many turbines of this type had been introduced in this 
country. The great advantages of the turbine over the old-style water 
wheels are as follows : 

1. They occupy much smaller space. 

2. On account of their comparatively high speeds, they can frequently 
be used without gearing or other complicated means of transmission. 

3. Some types will work submerged. 


4. They may be utilized under any head or fall of water. 

5. They are readily protected from ice interference. 

6. Their speed can be regulated within narrow limits. 

7. They are cheaper for the same amount of power. 

8. More power can be developed in a single unit. 

About 1840, Uriah A. Boyden, of Massachusetts, made a number of 
improvements on the Fourneyron turbine, and several wheels of his design 
were installed by the Appleton Company, at Lowell, in 1846. These tur- 
bines showed an efficiency of eighty-eight per cent, and many turbines of 
this type were installed throughout New England. 

Mr. James B. Francis, engineer of the locks and canals, Lowell, Mass., 
designed a wheel of this type, which was erected in the Tremont Mills, 
of Lowell, in 185 1, and made a series of tests which he published in his 
book, "The Lowell Hydraulic Experiments." 

In 1838, Samuel B. Howd, of Geneva, New York, patented the 
"inward flow" turbine, in which the action of the Fourneyron turbine was 
reversed, and this seems to be the origin of the American or Francis type 
of turbine. 

In 1849, James B. Francis designed an inward tiow turbine of the same 
general type as the Howd turbine. Two of these turbines were constructed 
by the Lowell Machine Shop for the Boott Cotton Mills. The turbines 
designed by Francis were along more scientific lines and of better me- 
chanical construction, and this type of turbine has been generally known 
as the Francis turbine. 

The advantages of this type of turbine were : 

Increased efficiency at part load and smaller cost. 

The Fourneyron turbine had a high efficiency at full load only, and 
on account of its low speed was too expensive. 

About the same time that the Francis turbine was being developed in 
this country, the Jonval turbine was being introduced. This turbine was also 
of French design, and also showed a higher efficiency at part gate than 
the Fourneyron turbine, and was extensively used in this country for 
some time. However, both of these French types were superseded by the 
various forms of the American or Francis type, which proved considerably 
cheaper and of higher efiiciency at part gate than either. 

The three types of turbines mentioned are of the reaction type, in 
which the energy is largely developed by reactive pressure. Besides the 
advantage of higher efficiency at part gate already mentioned, both the 
Jonval and Francis turbines have the additional advantage, that a draft 
tube can be used with them, thus utilizing that part of the fall between 
the runner wheel and the tailrace. These turbines can also be submerged 
without interfering with the operation or efficiency, and are, therefore, very 
desirable where variable tail water occurs. 

In order to partially obtain the result of a draft tube with a Fourneyron 


outward flow turbine, Boyden developed the diffuser for this type of turbine, 
known by his name. Several per cent additional efficiency can be obtained 
with this diffuser, but it is a question whether the additional economy thus 
obtained will pay for the additional cost of the diffuser and the room 
required for it. 

Up to recently, turbine designers were under the impression that re- 
action turbines were not adaptable to heads much over 150 feet. This 
belief led to the development of the impulse turbine in this country, and 
to the development of the action turbine in Europe. Both of these types 
operate under the same hydraulic principle, and the energy is developed 
entirely due to velocity. Both of these types have the disadvantage, when 
used under comparatively low and medium heads, that no draft tube can be 
used with them, consequently that part of the head between the runner 
and the tailrace is lost. 1 his will be of considerable importance where the 
head is small and the level of the tailwater is variable, as the head so lost 
may be twenty-five per cent or more of the total. Where these types of 
turbines are used under higher heads, the amount so lost is of little con- 
sequence, being a very small per cent of the total head. 

These types of turbines first came into prominence in the western 
part of this country and in Switzerland. Undoubtedly they would have 
been developed even if the belief that reaction turbines could not be used 
under high heads did not exist, because the size of units required at that 
time was small and some of the heads developed comparatively high. A 
reaction turbine, having a fi.xed speed, is limited as to the smallest power 
it can develop under any given head, so that, leaving out of consideration 
the question of cost, there is a practically definite point where reaction 
turbines must be abandoned and impulse or action turbines must be used. 
However, the question of cost makes it desirable to use impulse or action 
turbines even for sizes so large that reaction turbines could still be used. 

Since the development of the electrical generator and electrical trans- 
mission of power, it has become desirable to develop large quantities of 
power in one place, and to develop large powers sometimes under high 
heads, which were previously inaccessible. It has been found economical 
to develop these large powers in very much larger units than had previously 
been used. The mechanical construction of generators, particularly of 
alternating current generators, make? it possible to use very high speeds 
even for the larger sizes, and, due to the fact that the reaction type of 
turbine can be operated at nearly twice the speed of the impulse or action 
turbine, they were soon designed for higher heads than previously and with 
every success. 

It is a well known fact that some of the earliest turbines designed by 
Boyden and Francis showed as high or higher efficiencies than most tur- 
bines since built. This, however, does not mean that the turbine had not 
been improved since then ; as a matter of fact, the improvement of the 


turbine has been phenomenal. In the development of the early water 
powers first cost was of primary consideration. 

Very few streams were developed to their full capacity, and the most 
successful turbine builder was the one who could market a turbine of great 
power and high speed at the smallest cost per horse power, providing a 
reasonably good efficiency could still be obtained. To show the success 
obtained in arriving at this result, it is necessary to mention the progress 
of but one builder, which is a good average among several. In 1859 he 
designed a turbine of 48-inch diameter, which, under 16-foot head, de- 
veloped 7Q.I H. P., at a speed of 102 R. P. M. By successive improvements, 
his 48-inch turbine, in 1903, developed 325 H. P., at a speed of 139 R. P. M. 

When we consider that the power and speed of a turbine runner of 
fixed diameter is largely a measure of the efficiency of that runner, it will 
be understood that an increase of 410 per cent in power and 13.6 per cent 
in speed, without sacrificing the efiiciency materially, is no small improve- 
ment. Since the development of large water powers during the last few 
years, and in plants where the total power available can be readily mar- 
keted, the question of efficiency has again become of primary considera- 
tion. In low head plants the economical solution is still often found in 
the use of the high-power, high-speed turbines, and this simply reduces 
itself to a problem of additional investment to obtain higher efficiency by 
means of the use of a smaller power and lower-speed turbine, and the 
return obtainable on the additional power gained by the higher efficiency. 

In plants where the head is considerable it is generally found that a 
commercial speed can be obtained with a low-power, low-speed wheel, and 
it is thus possible to again return to the higher efficiencies of the early 

In a well-designed, modern turbine, where the designer can practically 
choose the speed at which the turbine is to operate, an efficiency of ninety 
per cent can be obtained. Most modern, high-head turbines show an 
efficiency of eighty-five to ninety per cent in place at the power house. 

Perhaps of greater importance than high efficiency in a modern plant, 
is the speed regulation of turbines. As has already been stated, the steam 
engine governor invented by Watt was successfully applied to water wheels 
before the invention of the modern turbine, and the regulation thus ob- 
tained was satisfactory for the users of power in those days. With the 
introduction of turbines, hydraulic power was used for a greater variety 
of purposes, in some of which comparatively close regulation was desired, 
and many cheap mechanical governors were invented to obtain this result. 
However, very close regulation of speed was not of sufficient commercial 
importance to permit the use of expensive governors, which would increase 
the first cost of the plant materially. 

The success of the comparatively recent application of hydraulic 
power to the operation of alternators in parallel, and to the genepation of 


current for electric lighting, street railway and synchronous motor loads, 
has been largely dependent upon the possibility of obtaining close speed 
regulation of the generating units, accompanied with good water economy 
and without undue shock upon machinery and penstocks while working 
under extremely variable loads. 

The method used for regulating the speed of reaction turbines is to 
restrict the amount of water flowing through the runner as the load de- 
creases, or to increase the flow as the load increases. Three forms of gates 
are and have been in common use to obtain this result ; namely, the cylinder, 
register and swivel gates. 

The cylinder gate consists of a cylinder closely fitting the guide that 
by its position admits or restricts the flow of water into the buckets. With 
this type of gate the guides are fixed. When partially closed, the cylinder 
gate causes- a sudden contraction in the vein of water, which is again sud- 
denly enlarged in entering the runner. These conditions produce eddying, 
which result in decreased efficiency at part gate. This type of gate is 
very bulky, and for large turbines heavy counterweights must be used to 
operate them. They are, therefore, not well adapted where close regulation 
and high efficiency are desired. 

Turbines with this type of gate are well adapted for driving pulp 
grinders or mills, where the load is practically constant and where they 
are operated generally at full load. They can then be regulated by hand 
or a slow-moving, mechanical governor. They have no advantage, however, 
for even this kind of load, where good head gates exist to close off the 
water from the turbine, the only advantage of the cylinder gate being 
the ease with which they can be tightly closed even with crude work- 

The "register gate" consists of a cylinder case with apertures to 
correspond with the apertures in the guides, and is so arranged that, when 
in the proper position, the apertures register and freely admit the water 
to the wheel, and is also .so constructed that, when properly turned, the 
gate cuts off the passage completely or partially, as desired. Considerable 
eddying is produced by the partially closed register gate, with a consequent 
decrease in part gate efficiency. The part gate efficiency is not much better 
than with the cylinder gate, but it is more adaptable to close governor 
regulation. This type of gate has never found much favor in this country 
because the cylinder gate is cheaper and simpler. 

The swivel or wicket gates have always been used in a more or 
less crude form, and, in their modern form, are undoubtedly the best 
gate, especially for moderate or high heads and where a high efficiency 
is desired at part gate with close regulation. When well constructed 
mechanically, they are as tight as cylinder gates, and they are usually so 
made for higher heads; but, when used for low heads, it will be found 
cheaper to provide good head gates which can be used to shut off the 


water from the flume. The swivel type of gate is well adapted to close 
regulation and to obtain a nearly constant efficiency over a large range of 
gate openings. 

The efficiency of a modern high head reaction turbine recently tested, 
is as follows: 

Eighty per cent at half load; 85 per cent at three-quarter load, and 84 
per cent at full load. The turbine tested was of 10,000 H. P. capacity, 
operating under 550 feet head at 375 R. P. M. It will be noticed that the 
best efficiency obtained was that at three-quarter load. This brings out 
another decided advantage of the swivel gate turbine; namely, by means 
of proper design, the highest efficiency can be obtained at a reduced gate 
opening, thus allowing for an overload capacity, such as all liberally 
designed generators have. 

The regulation of the earlier impulse turbines of importance was accom- 
plished by means of a deflecting nozzle. Most of these turbines operated 
under comparatively high heads in connection with long penstocks, and 
the danger of causing shocks in these penstocks by varying the flow of 
water in them led to the adoption of the deflecting nozzle. With the deflect- 
ing nozzle the flow of water is kept constant; if any variation of load occurs, 
the governor deflects the stream issuing from the nozzle, partially away 
from the runner buckets or farther into them, depending upon whether 
the load decreases or increases. 

The action turbine usually has a series of nozzles, and to regulate the 
flow of water either one or more of these nozzles are partially opened 
or closed by the governor. It can be seen from the description of the 
deflecting nozzle that it is very wasteful if the load is variable. This, 
however, is true not only of the deflecting nozzle impulse turbine, but if 
otlier types of turbines are used in connection with long penstocks, where 
danger of water hammer or shock exists, they must also be arranged to 
be made equally wasteful to avoid the change in flow and consequent shock, 
or else provision must be made to avoid this waste. To partially overcome 
this waste under such conditions as described, pressure regulators and 
relief valves have been developed. The object of these auxiliaries is to 
momentarily waste some water while the load on the turbine is thrown off, 
and, after the new load has reached a stationary point, to either close 
automatically or mechanically. 

Such pressure regulators, however, provide against a shock only 
which may occur when the load is thrown off; an equally serious result 
may occur when the load is thrown on faster than gravity can accelerate 
sufficient water to provide the turbine for the additional load. In this 
case a surge would occur, tending to collapse the penstock. It has been 
found that these surges are always considerably less than the shocks for 
any given set of conditions, and many cases, therefore, occur where it is 
necessary to provide against the shock, but not against the surge. If, 


however, the surge also becomes greater than permissible, a standpipe must 
be resorted to. Since even with a standpipe the shock will still be greater 
than the surge, it may be necessary or commercial to provide both the 
standpipe and pressure regulator. 

The conditions of installation have a marked effect on the difficulties 
of turbine speed governing, and often the devices above mentioned, together 
with additional ones, must be provided for regulation, even if not neces- 
sary, for the safety of a penstock. 

If the turbine is installed in an open pit or flume, as is often done in 
low head plants, and has only a short draft tube and the water flows to the 
gates in every direction, the velocity of flow is very slow. The quantity 
of water which moves at a high velocity is confined to that in the runner 
and draft tube, and the change in velocity and momentum, due to the change 
of load, produces no serious effect. If, however, the turbine is an encased 
one, and the water must be brought to it through a long penstock, the 
conditions become more complicated. In this case a large amount of 
energy is stored in the moving column of water, and a change in its 
velocity involves a change in its kinetic energy, which may, if an attempt 
is made at too rapid regulation, leave the turbine deficient in energy; when 
increased power is desired, or when the power is decreased, may produce 
such shocks as will seriously affect regulation. 

A fly-wheel on the turbine shaft can partially be relied upon to take up 
much of the energy produced when the load suddenly becomes less, and 
it will also provide energy if the turbine is deficient, due to lack of water 
supply. It is, of course, a commercial question which must be solved for 
each installation, for it may be cheaper to provide larger penstocks with 
consequent reduced velocities, or to provide a fly-wheel, standpipe, pres- 
sure regulator, etc., or two or more of these to get the desired regulation. 

All of these devices can be applied to the impulse turbine as well as 
the reaction turbine, and this has been successfully done in several recent 
modern plants. At the present time only the P'rancis tvpe of reaction turbine 
and the impulse turbine are being used in this country. 

The reaction turbine is being successfully designed for higher heads, 
and experience shows that if carefully and substantially designed, such as 
is possible with the modern cast iron and cast steel spiral casings, and 
improved gate mechanisms, there is no limit as to the head for which the 
reaction turbine can be used. 

As already stated in this paper, a reaction turbine is limited as to the 
smallest amount of power it can develop under any given head, so that the 
only limit as to the head for which it can be successfully designed is the 
size of the unit. This limit for a 10,000 H. P. turbine is approximately 
650 feet for a normal commercial speed. However, tlie higher the speed 
allowable, the higher the head for which the same power output of turbine 
can be designed. 


The power of the early water wheels was usually transmitted through 
gearing, the ratio of which was such as to increase the speed to that desired 
for the main shaft. From the main shaft it was transmitted to the various 
countershafts and machinery by means of either belts or rope drives. 

Whereas, the water wheels were all designed with horizontal shafts, 
the first turbines were constructed with vertical shafts. Their power was 
usually transmitted to a horizontal shaft through bevel gears, and by this 
arrangement a number of turbines could be arranged to drive a single 
line shaft. Very often a separate canal with its turbine was provided for 
every separate part of the mill. When this method proved too expensive 
or when what proved to be a desirable location for the canal and turbines 
was not economically accessible for the mill, a rope drive was used to 
transmit the power of the turbines to the mill, sometimes several hundred 
yards away. The losses in transmission were often excessive, amounting to 
sometimes fifty per cent and more. 

The development of the horizontal encased turbine, doing away with 
part of the canals, the water being brought to them in penstocks, was a great 
improvement over the vertical open-flume turbine. It was particulafly 
adaptable to heads over twenty feet and could be located above the tail 
water. This made it accessible and step bearings and gears were done 
away with, the shafting being driven directly off the turbine shaft by 
means of belts. In order to obtain higher speeds for low heads, two or 
more runners were placed on one shaft. 

Up to 1895 there were but few turbines with anything but mechanical 
transmission. About this time, the electrical generator, direct connected 
to the turbine shaft, came into general use, and soon large units were being 
built of this type. At first the turbines were of the horizontal type only, 
and under the lower heads two to six runners were often placed on one 
shaft, in order to increase the speed. 

The old type of single vertical turbine, geared to a jack shaft, is still 
being used extensively in low head plants. The speed obtained on the jack 
shaft is usually made sufficient to directly connect the generator. Vertical 
turbines, with generators of the vertical type direct connected to them, have 
come into use of late years. Usually two or more runners are placed on one 
shaft to increase the speed. The object is to do away with the gearing, thus 
avoiding the loss in them and their upkeep, which latter is usually a 
considerable item. An important advantage of the direct connected vertical 
unit over the horizontal type is that the generator can always be placed 
above the highest head and tail water. This is particularly true of open- 
flume turbines in any case, and true of both open and enclosed turbines 
where the tail water varies beyond the allowable length of a draft tube. 

I desire to acknowledge the assistance of Mr. W. F. Uhl in the 
preparation of this article. 




The history of the development and growth of the textile industry is 
made up of many chapters, each chapter so closely related to all the others 
that none can be studied independently. Improvements in one process or 
in one machine have led to changes at other points, and thus progress has 
been made first in one department and then in another, with a consequent 
advance all along the line. It is purposed in this chapter to follow one 
branch of this development and to describe the conditions attending the 
earlier installations of the electric system to indicate the several steps in 
the development and application, and to show the direct and indirect eflfects 
upon the industry which have followed its adoption. 

Previous to the year 1886 electric motors were practically unknown in 
the commercial world. Vanderpoel, Sprague, Brush and other pioneers in 
this field had installed a few continuous current motors, but not until 1888 
or 1889 did the public acquire sufficient confidence in the electric motor to 
depend upon it for important installations. The alternating current motor 
was still, more or less, in the laboratory stage, the first polyphase induction 
motor being placed upon the market in 1892. Previous to that time, the 
use of motors in textile mills had been confined to a few isolated cases 
where small continuous current machines had been installed to furnish sup- 
plementary power, but no mill had placed its sole dependence upon the elec- 
tric system. It was considered that it might be useful where "it was neces- 
sary to carrj' power for any distance beyond the ordinary reach of the 
mechanical drive; also that, in a few cases where the drive was very com- 
plicated, possibly it might furnish a simpler solution than could be oflfered 
by shafting and belting. Even the most progressive of the mill engineers 
did not believe that it would ever be a serious competitor of the mechanical 
system, especially in new mills. The advocates of the electric system were 
obliged to labor for months before the first opportunity was given to demon- 
strate that an entirely new field was being opened up, and that, with the 
freedom afl^orded the engineer, results could be accomplished which could 
be attained by no other system. It is true, also, that at the beginning all 
of the advantages of the electric system were not fully appreciated, even 
by its most earnest supporters ; but, as the introduction of the system pro- 
gressed, new advantages were realized, and in many ways the results proved 
even better than its early advocates expected. In view of the above, it may 


be of interest to explain somewhat in detail the conditions attending the 
first installation. 

On July 31, 189';, a contract was closed by the General Electric Com- 
pany with the CoUimbia Mills Company, Columbia, S. C, for an electrical 
equipment consisting of two 500-kilowatt, 3-phase, 36-cycle, 600-volt gen- 
erators and seventeen sixty-five horsepower induction motors. The exe- 
cution of this contract had been preceded by a most careful consideration 
of the whole subject, extending over several months, by the engineer, Mr. 
Stephen Greene, of the firm of Lockwood, Greene & Company. The prob- 
lems presented were of an unusual nature. It had been proposed to drive 
this mill by water taken from the canal of the Columbia Water Power Com- 
pany. This canal had been built many years before to permit the passage of 
boats around the rapids in the Congaree River, and followed the course of 
the river very closely. As there was no available mill site between the canal 
and the river on the property purchased by the Columbia Mills Company, 
the engineers had been considering two different plans of driving the mill 
mechanically. One plan involved the location of the wheels beneath the 
mill, which would have necessitated the construction of a very expensive tail 
race under the canal. The alternative plan considered the location of the 
wheel house between the canal and the river and the operation of the mill 
by means of a rope drive across the canal. Both of these plans would have 
been very costly. The General Electric Company proposed to locate the 
mill back from the canaJ, where the cost of the construction of the mill 
itself would be very much reduced, and to which point it would be conve- 
nient to bring a spur track from the railroad. By this latter plan the power 
house was to be located at a point between the canal and the river, where 
the best conditions for receiving and discharging the water were to be 
found. The simplicity of this plan immediately appealed to the engineers. 
At that time, however, no application of the system had been made on such 
an extensive scale and where so much depended upon its success. No similar 
installations could be referred to as examples of what could be accomplished, 
and to that extent the plan proposed by the General Electric Company was 
entirely theoretical, although it seemed the most feasible and simple solu- 
tion of the problems encountered. It was not without much adverse criti- 
cism that it was finally adopted, one prominent manufacturer terming it "a 
most hazardous and dangerous experiment." The facts of the case were 
laid before three of the larger electrical companies, each of which was in- 
vited to submit a report and recommendation as to the best solution of the 
problem, together with a proposal based upon same. It is not surprising 
in view of the condition of the art at that time that two of the three com- 
peting electrical companies suggested that a large continuous current motor 
should be used to drive each room, following in this respect the plan adopted 
by the best mechanical system then in use. The original recommendations 
of the General Electric Company., however, were finally adopted, and the 


mill was subdivided into seventeen comparatively small sections, each driven, 
independently of all the others, by its own motor. Each department was 
kept distinct from all others. In order to save floor space, the motors were 
suspended from the ceiling, and in most cases each was provided with two 
pulleys on each end to equalize the strain on the shaft and to reduce to a 
minimum the friction and wear on the bearings. It is interesting in pass- 
ing to note that the type of motor selected, as well as the plan in all its 
important details as recommended by the General Electric Company, are 
those which have been adopted in practically all textile mills using what is 
known as the ''group system'' of electric driving. 

The success attending the introduction of the electric drive at the Col- 
umbia Mills resulted in its adoption by many other mills in that section, 
where water power was available. In some other parts of the country 
the electric system was used as additional power to supplement insufficient 
mechanical systems. The advantages obtained by the subdivision of the 
mill into small sections in the Columbia Mills installation became so apparent 
that, in i8q6. a careful study was made of the possibilities of applying the 
motors directly to the textile machinery. On March i, 1897, a contract 
was closed by the General Electric Company with the Anderson Cotton 
A-Iills. of Anderson, S. C, for forty-two six horse-power motors. Each of 
these motors was so located as to drive a spinning frame from each end 
of the motor shaft through a friction clutch. This installation proved so 
successful that two repeat orders were placed for similar equipments. Al- 
though a marked increase of production resulted from this application, it 
was not generally adopted, however, for several reasons. The motors at 
that time were so expensive as to preclude the advisability of driving each 
frame by its own motor, and the plan of driving two frames by one motor 
was very limited in its application, inasmuch as it was impracticable, unless 
the motor and frames could be located upon an absolutely solid foundation. 
At the Ander.son Mills the frames and motor were located upon a concrete 
floor. Inasmuch as the spinning frame would usually be located on the top 
floor of a mill, this condition could not be duplicated in the ordinary mill 
with its wooden floors. Both of these difficulties have since been over- 
come The principal objection, however, still remained that this method of 
connecting the motors directly to the frames did not permit any changes 
in the speed of the frame cylinder. Accordingly, experiments were made, 
in 1901, at the Pierce Mills, in New Bedford, with a view of driving the 
frame by a pinion on the motor shaft, which meshed into a gear on the 
cylinder shaft. By reason, however, of the inertia of the rotating member 
of the motor as then designed, with its large diameter and comparatively 
heavy weight, too long a period elapsed between the time when the current 
w'lLS shut off and the frame was stopped, thus permitting the yarn to kink 
and break. Later improvements in the design and reduction in the first 
cost of electric motors have rendered this form of gear driving feasible. 


and it is now being adopted in many cases, modified in some instances by 
the substitution of chains and sprockets for the gears. Since these installa- 
tions were made at the Anderson Mills and Pierce Mills, modifications and 
changes have been made in the design of alternating current motors, and it 
is quite probable that in the near future the desired variations in speed 
may be secured with an alternating current motor directly attached to the 
cylinder shaft. It is quite probable also that .some mechanical means may 
be devised whereby, with the motor running at uniform speed, this desirable 
result may be obtained. 

Previous to the year 1897 the electric generators supplying current 
to the motors in textile mills had either been driven by water wheels or 
had been operated from steam engines by means of belts or ropes. The 
electric system had not sufficiently demonstrated its advantages to lead mill 
engineers to consider the installation of a large reciprocating engine with 
a generator directly connected thereto. It is interesting to note in this con- 
nection that Mr. Stephen Greene, to whose foresight and courage the first 
installation owed its adoption, was also the engineer in charge in this sec- 
ond step in the application of the electric system in the driving of textile 
mills. On November 24, 1S97, a contract was closed by the Lancaster Mills, 
of Clinton, Mass., with the General Electric Company for a 1,250-kiIowatt, 
3-phase, 40-cycle, fioo-volt generator, directly connected to a cross-com- 
pound Cooper-Corliss engine. The engine had a speed of seventy-five revo- 
lutions per minute. This engine and generator were used to drive about 
one-half of the mill, the balance still being operated by the mechanical sys- 
tem. So successful were the results obtained by this installation that on 
May 10, 1899, a 'second contract was closed, also with the General Electric 
Company, covering a 1,650-kilowatt, 40-cycle generator, together with a 
Cooper-Corliss engine designed for a speed of seventy and one-half revo- 
lutions per minute. With the addition of this second generator the entire 
premises were driven electrically. In view of the criticisms which have been 
made on account of the periodicity (forty cycles) adopted in this and later 
plants, it is proper to state that it was adopted in order to facilitate the 
operation of the generators in parallel. The prevailing periodicity at that 
time was sixty cycles, but up to that time no generators of the slow speed 
called for by the above contract had. been operated in parallel on sixty cycles. 
On accoimt of this slow speed it was considered necessary to adopt a nnich 
lower frequency, and forty cycles was chosen, and for several years con- 
tinued to be the standard for such work. 

Previous to 1899 the applications of the electric drive in textile mills, 
in which steam engines furnished the motive power, had been confined en- 
tirely to the replacement of the mechanical system. The Olympia Mills, of 
Columbia. S. C, was the first new mill, so far as we have any record, in 
which it was contemplated at the outset to distribute the power electrically 
where steam engines were to be used to drive the generators. W. B. Smith, 


Whaley 8z Company, of Columbia, S. C, were the engineers for this mill. 
A contract was closed September 13, 1899, with the General Electric Com- 
pany covering three 1,300-kilowatt, 40-cycle, 600-volt generators, each ar- 
ranged for direct connection to a Mcintosh & Seymour vertical cross-com- 
pound engine, running at a speed of 133 revolutions per minute. 

It was in the silk industry that the first application of individual motors 
to looms was made in this country. For several years this method of driv- 
ing had been common in Germany, France and Switzerland, but the com- 
paratively high first cost of the motors had precluded its adoption in this 
country in spite of its advantages. In March, 1901, however, the Royal 
Weaving Company, of Pawtucket, R. I., imported 170 looms, to each of 
which was attached a one-third horse-power Oerlikon motor. A reduction 
in the cost of induction motors has since rendered this system very attrac- 
tive, and there are to-day many thousand silk, woolen and worsted looms 
driven in this manner. 

The Saxony Worsted Mills, of Newton, Mass.. was the first textile 
manufacturing company to venture upon tlie driving of each mule by its 
own motor. On December 5, 1906, a contract was clf«ed with the General 
Electric Company for sixteen motors for this purpose, and six months later 
the balance of the mules in that mill were thus equipped. Up to that time 
only the group system of driving had been used in the operation of mules 
on account of the variable nature of the load and the special characteristics 
which would be required by the motors. This problem was successfully 
solved, however, in this mill, and for smoothness of operation and of 
control it cannot be duplicated by the mechanical system. 


With the adoption of the electric system it has become necessary 
to obtain more accurate information in regard to the dis^tribution of 
power in the several departments of a mill. Before the advent of this 
system the mill engineers had determined the total amount of power re- 
quired to operate an entire mill under given conditions, but the results of 
an error in distribution of that power were not so serious, as an under- 
estimate in one department would be balanced in all probability by an 
overestimate in another department. With the subdivided system of driv- 
ing, more accurate information was required, and, as the extent of that 
subdivision increased and the motors operating under the group system 
were reduced in size until finally the individual drive was reached, it be- 
came very necessary to know the power required by each of the several 
machines under the many diverse conditions under which it would be called 
upon to operate. Thus the electric system has compelled the manufac- 
turer and the engineer to ascertain more accurately and more in detail 
than was previously the case the distribution of power about his mill, and 


a means has been provided whereby unnecessary consumption of power can 
be avoided. Wherever the electric drive has been adopted, especially where 
subdivision has been followed, an increased production has resulted. This 
is due to the omission of steps in the transmission, thus reducing the op- 
portunities for loss of speed, the speed being maintained nearer to the 
theoretical maximum. This more regular and constant speed has also re- 
sulted in corresponding improvement in the quality. This is most marked 
where the motor is applied directly to the loom, as the "beat up" is uni- 
form. The fire risk from overheated journals and from rubbing belts has 
been reduced to the same extent that these items have been eliminated. 
The manufacturing rooms have been made cleaner and lighter, and the air 
has been freed from the lint and dirt circulated by the large horizontal 
belts. This has been of direct benefit to the operators. In large steam- 
driven mills, using over 1,800 horsepower, the first cost has been reduced 
below that of the mechanically driven mill in the majority of cases, espe- 
cially if the looms are located in a separate weave shed. This has been 
brought about, in part, by the introduction of the steam turbine in place 
of the reciprocating engine. Mill sites, not otherwise suitable for the pur- 
pose, have been made available, as the steampower plant and the manu- 
facturing buildings could be located at a point most suitable for the processes 
carried on in the several buildings respectively. 

Probably the most marked result following the introduction of the 
electric system, however, has been found in the concentration of power 
plants. Under the mechanical system each factory, and oftentimes each 
large building, was compelled to have its own independent prime mover. 
In many mill yards in which the mechanical system is used there will be 
found several independently operated steam plants, each complete in itself 
and each under the control of a high-salaried engineer. Each manufactur- 
ing building is operated entirely independently of the others, and in case 
of an accident in one building the machinery in that building cannot be 
driven from any of the other power plants. Under such a system, if, for 
any reason, the original estimate on the power required in one building 
was exceeded, the manufacturer could not draw from his other power 
plants to supplement this deficiency, although there might be a surplus in 
each of the others. The larger the manufacturing establishment, the more 
marked do these limitations of the mechanical system become. With the 
advent of the electric system this was entirely changed, and large power 
plants are now being erected at the most advantageous point, and all the 
power required about the entire premises is being generated in one central 
station. Not only does this result in economy in the cost of fuel and labor 
and a reduction in first cost of the power plant itself, but it permits the 
employment of a higher grade chief engineer and insures the operation of 
the plant at its highest efficiency. In case of an accident within the power- 
house, selection may be made by the manufacturer of those portions of 



his establishment which it is most desirable for him to operate. This plan 
of the concentration of power plants is being followed in many of the 
larger mills throughout the country. 

The advent of the electric system has opened up an entirely new field 
of operation for the engineer and the manufacturer. This has already been 
referred to briefly in regard to the utilization of hitherto inaccessible water 
powers. Probably no other .section of the country has profited as much 
by the introduction of the electric system as have North Carolina, South 
Carolina and Georgia. In these states many millions of dollars have been 
invested in the development of water powers which would otherwise have 
remained unused. On account of the cheapness of the power thus de- 
veloped, many textile mills have been built which could not have been oper- 
ated at a profit under previous conditions. The current from these cen- 
tral stations has been distributed over very wide areas to these mills, which 
have been located at the distribution centres, and the amount of money 
invested indirectly in the building of towns and other enterprises exceeds 
many times the investment in the electrical apparatus itself. New villages 
have been built and employment has been given to many thousands of oper- 
atives who otherwise would have remained on the farm or in other less 
remunerative occupations. Thus, most important, economical, sociological 
and education results, not contemplated by its early advocates, have followed 
the introduction of this electric system. 




Scope of the Work. — The work of the mill engineer and architect 
consists in determining the general arrangement of a plant for the ac- 
commodation of the machinery necessary to produce a given quantity of 
goods of a given kind, the determination of the kind and the amount of 
the power, the determination and arrangement of the machinery of trans- 
mission and the design of the buildings. The contour of the land, the 
surroundings of the site, the location of the means of transportation, and 
other things modify the design. The work of the designer is more of an 
engineering character than otherwise, and architecture takes a secondary 
position. The mill engineer should be a man well trained in the funda- 
mental principles of engineering, for with this equipment he can under- 
take problems and carry them out with wise discrimination. He should 
know many things about boilers, engines, machinery of transmission and 
building constraction. He will often be called upon to undertake the con- 
struction of a mill for the manufacture of articles that he has never seen 
or scarcely heard of, or, in textile mills, for the production of a fabric 
entirely new to him; having a sound engineering education, reinforced 
with sufficient experience to produce sound judgment, he will be well 
qualified to carry out such projects. 

Regular Mill Construction. — Regular mill construction originated in 
New England and is carried out to the greatest perfection in that part of 
the country, chiefly in textile mills. As now designed by the best mill 
engineers, it consists of brick walls, heavy transverse wood floor beams, 
covered with thick, splined plank, spiked on at right angles to the beams, 
the latter being covered with top flooring nailed at right angles to tFie 
plank. The spaces between the centres of the beams, or bays, should not 
be so wide as to require beams at right angles to the main beams, or 
any subdivision of the bays. Mill construction contemplates the smallest 
practicable number of heavy beams with heavy planks, the simplest forms, 
the least surface for contact with fire, and concealed metal where used. 
It also contemplates columns from bottom to top, resting on cast iron 
pintles through the beams, so that there will be no lengthwise shrinkage of 
the column system. By this construction the shrinkage of the floor beams 
and planks affects each floor independently, and is not cumulative. 

The floor beams tie the sides of the building together, and when the 


beams are placed and fastened to each other and to the walls, there should 
be no transverse strain on the brickwork until there is a disturbing effort, 
such as wind pressure and vibration from machinery. On account of 
the great compressive strength of cast iron, pintles are small in diameter, 
even when hollow, and therefore cut away the beams but little. They 
thus give room for a wrought iron dog on each side with ends bent over 
not quite at right angles, so that when driven into holes in the beams they 
draw them firmly together. The beams should not be fastened to the walls 
until after the dogs are driven, so that they will slide in the walls as the 
dogs draw them together. This requires the use of a wall plate or wall 
box, which has no projections to enter slots or holes in the undersides of 
the beams, for such a method cannot be carried out in practice without 
preventing the consummation of the desirable features of construction 
described above. The only way to fasten the beams to the wall plates 
or boxes to conform to the best principles of mill construction is to use 
lag screws passing through the plates, which project out of the walls 
sufficiently far for this purpose. The plates or boxes have ribs that can 
be built into the walls and thus tied to the brickwork. After the beams 
are fully placed the column caps are secured to the beams by lag screws, 
thus firmly securing the columns and tying the beams together on the 

Beams usually end over columns so that a half hole is cut through 
their ends for the pintles, but if a beam does not end over a column a hole 
is bored for the pintle and dogs are not required. No attempt should be 
made to have the pintle fit the hole, as it should be free to maintain 
its position when moving the beam and driving the dogs. When cast iron 
columns are used, pintles are usually dispensed with, the columns passing 
through the beams to the level of the floor and there formed to receive 
the columns of the next story. 

While there is no objection to carrying an iron column through a floor 
at the top of the column, there i.s a serious objection to carrying it, or a 
wood column, through a floor at the bottom of the column. In the 
latter case, when a floor above falls, it is likely to push columns over, 
and if they pass through the floor below the beams will be pried endwise. 
This may be sufficient to cause them to drop off the columns, thus caus- 
ing another floor to fall, and in fact all floors below would probably 
fall. The prying of the beams pushes the walls out and thus the absence 
of the most advanced features of mill construction might cause the wreck 
of a whole building if the top floor should be destroyed by fire. 

Another advantage of the use of pintles is that on account of their 
small diameter the beams rest over the body of the columns and are not 
held to any great extent by the column caps. Even if the ends of the lat- 
ter should break off, the beams would stay in position. This is an argument 
in favor of using caps and pintles for iron columns, for when such columns 


pass through beams they cause the weight of the floor to be carried by 
brackets cast on their sides, tlius putting the brackets in transverse strain, 
which is not desirable. 

Cast iron columns with separate bases and caps simplify fottndry opera- 
tions to a desirable extent, especially as mill castings are likely to be made 
at second-rate foundries. 

Dogs should always be put in on the tops of beams and depressed in 
grooves, so that the floor planks can be laid without difficulty. The plank 
prevents their coming out, and they are concealed. 

Floor beams, when doubled, should have no space between them, as 
was formerly the practice, to permit air to circulate between, for the pur- 
pose of preventing dry rot, as these spaces hold fire tenaciously. 

Floor planks are u.sually two and one-half inches to five inches thick, 
and occasionally six inches thick, and in widths not exceeding ten inches. 
They should be at least two bays long, except enough one-bay lengths to 
cause breaking of lengths. It is not necessary to have every other plank 
break joints. Four or five planks of the same length can be laid side by 
side, and the next set can break joints with these. 

In cases where there are twice as many bays as there are rows of 
columns, the intermediate beams rest on longitudinal stringers. Vertical 
shrinkage is considerable in this construction, and pintle tops may appear 
so far above the top floor as to show a cavity underneath, unless they are 
suitably designed. 

Columns should not be bored, because nobody is able to identify bene- 
fit from this practice. should enter beams about three inches, and should be two in num- 
ber at each bearing. Top floors should be of square-edged maple, in lengths 
of not less than six feet or eight feet. They are usually about five inches 
wide, and usually seven-eighths inch thick. They should be nailed with 
two nails two and one-half inches long, on diagonal lines sixteen inches 
apart, along each board, with two nails at each end. Nails should be set 
and boards should be planed after nailing. 

Roofs are framed, supported and planked similar to floors, using dogs, 
and they should be driven before the brickwork is built aroimd the anchors. 
When there is not a row of columns in the centre of the room, the roof 
beams should not be carried on the slant to the centre of the mill and there 
fastened together with the expectation that a stable roof will result. Hori- 
zontal beams should run between the two rows of columns next to the cen- 
tre, and the roof slant should be obtained by wedge-shaped pieces nailed to 
the beams. Roof beams are not secured to the walls by means of plates 
or beam boxes, but plates could he advantageously used. 

It is best to have inside drainage for mill roofs, and this can be best 
accomplished by upturned edges. Conductors can be of galvanized iron 


or cast iron pipes, the latter being preferable. Thimbles should be of cop- 
per and goose necks of lead, not fastened into the conductors. 

Roofs for textile mills should be covered with six-ply tar and gravel 
roofing. While there are many cheaper roofings that are guaranteed for ten 
vears, the thickness of six-ply tar and gravel roofing is advantageous on 
account of its heat non-conducting properties. Cold roofs cause conden- 
sation under certain circumstances. Weave shed roofs require further in- 

Fire Protection. — The simplicity and lack of interruption of the spaces 
between the beams, of mill construction, augment the range and add to 
the effectiveness of automatic sprinklers. The water in a sprinkler system 
should flow promptly with great force, and come in plentiful quantity. If 
a city supply for any reason cannot fulfil these requirements, there should 
be an elevated tank and a fire pump. The tank should contain water 
enough to be effective while the fire pump is being started, and the pump 
should be sufficiently protected to be the last thing to be disabled. The 
source of supply of the pump, if a pond or river is not available, should 
be a reservoir, the capacity of which is specified by the insurance company. 

Steel Floor Beams. — Steel floor beams are used somewhat, but they 
do not fulfil the requirements of regular mill construction, because they 
soften when heated and the floors therefore fall in case of fire. They have 
the advantages of rendering narrow piers and great width of windows prac- 
ticable for a given width of bay. and permitting columns to be farther apart 
than with wood beams. This facilitates the arrangement of machinery by 
diminishing the number of columns. 

For securing the planks, nailing strips four inches thick, and as wide 
as the flange, are fastened to the beams by means of lag screws, through the 
upper flanges, at intervals of about thirty-six inches on each side, the holes 
alternating. To these the planks are nailed as usual. Planks are also se- 
cured directly to the flanges or steel beams by driving small railroad spikes 
from below bv means of pneumatic hammers. 

Reinforced Concrete. — Reinforced concrete is a comparatively recent 
material for use in mill construction. It has the advantages of resisting 
fire better, probably, than any other material, and of being rigid. It is cus- 
tomary to say that it co.sts from ten to fifteen per cent more than regular 
mill construction, but it is more likely to be twenty-five per cent. It is not 
only more costly than regular mill construction, but there are secondary 
additional costs due to special devices for securing hangers, pipings, wires, 
etc. These should all be worked out in advance so as to avoid cutting the 
concrete. Concrete floors often must be covered with wood becatise of 
the prejudice against concrete. This prejudice doubtless comes from the 
cooling efTect of concrete on the feet. 

All things considered, including the present price of lumber and bricks, 
reinforced concrete may be said to be somewhat premature for mill con- 


struction. Means of reducing the cost of forms are being studied by making 
them of metal and in such a way that they can be used repeatedly. 

One objection to reinforced concrete, as usually constructed, is the 
depth of the beams, and this has been overcome by the so-called mushroom 
or similar construction. 

While concrete buildings have failed, this appears to have occurred dur- 
ing construction. 

Shafting^. — Little can be said concerning shafting, which, for many 
years, has been very perfectly developed. Ball and socket bearings and ring 
oiling have made it as perfect as practicable without ball or roller bearings. 
Since automobiles have shown how perfect such bearings are, it is time 
that they were given more serious consideration in mills. The friction of 
textile mills ranges from about eighteen per cent to forty-five per cent, 
thirty per cent being common, and it can be reduced, probably, to twelve 
per cent by ball or roller bearings. The larger frictions are caused by want 
of alignment, which should be more frequently attended to. 

Use of Electricity. — In the case of a simple arrangement of buildings 
where direct belt or rope drives can be used, there is nothing as good as 
.an economical piston engine using belts with power up to about 1,000 horse- - 
power and ropes for powers above. Electricity is to be preferred where 
mills are at odd angles with each other, where they are scattered, as is 
usually the case in old plants and where a central station can be used. The 
latter reduces the cost of attendance, diminishes waste room and contributes 
to convenience in several ways. 

Alternating current is to be preferred to direct in textile mills. In such 
mills the power factor is high and the disadvantage of a low power factor 

Group driving is in general to be preferred in textile mills. In the 
cases of machines that run intermittently, individual motors are to be pre- 
ferred. For elevators the motors should not be constant-running, because 
they reduce the power factor. 

Piston Engines and Turbines. — When electricity is used steam turbines 
are to be preferred to piston engines. They are now* fully as economical in 
the smaller, more so in the larger sizes, take up less room, require less 
foundations, use less oil and general supplies, and are more reliable. They 
use no oil in the steam and thus render condensed steam harmless for 
boilers, which, in bad water districts, is of the greatest importance. 

Boilers. — Economy, durability, low cost and freedom from danger can 
be said to be the desirable features of boilers. The horizontal return tubular 
boiler combines these features to a greater extent than any other kind. The 
economy is permanent because the tubes can be both blown and scraped and 
thus made as clean at any time on the fire sides as when new. On the 
water sides scale can be cracked off by the use of a multiple hammer pass- 
ing through the tubes. Compared with water tube boilers, another cause 


of economy of the fire tube boiler is the smaller area of brickwork and 
the almost entire absence of cleanoiit doors, both of which reduce air leak- 
age. Water tube boilers become dirty and can never be made clean, except 
by radical and expensive means. Many of the tubes become incrusted with 
clinker, and in some the tubes have tiles on one side and clinker on the 
other, and in either case the heating surface is all but useless. Horizontal 
return tubular boilers do not short circuit the gases because the distance 
from any point in a transverse line on the grate to the uptake is the same 
through corresponding tubes, and the resistance to passage of gas is the 
same. In water tube boilers there is much short circuiting and corre- 
sponding uselessnoss of some of the heating surface. 

For safety the horizontal return tubular boiler has a unique history, 
for there has not been a single explosion of such a boiler when built with 
butt longitudinal joints. These joints can be improved, which will render 
explosions even less probable. 

For size, 90-inch horizontal return tubular boilers of 400 rated horse- 
power have been built, and they are perfectly successful. They have been 
continuously worked to nearly double their rating with great economy. The 
size can be increased to 500 horse power without disadvantage, and there is 
no ordinary limit to the pressure that can be carried. The theory of the 
transmission of heat shows that the resistance to its flow through steel 
plates is only slightly increased by increasing their thickness, and there 
should be no hesitation in making them one inch or more thick. A ninety- 
eight-inch boiler for 200 pounds .pressure, with 5,000 square feet of heating 
surface, is feasible and unobjectionable. Dirt on the water sides is the only 
cause of trouble, and this is equally troublesome on thin plates. 

For forcing, the horizontal return tubular boiler is unequalled, except 
by other fire tube types, and no boiler will respond to sudden demands bet- 
ter. While it makes no difference to forcing capacity, it is a matter of in- 
terest that this type of boiler contains less water, in proportion to heating 
surface, than any other. 

The vertical fire tube boiler is more economical than the horizontal 
tubular when fired properly, but it requires more skill in firing. It is more 
economical because its heating surfaces keep cleaner, all parts of the tubes 
are equally effective, and because there are no opportunities for air to leak 
in and cool the gases. With an economizer the latter is more effective than 
with boilers in brickwork, because the gases leave hotter, due, not to the 
inability of vertical tubes to absorb heat, but to the gases escaping at their 
normal temperature, as noted above. As usually built, these boilers have 
leaky smoke boxes and covers, which neutralize this, and this practice should 
be discontinued. For economy of space vertical boilers about double the 
horsepower on a given floor area, compared with horizontal. An important 
feature of these boilers is that they superheat the steam from twenty degrees 
to forty degrees, thus causing economy of steam in engines. 




The first fire insurance companj' established in America was organ- 
ized in Pennsylvania, April 13, 1752, at the instigation of Benjamin Frank- 
lin, James Hamilton, then Lieutenant Governor of the Province, being the 
first subscriber to its articles of agreement. 

The title of this company was the "Philadelphia Contributionship For 
The Insurance Of Flouses Trom Loss By Fire," commonly called the "Hand 
In Hand Fire Insurance Company," due to the fact that the company placed 
a seal on each house that it insured, representing four hands crossed and 
clasped at the wrist. 

No other fire insurance company was organized in America until 1783, 
but by the close of the century there had been organized in this country ten 
mutual and four stock fire insurance companies, and by 1820 this number 
had increased to seventeen stock companies in New York, six in Pennsyl- 
vania, two in Connecticut, and one each in Rhode Island, New Jersey and 

In all of these companies the underwriting of cotton mills was looked 
iipon with distrust and fear, and many of them refused absohitely to in- 
sure this class of business at any price. 

The rates in such companies as would insure cotton mills for limited 
amounts were the highest paid for any class of property existing at that 

While the rates charged on cotton mills were published at from one and 
three-quarter per cent to three per cent, a woolen mill was considered less 
hazardous to the extent that the insurance companies were willing to in- 
sure this class of property at from one per cent to one and one-quarter per 

From a pamphlet on "Fire Hazards," published by Captain Wm. Jones, 
Secretary of the North American Insurance Company, in 1823, is extracted 
the following as applied to the insuring of cotton mills from the under- 
writers' point of view : 

"Cotton Manufactories: The exemption of these establishments 
from conflagration depends less upon even the best mechanical safe- 
guards in the construction and arrangement than upon a well-organized 
system of management, combining vigilance, cleanliness, order, and disci- 
pline; without these, the highest possible premium would be inadequate to 


the risk; gunpowder itself is not so inflammable as the atmosphere of a cot- 
ton mill, where the waste and dust of the staple are suffered to accumulate 
from time to time among numerous lamps or candles, which may be pre- 
sumed to be managed with equal negligence.'' 

The feeling of the underwriters in relation to the insuring of cotton 
mills was particularly emphasized by an incident which occurred in Bos- 
ton, ]\Iass., in 1850. The owner of what was at that time considered a 
large cotton mill called on the president of one of the prosperous fire in- 
surance companies in that city and asked if he insured cotton mills, to 
which he replied : "Oh, yes, we insure them to burn up at a very low rate, 
but we do not insure them against loss by fire at any rate." 

Previous to 1835, notwithstanding that high rates and unusual and ex- 
acting policy conditions were imposed upon the cotton manufacturers, no 
steps had been taken to overcome the existing difficulties and provide a 
means for the protection of their properties with suitable insurance at rea- 
sonable cost. During the year 1835 Mr. Zachariah Allen, owner of the 
Allendale Mill, at Allendale, R. I., together with a number of business as- 
sociates and fellow-manufacturers, organized the Providence Manufacturers' 
Mutual Fire Insurance Company, of Providence, R. I. (this title afterwards 
being changed to the Manufacturers' Mutual Fire Insurance Company of 
Providence, R. I.) In 1848 the Rhode Island Mutual Fire Insurance Com- 
pany of Providence, R. I., was established. The object of these compa- 
nies was the insuring of manufacturing and warehouse properties, and this 
object was maintained except in a few isolated cases when houses and 
barns were accepted. Th incorporators of these companies consisted largely 
of woolen and cotton manufacturers, Mr. Allen then being engaged in the 
manufacture of woolen goods at his Allendale mill. The records of the 
companies show, however, that the largest proportion of the risks insured 
were cotton mills. 

The largest amount assumed by each company on a single risk was 
$15,000, the balance being placed in such companies as could be induced to 
accept it. The basis on which rates were made by these companies was the 
accepting by them of about three-quarters of the rates charged by the stock 
insurance companies on the same property, this being necessary on account 
of the lack of suitable statistics and experience in the insuring of manu- 
facturing property exclusively. The policies or contracts of indemnity were 
made on the simplest form possible, it being agreed among the incorporators 
that by the careful selection of their assured and the acceptance by them 
of only desirable members, each member would keep faith with his asso- 
ciates, and there is no record of there having been any attempt on the part 
of any member insured to take advantage of the other members, which 
gives evidence of the high moral hazard of the parties insured. Among the 
several objects for the establishment of these companies was the avoidance 
of clauses and restrictions in their policies that invariably complicated a 


proper and equitable settlement of loss and with which almost all insurance 
contracts were at that time encumbered. 

The care exercised by the management in the selection of their busi- 
ness and the rigid economy practised by them gave evidence early in their 
history of the success of the undertaking, and which led to the organization 
of the Boston Manufacturers' Mutual Fire Insurance Company in Boston, 
Mass., in 1850, by Mr. James Reed, of that city, and Mr. John L. Hughes, 
of Providence, R. I., Mr. Reed occupying the position of Secretary until 
he resigned on account of ill health, when Mr. Edward E. Manton, of the 
Rhode Island Mutual Fire Insurance Company, of Providence, R. I., be- 
came the chief executive officer of the Boston company, retaining the ex- 
ecutive control of the Rhode Island Mutual Fire Insurance Company and 
acting in the capacity of chief adviser of the Manufacturers' Mutual Fire 
Insurance Company, of Providence, R. I. 

With the organization of the Boston Manufacturers' Mutual Fire In- 
surance Company the underwriting under the original method was increased 
to $60,000 on a single risk, by the acceptance by the Boston Company of 
a maximum line ot $30,000. P'ollowing the organization of this company 
other companies were organized in the following order: 

Firemen's Mutual Insurance Co., Providence, R. I., 1854 

Worcester Mfrs. Mutual Insurance Co., Worcester, Mass., 1855 

State Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Providence, R. I., 1858 

Arkwright Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Boston, Mass., i860 

Blackstone Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Providence, R. I., 1868 

Fall River Mfrs. Mutual Insurance Co., Fall River, Mass., 1870 

Mechanics' Mutual Firo Insurance Co., Providence, R. I., 1871 

What Cheer Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Providence. R. I., 1873 

Enterprise Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Providence, R. I., 1874 

Merchants' Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Providence, R. I.. 1874 

Hope Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Providence, R. I., 1875 

Cotton & Woolen Mfrs. Mutual Insurance Co., Boston, Mass., 1875 

American IMutual Fire Insurance Co., . Providence, R. I., 1877 

Phila. Mfrs. Mutual Fire Insurance Co., Philadelphia, Pa., 1880 

Keystone Mutual Fire Insurance Co.,. Philadelphia, Pa., 1884 

Rubber Mfrs. Mutual Insurance Co., Boston, Mass., 1886 

Paper Mill Mutual Insurance Co., Boston, Mass., 1887 

After 1887 other companies were organized in several of the other 
states until, in igit, there are thirty-two (32) companies operating under 
the same uniform methods and in co-operation with each other. 

From the organization of the parent company in 1835, until 1878, the 
sole purpose of the management seems to have been to select their risks 
with care and to practise the most rigid economy, saving for their policy- 


holders as much money as possible in the cost of their insurance, dis- 
tributing to them upon the expiration of their policies such saving over the 
losses and expenses as they were able to effect during the' period. 

Each company acted independently of the other companies, although 
there was a community of interest in the fact that they were underwriting 
on the same property. Inspections were made about once a year by the ex- 
ecutive officers, usually just prior to the expiration of their policies; other 
than this, their methods ditVered in no essential respect from the other fire 
insurance companies existing at that time. 

In 1878 it was found that the magnitude of the business was such as 
to make it impossible for the officers to inspect their risks as often as was 
considered necessary, and the expense of maintaining an inspection staff of 
competent men for each company was too great to be considered favorably ; 
it therefore became manifest that some other and more economic method 
must be adopted, as the risks required, if anything, more care and atten- 
tion than formerly, due to the rapidly growing business and the increasing 
hazards, brought about by new methods and labor-saving devices. It was 
finally decided that by the establishment of an Inspection Department for 
the joint benefit of all of the companies it could be conducted economically 
and at a cost well within the moans of the several companies. An Inspec- 
tion Department was, therefore, established in Boston, Mass., under the di- 
rection and supervision of Mr. Wm. B. Whiting, Secretary of the Boston 
Mfrs. Mutual Fire Insurance Co., a man of exceptional ability and extra- 
ordinary memory, and through the efforts of this gentleman, coupled with 
those of Mr. Edward E. Manton and .^Mr. Edward Atkinson, this depart- 
ment was a success, both financially and in the assistance it rendered the 
manufacturers in the care of their properties. Quarterly inspections were 
made of each risk insured; modern safeguards were investigated and ap- 
plied, and in 1880 the automatic sprinkler was adopted and every device 
that would reduce the fire waste of manufacturing property was applied to 
the risks insured by these several companies. 

With the establishment of the Inspection Department the companies 
were brought into closer association, and, before the close of the year, a 
conference of the chief executive officers of the several companies was 
established and meetings were held monthly, at which meetings all subjects 
v;ere discussed and proper action taken pertaining to the improvement in 
manufacturing properties, application of proper forms, uniformity of rates 
and other conditions looking to the reduction in the cost of insurance to 
the manufacturers. This conference or association w"as known as the Fac- 
tory iNlutual Fire Insurance Companies, but, as this class of companies was 
originally established in New England, they were very commonly known as 
the New England Factory Mutual Fire Insurance Companies. 

Thus was established in the history of fire insurance the single in- 
stance of a system of insurance for tlie exclusive insuring of manufacturing 


and warehouse properties, coupling the prevention of loss by fire as the 
prime motive with the payment of indemnity in case of unavoidable losses 
as an incident. 

In the operation of these companies no commissions were paid to 
agents and brokers for the securing of the business, but the companies dealt 
direct with the principals ; no property was insured until after it was in- 
spected and brought up to a uniform standard of construction and protec- 
tion, and by the care exercised in their management the savings to the in- 
sured have increased each y.^ar from an initial saving in the early history 
of the companies of about twenty per cent of the premium charged, to an 
average of about ninety per cent in 191 1. 

In dealing more particularly with insurance on cotton manufactories, 
it is to be noted that since 1835 they have been gradually brought up to a 
high standard of perfection, and through the efforts of the owners of the 
properties, with the assistance of the officers and inspectors of the Asso- 
ciated Factory Mutual Fire Insurance Companies, their loss ratio in a 
series of vears is less than that of the woolen manufactories, and from a 
rate of one and three-quarters per cent to three per cent in 1835, the cost 
has been reduced to about ten cents, which gives evidence that under proper 
management and the adoption of proper safeguards a hazardous risk may 
be made uniformly profitable to the insurance companies; thus, in the organ- 
ization of these companies the cotton and woolen manufacturers were in- 
strumental in establishing a system of insurance that has been of inestimable 
value to the manufacturers in general during the entire period. 




The varied uses to which the seed of the cotton plant may be put, and 
the commercial value of the products obtained from it, entitle it to con- 
sideration in a volume which treats of the manufacture of cotton. Though 
the cotton plant has been cultivated from time immemorial for its fibre, 
it was not until a comparatively modern date that the oil-producing proper- 
ties of its seed, the valuable qualities of its oil, and the important and 
varied uses to which it could be put, were even imagined. The Chinese, 
it is true, crushed the seed of their native cotton and consumed the oil 
expressed from it in their primitive hand lamps, and also recognized the 
fertilizing qualities of the crushed residuum probably centuries before the 
discovery of America. But their knowledge was not disseminated, and 
civilization owes little to it. The eighteenth century was nearing its close 
when the attention of modern men was directed to the fact that cotton 
seed contained a useful oil. It is stated that in the year 1783, when the 
cotton industry was still in its infancy in England, a cask of cotton-seed was 
brought there from the West Indies and presented to the Society of Arts, 
an organization which has for its object the promotion and encouragement 
of arts, manufactures and commerce, that under its auspices, experiments 
might be made as to the possibility of extracting oil from the seed. This in- 
tention was carried out at the mill in the city of London in the presence of 
the Secretary of the Society, and the oil so obtained was used in experimental 
efforts to determine the uses to which the oil might be applied, a sample of it 
being preserved by the Society. In consequence of these experiments, the 
Society offered gold and silver medals: the first to be bestowed upon "the 
planter in any part of the British islands of the West Indies, who shall express 
oil from the seed of cotton, and make from the remaining seed, hard and 
dry cakes, as food for cattle," a part of the condition being that one ton 
of oil should be expressed and five hundredweight of the cake obtained; 
the silver medal was destined for the person manufacturing the next 
largest quantity of oil and cakes, but though the offer was made in later 
volumes of the Transactions of the Society, there is no record of its ever 
being called upon to award the medals. 

Nevertheless, a number of mills in England and France became en- 
gaged in the business of expressing oil from cotton seed, imported from 
India and Egypt, and so brisk a demand arose for the oil, which was 


applied to industrial purposes, and for the crushed kernels for stock-feeding 
purposes, that the mill owners made several attempts to import American 
seed to supplement the supply from other sources. 

The Upland seed being unsuited to their purpose, they turned their at- 
tention to the smooth hulled Sea Island seed, and for some years a thriving 
business was done in the exportation of Sea Island seed to Europe from 
Savannah and Charleston. The rapid advance made in the process of pre- 
paring cotton seed oil by both British and French, is shown by the fact 
that in the Exposition of 185 1, Mr. Burns, of Edinburgh, and M. de Gemni, 
of Marseilles, were awarded prizes for samples of that commodity, and the 
real history of the industry may be said to date from that period. 

For more than seventy years after cotton had become the most im- 
portant crop in the Southern States, the seed was a wasted product, and as 
the seed is, by weight, two-thirds of the cotton crop, the disposition of this 
enormous amount of refuse was a rnatter of grave moment to the planter 
and the ginner. The accumulations of seed about the gins were hauled to 
some remote spot, there to decay, or dumped into some running stream, to 
contaminate and infect the water, which, as the population increased about 
these centres of industry, became a menace to the public health. Therefore, 
laws were passed in Mississippi, in 1857, forbidding such disposal of the 
seed under penalty (See Revised Code of Mississippi, 1857, page 207). 
Other States followed this example, and tons of seed were burnt and the 
ashes used as a fertilizer, and thousands of tons were piled high on worth- 
less land and surrounded by strong fences, for common tradition held it 
poisonous to cattle. A few adventurous planters had made use of small 
rude mills and presses, and used the oil so obtained for plantation purposes. 
Shingle roofs painted with cotton seed oil were common throughout the 
South, remarkable preservative qualities being claimed for it. Robert 
Mills, in his "Statistics of South Carolina," published in 1826, writes: "Mr. 
Benjamin Waring was one of the earliest settlers of the town of Columbia. 
He established the first paper, oil, and grist mills here, and expressed 
from cotton seed a very good oil." In another part of his book, the 
historian says: "The quantity of oil that cotton seed will yield has been 
estimated at one gallon to one hundred pounds of seed, which is a very 
low estimate." From this, the inference may be drawn that the knowledge 
of the expression of oil from cotton seed was common prior to 1826, in 
South Carolina. Rut the difficulty that had confronted the planter as to 
the ginning of the lint-covered seeds of Upland cotton, before the invention 
of Whitney's gin, met also the manufacturer of oil from cotton seed, as 
the absorbent qualities of the seed husks made it impossible to extract more 
than a small part of the oil. 

The following excerpt, from the Niles Register of 1829, is the earliest 
record of the practical beginnings of the cotton-seed oil industry in the 
United States, and shows how the difficulty stated above was met. "Cotton- 


seed yields a considerable portion of excellent oil. The difficulty of 
expressing it, in consequence of the quantity and absorbing quality of the 
integuments of the kernel, has been so great that heretofore no great 
quantity of the oil has been made. We are happy to announce that a 
highly respected gentleman of Petersburg, Va., has invented a machine 
by which the seed is completely hulled and prepared for the easy expression 
of its oil. The importance of this invention to the Southern country may be 
appreciated from the fact that the inventor is erecting a cotton gin, and 
will be shortly prepared to gin cotton for the seed only. This invention, as 
we understand it, consists of a granite cylinder, revolving within convex 
pieces of the same substance faced and placed in a peculiar manner. A 
hopper over the stone supplies the seed ; a wire sieve under it separates 
the hull from the kernel. Dropping through a current of air from a wind 
fan, it is delivered clean and ready for the press. This machine will 
probably rank in the country second only to Whitney's gin. About twenty- 
five years ago, Dr. George Hunter, chemist and druggist of Philadelphia, 
having made some experiments on the oil of cotton-seed, thought it worth 
while to remove to New Orleans, where he carried two steam engines, 
purchased from Oliver Evans, the one for the purpose of grinding cotton 
seed. He did not find the place so well suited to his purpose as he ex- 
pected, and did not set up his manufactory. Afterward, about 1818, Colonel 
Oark, an ingenious inventor, made some experiments on the oil of cotton- 
seed for burning in lamps. Oil of cotton-seed is selling at Providence, R. I., 
at eighty cents per gallon." 

A small mill is said to have been established on an island off the 
Georgia coast in 1832; and another was built in 1834, but the venture was 
unsuccessful from a pecuniary standpoint and was soon abandoned. In 
1847, the experiment was tried in New Orleans and again in 1852, but 
these attempts were experimental and led to no definite results. As the 
manufacture in France had reached the point of refining and preparing the 
oil for food, Mr. Paul Aldige, of New Orleans, visited Marseilles, the chief 
point of manufacture, in 1852, and having acquired much knowledge as to 
the requisite processes, on his return to New Orleans in 1855, he and 
others set seriously to work in the business of manufacturing oil from 
cotton-seed in that city. About the same time the Union Oil Company was 
established in the North, with mills at Providence, R. I., and in i860, there 
were seven mills making cotton-seed oil. 

The Civil War now intervened and practically stultified the infant 
industry for some years in the United States ; and mills at Natchez, 
New Orleans, and Mobile disappeared. The exportation of seed to Europe 
had ceased, and the industry was not resumed until the reconstruction of 
the South had proceeded far enough to permit of the harvesting of a normal 
crop of cotton. In 1867, Colonel W. D. Mann established the Mobile 
Cotton Mills, the works being the largest then in existence. A refinery, 


soap factory and fertilizer factory were run in conjunction with it, the 
capacity of the plant being three thousand gallons of oil per diem ; his 
first shipment of oil to New York brought him in handsome returns, but 
it glutted the market and his second shipment sold at less than half the 
price of the first; seed and freight were both high, and after sinking $170,- 
000 in machinery and appliances alone, he abandoned the enterprise. 
General C. P. Alexander established an oil mill at Columbia, S. C, in 1869, 
but, although he also set up a refinery and attempted to utilize every by- 
product, he too was obliged to abandon his venture. He did much 
by means of literature, which he himself prepared and disseminated, to 
educate the people of the South to a realization of the valuable qualities 
of oil. 

The first mill in Texas was built at High Hill by Mr. Hillje, and 
equipped with machinery from Germany. This mill was successful and 
the pioneer's sons are still continuing the business. In 1871, there were 
twenty-six oil mills in the United States which exported 547.165 
gallons of cotton-seed oil. As the entire output of oil was then exported, 
this amount represents the production of the mills then operating, and 
statistics show that only four per cent of the seed of the cotton crop that 
year (3,011,996 bales) was milled, the remainder being used as fertilizer 
or allowed to rot upon waste land. But the industry was now permanently 
established as a legitimate business. At the outset, the processes employed 
were carefully guarded as trade secrets; nevertheless, the establishments 
increased and knowledge became more general. 

In 1880, there were forty-five mills, and 6,997,796 gallons of oil, valued 
at $3,275,414, were exported. This represented twenty per cent of the 
seed of the crop of that year. Up to this year, the production of the oil 
could be definitely determined by the export statistics, but thereafter home 
consumption formed a new factor in the industry. In 1890, the crop was 
7,472,511 bales, and twenty-five per cent of the seed crop was used ; in 
1900, of a crop of 9,645,974 bales, fifty-three per cent of the seed crop was 
used in the manufacture of oil products, and 46,902,390 gallons of oil were 
exported, the home consumption amounting to as much more. Up to 1885, 
the oil reserved for domestic consumption had been largely employed for 
the manufacture of soaps; but the brokers and dealers in the North soon 
found a new outlet for it as an edible commodity, and with this new use, 
the industry increased by leaps and bounds. According to the twelfth 
census report, there were in 1900, 357 oil manufactories in the United 
States, producing 93,325,729 gallons of oil per annum, valued at $21,390,674. 
The residuum of the seed, after the oil is expressed, is made into cakes 
and meal for the feeding of cattle, and this portion of the product is 
valued at $16,030,576. In the manufacture of these two products 6,945 
tons of seed were used. 

In the report of the quantity of cotton ginned in the United States in 


1902-4, it is stated that there were 618 cotton-seed oil mills in the United 
States. In 1902-4, the number had increased to 704, in 1905 to 715, and in 
1908 there were 848 mills in the Southern States engaged in the manufacture 
of various products useful to man and beast from cotton seed. These mills 
operate 2,608 presses, 2,752 gin stands, and 3,126 delinters, in addition to 
fertilizers and ice plants. 

Crude Products Per Ton of Cotton-Seed. 

Products Pounds Value 

Oil 282 $8.61 

Cake and meal 713 6.48 

Hulls 943 1.29 

Linters 23 0.71 

Waste 39 

Total 2,000 $17.09 

The seed goes from the gin immediately into the storehouse of the 
oil mill ; it is then boiled or screened, to remove all sand and other foreign 
bodies, after which it is passed through the delinter, that the remaining 
short fibre or lint may be removed. This operation yields about twenty- 
three pounds per ton of seed of a commodity technically termed 'iinters," 
which brings on an average three and one-tenth cents per pound. This 
material is used for the making of mattresses, felt hats, pillows, and cotton 
batting. In 1900, the total amount obtained was 57,272,053 pounds, valued 
at $1,801,231. 

The next process is the hulling, the seed being ground and the hulls 
separated from the meats by a revolving screen, supplemented by other 
screens which complete the process; the hulls, in the primal stages of the 
industry, were used to feed the mill furnaces, but are now largely exported 
as food for cattle, and are also used in the making of paper stock. For 
feed, the hulls are ground and mixed with cotton-seed meal. The amount 
of hulls obtained from the seed crushed in 1900 was 1,169,286 tons at an 
average price of $1.29 per ton. 

The meats, having been freed thoroughly from the hulls, are crushed 
between rollers. This process ruptures the oil cells and largely assists the 
cooking process which is for the purpose of evaporating the excess of 
moisture, to heat the oily matter, and to coagulate the albuminous matter 
of the seed and thereby reduce its solubility in the oil. The cooked meats 
are then put into a cake former, which has just enough pressure to cause 
the particles to adhere without causing the oil to exude. The cakes are 
tlien wrapped in camel's hair cloths and placed at once in the hydraulic 
press in compartments or boxes provided for the purpose. The cakes are 
then subjected to intense hydraulic pressure, the product of this final stage 


being crude oil and press cake. This cake is a most valuable by-product of 
cotton-seed oil, amounting as it does to 725 pounds from each ton of seed. 
The cake, either in its primal form or else ground into cotton-seed meal, 
is used largely as a cattle food, or as a fertilizer applied directly to the 
ground, or is mingled with other ingredients to produce many prepared 
fertilizers, and Professor J- H. Connell, of Texas, at a meeting of the 
Cotton-seed Crushers' Association at Atlanta, Ga., in 1909, made a striking 
presentation of the value of cotton-seed meal as human food. Cotton-seed 
meal, mingled with flour, is used in making corn and flour muffins, biscuits, 
pancakes, gingerbread, dark graham bread, as well as cakes of all sorts. 
Professor Connell exhibited samples of biscuits and cakes which were highly 
approved by the members of the Association who tasted them. He stated 
that in the near future, the cotton-seed crushers of the South would be 
able to announce an actual discovery of 4,500,000 tons of a new product fit 
for human consumption. For the calendar year of IQO", the exports of 
cotton-seed cake and meal amounted to 590,000 tons, the average price of 
the shipments for 1907 being $25.44 per ton of 2,000 pounds. 

The crude oil is allowed to stand in settling tanks for a number of 
hours, and is then ready for the refining process. The oil varies largely 
in color and quality, which depends greatly upon the quality of the seed and 
the localities from which it comes. It ranges from a light brown to a deep 
black. The oil obtained from the first refining process is known to com- 
merce as "summer yellow oil ;"' this, when filtered with Fuller's earth, yields 
"summer white oil" from which is obtained "compound lard" and cottolene. 
"Winter yellow oil" is obtained by chilling "summer yellow oil" and 
separating the stearin, which latter product is utilized in the making of 
"butter, and salad oils" and candles. "Miners' oil" is a white oil obtained 
from "summer yellow" by the use of sulphuric acid, and is used in miners' 

The average yield of crude oil from a ton of cotton-seed is thirty- 
seven and sixth-tenths gallons, or 282 pounds, but no doubt with the im- 
provements constantly being initiated in the processes of expressing the oil 
the maximum amount of fifty-one gallons to the ton will be universally 

The phenomenal growth of the cotton-seed industry is largely due to 
the vast improvements that have been made in the methods of and ap- 
pliances for refining cotton-seed oil, which render a much greater amount 
of fine oil available for the various industries in which it is used. 

During the early years of the industry, the oil was mostly exported 
to be used in soap making, but a surplusage of oil in 1879, when the price 
per gallon dropped to twenty-three and nine-tenths cents, caused the 
brokers to urge it into other channels; it was found that it could be 
combined with beef fat as a substitute for lard; that it could be combined 
with other substances in the manufacture of olemargarine (in 1900, 11,- 


818,921 pounds of cotton-seed oil were used in this industry alone) 
and other artificial butters; with lard and also stearine, it makes "com- 
pound" lard; white cottolene is a mixture of oleo-stearine and specially 
prepared cotton-seed oil. It is largely used in all these forms by bakers 
and cooks, and is recognized by chemists and physicians as a high-class 
food product. 

Though cotton-seed oil lacks the peculiar flavor of olive oil, it has 
come into competition with that article. It was long ago conceded by 
expert olive oil manufacturers abroad that an admixture of one-third 
cotton-seed oil with two-thirds olive oil could not be detected, and that it 
was as pure and wholesome as the best olive oil ; it is, therefore, largely 
used as an adulterant in what purports to be pure olive oil. Italy, feeling 
one of her chief industries menaced, sought by a prohibitory tax to exclude 
the imports of cotton-seed oil ; which measure apparently did not have the 
deterrent effect intended, for the exports of cotton-seed oil from the United 
States have grown larger year by year. 

Until about eight years ago, the producers of crude oil depended 
largely on Eastern and Western refiners for their home markets, about half 
of the oil being exported; but in 1900, a large number of crude oil mills 
were purchased by Southern refineries, and thereafter ensued an increased 
output of the finished products and an increased domestic demand for 
those products. 

There is no reason why the South should not monopolize the manu- 
facture of the best refined cotton-seed oil for edible purposes. Since 
cotton-seed is liable to depreciate if kept too long or not properly kept, it is 
evident that the Southern refiner who takes the seed direct from the gin 
and in his crude mill prepares the seed carefully and speedily for the final 
refining processes, all on the same premises, has a distinct advantage over 
his foreign rival, who must use seed that has lain long since it was 
harvested, and been exposed to various climatic influences. Processes are 
now being sought which, as well as extracting the twenty per cent of oil 
now left in the cakes, will render the oil more easily refinable, with less 
loss. By the means under consideration, it is hoped to recover at least 
ninety-nine per cent of the oil contained in the seed, and the meal is 
rendered more valuable as cattle food, because of an increase of ammonia. 
It is felt that the time will come when all the cotton-seed produced in the 
South, except that required for planting the next crop, will pass into her 
own mills and refineries, while the South, having at her command a limitless 
supply of the best fattening food in the world will become a great cattle- 
raising country. 

Cotton-seed oil is used for an infinity of purposes ; the miner, delving 
deep in the bowels of the earth uses it in the lamp that lights his labors, 
on account of its non-explosive properties ; and the stately cathedrals of 
Europe receive their "dim religious light" from the same source. The 


electrician uses it under certain conditions for insulation ; it is used as a 
tempering oil and for lubricating heavy machinery, for mixing putty, and 
to a slight extent for mixing paint. Owing to the extremely low price of 
cotton-seed oil as compared with animal fats, it is largely used by manu- 
facturers of soaps and soap powders both here and abroad. The refining 
process leaves a residuum amounting to ten per cent of the crude oil ; this 
substance is known as soap stock, or "foots," and is utilized for making 
wool-scouring soaps and cheap grades of laundry soaps ; also glycerine, 
candle stock, olein, still pitch, etc., the list being too large to insert here. 

In the early days of the industry, most of the oil was exported to 
foreign countries ; but the domestic use of it has greatly increased during 
the past decade, so that while in 1899 the quantity of cotton-seed oil exported 
during the calendar year amounted to fifty-four per cent of the production; 
the quantity of oil exported during the calendar year 1909 amounted to only 
twenty-nine per cent of the quantity returned as produced at the 1909 census. 
Notwithstanding this fact the value of the exports during decade 1889 to 
1909 increased fifty-seven per cent. 

The rapid advance of the industry is attributed mainly to the develop- 
ment of superior methods in the refining processes ; while the home demand 
has greatly profited by the high price of hog products, a great percentage 
of cotton-seed oil being used in lard compound. 

The States showing the greatest development in the industry, as in- 
dicated by the actual increase in number of establishments, are: Georgia, 
where the number has grown from forty-six in 1899 to 145 in 1909, or 215 
per cent; Texas, from 102 to 191, or eighty-seven per cent; and South 
Carolina, from forty-eight to 102, or 113 per cent. Texas leads in total 
value of products, with twenty-three per cent of the output of the whole 
country; Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Alabama follow in 

The largest importing countries of American oil, are, in the order ol 
their importance: The Netherlands, Italy, Mexico, United Kingdom, 
France, and Germany. While Germany and Denmark are the largest 
consumers of cake and meal for stock feeding purposes. 

The total number of establishments in 1909 were 809, an increase of 
twenty-seven per cent over those of 1899; while the total value of pro- 
duction had risen from $42,412,000 in 1899 to $107,538,000 in 1909. 



Samuel Slater, who has not inaptly been styled the father of cotton 
manufacturing in the United States, was born at Belper, Derbyshire, Eng- 
land, June 9, 1768; he was the fifth son of William and Mary (Fox) Slater. 
His father, as the descendant of a long line of yeoman ancestry, inherited an 
estate entitled "Holly House Farm," and while cultivating his own lands 
followed the business of a timber merchant. He owned other real estate; 
and that he was a man of substantial means is evidenced by the fact that 
he bequeathed a comfortable portion to each of his ten children: the eldest 
son of course inheriting the estate, where his descendants now live. 

Samuel Slater received an excellent commercial education, under a 
noted schoolmaster of those parts named Jackson. He made rapid progress 
in his studies, and was particularly proficient in mathematics. 

At the age of fourteen, his father placed Samuel with his close friend, 
Mr. Jedediah Strutt, that he might after trial, should the arrangement be 
agreeable to both parties, be apprenticed to learn the "art of cotton manu- 
facturing." Mr. William Slater died in 1782 before the indentures were 
made out, and in 1783 Samuel Slater bound himself apprentice for six 
and a half years to Mr. Jedediah Strutt. This arrangement did not mean 
that he was bound apprentice to become a weaver or an operative of any 
particular kind ; but it meant that as a son of a man of means and position he 
was to learn the "art of cotton manufacturing" in all its branches with a 
view to engaging in that business himself. Mr. Jedediah Strutt was 
eminently qualified to instruct him. A successful manufacturer himself, 
he was possessed of much mechanical genius and had invented a machine for 
the weaving of ribbed stockings He was also the patentee of several 
inventions of an entirely dififerent character. He was a patron and later 
in partnership with Richard Arkwright. and suggested several improve- 
ments in Arkwright's spinning frame, which were incorporated in it before 
it was patented. Strutt and Arkwright built mills at Cromford, at Belper 
and at Alilford, and when the partnership was dissolved in 1881, Mr. Strutt 
retained the Belper and Mil ford factories, where the subject of this 
sketch passed his apprenticeship. Samuel was diligent in his application 
to business and passed much of his spare time among the machinery. 
After the expiration of three years he was appointed overseer in the mill, 
being then barely seventeen. He also became an expert machinist in these 
mills where all that was latest and best in cotton manufacturing machinery 
was in motion, and where improvements were constantly being made. 


Owing to the contention then taking place in regard to patent rights he 
had an opportunity of gaining a knowledge of those also, and a great 
insight into the laws concerning them. 

His term of indenture having duly expired, he was employed by ]\Ir. 
Strutt to oversee the construction of some new works and the setting up 
of the machinery, in addition to his duties as overseer in the mill. The 
experience he thus gained was of incalculable service to him when, in the 
new world, he built and equipped his first mill. 

During the latter years of his apprenticeship, his active and ambitious 
mind had dwelt much upon the possibilities of the future for him, and 
being apprehensive that the cotton business would be overdone in England, 
his attention was caught by an article in an English newspaper, mentioning 
the inducements held out by the legislatures of Pennsylvania and other 
States to encourage the introduction of improved machinery for the manu- 
facture of cotton, and in particular a bounty offered by the Pennsylvania 
legislature for "a roll for jennies," which convinced him that America 
must be destitute of much of the machinery with which he had such full 
acquaintance, and this induced him to try his fortunes in the Western 

He hastened home for some clothing, started to London and took his 
passage, disguised as a farm laborer. He was considerably handicapped 
at the outset, for he not only did not dare to embark as a machinist, but he 
was compelled to refrain from carrying with him the smallest drawing or 
specification concerning machinery, owing to the strict laws regarding its 
exportation from England. He therefore left his native land without in- 
forming anyone of his departure, and in due time he reached New York, 
where he obtained employment in a cotton factory on Vesey street, operated 
by the New York Manufacturing Society, then newly organized. He 
very quickly ascertained that here was no field for his efforts, and hearing 
of the experiments then being made at Providence, he wrote to Moses 
Brown, the wealthy retired merchant who had initiated them, the following 

New York, December 2, 1789. 

Sir: A few days ago I was informed that you wanted a manager of 
cotton spinning, etc., in which business I flatter myself that I can give the 
greatest satisfaction, in making machinery, making good yarn, either for 
stockings or twist, as any that is made in England, as I have had oppor- 
tunity and an oversight of Sir Richard Arkwright's works, and in Mr. 
Strutt's mills upwards of eight years. If you are not provided for, should 
be glad to serve you; though I am in the New York Manufactory, and 
have been for three weeks since I arrived from England, but we have but 
one card, two machines, two spinning jennies, which I think are not worth 
using. My encouragement is pretty good, but should much rather have 
the care of the perpetual carding and spinning. My intention is to erect 


a perpetual card and spinning. [Meaning the Arkwright patents.] If you 
please to drop a line respecting the amount of encouragement you wish to 
give, by favor of Captain Brown, you will much oblige, sir, your most 
obedient humble servant, Samuel Slater. 

N. B. — Please to direct to me at No. 37 Golden Hill, New York. 

To this letter, he received an answer informing him that experiments 
had been made in water spinning, but with no success ; and Mr. Brown 
invited him to go to Providence, "and have the credit as well as the 
advantage of perfecting the first water mill in America.'' 

Mr. Slater accepted this invitation and went to Providence, where he 
assured Mr. Brown he could do all he had promised in his letter. He 
visited Pawtucket to inspect the machinery there, and pronounced it 
worthless. It was then proposed that Mr. Slater should erect the series of 
machines called the Arkwright patents, which he refused to do unless he 
were provided with a skilled worker in wood, who should be put under 
bonds not to steal the patterns, or disclose the nature of the works. "Under 
my proposals," he said, "if I do not make as good yarn as they do in 
England, I will have nothing for my services, but will throw the whole of 
what I have attempted over the bridge." 

Mr. Slater at once began the construction of new machines on the 
Arkwright principles, a work attended with immense difficulty, owing to 
the fact that he was obliged to rely upon his own mechanical knowledge 
and his memory for the reproduction of the most delicate and intricate 
machines. There were at the outset many disappointments and setbacks, 
and the first frame of twenty-four spindles was much longer in course of 
construction than had been anticipated, owing to the difficulty of obtaining 
cards and even tools to work with ; all of which had to be made by Mr. 
Slater himself or under his directions. The card clothing was obtained 
from Phinney Earle of Leicester, who manufactured hand cards, but when 
applied to the machines it failed to work properly, the teeth of the cards not 
having the right angle or inclination, Mr. Slater's instructions for remedy- 
ing this defect having been followed by Mr. Earle, it was overcome and 
the machine worked effectively. 

In order to give a fair understanding of the immense service rendered 
to the cotton industry of the United States by Mr. Slater in accomplishing 
this work, it is necessary that we should describe the status of the 
manufacture at that time, and the experiments that had been made to 
better it. 

About 1788, Daniel Anthony, Andrew Dexter and Lewis Peck, of- 
Providence, had formed a partnership to make what was then called home- 
spun cloth. The idea at first was to spin by hand and manufacture jeans 
with linen warp and cotton filling, but learning that Mr. Orr, of Bridge- 
water, Mass., had imported models of machinery from England, Daniel 


Anthony went to Bridgewater and obtained a draft of the model which was 
very imperfect, and not in operation. They also built a machine called a 
jenny, a model of which had been brought from England into Beverly, 
Mass., by a man named Somers. This jenny had twenty-eight spindles 
and was operated in the market house at Providence. They then made a 
carding machine, and subsequently proceeded to build a spinning frame 
from the draft obtained at Bridgewater, but it was a failure, being too 
cumbersome to work by hand and too imperfect to be worked by water. 
This was the machinery bought by Moses Brown and condemned by 
Samuel Slater on his arrival in Providence. But notwithstanding the 
difficulties attending his experiments, and his own depression at the con- 
stant failure of his own efforts towards perfection, Mr. Slater evinced so 
great an ability for this task in the first three months, and there seemed 
such good prospect of ultimate success, that it was proposed he should enter 
into partnership with Messrs. Almy and Brown. On the fifth of April, 
1790, a contract was drawn up between William Almy and Smith Brown 
of the one part, and Samuel Slater of the other part, that the first named 
parties should furnish capital and materials for the construction of two 
carding machines, a drawing and roving frame, and a spinning frame to 
the capacity of one hundred spindles, and capital for the carrying on of the 
manufacture after the completion of the machines; while the last named 
was to receive one-half the profits of the business and to own one-half 
the machinery as compensation for his services. Messrs. Almy and Brown 
were to have a commission of two and one-half per cent for the purchase 
of stock, and four per cent for selling yarn, and Mr. Slater was to 
be charged half the expense incurred in the purchase and construction 
of the machines and for the amounts advanced for his support while 
developing and prosecuting the business. The style of the firm formed 
under this contract was Almy, Brown and Slater. 

Mr. Slater's new machines were set up in the fulling mill of Ezekiel 
Carpenter, which stood near the West end of Pawtucket Bridge, and the 
day on which they were first set in motion marked a new era in manufactur- 
ing in New England. The first yarn was probably produced in the autumn 
of 1790. But the first record of the employment of operatives and the 
keeping of their time was made on Monday, Dec. 20, 1790. 

The success of the enterprise was such that cotton yarn was almost 
immediately produced, which was fully equal in quality to that of the same 
grade produced in England, and the firm decided to build a mill especially 
adapted to cotton spinning. For this purpose, a mill privilege on the 
Blackstone River, some twenty rods above the Pawtucket Bridge, was 
purchased Nov. 12, 1791, and early in 1793 the building was begun. The 
building still stands, though many alterations and additions have been 
made, and, though it is styled the "Old Slater Mill," as seen from the 


street, it does not give a very correct idea of the mill as it was when Samuel 
Slater was one of its owners. 

Hardly was the mill running on a substantial basis, with every promise 
of unlimited prosperity and success, than dissatisfaction arose among some 
of the help employed, and several of these employees left and erected for 
themselves a small mill, the patterns of the machinery were copied by them, 
and new machines were at diverj times and places set in motion by persons 
drawing their knowledge from Slater's mill in Pawtucket, so that in 1812, 
more than one hundred factories, operating eighty thousand spindles, had 
been established in different parts of the country. 

The business of Almy, Brown & Slater was for several years confined 
to cotton spinning, the yarns made by them being sold in the vicinity of 
the mills, but as similar factories became numerous, a market was sought 
further afield, and Almy & Brown became the selling agents, the manufac- 
uring being done by Almy, Brown & Slater. 

In 1793, Mr. Slater sold the first cotton sewing thread manufactured 
in the United States. He was showing his wife some warp spun from 
cotton upon his new machinery, which was then being introduced to 
take the place of the linen warp which had heretofore been used with 
cotton filling, when in testing its strength and fineness, she suggested that 
it might prove an available substitute for the linen sewing tliread then in 
use, and Mr. Slater successfully adopted her suggestion. 

Early in 1799, Mr. Slater began the erection of a mill on land owned 
by him in Rehoboth, and by a transfer of property, later admitted Oziel 
Wilkinson, Timothy Greene and William Wilkinson into the venture, and 
tlie business was carried on under the style of Samuel Slater & Co. This 
factory was known as the White Mill. In 1819 (Jan. 30) Mr. Slater sold 
his interest in the business. 

When the first cotton factory established by Samuel Slater had been 
successfully operated for some ten years, desiring the co-operation of his 
younger brother John, he invited him to come to America. On his arrival 
in Pawtucket in 1803, he entered the service of Almy, Brown & Slater, 
and two years later, when the firm decided to start cotton manufacturing in 
some new location, Mr. John Slater made several prospecting journeys, 
during which he discovered in the northern part of the town of Smithfield, 
R. I., the Monhegan, now the branch river, which afforded an exceptionally 
fine water privilege. Three purchases of land were made, comprising in all 
more than one hundred and fifty acres, and including the control of the 
stream. A partnership was formed by William .\lmy, Obadiah Brown, 
Samuel Slater and John Slater, under the style of Almy, Brown & Slaters, 
and the building of the mills was at once begun and completed late in 1806, 
the machinery being started in 1807. This mill was equipped with all the ■ 
latest improvements in machinery brought by Mr. John Slater from 
England, and in September he removed tliere as superintendent of the 


concern, which began spinning in the following spring, and was managed 
by him for upwards of fifty years. Samuel Slater himself resided during 
part of his life at Slatersville, a village which was built mainly by his own 
and his brother's efforts. The establishment there was originally owned 
by the four partners in equal shares, but eventually became the sole 
property of John Slater and the heirs of his brother. 

In 1808, Samuel Slater & Co., in addition to their output of spinning 
products, advertised "checks, stripes and tickings of superfine and middling 

In 181 1, Mr. Slater was informed by one of his clerks, Bela Tiffany by 
name, of the existence of a water-power in what is now Webster, Mass. 
Mr. Tiffany lived in Brimfield, Mass., and passed through this section on 
his journeys to and from Pawtucket, and upon mentioning the fact of the 
water-power to Mr. Slater, the latter suggested that he stop oft' and 
ascertain its situation and quality. In a letter of May 27, 181 1, the young 
man wrote informing Mr. Slater, that in an almost benighted region, four 
miles from Oxford, three miles from Dudley, and six and a half miles from 
Thompson, Connecticut, he had found about thirteen acres of land with 
certain buildings thereon and a "waterfall suflRcient for all practicable pur- 
poses." Before the close of the year 1812, about two hundred and sixty 
more acres had been added, mills were at once erected, and in 1813, 
Slater and Tiffany (Mr. Tiffany was now a partner with one-sixth interest) 
began the manufacture of cotton yarn. At the same time, a dyeing and 
bleaching house was erected and placed under the management of John 
Tyson, who had an interest in the business until his death in 1821, when it 
passed into the hands of Mr. Slater. Other purchases of land were made 
by Slater & Tiffany during 1814-15, but in November, 1816, during the de- 
pressed condition of manufactures and the financial stress occasioned by the 
war of 1812, Mr. Tiffany sold his interest to Mr. Slater. During the war, 
the company had engaged in the manufacture of woolen cloth under the 
superintendence of Edward Howard, a Yorkshire man, and through his 
influence a new location was made on French River, where a property of 
twelve thousand dollars was bought, and Mr. Howard in 1822 conveyed 
half his interest to Mr. Slater. 

Further purchases of land were made on French River, amounting to 
more than five hundred acres between 1822-24. In 1823, Mr. Slater pur- 
chased the cotton mills of Braman, Benedict & Waters at what is now the 
North Village of Webster. The several villages to which these manufactur- 
ing interests afforded nurture, with some additional territory taken from the 
towns of Dudley and Oxford, were through Mr. Slater's influence incor- 
porated as the town of Webster, named in honor of the great statesman, 
of whom Mr. Slater was an ardent admirer. 

In 1823, on the tenth of July, Samuel Slater, with his brother John, 
bought the cotton mills at Jewett City, Conn., which plant was operated by 


the Jewett City Manufacturing Co., the enterprise proving successful under 
the Slater management. July 22), 1831, Samuel Slater conveyed his interest 
in this property to his brother John, who from that time until his death 
owned and operated the mills. 

In May, 1826, Samuel Slater became the owner of a half interest in 
the Amoskeag Village Mills, N. H., his partners being Larned Pitcher of 
Seekonk, Mass., and Ira Gay, of Dunstable N. H. and in December of the 
same year, Messrs. Slater, Pitcher and Gay with Oliver Dean, of Medway, 
Mass., Lyman Tiffany, of Ro.xbury, Mass., and Willard Sayles, of Boston, 
Mass., entered into partnership under the firm name of the Amoskeag 
Manufacturing Company, and operated the two mills until July i, 1831, 
when a charter of incorporation was granted by the New Hampshire 
legislature, under the same name, the partners conveying their interest to 
the company and receiving shares in return. Mr. Slater was a stockholder 
in this company imtil his death. 

In 1829, Mr. Slater conveyed his interest in the Slatersville Mills to 
his partners, but he repurchased it in 1832, and with it, in, partnership wrtti 
his brother John, he bought the interests of the other partners, after which 
time the mills at Slatersville were operated by the firm of S. & J. Slater. 
On August 12, 1829, the partnership of Almy, Brown & Slater, at Paw- 
tucket, was dissolved, Mr. Slater selling his interest to his partners. 

In 1829, Mr. Slater became sole proprietor of the woolen mill in 
Webster, which up to that time he had carried on in partnership with ]\Ir. 
Howard. In 1830, he became the proprietor of the Providence Steam 
Cotton Mill, which had been erected some years before, largely with capital 
furnished by him, and also of the mills at Wilkinsonville, Mass., which had 
been built in 1823 by David Wilkinson, who became insolvent in 1829, and 
of whom he was the largest creditor. His interest in these mills descended 
to his heirs. 

Though for more than twenty years after coming to this country he 
still had labored for sixteen hours a day, Mr. Slater found time and thought 
for those in his employ. On the establishment of the old mill in Pawtucket, 
he introduced such rules and regulations as he thought expedient for the 
enforcement of order and regularity, and also opened Sunday schools after 
the manner of those established by Mr. Raikes in England, for the 
instruction of the young people employed in the mills ; in addition to these, 
day schools were promoted by Mr. Slater at all of the manufactories in 
which he was interested, in some cases the teachers' salaries being paid by 
Mr. Slater himself, and his relations with his employees were cordial and 
pleasant. He took a paternal and. kindly interest in their welfare, which 
was extended to their social and domestic concerns, and to his care and 
effort for a period extending over forty years, was due the relatively 
superior condition of the manufacturing villages of Rhode Island in their 
moral and social aspects as compared with similar manufacturing villages 




of that time in Great Britain. He was especially winning and genial with 
youth and children, and his paternal relations with his own children were 
peculiarly tender. 

His ideas were broad, far-reaching and philosophical, and he deserved 
in an eminent degree the place he holds in New England as the one who 
gave direction and impetus to the movement which early in the nineteenth 
century placed the United States on a manufacturing eminence, and opened 
out to her, in the textile industries, possibilities that are still unlimited. 
Mr. Slater was several times honored by the thanks and appreciation of the 
nation, formally expressed by a unanimous vote in Congress for the ines- 
timable benefits he had conferred in fostering the manufactures of the infant 
republic. In person he was tall and well proportioned, of light complexion, 
ruddy countenance, regular features and intellectual expression. 

He was a citizen of Pawtucket up to the time of his death, though his 
later years were passed mostly in the mansion he had built at East Webster. 

Mr. Slater married, shortly after he had settled in Providence, Hannah, 
daughter of Mr. Oziel Wilkinson, with whom he was associated in business. 
The marriage took place Oct. 2, 1791, and of it were born nine children: 
William, born Aug. 31, 1796, died Jan. 31, 1801 ; Elizabeth, born Nov. 15, 
1798, died Nov. 4, 1801 ; Mary, born Sept. 28, 1801, died Aug. 19, 1803; 
Samuel, born Sept. 28, 1802, died July 14, 1821 ; George Basset, born Feb. 
12, 1804, died Nov. 15, 1843; John, born May 23, 1805, died Jan. 23, 1838; 
Horatio Nelson, born March 5, 1808, died Aug., 1888; William, born Oct. 
15, 1809, died Sept., 1825; Thomas Graham, born Sept. 19, 1812. died 
Sept., 1844. 

Mrs. Slater died, aged thirty-eight, soon after the birth of her youngest 
child, and Nov. 21, 1817, Mr. Slater married Esther, widow of Robert 
Parkinson, and she survived him. Samuel Slater died at Webster, Mass., 
April 21, 1835, in his sixty-seventh year. 


Augustus Lowell was born in Boston, Mass., Jan. 15, 1830. He was 
the son of John Amory and Elizabeth (Putnam) Lowell. Augustus Lowell 
passed his boyhood in Roxbury, attended the Boston Latin School, where 
he was prepared for college, and was graduated from Harvard in the 
Class of 1850. He travelled in Europe, visiting England, France, Germany 
and Switzerland, and, on returning to Boston, found a position in the 
counting room of BuUard & Lee, East India merchants, where he re- 
mained from 1852 to 1853. He then was sent to Lowell (which place 
was named after his great-uncle, Francis Cabot Lowell) to obtain a prac- 


tical knowledge of the business of cotton manufacturing, and, after spending 
a year in the mills there, he returned to Boston and was employed in the 
office of J. M. Beebe, Morgan 8i Co. He was almost constantly officially 
connected with the cotton mills at Lowell and Lawrence, and was also 
engaged in the East India trade in partnership with Franklin H. Story. 
With his wife and family he visited Europe, 1864-66, tarrying for two and 
a half years on account of Mrs. Lowell's health. Returning to. Boston 
in 1866, he continued the care of the cotton manufacturing interests and 
assumed the management of numerous trusts. In 1875 he was chosen 
treasurer of the Boott Cotton Mills, an office which he held for eleven 
years, and about the same date was elected to succeed his father on the 
board of the Massachusetts Hospital Life Insurance Company. Of the 
Provident Institution for Savings he was likewise made a member, and 
eventually became its president, and at this date also began his long career 
upon the board of the Boston Gaslight Company. He was also treasurer 
of the Merrimack Manufacturing Company, June 20 to October 29, 1877; 
president of the Massachusetts Cotton Mills; of the Massachusetts Mills, 
in Georgia ; of the Pacific Mills ; of the Merrimack Manufacturing Com- 
pany, 1887-8 and 1892, to death; of the Boott Cotton Mills; of the Lowell 
Bleachery; of the Lowell Machine Shop; of the Glendon Iron Company, and 
a director of the Everett Mills ; of the Middlesex Company ; of the 
Lawrence Mills; of the Lowell Manufacturing Company; of the Suffolk 
National Bank; of the Cranberry Iron Company; of the Plymouth Cordage 
Company, and of the Union Trust Company of New York, taking a leading 
part in the direction of all the companies with which he was associated. 

Aside from these widely varying business interests, Mr. Lowfell took an 
active interest in matters affecting the public welfare. For many years he 
was a trustee of the Boston Eye and Ear Infirmary, and participated 
actively in its management. He followed his father as trustee of the Lowell 
Institute and did much for its prosperity : and he largely shaped the policy 
of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as a member of the corpora- 
tion from 1873 to 1883, "iifl ■IS a member of its executive committee from 
1883 to 1901. He was made a member of the American Academy of Arts 
and Sciences in 1886, of which he was also treasurer and then vice-president. 
He was also a member of the American Association for the Advancement 
of Science from 1898; of the Rfass-achusetts Historical Society in 1900; of 
the Colonial Society of Massachusetts from 1898; ex-officio, he was a 
trustee of the Boston Art Museum for twenty years and a trustee of the 
Lowell Textile School from 1897 to the time of his death. Mr. Lowell's 
son, Mr. Percival Lowell, wrote a memoir of him which was published 
in the "Proceedings of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences," 
Vol. xxxvii, from which we quote the following as of special interest : 
"Tliree qualities he possessed to an unusual degree — will, ability and 
integrity. He was noted for his determination. To his lot, in consequence, 


fell many necessary and thankless tasks. He likewise escaped many empty 
honors. For where he went, he worked. No one ever thought of pre- 
ferring him to a post merely honoris causa. For people knew that in 
getting him they got not a figurehead, but a man who was certain to make 
himself felt ; not because he tried to do so, but because it was in him to do it." 
Mr. Lowell married, June i, 1854, Katharine Bigelow, .seventh and 
youngest child of the Hon. Abbott (1792-1855) and Katherine (Bigelow) 
Lawrence, and their children were: Percival Lowell, born in Boston, 
March 13, 1855, astronomer; Abbott Lawrence Lowell, born in Boston, De- 
cember 13, 1856; elected president of Harvard in 1909; Katharine Lowell, 
born in Boston, November 27, 1858, married Alfred Roosevelt, who died 
in 1891, and, secondly, November 24, 1902, Thomas James Bowlker; Eliza- 
beth Lowell, born in Boston, February 2, 1862, married June 9, 1888, 
William Lowell Putnam, lawyer, of Boston ; Roger Lowell, born in Boston, 
February 2, 1862, died August 31, 1863; May Lowell, born May i, I'S/O, 
died same day ; Amy Lowell, born in Brookline, February 9, 1874. Mr. 
Lowell died at his home in Brookline, Mass., June 22, 1901. 


Francis Cabot Lowell was born in Newburyport, Mass., April 7, 
1775. He was the son of Judge John and Susanna (Cabot) Lowell, grand- 
son of the Rev. John and Sarah (Champney) Lowell and of Francis and 
Mary (Fitch) Cabot, and a descendant of Percival Lowell, who came from 
Bristol, England, in 1639, and settled in Newbury, Mass. 

Francis Cabot Lowell was graduated from Harvard, A. B. 1793 and 
M. A. 1796. He then engaged in mercantile pursuits in which he was 
remarkably successful. In 1810 the condition of his health induced him 
to visit England. On his return to America, shortly after the commence- 
ment of the War of 1812, he, with his brother-in-law, Patrick Tracy 
Jackson, undertook the manufacture of cotton on what was then a large 
scale. Unable to obtain a power loom, such as was then in use in Eng- 
land, Mr. Low:€ll and Mr. Jackson spent the winter of 1812-13 in the 
construction of such a loom, in which they were eminently successful, and 
immediately formed the Boston Manufacturing Company with an authorized 
capital of $400,000. Mr. Nathan Appleton was associated with Mr. Lowell 
and Mr. Jackson in this venture, and a mill was immediately built at 
Waltham, Mass. In the mean time, the joint inventors were busily engaged 
in perfecting this loom, for which they obtained a patent February 23, 
1815. A number of looms had been placed in the Waltham Mill, and Mr. 
Lowell, unable to obtain the requisite supply of yarn of a uniform quality, 


established there also a spinning mill of 1700 spindles, and thus the first 
factory making finished cloth from the raw cotton was established. 

The close of the War of 1S12, in iSi^, however, had a very injurious 
effect on the cotton industry of New England, and when Mr. Lowell, in 
company with Mr. Appleton, visited the mills in Rhode Island, they found 
the owners clamorous for a very high tariff. In 1816 Mr. Lowell went 
to Washington to aid in procuring L^uch a tariff as would protect New 
England cotton mills, but he found the representative and senators in 
Congress from these states hostile to his scheme on account of the op- 
position offered by the merchants largely engaged in the carrying trade 
with the East Indies, who dealt largely in cotton cloth manufactured in 
the East. Mr. Lowell therefore turned to the members from the Soutfiern 
States, and through them obtained a minimum duty of six and one-quarter 
cents per square yard, which tariff set the spindles and looms of New 
England in motion again. Thus was Mr. Lowell mainly instrumental in the 
permanent establishment of the cotton industry in New England. 

After his death his brother-in-law, Patrick Tracy Jackson, purchased 
a section of Chelmsford, and, with John Amory Lowell, located mills there, 
and the new manufacturing centre for Northern Massachusetts became 
known as Lowell, in commemoration of Francis Cabot Lowell, the town 
being incorporated in 1826. 

Mr. Lowell married Hannah, daughter of the Hon. Jonathan and 
Hannah (Tracy) Jackson, October 31, 1798, and had three sons and one 
daughter. His son John left $250,000 for a course of lectures which 
resulted in the founding of the Lowell Institute in 1836. Francis Cabot 
Lowell died in Boston, Mass., August to, 1817. 


John Amory Lowell was born in Boston, Mass., Nov. 11, 1798. He 
was the son of John (1769-1840) and Rebecca (daughter of John and 
Katharine Greene Amory) Lowell and grandson of John and Sarah Hig- 
ginson Lowell. 

John Amory Lowell was graduated from Harvard, A. B. 1815, A. M. 
1818, and received his business education in the house of Kirk Boott & 
Sons, to whose business he succeeded in partnership with the eldest son, 
Mr. John Kirk Boott. In 1827 he was treasurer of the Boston Manufac- 
turing Company, at Waltham, and in 1835 built the Boott Mill at Lowell, 
and was treasurer of the Boott corporation for thirteen years and president 
and director up to the time of his death. 

In 1839 '1^ '^"''^ ^^^ Massachusetts Mills, at Lowell, of which he was 


treasurer from its inception to 1848, and a director throughout his life. 
From 1871-77, he was president of the Pacific Mills, and was also a di- 
rector of that corporation. He was associated with Abbott Lawrence and 
others in the founding of the Essex Company at Lawrence. He was also 
a director of the Lowell Machine Shop, of the Lake Company, and for 
fifty-nine years a director of the Suffolk Bank, Boston, in which connec- 
tion he originated the system of redemption of country bank notes. 

From Harvard, Mr. Lowell received the honorary degree of LL.D. in 
185 1. He was a Fellow of Harvard College, 1837-77, member of the 
Linnean Society of London, England, Fellow of the American Academy of 
Arts and Sciences and member of the Massachusetts Historical Society. He 
was a member of the convention that revised the State Constitution in 1853, 
and was connected with various benevolent and literary associations. Under 
the will of John Lowell, Jr., he was sole trustee of the Lowell Institute for 
forty years, and as such was responsible for its founding and development 
and for the institution of its lecture courses, its free drawing school, its 
lectures for advanced classes in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 
its courses of instruction in science for the teachers of Boston, and the 
Lowell School of Practical Design, established in 1872. 

He married in Boston, Feb. 14, 1822, Susan Cabot, second child of 
Francis Cabot and Hannah (Jackson) Lowell. She died at Cambridge, 
Mass., August 15, 1827, and he married secondly, April 2, 1829, Elizabeth 
Putnam, daughter of Hon. Samuel and Sarah (GooU) Putnam, of Salem, 
Mass., and had one son, Augustus Lowell, born Jan. 15, 1830. 

John Amory Lowell died in Boston, Mass., Oct. 31, 1881. 


Amos Adams Lawrence was born in Boston, Mass., July 31, 1814; 
son of Amos and Sarah (Richards) Lawrence; grandson of Samuel and 
Susanna (Parker) Lawrence, of Groton, and of Giles and Sarah (Adams) 
Richards, of Dedham ; great-grandson of Captain Amos and Abigail 
(Abbott) Lawrence, of the Rev. Amos and Elizabeth (Prentiss) Adams, 
of William and Sarah (Richardson) Parker, of Groton, and of Abigail 
and Hulda (Hopkins) Richards, of Waterbury. His first ancestors in 
America included John and Elizabeth Lawrence, Watertown, Massachu- 
setts Bay Colony, 1635, and Groton, 1662; Thomas Richards (1600-1639), 
of Hartford Colony, and Henry and Elizabeth (Paine) Adams, Medfield. 
Massachusetts. Amos Lawrence (1786-1852) was a member of the firm of 
A. & A. Lawrence, extensive promoters of the early woolen and cotton mill 
enterprise of New England. 


The subject of this sketch, Amos Adams Lawrence, was prepared for 
college in Boston, and at Franklin Academy, North Adams, and was grad- 
uated from Harvard, A. E. 1835, A. M. 1838; was treasurer of the 
Corporation of ITarvard College, 1857-62, and an overseer, 1879-85. His 
business career began in 1835 as a clerk in the dry goods commission house 
of Almy Patterson & Co., of Boston, in 1S35 ; commission merchant on his 
own account, 1836-9; member of the commission firm of Mason & Law- 
rence, 1843-6, and of Lawrence & Co., 1846-86. He was president of the 
Cocheco Cotton i\lanufacturing Company, East Rochester, N. H., and 
treasurer of the Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company, Salmon Falls, N. 
H., the firm of Lawrence & Co. being the selling agents for these mills, 
and for the Pacific Mills, Lawrence, Mass., for more than forty years. 
He was a director of the Sufifolk Bank, of Boston; of the American 
Insurance Office; of the Massachusetts Llospital Life Insurance Company; 
of the Boston Water Power Corporation; of the Amesbury Company; of 
the Middlesex Canal ; of the New England Trust Company, of which he 
was the first president ; of the National Association of Cotton Manufac- 
turers and Planters, and of the Association of Knit Goods Maimfacturers, 
serving both these associations as president. 

In 1846 he purchased a large tract of land in Eastern Wisconsin, 
and founded the town of Appleton, on the banks of the Fox River, which 
became the capital of Outagamie County and the seat of Lawrence L^ni- 
versity, which he founded in 1849, ''"d of which he was the chief benefactor 
during his lifetime. Fie was a member of the- Massachusetts Historical 
Society and of various benevolent associations. He was treasurer and 
one of the three trustees of the New England Immigrant Aid Company, 
active from 1854 in supporting the Free Soil Party in Kansas in their 
struggle to prevent the establishment of slavery in the territories of Kansas 
and Nebraska. It was mainly due to his personal aid and the efiforts of 
Eli Thayer, of Worcester, that Kansas became a free state. In i860 he 
was the candidate of the Union Party for Governor of Massachusetts, 
and when the Civil War was apparent, he devoted much time and money 
to military drill and in instructing college students in the manual of 
arms. He was the leader in recruiting the Second Regiment Massachu- 
setts Volunteer Cavalry in the fall of 1862, and in 1863 he was appointed 
by Governor Andrew to organize and recruit the Fifty-fourth Massachu- 
setts Regiment, composed of colored men recruited in Boston. 

He acted as chairman of the finance committee which raised the fund 
to erect Memorial Hall at Cambridge, in honor of the sons of Harvard who 
were killed in the service during the Civil War. He was the first treasurer 
of the Episcopal Theological School at Cambridge, and served in that 
office for fifteen years. In 1873 he built and presented to the school 
one-half of the stone dormitory, known as Lawrence Hall, and he com- 
pleted the building in 1880. Mr. Lawrence married IMarch 31, 1842, Sarah 


Elizabeth, daughter of the Hon. W'illiam and Mary Ann (Cutter) Appleton, 
and they resided in Pemberton Square, Boston, removing in 185 1 to 
Cottage Farm, BrookHne, where he acquired a large landed property, and 
where, in 1867, in connection with his brother, William Richard Lawrence, 
he built the Church of Our Saviour, Longwood, in memory of their father, 
the beautiful church being consecrated by Bishop Eastborn, September 29, 
1868. In 1885 his widow added to the gift a stone rectory; and in 1893 
their children erected a transejit of the church as a memorial of their 
mother who died at L.ongwood, ]\lay 27, 1891. The children of Amos 
Adams and Sarah Elizabeth (Appleton) Lawrence were: Marianne Apple- 
ton, who married Dr. Roliert Aniory ; Sarah, who married Peter Charles 
Brooks; Amory Appleton, born April 22, 1848; William, born May 30, 
1850, Bishop of Massachusetts; and Susan, who married William Cabot 
Loring. Amos Adams I.-awrence died at his summer home at Nahant, 
Mass., August 22, 1886. 


Amos Lawrence was born in Groton, Mass., April 22, 1786, the fourth 
son of Major Samuel and Susanna (Parker) Lawrence and brother of 
Abbott Lawrence (1792-1855). He attended the public school in Groton 
and then spent a term at Groton Academy, leaving school at the age of 
thirteen to take a position as clerk in a store at Dunstable, where he re- 
mained less than a year. He then served an apprenticeship of seven years 
in the general variety store of James Brazer, in Groton, and his next posi- 
tion was as clerk in a Boston drygoods store. This firm, within a few 
months failed, and Mr. Lawrence was appointed by the creditors to settle 
its afifairs. This being satisfactorily accomplished, he, December 17, 1807, 
began business on his own account, opening a small drygoods store on 
Cornhill. The following year he was joined by his brother Abbott, who 
served as his apprentice. January i, 1814, the two brothers formed the 
firm of A. & A. Lawrence, and, as a partner, the subject of this sketch be- 
came interested in the mantifacture of domestic goods and in promoting 
enterprises at Lowell and Lawrence, Mass., the firm becoming large owners 
in the first mills erected in these towns. These two brothers, in establish- 
ing the commission house of A. & A. Lawrence, not only laid the founda- 
tion of their own fortunes, but that of many of the members of the Lawrence 

In 1831, on account of ill-health, Amos Lawrence retired from active 
participation in business and devoted the remainder of his life to philan- 
thropic works. He gave $40,000 to Williams College, and the library of 


the college was named "Lawrence Hall" in his honor. He founded a 
library for Groton Academy, giving to the school a valuable telescope, and, 
at the time of his death, was engaged in raising $50,000 as an endowment 
fund for the academy. In 184^-1 the name was changed to Lawrence 
Academy on account of his munificent gifts. He gave generously to Kenyon 
College, Ohio; to Wabash College, Indiana, and to Bangor Theological 
Seminary, Maine. He established a Children's Infirmary in Boston, 
donated a building to the Boston Society of Natural History and contributed 
Sio,ooo towards completing Bunker Hill Monument. His fame as a mer- 
chant caused his name to be placed among the candidates in "Class B Mer- 
chants" as worthy of a place in the Hall of Fame for Great Americans 
in October, 1900, and twentv votes were given him, the only candidate re- 
ceiving a greater number being Cornelius \^anderbilt, who received twenty- 
nine votes, but, as fifty votes were necessary to secure a place, the name 
of no merchant appears in the Hall. He served as a representative in the 
General Court of Massachusetts, 1822. 

Mr. Lawrence was twice married; first to Sarah Richards, June 6, 181 1, 
and second to Mrs. Nancy Ellis, widow of Judge Ellis, of Claremont, N. H., 
and daughter of Robert Means, of Amherst, N. H. Mr. Lawrence died in 
Boston, December 31, 1852. 


Abbott Lawrence was bom in Groton, Mass., December 16, 1792, fifth 
child of Samuel and Susanna (Parker) Lawrence and younger brother of 
Amos Lawrence (1786-1852) (q. v.). He attended the district school, and 
subsequently, for three years, Groton Academy, and worked on his father's 
farm during the vacation periods. In 1808 he went to Boston, where he 
was apprenticed to his brother Amos in the drygoods business, and on 
reaching his majority, December 16, 1813, became a partner in the busi- 
ness, the firm of A. & A. Lawrence, importers and dealers in foreign 
woolen and cotton goods, being formed January i, 1814. In 181 2 he as- 
sisted in organizing the New England Guards, and rendered service in the 
Charlestown Navy Yard and elsewhere during the war with Great Britain, 
for which service he received a grant of land from the government. Dur- 
ing his repeated trips to England to purchase goods, he became alive to 
the necessity of manufacturing in the United States, and joined the men 
who first proposed to erect factories on the Merrimack River at Lowell. 
He led the distinguished company, including William and Samuel Lawrence, 
John A. Lowell, Francis C. Lowell, Nathan Appleton, Theodore Lyman, 
George W. Lyman, Patrick T. Jackson, James B. Francis and Charles S. 


Storrow, in organizing the ^ferrimack Water Power Association, of which 
he was made president and i\Ir. Storrow treasurer and agent, and in his 
honor and that of his brothers, Samuel and WilHam, Bodwell Falls be- 
came known as Lawrence and was incorporated as a town in 1847. The 
Atlantic Mills were chartered in 1846 and three mills erected in 1849-52 
for the manufacture of sheetings and shirtings, which were sold by the firm 
of A. & A. Lawrence. Abbott Lawrence was elected the first president of 
the corporation, and when the Pacific ]\Iills was formed and incorporated 
he became president of that corporation also, and so continued up to the 
time of his death, in 1855. 

He was largely interested in political affairs, and served as one of the 
seven delegates from New England to the Harrisburg Tarifi: Convention 
of 1827; was a member of the Common Council of Boston, 1832, declining 
re-election ; was a Whig representative from Massachusetts in the Twenty- 
fourth Congress, 1835-37, serving on the Ways and Means Committee; de- 
clined to stand for the next election, but was elected to the Twenty-sixth 
Congress, taking his seat in 1830, but was obliged to resign in September, 
1840, on account of ill-health. He was the United States Commissioner 
to settle the Northeastern boundary question in 1842 with Lord Ashbur- 
ton, the representative of Great Britain. He was a delegate to the Whig 
National Convention at Baltimore. Md., May i, 1844, and to the National 
Convention of 1848. He accepted the position of United States Minister 
to England, but resigned in 1S52 and returned to Boston. He gave $50,000 
to endow the Lawrence Scientific School, Harvard L^niversity, and be- 
queathed $50,000 for the erection on East Canton Street. Boston, of model 
lodging houses for the poor: to the Boston Public Library, and 
$50,000 to the Lawrence Scientific School. He received the honorary de- 
gree of LL. D. from Williams College in 1852 and from Harvard College 
in 1854, of which body he was an overseer, 1854-55, a member of the 
Massachusetts Historical Society and a fellow of the American Academy 
of Arts and Sciences. He married June 28, iSiQ, Katharine Bigelow (1793- 
1860), eldest daughter of Hon. Timothy and Lucy (Prescott) Bigelow, 
granddaughter of Col. Timothy and .A^nna (Andrew) Bigelow, of Wor- 
cester, Mass., and of Dr. Oliver and Lydia (Baldwin) Prescott, of Groton, 
Mass., and their children were : Annie Bigelow, who married Benjamin 
Smith Rotch, of New Bedford, Mass., July 30, 1846; James, who married 
Elizabeth, daughter of William Hickling Prescott, the historian, and Sarah 
(Amory) Prescott, March 16, 1852; George (April 16, 1824-August 7, 
182^); John Abbott (June 11, 1825-Tune 22, 1825); Timothy Bigelow 
(1826-1869), Harvard College A. E. i8.^fi. A. M. 1849, attache of the Amer- 
ican Legation at London, England. 1849-55: on staff of General E. D. 
Keyes, Army of the Potomac, 1861 ; consul-general to Florence, Italv, 

A public memorial service was held in Faneuil Hall, August 20, 1855, 


at which the Hon. Robert C. Winthrop, Hon. Edward Everett and other 
of the leading men of New England eulogized his character and services. 
Abbott Lawrence died in Boston, Mass., .August iS, 1855. 


Amory Appleton Lawrence was born in Boston, Mass., April 22, 
1848. He was the son of Amos Adams and Sarah Elizabeth (Appleton) 
Lawrence. (For genealogy see sketch of his father, Ibid.) 

He attended school in Brookline and Boston, and was graduated from 
Harvard University, A. B. 1870, and in the same year entered the liouse 
of Lawrence & Co., drygoods commission merchants. In 1871 he was ad- 
mitted to the firm, and, as a member of it, became a large investor in cot- 
ton manufacturing enterprises. He was director of the Ipswich Mills, 
1S70; treasurer, October, 1870. to October, 1873, and president from 1S76. 
A director of the Gilmanton Mills, Belmont, N. H., from 1875, and was 
made president of that corporation in 1886. He was a director of the 
Salmon Falls Manufacturing Comjiany, Salmon Falls, N. H., from 1886, 
and president from 1894; a director of the I'acific Mills. Lawrence, Mass., 
from 1884; a director of the Dwight Manufacturing Company, Chicopee, 
Mass., from 1884; director of the Cocheco ^Manufacturing Company, Dover, 
N. H., from 1886, and treasurer of the Groton Water Company from 1897 
to 1900. The Boston Merchants' .Association, of which he was a member, 
at their annual meeting in January, 1901, elected him president of the as- 
sociation; and in March, igo2, he was one of three Boston merchants 
selected as a committee to settle the teamsters' strike which threatened to 
paralyze the city trade, and, with the aid of Governor Crane, in a single 
night's conference with the strikers settled the difficulty. Mr. Lawrence 
was a member of the managing board of the Boston Episcopal Charitable 
Society, and in 1891 he was made treasurer of the society. He was also 
director of Boston Manufacturing Co., of Waltham, from 1904; director 
of Waltham Bleachery and Dye Works from 1904. He was also vice- 
president of Massachusetts Hospital Life Insurance Co. ; trustee Provi- 
dent Institution for Savings of Boston ; trustee of the Church Home for 
Orphan and Destitute Children at South Boston ; vice-president of the 
Perkins Institute for the Blind at South Boston ; vice-president of the In- 
dustrial School for Crippled Children^ of Boston. 

Mr. Lawrence was a member of the managing board of the Boston 
Episcopal Charitable Society, and in 1891 he was made treasurer of the 
society. Harvard Class of 1870 made him chairman of the Class Committee 
in 1870, and he was elected overseer of Harvard College in 1906 for five 


years. He married, June i, 1871, Emily Fairfax (daughter of John Board- 
man and Martha Mansfield (Shepard) Silsbee), and their son, Amos Amory 
Lawrence, was born in Boston, December i, 1874; was prepared for col- 
lege at St. Paul's School, Concord, N. H. ; was graduated at Harvard Uni- 
versity A. B. 1896; was a postgraduate student at Massachusetts Institute 
of Technology, 1896-97, in the Department of Architectors : studied at 
the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, and there obtained his diploma in June, 
1905. Their second child, John Silsbee Lawrence, was born at Nahant, 
Mass., September 6, 1878. (See sketch. Ibid.) Their third child, Edith, 
born in Boston, November 10, 1879, m.arried, February 19, 1903, Harold 
Jefferson Coolidge (Harvard, 1892), son of Joseph Randolph and Julia 
(Gardner) Coolidge, and a lineal descendant of Thomas Jefferson, third 
president of the United States. He became a member of the firm of Loring 
& Coolidge, of Boston, and their sons are Harold Jefferson Coolidge, Jr., 
born January 15, 1904, and Lawrence Coolidge, born January 16, 1905- 
Mrs. Lawrence died in Boston, April 4, 1895, and Mr. Lawrence married 
(secondly), at Groton, Mass., June 12, 1900, Gertrude Major, daughter of 
Francis Blake and Sallie Blake (Austin) Rice, of Boston, and she died in 
Boston, January 11, 1907. In April, 1911, he married (third), Mrs. Laura 
Amory Dugan, daughter of General Thomas I. C. and Mary (Dolan) 
Amory; adopted daughter of Charles B. Amory, and widow of Thomas 
Clay Dugan. 


John Silsbee Lawrence was born in Nahant, Mass., September 6, 1878, 
the son of Amory .A. and Emily Fairfax (Silsbee) Lawrence. Prepared 
for college at Noble and Greenough's School, Boston, he entered Harvard 
and was graduated, A. B., in the class of 1901. He then decided to adopt 
a mercantile profession, and entered as clerk the firm of Lawrence & Co., 
of which his father was senior member, and in 1906 John S. Lawrence 
was admitted to partnership. 

In 1907 he became a director. of the Second National Bank of Boston; 
in 1908 a director of the American Trust Co.; in 1907 a trustee of the 
Suffolk Savings Bank, and in 1910 a director of the New England Cas- 
ualty Co. 

As a member of the Chamber of Commerce, he took great interest in 
Boston's fuel supply, and was one of the leaders in securing for Boston 
an efficient smoke bill in 191 o. 

Mr. Lawrence married, April 29, 1907, Emma, daughter of Isabelle 
(Ray) and George E. Atherton, of Brookline, Mass., and on February 6, 
1910, their first child, Eloise, was born. 



Patrick Tracy Jackson was born in Newburyport, Essex County, 
Massachusetts, August 14, 1780. He was the son of Jonathan and Hannah 
(Tracy) Jackson, grandson of Edward and Dorothy (Quincy) Jackson; 
great-grand-^on of Jonathan and j\Iary (Salter) Jackson; great-great-grand- 
son of Jonathan Jackson and great-great-great-grandson of Edward Jack- 
son, who came from England to Massachusetts P)ay Colony about 1643 with 
his wife and Jonathan and settled in Cambridge, was deputy to the Gen- 
eral Court, 1647-54, and eleven times in later years selectman and one of 
the proprietors of the town of Cambridge. Patrick Tracy Jackson's father, 
the Hon. Jonathan Jackson (1743-1810) was born in Boston; graduated 
from Harvard, 1761: settled in Newburyport about 1762 as a merchant; 
was a delegate to the provincial Congress of 1775 ; delegate to Continental 
Congress, 1782; United States Marshal under President Washington. 1789- 
91; treasurer of Alassachusetts, 1805-1810; the first president of the first 
bank established in Boston; treasurer of Harvard corporation and fellow 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 1807-10. He married, Jan- 
uary 3, 1767, Sarah Barnard, and secondly, June i, 1772. Hannah, daughter 
of Captain Patrick Tracy. 

Patrick Tracy Jackson was educated in the Newburyport Public Schools 
and Dummer Academy. In 1795 he was apprenticed to William Bartlett, 
a shipping merchant, and from iRoo was repeatedly sent as supercargo to 
the East Indies, and in 1808 was engaged in the East India trade on his 
own accoimt in Boston, in which he amassed a large fortune. His sister, 
Hannah, married Francis Cabot Lowell (q. v.), and this marriage brought 
the two men into intimate business relations. Lowell, who had studied the 
working of the power loom used in England in weaving cotton cloth, sought 
the assistance of Mr. Jackson in constructing a loom, with the object of 
engaging in the extensive manufacture of cotton in New England. Lowell 
had bnt a vague knowledge of the construction of the English loom, but 
he imparted what information he had to ]\Ir. Jackson, and the two men 
invented the model from which Paul Moody constructed the first power 
loom used in the LTnited States. In 1813 they organized the Boston Manu- 
facturing Company and rebuilt an old mill at Waltham in which the loom 
was set in motion by the water power of the Charles River, and 1,700 
spindles were installed to furnish yarn for the loom. While other mills 
had already spun cotton yarn by mechanical power, this was the first mill 
to produce cotton cloth from raw cotton both spun and woven by machinery 
under one roof, thus constituting a complete cotton mill operated by water 
power. In 1821 Mr. Jackson purchased land on the Merrimack River at 
East Chelmsford, on the Pawtucket Canal (Mr. Jackson had designed and 
built the Pawtucket dam), organized and became first president of the 
Merrimack Manufacturing Company. The machinery of this company was 



set in motion in September, 1823. This enterprise and the Appleton Mills, 
which began operations in 182S, were the nucleus of the great cotton manu- 
facturing city of Lowell. 

In 1830 ^Ir. Jackson laid the foundation of another important work 
in securing the charter of and organizing the Boston and L.owell Railroad. 
A great deal of the property between Boston and Lowell was owned by 
the Locks and Canals Company, and, believing that the railroad would en- 
hance the value of the land, the company offered a bonus of $100,000 to 
whatever company engaged in the construction of same. Mr. Jackson, in 
company with Mr. Boott and Mr. Moody, had a general survey of the dis- 
trict made, and estimated the expense, income, etc. It was decided that 
the road should be built, and those interested looked to Mr. Jackson as 
constructor. Work was commenced in 1831, and May 27, 1835, the road 
was opened ; the first trains ever drawn by the locomotive. It was a 
wonderful advance in the mode of land transportation of both pas- 
sengers and freight, and was used as a model for construction and equip- 
ment of the roads that rapidly followed. In the course of a few years, 
with business constajitly on the increase, greater accommodations had to 
be made. Mr. Jackson had anticipated the necessity of two tracks over 
the road, and his plans were carried out, and car houses, freight houses, 
yards and depots were built and increased. For several years Mr. Jack- 
son gave exclusive attention to the railroad and collateral undertakings. 
In the progress of his great work, the fact is worthy of mention that he 
levelled the top of Beacon Hill, Boston, and made the land where the 
present North Station stands. 

In 1837 came a dark period. The panic of that year impaired a great 
part of his fortune. In April, 1838, however, he was offered and accepted 
the agency of the Locks & Canals Co., and retained that office until Sep- 
tember, 1S45. Iri September, 1840, he was invited to become agent of 
the Great Falls Manufacturing Company. He accepted, and immediately 
devised a ])lan by which this company might retrieve at least a portion of 
its fortune lost in the panic. He conducted the affairs of the company 
successfully for many years, which resulted in large dividends during the 
period of his agency. 

In 1810 Air. Jackson married Lydia. daughter of Andrew and Lydia 
(Dodge) Cabot, of Beverly, Mass., and their children were: Anna Cabot 
(Jackson) Lowell, Sarah Cabot (Jackson) Russell, Patrick Tracy Jack.son, 
Hannah Lowell (Jackson! Cabot, Catherine Cabot (Jackson) Stone, 
Eleanor Jackson and Edward Jackson. 

Patrick Tracy Jackson, "the pioneer cotton manufacturer," died at 
Beverly, Mass., September 12, 1847. 



Patrick Tracy Jackson (2d) was born at Watertown, Mass., Novem- 
ber 5, 1818, son of Patrick Tracy and Lydia (Cabot) Jackson. (For 
genealogy see sketch of his father, Ibid.) The subject of this sketch at- 
tended private schools in Boston, and was graduated from Harvard, A. B., 
1838, A. M., 1841. On leaving college he entered the counting house of 
James K. Mills & Co., in Boston ; was made a partner, the firm name 
being changed to C. H. Mills & Co., and remained with that house up to 
1857. He was manager of the Hampden Mills, 1852-75, and while in that 
position introduced the manufacture of fine ginghams into this country and 
was also a cotton buyer in Boston, 1875-86. He served the city of Boston 
as councilman. 

Mr. Jackson married March 23, 1843, Susan Mary, daughter of Charles 
Greely (1794-1867) and Anna Pierce (Brace) Loring. They had four 
children: Patrick Tracy Jackson (3d), who married Eleanor B. Gray and 
was president of the Lowell Weaving Company in 1906; Charles Loring 
Jackson, born A.pril 4, 1847, Harvard A. B. 1867, A. M. 1870, assistant in 
chemistry Harvard Universisty 1S67-71, assistant professor of chemistry 
1871-81, student under Bunsen, Heidelberg, 1873, under Hofmann, Berlin, 
1874-75, fi^ll professor of chemistry at Harvard, 1881-94, and Erving pro- 
fessor of chcni'stry frcim 181-1. fellow of the American Academy of Arts 
and Sciences, member of the National Academy of Science and of the 
American Association for the Advancement of Science, associate fellow 
of the British Association for the Advancement of Science ; Anna Pierce 
Jackson; and Ernest Jackson, Harvard A. B. 1878, A. M. 1879. 

Patrick Tracy Jackson (1818-1891) died at Beverly, Mass., November 
10, 1891. 


Patrick Tracy Jackson (4th) was born in Cambridge, Mass., Novem- 
ber 7, 1872; son of Patrick Tracy and Eleanor B. (Gray) Jackson. (For 
genealogy see sketch of great-grandfather. Ibid.) The father of Patrick 
Tracy, the subject of this sketch, was first lieutenant in the Fifth Massa- 
chusetts Cavalry during the Civil War, became a cotton broker and was 
trustee of estates, treasurer of the Boston Provident Association, of the 
Eastern Yacht Club, and president and director of the Lowell Weaving 
Company, of Lowell, Mass., in 1906. 

Patrick Tracy Jackson (4th) was prepared for college at the Browne 
& Nichols School in Cambridge, and was graduated from Harvard Col- 


lege, A. B., 1893. He became a machinist's apprentice in the Boston Blower 
Company, Hyde Park, JNIass., immediately after his graduation from 
Harvard, and was designer and draughtsman for the Dwight Manufactur- 
ing Company, Chicopee, Mass., 1896-97, and designer for Arlington Mills, 
with Harding, Whitman & Co., Boston, 1898-1901. He served in the 
Massachusetts Naval Militia for one year as a private. He was made a 
director in The Fisk Rubber Company, Chicopee Falls, Mass. ; treasurer and 
director of the Lowell Weaving Company, of which his father was presi- 
dent from January, 1902, and in 1906 he organized with M. C. Taylor, 
of New York City, the I-e Roy Cotton Mills, of Le Roy. N. Y., witli a 
capital of $450,000, for the purpose of making black and white twist yarns, 
and in June, 1906, on the first election of the board of directors, he was 
made treasurer and general manager of the mills. 

In 1907, with M. C. Taylor and Chas. M. Warner, of New York City, 
he bought the \'ictoria MilW, of Newburyport, Mass., then owned by the 
Peabody Mfg. Co., converting it from a weaving mill into a yarn mill. 
The new com]3any was named the Warner Cotton Mills, and organized with 
a capital of $300,000. He was elected treasurer and general manager at 
the first meeting, held in January. In 1007, also, he organized, with M. C. 
Taylor the Boston Yarn Co., with a capital of $2,000, for the purpose of 
selling the product of the Le Roy Cotton Mills and Warner Cotton Mills. 
he being elected president. The capital was later increased to $50,000 in 
1908, and then to $100,000 in 1909, and the company took on also the sell- 
ing accounts of the Lowell Weaving Co. and Passaic Cotton Mills, of 
Passaic, N. J. In April, 1910, the capital stock of the company was sold 
outright to the J. Spencer Turner Co., of New York City, the management 
being left in control. 

In March, 1909, he organized with M. C. Taylor, of New York City ; 
R. P. Snelling and F. T. Hale, of the Saco-Pettee Co., and C. M. Warner, 
of New York City, the Bay State Cotton Corporation, capitalized at $1,500,- 
000, which, acting as a holding company through exchange of stock, com- 
bined the Lowell Weaving Co., Warner Cotton ]\Iills and Le Roy Cotton 
Mills. He was elected treasurer and general manager at the first meeting. 
In July, 1910, in conjunction with Messrs. M. C. Taylor, A. P. Loring. 
S. P. Warfield, R. P. Snelling. F; T. Hale and C. M. Warner, he helped 
organize the International Cotton Mills Corporation, capitalized at $20,000,- 
000, which, through exchange of stock, combines the Consolidated Cotton 
Corporation. J. Spencer Turner Co., Boston Yarn Co. and Bay State Cot- 
ton Corporation. He was elected vice-president and manager of the Eastern 
and Canadian Mills, also member of the executive board of directors. 

On April 11, 1898, Mr. Jackson married Anne, daughter of William S. 
and Mary (Head") Smoot, of Brookline, Mass., and their daughter, Anna 
Loring Jackson, was born October 5, 1904. A son, Patrick Tracy Jack- 
son, was born November 10, 1906. being the fifth of that name in direct 



Kirk Boott was born in Boston, Mass., October 20, 1790. He was 
the son of Kirk Boott, an Englishman who came to Boston soon after the 
Revohition and estabHshed himself as a merchant. He had large shipping 
interests, Boott & Sons being importers of British goods, for sale almost 
exclusively to the country trade, and resided in a mansion at the corner 
of Cambridge Street and Bowdoin Square, then known as the Boott House, 
and now the Revere House. 

The younger Kirk Boott was one of nine children : John Wright, Kirk, 
Francis, James, William, Frances, Annie, Mary L. and Eliza. He was 
educated at Rugby, England, entered Harvard in 1807, but did not com- 
plete his course. He studied surveying and engineering in England, and 
his father purchased a commission for him in the English army as Lieu- 
tenant in the Eighty-fifth, the Duke of York's regiment, in which capacity 
he served in the Peninsular War under Wellington. During July, 1813, he 
commanded a detachment at the siege of San Sebastian. He was present 
at the battles of Nieve and the Nevelle, the passage of the Garonne, and 
the siege of Bayonne. In all, he served with great credit for five years in 
the British army; but his loyalty to his native country caused him to yield 
his commission when his regiment was ordered to America, where later it 
participated in the Battle of New Orleans. 

Mr. Boott returned to England and married there a lady of high social 
standing. In 1817 his father's death drew him back to America, where he 
joined his brothers in carrying on the business in which his father had been 
highly successful, but which, under the management of the sons, proved a 

In 1821 he was urged by Patrick T. Jackson to accept a partnership 
in the new manufacturing interest at East Chelmsford, Mass., then being 
fostered by Mr. Jackson and Nathan Appleton. Mr. Boott assented, and 
the articles of the jMerrimac Manufacturing Company being drawn up, he 
was appointed its treasurer and agent, January i, 1822, for a period of five 
years, at a salarv of three thousand dollars per annum. He purchased, at 
a par value of $1,000, ninety out of its six hundred shares of stock. 

The act of incorporation was granted February 5, 1822, and Mr. Boott 
settled with his family at East Chelmsford (afterwards Lowell), where 
he resided until his death. He had charge of all the operations necessary 
in the building and equipment of the mill, which included the enlargement 
of an old canal and the building of a new one before it could be success- 
fully operated. The Merrimac Company's Mill commenced to manufacture 
printed calicoes September 23, 1823. Mr. Boott was appointed agent of 
the Company of the "Proprietors of Locks and Canals on Merrimac River" 
upon its re-organization in 1825, and combined that office with his duties 
as treasurer and agent of the Merrimac Company, and to his tireless energ\' 




and fostering care the cotton industry of America is in no small measure 
indebted for its immense success in the early days of its establishment. 
Though Jackson and Appleton had their share in the making of the mill 
industry in Lowell, yet the foremost of these are Boott and Lowell. When 
writing of either, their names must be associated as the promoters of Lowell. 

Mr. Boott was a man of integrity and honor, and well fitted to take 
the part of a leader in a great industrial enterprise. He was interested 
in the political affairs of Lowell, served as its representative in the legis- 
lature, and took a deep interest in all matters pertaining to its welfare. 

At his death he left a wife and a family of six children: Kirk, John 
Wright, Fred, Sarah, Mary Love, and Eliza. He died very suddenly, at the 
age of forty-seven, April 11, 1837. 


George Draper was born in Weston, Mass., August 16, 1817. He was 
the son of Ira and Abigail (daughter of Lemuel and Rebecca Richards) 
Draper; grandson of Abijah and Alice (Eaton) Draper; great-grandson of 
James and Abigail (Whiting) Draper, and great-great-grandson of James, 
the immigrant progenitor of the American Drapers, who was a son of 
Thomas Draper, a well-known manufacturer and fuller of Yorkshire, Eng- 
land. The son was brought up in his father's business, and in 1647-48 came 
to Massachusetts with his wife, Miriam Stansfield, and settled at Roxbury. 
Major Abijah Draper, the grandfather of George (1737-1780), was an 
officer in the Colonial militia and commanded a body of minute men under 
Washington at Roxbury, 1776, and took part in the Battle of Lexington. 
His son, Ira Draper (1764-1848), was the inventor of the first threshing 
machine, of the "ily shuttle handloom," of the "revolving temple" for 
keeping cloth extended in the process of weaving, and of many minor in- 
ventions ; and, during the administration of President John Quincy Adams, 
he was a candidate for the office of L-nited States Commissioner of Patents. 

George Draper, the subject of this sketch, attended the public schools 
of Saugus and worked on his father's farm. When fifteen years of age 
he became second-hand of weaving in the cotton mills at North Uxbridge. 
He then entered the cotton-sheeting mill located at Walpole, Norfolk 
County, a small manufactory of which he was superintendent and manager 
for a short time. From the Walpole Mill he went to Three Rivers, Mass., 
where he was overseer of weaving in a large mill, 1835-39, and while there 
he made an improvement in the revolving temples invented by his father. 
He was then employed for three years at the Lowell Mill, after which he 
was engaged as designer in the mill built by Edward Harris in Woonsocket 


for the manufacture of "Harris cassimeres." In 1845 he went to Ware, 
Mass., as superintendent of one of the Otis Company's Mills, and before 
he left the employ of the Otis Company he was general superintendent of 
the entire plant. In 1853 he removed to Hopedale, then a part of the town 
of Mil ford, Worcester County, and he there joined his brother, Ebenezer 
Daggett Draper, in the business organized by his father for the manu- 
facturing of revolving temples. He also became a member of the HopedaJe 
Community, of which his brother, E. D. Draper, was president. This was 
a socialistic organization intended to be based upon practical Christianity, 
and was founded by Adin Ballon about the year 1842, on a joint stock 
basis, with a mutual industrial division of profits. The Community failed 
in 1856, and Ebenezer D. and George Draper took the property and paid 
its debts. By this means they became owners of two small shops in which 
hatchets, temples, shoe boxes, etc., were manufactured, the work being 
done by fifteen hands, and this was the foundation of the Hopedale in- 
ventions and the fortune of the Draper Company. In 1868 Ebenezer D. 
Draper retired from the business, and this made way for the firm of George 
Draper & Sons. George Draper was a man of great ability as an inventor, 
and he took out probably over one hundred patents, including self-acting 
temples, railway head-eveners, parallel shuttle motion, a new form of let- 
off motion, a shuttle guard for looms, a self-lubricating bearing for 
spindles, double adjustable spinning rings, slasher, warpers and bobbin hold- 
ers for spooling. His high speed and power-saving spindle is said to have 
doubled the quantity of yarn produced in a given time, and his improve- 
ments in speed and power utilization were estimated to represent a saving 
equal to two water-powers like that of Lowell. His spinning-frame sepa- 
rators came into universal use in the United States and into general use in 
England. Mr. Draper was a large stockholder in many cotton manufactur- 
ing corporations in New England and a large owner in the Shaw Stocking 
Works, of I.owell, of which concern he became president; the Glasgow 
Thread Co.. of Worcester, and the Glasgow Yarn Mills, of Norwich, Conn. 
He was also interested in the Milford and Woonsocket and in the Hopkin- 
ton railroads. His political faith found expression first in the Whig party, 
and, upon its dissolution, in the Free-Soil organization, out of which evolved 
the Republican j)arty in 1855. He was the organizer of the Home Market 
Club and its first president. EFe kept in close touch with the leaders in 
public affairs in Massachusetts in the Republican party, but always refused 
to accept public office. He favored the abolition movement, was a friend 
of William Lloyd Garrison, and was a member of Governor John A. An- 
drew's Advisory Board during the Civil War. During this period his busi- 
ness was always second to his interest in the soldiers at the front and in the 
general support of the government. After the war his concern was for the 
protection of the manufacturing industries of the country, and he kept a 
zealous watch over the lawmakers at Washington and maintained a con- 


stant correspondence with Representative William D. Kelly, of Pennsyl- 
vania; William McKinley, of Ohio, and George F. Hoar, of Massachusetts, 
and the other prominent champions of protection in the United States Con- 
gress. This interest absorbed most of his time during the later part of his 
life His gifts of money included a handsome annual gift to the Soldiers' 
Home in Chelsea, the Town Hall in Hopedale, while to the Unitarian Church 
in Hopedale his gifts were liberal and continuous. His private beneficence 
was generous and unostentatious ; he cared for the men in his employ with 
a father's interest ; the temperance cause was one of his most anxious con- 
cerns, and the Grand Army Posts were constant debtors to his benevolence. 
Mr. Draper married, March 6, 18.3Q, Hannah, daughter of Benjamin and 
Anna Thwing, of Uxbridge, Mass. This union was blessed with eight 
children, of whom the eldest was William Franklin Draper, Ibid; the 
second son died in infancy; the third son, George Albert, was born in 
Hopedale, November 4, 1855, and the fourth son, Eben Sumner, was born 
in Hopedale, June 17, 1858. His two daughters who reached maturity were : 
Frances E. (Colburn) and Hannah T. (Osgood). 

Mr. Draper was a pioneer manufacturer of cotton machinery in New 
England, and was a man of extraordinary strength of character, energy 
and intellectual attainment, coupled with great mechanical skill. He was 
the author of numerous pamphlets relating to protection and to the manu- 
facture of cotton goods. He died at the United States Hotel in Boston, 
Mass., June 7, 1887. 


Ebenezer Daggett Draper was born in Weston, Middlesex County, 
Mass., June 13, 1813; son of Ira and Abigal (Richards) Draper; grandson 
of Major Abijah and Alice (Eaton) Draper and of John and Elizabeth 
(Lovering) Eaton, of Dedham, and a descendant of James and Miriam 
(Stansfield) Draper. James Draper, the immigrant, founded a textile 
business in Roxbury, Massachusetts Bay Colony, in 1647, having learned 
the trade of fuller of cloth from his father, Thomas Draper, of Yorkshire, 
England. Ira Draper, the father of Ebenezer Daggett Draper, was the 
inventor of the first threshing machine and of the revolving loom temple. 
He conducted a farm in Weston and removed from Weston to Saugus, 
Mass., where Ebenezer attended the district school and when sixteen years 
of age found employment in the cotton mills at North Uxbridge, Worcester 
County, Mass., and subsequently was overseer of the mills. He became 
president of the Hopedale Community, formed about the year 1842 as 
a joint stock, practical Christian association with a mutual industrial 
arrangement by which the capital and profits were communistic. The 


Community grew to a village of about fifty dwellirtgs and about two 
hundred and fifty people. They owned six hundred acres of land and a 
few small shops; the shop for the manufacture of the Draper revolving 
temples, used in holding cloth while being woven, being the contribution 
of Ebenezer Draper, who was joined by his brother, George Draper, in 
1852. In 1856, when the Hopedale Community gave up business, the firm 
of E. D. & G. Draper was formed and they took the property of the 
Community, paid the debts, and continued the manufacture of revolving 
temples and loom improvements. Subsequently, Ebenezer Daggett Draper 
withdrew in 1868 to become treasurer of the American Steam Fire-Proof 
Safe Company, and in this venture he lost all his property. 

The subject of this sketch married Anna Thwing, September 11, 1834. 
No children were born of this union, but a son, Charles Henry Eaton, was 
adopted, and he became a prominent Universalist clergyman and died 
in New York City in 1902. Mr. Draper died October 20 1887. 


William Franklin Draper was born in Lowell, Mass., April g, 1842. 
He was the eldest son of George and Hannah B. (Thwing) Draper. (For 
genealogy see sketch of his father, George Draper, Ibid.) He was brought 
up in Lowell, Mass., Woonsocket, R. I., Ware, Mass., where he attended 
the high school, and at Hopedale, Mass., where he was a pupil in the 
Hopedale Home School. His father, George Draper, being a member of 
the Hopedale Community, William F. was brought up according to the 
tenets of the sect, and his study was interspersed by periods of manual labor. 
He left school at sixteen, in the expectation of entering Harvard when a 
few years older, and spent the ensuing three years in P. W'bitin & Sons 
Mill in North Uxbridge, in a mill at Wauregan, Conn., and at the Saco 
Water Power Co., Biddeford, Me., in acquiring a practical knowledge of 
the details of all the departments of cotton manufacturing. His work in 
these directions was brought to a close August 9, 1861, by his enlistment 
in a volunteer company that was being recruited through the inspiration and 
efforts of his father. The Hopedale Company became the Twenty-fifth 
Massachusetts Volunteers, young Draper being chosen second lieutenant. 
His war record was a brilliant one, and is chronicled elsewhere. (See 
"Recollections of a Varied Career." William F. Draper. .\lso National 
Biography, Volume VI). His term of service expired October 12, -1864, 
and he was honorably discharged, with the brevets of colonel and brigadier- 
general for "gallant service during the war.'' General Draper then entered 
the employ of the firm of E. D. & G. Draper at Hopedale. This firm. 

/fe_ a A^. 


formed in 1852, was composed of his uncle, Eben D. Draper, and his father, 
George Draper, who had succeeded their father Ira in 1825, Ira Draper 
having been in business from 1816 as the inventor and maker of revolving 
temples and looms. General Draper in 1868 bought out the interest of his 
uncle, Eben D. Draper, and the firm of George Draper & Son came into 
existence. In 1887, George A. Draper, the second son of George Draper, 
was admitted and the firm name became George Draper & Sons, and in 
1880, Eben S. Draper, the third son of George Draper, became a partner. 
In 1887, George Draper, the senior member of the firm, died, and William 
F. Draper, Jr., the eldest son of General Draper, was admitted to partner- 
ship. In 1 189, George Otis Draper, the second son of General Draper, 
was admitted to the firm, and in January, 1897, the business was reorganized 
and corporated as the Draper Company, with William F. Draper, Sr., as 
president. His part in the business as senior member of the firm and as 
an inventor is most noteworthy. His mechanical and inventive talent were 
an inheritance from two and a half centuries of family skill and growth 
along the line of textile manipulation applied to the raw woolen and cotton 
by way of spinning and weaving, but principally applied for the last 
century to cotton. The Drapers, under the auspices of General Draper, 
have doubled the speed of spindles and divided the cost of spinning cotton 
yarns by two. Their inventions not only came into universal use in the 
United States, but were largely introduced in other parts of the world. To 
America, the cost of machinery alone has been so decreased by reason of 
their inventions as to save not less than fifty million dollars to manufacturers, 
while the saving in labor, power and incidental expenses has probably been 
four times as great. General Draper, in 1905, hoped to halve the cost of 
weaving as he had of spinning, and had for many years employed as skilled 
inventors Mr. James H. Winthrop and Mr. Charles F. Roper, and others, 
to carry out the results of his own thought and study along the lines of 
improving the art of weaving. The machine was in 1906 perfected for 
many lines of cotton goods and he assigned himself the task of perfecting 
it in all lines. He took charge of the business of defending the patents 
of himself, which on cotton machinery numbered nearly one hundred, and 
those of his co-workers, against infringement, and in it showed marked 
legal instinct. As a mechanic he became known as one of the foremost 
experts in the United States on spinning machinery. This was largely due 
to his early training under his father and his long experience as an 
inventor and manufacturer. 

General Draper, in his memoirs under the title of "Recollections of a 
Varied Career" in the final chapter makes reference to the causes which 
led to a most important change in his business relations, occurring in 1906. 
At the time of General Draper's death, he was busily engaged in experi- 
ments carried on under his own personal supervision to still further improve 
the art of weaving. 


For thirty-five years General Draper was a director in the Milford 
National Bank, was one of the heaviest stockholders in the Milford Shoe 
Co., Milford Water Co., Milford Gas Light Co., and other Milford enter- 
prises, in most of which he was a director. 

He was a director of the Arhngton and other cotton mills, and also a 
director of the First National Bank of Boston. 

General Draper was a member of the school committee of Hopedale, 
member of Governor Long's staff during his three years' service to the 
Commonwealth, 1880-83, was a delegate to the Republican National Con- 
vention of 1876, elector-at-large for Massachusetts on the Harrison and 
Morton ticket in 1888; was a candidate before the Republican State Con- 
vention, in 1888, for the nomination of his party for governor of Mass., 
and received a handsome vote in the convention, and in 1889, he declined an 
assured nomination for that office, he represented the eleventh district of 
Massachusetts, in the fifty-ithird and fifty-fourth Congresses, 1802-07. 
where he was a bulwark of defense against the enemies to protection, 
second on the committee on foreign affairs and acting chairman during a 
continued illness of Representative Hitt, of Illinois, the chairman of the 
committee. He also held the chairmanship of the Committee on Patents. 
He urged moderate action on the Chinese exclusion bill and his speech on 
the Hawiian question was adopted as a part of the Senate report. He 
opposed the resolution which censured Ambassador Bayard and his speech 
was widely published and received the hearty commendation of the con- 
servatives of both political parties. He served as United States Ambassador 
to Italy, 1897-1900, by appointment of President McKinley, and in 1900, 
he was decorated by King Victor Emmanuel HI with the Grand Cordon of 
the Order of S. S. Maurice and Lagare. and he received the honorary degree 
of LL. D. from Washington and Lee LTniversity in the same year. 

He was a companion of the' military order of the Loyal Legion of the 
United States, and he served as commander of the Massachusetts division 
of the order. He was a member of the Arkwright Club, Grand Army, 
Knights Templar, Sons of the Revolution, Society of Colonial ^^'ars, the 
Union and Algonquin Clubs, and the Hope Club of Providence. 

General Draper married, September 15, 1862, Lydia, adopted daughter 
of the Hon. David Joy, of Nantucket. IMass., and the children by this 
marriage were William Franklin, Jr., George Otis, Edith, Arthur Joy and 
Clare H. Mrs. Draper died February 14, 1884. Mr. Draper married 
secondly. May 22, 1890, Susan Christy, daughter of General William 
Preston, of Kentucky, an officer in the Mexican War, United States Min- 
ister to Spain under Buchanan and a major-general in the Confederate 
army. By the second marriage one child, Alargaret Preston, was bom, 
March 18, i8gi. 

General Draper was the author of "History of Spindles" (18 — ) ; "In- 
fluence of Invention on Cotton Manufacturing Industries'' (18 — ); an 


autobiography entitled "Recollections of a Varied Career," 1908; and of 
numerous magazine articles. 

General William F. Draper died at his home in Washington, D. C, 
January 31, 1910. 


Eben Sumner Draper was born in the town of Milford (that part 
of the town called Hopedale), Worcester County, Massachusetts, June 17, 
1858, son of George and Hannah (Thwing) Draper. (For ancestry see 
sketch of his father. Ibid.) 

The subject of this sketch attended the public schools of his native 
town, and was prepared for business life in the Allen School, West Newton, 
Mass. He then completed a course in the deparatment of engineering at the 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in 1880. and began work in the 
Hopedale Machine Shops, where he was thoroughly trained in the various 
details of the intricate business. He had at first obtained a practical knowl- 
edge of the working of cotton machinery in the cotton mills of LoweJl, 
Manchester and other New England manufacturing cities, and his knowl- 
edge thus acquired, through three years of practical work, made him ex- 
pert and at home either in the cotton mill, where it was to be his business, 
as selling agent for the Hopedale concerns, to introduce new machinery, 
or in the machine shop in which the machinery was made. 

He was made a member of the firm of George Draper & Sons in 1880. 
On the organization of the Draper Company in 1896, he was elected selling 

Mr. Draper became a member of the corporation of the Massachusetts 
Institute of Technology and of the Board of Managers of the Milford 
Hospital, which he and Mrs. Draper presented to the town of Milford and 
which is one of the best equipped hospitals in the State. Also a member 
of the Board of Trustees of the Peter Brigham Hospital, and vice- 
President of the American Unitarian Association. He was also a director 
of the Boston & Albany R. R., National Shawmut Bank, Old Colony Trust 
Co., and New England Cotton Yarn Co. He was associated with the 
Hopedale Machine Company, the Dutcher Temple Company, the Hopedale 
Screw Machine Company, the Globe Yarn Mills, the Continental Mills, of 
Lewiston and the Glasgow Thread Company. He became vice-President 
of the Manville Company, and director of the Draper Company, of the 
Milford National Bank, the Queen City Cotton Company, of Vermont and 
the Sawyer Spindle Company, of Maine. 

Governor Draper was a member of the Massachusetts militia for three 
years, and on the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, he was made 


President of the Massachusetts Volunteer Aid Association by Governor 
Wolcott, the greatest work of tlie association being the purchase and 
equipment of the hospital ship "Bay State," at an expense of $200,000, the 
association also raising $200,000 more for the care of the Massachusetts 
soldiers and sailors. He was also chairman of the Massachusetts Associa- 
tion for the Relief of California. 

Governor Draper had never held political office or been a political 
candidate up to 1905, when the Republican State Convention unaminously 
nominated him for Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth, and he 
was elected and inaugurated January, 1906, under Governor Guild. He 
had, however, served his party as a member of the Milford Republican 
Town Committee, and of the Hopedale Town Committee. He was also 
chairman of his Senatorial district committee, and was a member of the 
Congressional district committee. He also served as chairman of the 
Republican State Committee in 1892, and declined a unanimous re-election 
in 1893, but served as a member of the committee for the three years 
following. He was president of the Massachusetts Republican Club for 
two years, and a member of the Club from its organization. The subject 
of this sketch was re-elected lieutenant-governor for 1907 and 1908, and 
served as governor in 1909 and 1910. In 191 1, he again became candidate 
for the same office, but was defeated by Eugene N. Haas. 

He served as a delegate from Massachusetts in the Republican 
National Convention at St. Louis in 1896, and was made chairman of the 
Massachusetts delegation. He. of all the delegates to that convention, made 
the canvass on the question of making the platform decidedly for gold as 
the unit of monetary measure, and through fifty sub-committees working 
under his direction he secured a report that showed the standing of every 
delegate in the convention on that important subject. 

In 1900 he was Republican Elector for the eleventh Congressional 
District of Massachusetts; chairman of the Massachusetts delegation to 
the Nashville Exposition in 1897; served three years as lieutenant-Gov- 
ernor, and is now serving his second year as Governor. 

Mr. Draper was also a member of the Society of Colonial Wars, 
Republican Club of Massachusetts, Society of the Sons of the Revolution, 
Middlesex Club, Norfolk Club, Massachusetts Club. Somerset Club, Union 
Club, New Algonquin Club, Exchange Club, Country Club, Home Market 
Club, Hope Club (Providence), Metropolitan Club (New York), etc. 

Mr. Draper married November 21, 1883, Nannie Bristovv, daughter of 
the late General Benjamin Helm Bristow, of New York, who was Secretary 
of the Treasury, under Grant, and candidate for the Presidency in 1876. 
They had three children, Benjamin Helm Bristow, born February 28, 18S5; 
Dorothy, born November 22, 1890; Eben S., Jr., born August 30, 1893. 

^T^ l-y £r a- a^/ia-^r =i" 3r^- 

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George Albert Draper was born in Hopedale, Worcester County, 
Massachusetts, November 4, 1855, the second son of George and Hannah 
(Thwing) Draper. He received his primary and secondary education in 
his native town, and after a two years' course in mechanical engineermg 
at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston, he entered the employ 
of the firm of Geo. Draper & Son, and in 1877 was admitted a member of 
the firm. He subsequently served as treasurer of the Hopedale Machine 

In January, 1897, when the business of George Draper & Sons and 
others was incorporated as the Draper Company, he was elected treasurer 
of the corporation, which position he has continued to hold up to the present 

He married, November 6, 1890, Jessie, daughter of General William 
Preston, of Kentuckv. 


George Otis Draper, second son of General William F. Draper, was 
born in Hopedale, Mass., July 14, 1867. His mother was Lila Warren Joy, 
adopted daughter of the Hon. David Joy, of Nantucket, Mass., married 
Captain William Franklin Draper, U. S. V., in September, 1862, when the 
young captain was on leave of absence for four days by reason of promo- 
tion from the twenty-fifth to the thirty-sixth Massachusetts volunteers. 
(For ancestry see sketch of George Draper, Ibid.) George Otis Draper 
was as a boy interested in mechanical drawing and was fond of working in 
the shops of his fatlier when not attending school. He was a pupil in the 
celebrated English and Classical School conducted by the Allen brothers, at 
West Newton, Mass., and he went from this school to the Massachusetts 
Institute of Technology where he was graduated in 1887, having taken a 
mechanical engineering course. He then became a machinist in the Hope- 
dale Works, and there learned the practical details of the business. He was 
admitted a partner in the firm of George Draper & Sons on January i, 
1889. He became an inventor as well as manufacturer of cotton machin- 
ery and this adaptability to the wants of the business grew out of personal 
application and private reflection. He invented over one hundred devices 
which he patented, many of which were put into practical use in his 
business, especially those applying to the perfection of the Northrop looms. 
He served the town of Hopedale as Assessor from 1894, and was made a 
member of the Hopedale Park Commission. He became a stockholder and 
officer in at least a score of corporations organized to further the advance- 


ment of textile manufacturing, mining, quarrying and the development of 
patented inventions, giving to each much of his time and thought. This 
work was in addition to his duties as secretary of the Draper Company, 
the largest American builders of cotton machinery. He was elected to 
membership in the Home Market Club, of Boston, organized by his grand- 
father and of which his father was president for two years. He was also 
a member of the Republican Club of Massachusetts, the New England 
Cotton Manufacturers' Association, the American Inventors' Association, 
the Society for Psychical Research ; the Algonquin, Puritan Athletic and 
Automobile Clubs of Boston ; the Country Club of Brookline, Mass., the 
Metropolitan Club, of Washington, D. C. ; the Technology Club, of Boston, 
and Theti XI Graduate Club, of New York. He joined the fraternal associa- 
tion of Knights of Pythias, founded in Washington, D. C, February 9, 1864. 

On April 28, 1892, Mr. Draper married Lilly, daughter of Henry and 
Lily (Braid) Duncan, of Lexington, Ky., and had three children, Elise 
Allen Draper, George Otis Draper, Jr., and Henry Duncan Draper. The 
marriage was annulled by divorce obtained in July, 1903. Mr. Draper was 
the author of various technical pamphlets, including Facts and Figures 
(1898); Textile Texts (1891); Labor-saving Looms (1904); Searching 
for Truth (1902) and Still on the Search (1904), the latter work being 
illustrated by drawings from his own pencil, the two volumes being in- 
tended to give his theories on various theological doctrines, he being 
greatly interested in liberal theology. He travelled extensively for re- 
creation and information, and entered into many automobile contests, 
winning several prizes and trophies. He was a liberal contributor to the 
various philanthropic institutions and charities of Massachusetts, irrespec- 
tive of denominational control. Mr. Draper served two terms as vice- 
president of the National Association of Cotton Manufacturers, was a 
member of the Board of Government of the American Civic Association, 
and the Welfare Committee of the National Civic Federation. 

In 1907, a change of policy was adopted by a majority of the Draper 
Company directors, which ultimately led to the resignation of General 
Draper and his two sons. George Otis Draper decided to make New York 
City his future home, and being adverse to anything in the nature of a 
competition with his former associates, he entered into other lines of in- 
dustry, still giving liberal time to the development and introduction of 
patented improvements. In 1908, he published a work on political economy, 
which obtained very universal commendation from art critics. 



Warren Whitney Butcher was born in Shaftsbury, Vermont, July 4, 
1812, son of Peter and Lucy (Slye) Dutcher. His ancestors were among 
the early Dutch settlers of Eastern New York. Warren Whitney Dutcher 
obtained his education in the local district school during the few months m 
each year that it was in session. At the age of thirteen he was employed as 
bobbin boy in a small woolen mill in Shaftsbury. After several years' 
experience in the woolen mill, at the age of nineteen, he obtained a position 
in a cotton mill at North Bennington, Vermont. Later on he had charge 
of the weaving in the Doty mill in that place. In 1846 he patented the 
parallel shuttle motion, the first successful attempt in this direction. He 
also made various improvements on speeders and other machines. 

In 1 85 1 and 1852, in connection with his older brother, Elihu C. 
Dutcher, he obtained patents on reciprocating loom temples using toothed 
cylindrical rolls, and began their manufacture in North Bennington under 
the firm name of E. & W. W. Dutcher. The great improvement made in 
weaving by these temples attracted the attention of the Drapers, and in 
1854 they purchased the interest of Elihu Dutcher in the patents and busi- 
ness, and the partnership of W. W. Dutcher & Co. was formed to 
manufacture the temples, E. D. & G. Draper acting as selling agents. In 
May, 1856, this industry was transferred to Hopedale, Mass. In 1867, the 
Dutcher Temple Company was incorporated, with Warren W. Dutcher as 
agent, and he continued in this position until his death. During this 
period he made and patented many improvements in loom temples ; he also 
designed ingenious and accurate machines for use in their manufacture, 
many of which are still in everyday use. 

Recognizing the importance of good castings, Mr. Dutcher made it 
one of the conditions of his removal to Hopedale that a foundry should be 
built and castings made on the premises. The Hopedale Furnace Company 
carried on a separate business in this line as a co-partnership, of which 
Mr. Dutcher was a member, until 1867, when it was incorporated as 
a stock company. From the time he began the construction of loom 
temples he had entire charge of their manufacture up to the time of his 
last illness, and the high quality of work produced bore evidence to the 
thoroughness of his supervision. 

Mr. Dutcher married, October 10, 1841, Malinda Amelia, daughter of 
Lyman and Eleanor (Stearns) Tombs, of Hoosick, N. Y. Their children 
were Charles Volney. born July 23, 1848, died October 25, 1848; 
Frank Jerome, born July 21, 1850; and Grace Mary, born July 17, 
1853. Mr. Dutcher died at Hopedale, January 26, 1880, and his wife died 
February 9, if 




Dutcher, Frank Jerome, was born at North Bennington, Vermont, July 
21, 1850, the son of Warren Whitney and MaHnda AmeHa (Tombs) 
Dutcher. He received his education in the pubhc schools of Hopedale and 
Milford, and was graduated from the IMilford High School in 1868. In 
September of that year he was engaged as office boy by the newly organized 
firm of George Draper & Son. For many years, until 1896, when it merged 
with the other Hopedale Companies, he served as treasurer of the Dutcher 
Temple Company. He also became agent of the Hopedale Furnace Com- 
pany and treasurer of the Hopedale Machine Screw Company. On the 
formation of the Draper Company, Mr. Dutcher was chosen assistant agent; 
in 1907 vice-president, and in 1909 president, which position he still holds. 

Mr. Dutcher married, January 27, 1877, Martha Maria Grimwood, of 
Pawtucket, R. I. Their children were Warren Whitney, born August 29, 
1880; Daisy Grimwood, born November 28, 1881 ; and Ruth Collyer, born 
April 21, 1887. 


Joseph Bubier Bancroft, one of ten children of Samuel and Mary 
(Bubier) Bancroft, was born at Uxbridge, Massachusetts, October 3, 1821, 
his father being a native of Marblehead, who during the War of 1812 was 
taken prisoner by the British and confined in the infamous Dartmouth 

His educational opportunities were limited to the primitive schools of 
the district system. At an early age he went to work in one of the mills in 
the neighborhood, but preferring mechanical pursuits, served an apprentice- 
ship at the machinist's trade. He was employed in Woonsocket, R. I., Med- 
way, Uxbridge, and elsewhere, for various lengths of time, and in 1847 
joined the Hopedale Community at Hopedale, Mass. When the Community 
gave up its business interests, Mr. Bancroft associated himself with Ebenezer 
D. and George Draper, his brothers-in-law, under the firm name of Hope- 
dale Machine Company, to manufacture various improvements in cotton 
machinery, Mr. Bancroft having charge of the works. After the incorpora- 
tion of the company in 1867, he was made superintendent, which position 
he held for many years. 

In 1896, the business was incorporated as the Draper Company, and 
Mr. Bancroft was elected vice-president, officiating continuously as such 
until July, 1907, when, upon the retirement of General Draper, the subject 
of this sketch became president. 

Mr. Bancroft was an unassuming man of quiet tastes and confined most 
of his attention to business interests. He never sought public office. 


although in 1877-78-79 he served as selectman and represented the town 
of Alilford in the Legislature in 1864. In 1875, Mr. Bancroft became and 
remained until 1881 an engineer of the Fire Department. He rendered 
service on the directorate of the Home National Bank of Milford for ten 
years, and was associated with the management of the Milford Gas Light 
Company, as president, which position he resigned May 26, 1909, on ac- 
count of his failing health. In all official connections Mr. Bancroft was 
held in the highest esteem, for his ability as well as his trustworthiness. A 
member of Montgomery Lodge, A. F. and A. M. of Milford, Mt. Lebanon 
R. A. Chapter, and Milford Commandry, he was in all these orders, on 
account of special favors rendered, voted an honorary life member. 

Though extremely unostentatious in his giving, Mr. Bancroft was very 
charitable, and during his life benefited many in the community where he 
lived. Coming from the ranks of the laboring class, he appreciated the 
needs and trials of the ordinary workman, and his liberality to such was 
unbounded. To him also the town of Hopedale is indebted for its 
magnificent granite library building, which was erected to his wife's memory 
in 1898, he having married in 1844 Sylvia Willard. daughter of Benjamin 
and Anna (Mowry) Thwing, of Uxbridge. Ten children were born to Mr. 
and Mrs. Bancroft, five of whom at this writing are still alive, viz., Eben 
D., vice-president and purchasing agent of the Draper Company; Anna M., 
unmarried ; Gertrude, wife of \\''alter P. Winsor, of Fairhaven, Mass., 
president of the First National Bank of New Bedford; Lilla J., wife of 
H. W. Bracken, of Hopedale, one of the Draper Co. superintendents; and 
Lura B., widow of Charles M. Day, who at the time of his decease was 
general superintendent of the Draper Company. Mrs. Bancroft died in 

At the advanced age of eighty-eight years, Mr. Bancroft died October 
25, 1909. 


Eben D. Bancroft, son of Joseph Bubier and Sylvia W. (Thwing) 
Bancroft, was born in Hopedale, ]\Iass., August 27, 1847. He was educated 
in the public schools of Milford and in a private school at Providence, R. I. 
In 1866 he was engaged by his uncles, E. D. and G. Draper, to take charge 
of their office and accounts. In 1868 he succeeded to the same position 
with George Draper & Son and had continuous charge of this branch of the 
business during the various changes The office force during this period has 
increased from three persons to nearly one hundred. ]\Ir. Bancroft served 
as a director in the Hopedale Machine Company, and when the Draper Com- 


pany was organized he was chosen purchasing agent. In 1909 he was 
elected vice-president. 

Mr. Bancroft married, September 9, 1874, LeHa Coburn, daughter of 
Alonzo and EHza Curtiss (Jones) Coburn. Their children were Alice 
Coburn, born July 3, 1876, and Joseph Bubier, born February 26, 1880, 
who was graduated from Harvard University in the class of 1903, and 
became assistant treasurer of the Portland Iron & Steel Company, rolling- 
mill at Portland, Maine. 


Paul Whiting or Whitin was a descendant in the fifth generation 
of Nathaniel Whiting, who came from Norfolk County, England, to Lynn 
(then Saugus) Massachusetts Bay Colony, about 1635, and after ten 
years' residence in Lynn he removed to Dedham where he married Hannah, 
only daughter of John Dwight, who with his wife Hannah immigrated 
to Dedham, Tvlassachusetts Bay Colony, from England in 1634. Nathaniel's 
great-grandson, Nathaniel Whiting, lived on the boundary line between 
Dedham and Roxbury, and married Sarah Draper. Here their son, Paul 
Whiting, was born December 3, 1767. In 1769 Nathaniel Whiting died and 
his widow married, in 1770, James Prentice, a farmer of Baylies Hill, 
Uxbridge, and in 1776 they removed to Sutton, where Paul was brought 
up on his stepfather's farm and attended school. He worked on the farm. 
At the age of fourteen he began to learn the trade of blacksmith at North- 
bridge, and served an apprenticeship of nearly seven years with Jesse White. 
He then worked for four years as a journeyman blacksmith. December 
3, 1793, he married Betsey, daughter of Colonel James Fletcher, who 
had married a daughter of Ezra Wood of Upton, who had in 1771 pur- 
chased a farm and iron-producing furnace and forge on the Mumford River 
in Northbridge. They produced iron from the ore. Paul Whiting worked 
in his father-in-law's saw-and-grist mill for one year after his marriage. 
He then worked at his trade as a blacksmith for one year, when he 
bought out the business and conducted it on his own account. He soon 
after operated a small forge owned by Colonel Fletcher on the south side 
of the Mumford River, the drop-hammer being operated by water-power. 
About this time he was town clerk, and in signing his name dropped the 
final "g." He continued to serve as town clerk for thirteen successive 
years. On the privilege, which afterwards supplied power to the Whitin 
Machine Works, he built in 1809 a cotton mill operated by the Northbridge 
Manufacturing Company, of which he was the principal stockholder. This 
was the third cotton mill erected in the Blackstone Valley above Paw- 
tucket, the mill of .Mmy, Brown and Slaters having been built in 1807 at 


Slaterville, R. I., and the first mill at South ]\Ieaclow, Mass., operated by 
the Blackstone Company in 1808. The original mill erected by Paul \Miitin 
was built of wood and was equipped with fifteen hundred spindles. Pre- 
vious to and after building this mill, Paul Whitin was engaged largely in 
the making of heavy hoes used by Negro slaves on Southern plantations, 
and this trade was largely increased by the embargo caused by the suspen- 
sion of commerce with England during the War of 1812. The Northbridge 
mill was sold in 1824, and meantime in 1815 Mr. Whitin had entered into a 
partnership with Colonel Fletcher and his two sons, under the firm name 
of Whitin and Fletchers, and erected a second cotton mill of three 
hundred spindles on the site of the old forge for the manufacture of yarns, 
and the business of this mill was continued until 1826, when Mr. WHiitin, 
who owned a half interest, purchased the other half from the Fletchers 
and formed a partnership with his sons, Paul Whitin, Jr., and John C. 
Whitin, under the style of P. Whitin & Sons, and they erected a new mill 
of fifteen hundred spindles on the site of the mill of three hundred spindles. 
Paul Whitin, Sr., invested the capital, but took no part in the manage- 
ment of those mills. 

Paul and Betsey (Fletcher) Whitin had ten children, of whom eight 
lived to maturity, and five, Paul, Jr., John C, Charles P., James F. and 
Margaret F. (Whitin) Abbot, survived their mother, who had been a 
widow for thirty-seven years, and for thirty-four years had been a member 
of the firm of P. Whitin & Sons. She died July 2, 1868. 

Paul Whitin died at his home in Northbridge, February 8, 1831, in his 
sixty-fourth year. 


Paul Whitin, Jr., was born in Northbridge, Worcester County, Mass., 
February 5, 1800; son of Colonel Paul and Betsey (Fletcher) Whitin. 
(See sketch of his father. Ibid.) His school attendance was limited to the 
few months each year of the district school term, a short term at a 
school in Amsterdam, N. Y., and two terms at the Leicester Academy. 
From his tenth year, when not at school, he worked in the mill and on 
the farm of his father, and when eighteen he went to Boston as clerk in 
the drygoods store of James Beaver, where he remained up to February, 
1821, when, with a fellow-clerk named Lee, he removed to New York City 
and opened the drygoods store of Lee & Whitin on Maiden Lane, then a 
dry goods centre. In 1826 he returned to Northbridge, Mass., and with 
his father and younger brother, John C. Whitin, formed the firm of P. 
Whitin & Sons, cotton jnanufacturers. He, bv reason of his mercantile 


experience, took charge of the store and purchase of supplies for the cotton 
mill and the selling of the yarn and cloth produced. His father died in 
1831, and on the reconstruction of the firm, when his mother became a 
partner, he continued to hold the same position in charge of the mercantile 
department, and this service covered a period of thirty-eight years. On 
the dissolution of the firm in 1864, and the division of the property, he 
received the cotton mill at Rockdale and the mill privileges at Riverdale, 
where a cotton mill was built from the assets of the old firm, and in 1780 
he became president of the newly incorporated Paul Whitin Manufacturing 
Company, formerly the Rockdale Mill. He held various town offices and 
took a working interest in public affairs. He was made a trustee for 
numerous estates, and his fidelity as trustee was as unimpeachable as his 
conduct of his own personal afl'airs. 

Mr. Whitin married, August 22, 1822, Sarah R. Chapin, of Uxbridge. 
His son, Charles E. Whitin, continued the business of his father after his 
sudden death; another son, Henry E. Whitin, was for many years a cotton 
merchant in New York City. His daughter, Sarah, married Mr. Orvis, 
of Manchester, Vt., and his daughter, Anna L., in 1910 was still unmarried. 
He died at his home, February 7, 1884. 


John Crane Whitin, fourth son of Colonel Paul and Betsey (Fletcher) 
Whitin, was born in Northbridge, Worcester County, Mass., March i, 
1807. He attended the public schools of his native town until twelve years 
old, working between the summer and winter terms of schools in the picker- 
room of the Northbridge Manufacturing Co. owned by his father. When 
twelve years of age he was placed in the repair-room of the mill, where 
he worked three years, and this experience was an apprenticeship to the 
business in which he achieved his success as proprietor of the Whitin 
Machine Works. From 1822 to 1825 he was employed in the drygoods 
store of his brother, Paul Whitin, Jr., in New York City. He returned to 
Northbridge in 1825, when a partnership was formed betvreen his father, 
his brother, Paul Whitin, Jr., and himself, as manufacturers of cotton yarns 
and cloth under the firm name of P. Whitin & Sons. They erected a new 
mill on the old Whitin & Fletcher mill site. Paul Whitin, Jr., being in 
charge of the financial and mercantile department, and John C. ^Vhitin of 
the manufacturing and mechanical department. 

In an ell attached to the cotton mill the machine shop was located, 
and in this room the necessary repairs to the machinery were made. Mr. 


x^ ^,cv 


Whitin doing the work with the aid of one assistant. This department 
gave birth to the Whitin Machine Works. He had been early brought 
to a knowledge of the inadequate construction of the machines in use in 
the cotton mill, and the constant need of repairs, and he directed his 
leisure time to the improvements needed. In fact, when a boy in the 
picker-room, he had discovered the defects in the "scutcher" when applied 
to cotton, long baled and necessarily matted, and his first invention, patented 
in 1832, was to overcome this difficulty. While working on this invention, 
Colonel Paul Whitin died and the business was reorganized, his widow 
and three of the sons, Paul, John C. and Charles P., becoming equal 
partners. The old firm name, P. Whitin & Sons, was retained and the 
old Northbridge Mill was repurchased and put into operation. The pat- 
ented picker and lappers perfected by John C. Whitin attracted the at- 
tention of other manufacturers. The firm began to make machines for sale, 
and the small room, 20x40 feet, in which this work was done, became 
the nucleus of the Whitin Machine Works. At first the machinery was 
crude and incapable of producing such accurate and finished workmanship 
as the works subsequently turned out, but they were the best the market 
aflforded, and met with a ready sale. The successive machines displayed 
more complete workmanship. For many years the Whitin Works turned 
out most of the pickers and lappers used in the United States, and Mr. 
Whitin was encouraged to apply his inventive genius to other cotton mill 
machinery in the same line, and it soon embraced cards, card grinders, 
doublers, railway heads, drawing frames, ring frames, spoolers, warpers, 
dressers and looms, the works finally producing all the machinery used 
in a cotton mill except fly- frames and mules. In 1847 a large brick shop 
was built, 102x306 feet, as a machine shop. In i860 Mr. Whitin purchased 
the Holyoke Machine Works on his own account. This establishment had 
been engaged in the manufacture of turbine wheels and of cotton and 
miscellaneous machinery, and Mr. Whitin made the business profitable. 
Owing to the distance of Holyoke from Whitinsville, his home, he decided, 
in 1864, to dispose of it and remove such machinery as he needed to 
the Whitinsville works, and the Hadley Company purchased the property 
and transformed it into a manufactory for the production of cotton thread 
and yarn. The joint business of P. Whitin & Sons as manufacturers of 
cotton goods and of cotton machinery was divided in 1864. The cotton 
manufactory had in forty years increased from 1,500 spindles to a capacity 
of 50,000 spindles. They had added, in 1840. the old Uxbridge cotton 
mill erected by Robert Rogerson. of Boston, and subsequently they built 
the Rockdale Cloth Mill in Northbridge, and, in 1845, erected the large 
stone mill at Whitinsville. In the division of the business in 1864, the three 
brothers, Paul, Charles P. and James F. Whitin, became owners of the 
cotton mills, and John C. Whitin, the sole proprietor of the machine works. 
He enlarged the works by a large brick building with an ell, and in 1865 


built a new foundry 100x120 feet on the site of the old Xorthbridge factory. 
The increased demands for cotton machinery were met by continued en- 
-largement of the plants in both buildings, and by change in the character 
of the equipment of tools and macliinery. The working force of two men, 
who were the sole makers of the first machines, had been increased to 
over seven hundred men, and the improved machine tools introduced had 
increased the product of each man, making it equal to that of three men 
using the old-time tools. In 1870 the business of John C. Whitin was 
organized as a joint-stock corporation under the name of the Whitin 
Machine Works, with a capital of $600,000. John C. Whitin was elected 
president; Josiah Lasell, treasurer and general manager; and Gustavus 
E. Taft, superintendent. 

Mr. Whitin filled various offices of trust, being director of the National 
Bank of Whitinsville, president of the Whitinsville Savings Bank and 
director of the Providence and Worcester Railroad. He also served as 
presidential elector in 1876, elected on the Hayes and Wheeler ticket. 

Mr. Whitin married. May 30, 1831, Catherine H. Leland, of Sutton, 
Mass., granddaughter of Silence Dwight, who was a great-granddaughter 
of John and Hannah Dwight, the Dedham immigrants, 1634, who were 
thus the common ancestors of both Mr. and Mrs. Whitin. Their only son 
who attained to manhood, John Maltby Whitman, was employed in his 
father's works and died October 22, 1872. Their daughter Jane became 
the wife of Josiah Lasell (Ibid.). Mrs. Whitin died Jan. 31, 1873, and 
Mr. Whitin married Jan. 20. 1875. Sarah Elizabeth Pratt, of Hopkinton. 
Their only son, John C. Whitin, died in infancy. 

John Crane Whitin died at his home in Whitinsville, Mass., April 
22, 1882. 


Charles Pinckney Whitin was born in Northbridge, Worcester 
County, Mass., Aug. 6, 1809; the fifth son of Colonel Paul and Betsey 
(Fletcher) Whitin. (See sketch of his father. Ibid.) His education was 
received in the schools of the town and in the academy at Leicester. 
It was such that, when but sixteen, he taught school accceptably in the 
stone schoolhouse, near Plummers' Comer. He early worked in the 
cotton mill in which his father was interested, and here learned the rudi- 
ments of the art of cotton manufacture, in which he afterwards became so 
proficient. He continued with his father and brothers until his twenty-first 
year, when he went to Willimantic, Conn., to fit up and take charge of a 
cotton mill. Havine been called home the next year bv his father's sickness. 


he remained in his native town, and became identified with and most active 
in its growth and prosperity. The same year, 183 1, after his father's death, 
he became an active member of the firm of P. Whitin & Sons, in which he 
had charge of the cotton manufacturing department, and in this he became 
an expert and an authority. He superintended the erection of the stone 
mill in Whitinsville in 1845, the enlargement of the North Uxbridge Mill 
in 1847-8 and the erection of the mill in Rockdale in 1856-7. He was 
largely interested in the improvement of the water power of the Mumford 
River, devising and building the dams and reservoirs by which the surplus 
water of the spring was stored for later use. Whenever his brother, 
John C. Whitin, who had charge of the machine shop, was absent, this 
care devolved upon him, and he had practical management of the shop from 
April, i860, to January, 1864, while his brother was engaged at Holyoke. 
When the firm of P. Whitin & Sons was dissolved, Jan. i, 1864, Mr. Whitin 
took the cotton mills in Whitinsville and East Douglas and carried on the 
business of cotton manufacture, having associated his two older sons, 
Edward and William H., with him. In 1865, with his brother, James P., 
Whitin, he built the mill in Linwood, and in 1881 he purchased the cotton 
mill in Saundersville, Mass. At the time of his decease he was a director 
of the Douglas Axe Company and president of the Whitinsville National 
and Savings Banks. 

Mr. Whitin was selectman of his town in 1852, and served as repre- 
sentative of his district in the General Court in 1859. He was affiliated with 
the Congregational Church for sixty-five years, and was deeply and in- 
telligently interested in the great missionary and benevolent enterprises 
of his day to which he was a continuous and liberal contributor. 

Mr. Whitin married Sarah J. Halliday Oct. 2t, 1834, and she survived 
him with four sons, three of whom, Edward, William H. and Arthur F., 
were associated with him in the business, which they continued after his 
death until June 4, 1893, when William H. died, after which it was con- 
tinued by the two remaining partners, Edward and Arthur F. His son, 
Lewis P., was a commission merchant in New York. His only daughter, 
Helen L., married George L. Gibbs, and died May 9, 1885. 

Mr. Whitin died at Northbridge. I\Iass., Aug. 29, 1887. 


James Fletcher Whitin was born in Northbridge, Mass., December 
21, 1814; the youngest son of Colonel Paul and Betsey (Fletcher) Whitin. 
(See sketch of his father. Ibid.) He was educated in the public schools 
of Northbridge, and the academies of Uxbridge, Leicester, Munson and 



Amherst. He began his active business Hfe in the counting-room of P. 
Whitin & Sons; he was admitted as a member of the firm in 1847, and 
assumed entire charge of the financial department, retaining it up to the 
time of the dissokition of the firm, January i, 1864. In the division of the 
property, he received the cotton mill at North Uxbridge, and in 1866, with 
his brother, Charles Pinckney Whitin, he built the cotton mill at L.inwood, 
known as the "Linwood Mill." When tlie Whitins obtained control of the 
Uxbridge cotton mill. May 8, 1849, he was made clerk of the corporation ; 
at the meeting held May 10, 1864, he was elected treasurer and clerk ; and at 
the meeting held May 9, 1899, he was elected president, treasurer and 

Mr. Whitin married. July 23, 1842, Patience H., daughter of Ebenezer 
and Deborah (Fisher) Saunders, of Grafton. Their son, George M. 
Whitin, became a director and superintendent of the Uxbridge Cotton Mills 
May 9, 1878, and died suddenly January 24, 1883. Another son, Albert 
H. Whitin, became a director of the Uxbridge Cotton Mills in 1887. James 
Fletcher Whitin died at his home in Northbridge, Mass., March 2, 1902. 


Charles E. Whitin was born in Uxbridge, Mass., Sept. 13, 1823; 
son of Paul, Jr., and Sarah (Chapin) Whitin, grandson of Colonel Paul and 
Betsey (Fletcher) Whitin. Charles E. Whitin was a pupil in the public 
schools and the academy at Uxbridge, subsequent to which he learned the 
business of manufacturing cotton in the Whitinsville Cotton Mill, and was 
not there long before he was advanced to the position of overseer of the 
carding-room. When P. Whitin & Sons purchased the cotton mill property 
at North Uxbridge, Charles Whitin was made superintendent of the mill, 
and when the firm of P. Whitin & Sons was dissolved, Jan. i, 1864. he trans- 
ferred his services to the Paul Whitin Manufacturing Company, then 
known as the Rockdale Mill, and, on its incorporation in 1870, he was 
made treasurer of the Paul Whitin Manufacturing Company; on the death 
of his father, Feb. 7, 1884, he succeeded as president of the corporation, 
and held the office up to the time of his death. 

Mr. Whitin held important town, county and state offices, including 
those of selectman, justice of the peace, and state senator. He was also 
a director of the Whitinsville National Bank, and a trustee of the Whitins- 
ville Savings Bank. 

He married Adeline C, daughter of Oliver C. and Eliza (Jenkins) 
Swift, of Falmouth, Mass., and of their children three survived their 
father: Henry Thomas Whitin (Ibid.), treasurer of the Paul Whitin 


Manufacturing Company; G. Marston Whitin, treasurer of the Whitin 
Machine Works and president of the Paul Whitin Manufacturing Com- 
pany, and EHza Swift, wife of Paul Whitin Abbott, of Boston. Charles 
E. Whitin died in Whitinsville, Mass., Feb. 8, 1890. 


William Halliday Whitin was born in Whitinsville, Mass., Sept. 
5, 1841, the second son of Charles Pinckney and Sarah (Halliday) Whitin, 
grandson of Colonel Paul and Betsey (Fletcher) Whitin. 

William H. Whitin attended the public schools of Northbridge, was 
prepared for college at Easthampton, Mass., and was graduated from 
Yale College, A. B., 1863. He spent two years in post-graduate studies 
at home and one in travel in Europe, and on his return to Massachusetts 
he determined to take up the business of his father, that of a cotton manu- 
facturer. He spent two years in the careful study of the economy of 
production, the question of machinery and of the wages and the waste and 
natural losses in conducting the business under prevalent methods. In 1868 
he assumed the superintendence of the Whitinsville Cotton Mills, and con- 
ducted the business for twenty-five years with profit and to the entire 
satisfaction of the other stockholders, and also of the employees. He 
was interested as a stockholder and director in the Saunders Cotton Mill, 
Saundersville, Mass., of which he was president at the time of his death, 
and in the Linwood Mill, at Northbridge, erected by his father, Charles 
P., and his uncle, James F., and conducted by his father, his brother 
Edward and himself. He was also a director of the Whitinsville National 
Bank, and a trustee of the Whitinsville Savings Bank. He served his na- 
tive town as a member of the school committee for twenty-nine years, 
and as selectman for several years, being chairman of the board for 
four years. He was a member of the board of directors of the New 
England Cotton Manufacturers' Association, and as he always attended 
the annual meetings, by his advice and council he secured the esteem and 
confidence of his fellow-manufacturers of New England. 

He died at his home in Whitinsville, ]\Iass., June 4, 1893. 


Henry Thomas Whitin was born in North LTxbridge, Mass., Dec. 
15, 1854; son of Charles E. and Adeline (Swift) Whitin, grandson of Paul 
Whitin, Jr., Charles E. Whitin, son of Paul, Jr., and Sarah (Chapin) 
Whitin, and was married, Oct. 12, 1853, to Adeline Cabot, daughter of 


Oliver and Eliza Jenkins Swift, of Falmouth, and a descendant from 
John Robinson, a passenger of the Mayflower in 1520. 

The subject of this sketch, Henry Thomas Whitin, was instructed in 
the public and high schools of North Uxbridge and was graduated from 
Highland Military Academy, Worcester, Mass., in 1872. He became an 
apprentice in the Whitin Machine Works, owned and conducted by his 
uncle, J. C. Whitin (this belonged to Mr. J. C. Whitin alone), and this was 
followed by practical experience in the cotton mills of the Paul Whitin 
Manufacturing Company (Rockdale Mills), Northbridge, of which his 
father was president and manager. He was rapidly advanced to the posi- 
tions of foreman, superintendent and agent, and was treasurer in 1906, his 
brother, G. Marston Whitin, being president of the corporation. 

Mr. Whitin attended the Rockdale Congregational Church. He became 
a prominent member of the Masonic Fraternity, a Knights Templar, a mem- 
ber of the Republican Club of Massachusetts, of the Home Market Club 
of Boston, of the Xational Association of Manufacturers of New York, 
the Manufactuiers' Club of New York, the New York Athletic Club, 
Tatonic Country Club, the Worcester Club of Worcester and the Country 
Club of Grafton. 

Mr. Whitin married, Jan. i, 1876, Fannie Cora, daughter of Scott 
and Mary (Lovett) Berry, of Worcester. Five children were born of 
this marriage, all of whom were living in 191 1. 


Gustavus Elzaplen Taft was born in Peacham, \^t., August 29, 
1829; son of Cyrus and Lucinda (Morse) Taft, and a descendant of 
Robert Taft, who was born in 1640, probably in Scotland ; came from 
England to Massachusetts Bay Colony with his wife, Sarah, and settled in 
Braintree in 1675; removed to Mendon in 1680 and died in 1725. Cyrus 
Taft removed with his family to Northbridge, Mass., in 1839, and his 
son attended the public schools of the town and the academy at Uxbridge. 
In 1846, at the age of seventeen, Gustavus E. Taft entered the Whitin 
Machine Shop as an apprentice, and he there found full scope for the 
development of his mechanical genius. In i860 John C. Whitin made him 
superintendent of the Holyoke Machine Shops, and he returned to Whitins- 
ville in 1864 to become superintendent of the Whitin Machine Shop, 
organized upon the dissolution of the firm of P. Whitin & Sons, with 
which firm he had learned his trade. He was identified with the extensive 
enlargement of the machine works, and was largely responsible for the 
growth and development of the business, being an excellent organizer 





of labor and manager of men. His mechanical skill applied to the tools 
used in the shops greatly increased their efficiency, and his inventions and 
improvements in machines manufactured, especially the cards, spinning- 
frames and looms used by cotton manufacturers, added largely to the 
reputation and patronage of the works. July 18, 1882, he patented the 
"Whitin Gravity Spindle," which he and Henry F. Woodmancy had in- 
vented, and patents were also obtained in England, France, Germany and 
Holland. This invention greatly increased the producing capacity of the 
spindle, which came into general use in all parts of the world where 
cotton is manufactured. In 1884 Mr. Taft became agent of the Whitin 
Machine Works corporation, and had the active management of the large 
business up to the time of his death. Mr. Taft married, November 8, 
1855, Ruth L. Lamb, of Clinton, Me., and they had six children, who, 
with the mother, survived him. He died quite suddenly at his home in 
Whitinsville, Mass., June 24, 1888. Cyrus A. Taft, his oldest son, was 
appointed to the position held by Gustavus E. Taft, and held the same 
until 1904, at which time he gave up active business. He died February 6, 


Josiah Lasell was born in Schoharie, Schoharie County, New York, 
Aug. 6, 1825, son of Chester and Nancy (Manning) Lasell. He was pre- 
pared for college at the Schoharie Academy, and was graduated from 
Williams College, A. B., 1844. He then studied law but, instead of seeking 
admittance to the bar, began teaching in the celebrated boys' school con- 
ducted by Prof. Piquet in Brooklyn, N. Y. From this school he went to 
Springier Institute, New York City, remaining several years. In 1852, with 
his elder brother. Prof. Edward Lasell, of Williams College, and his 
brother-in-law. Prof. G. W. Briggs, he aided in incorporating the Lasell 
Seminary at Auburndale, Mass., a school of high grade for young women. 
Soon after beginning the work. President Edward Lasell, the founder, died, 
and Josiah Lasell became joint proprietor with Professor Briggs, and he 
continued in this work up to i860. Meantime, he had married, June 5, 
1855, Jane, the only daughter of John C. Whitin, of Whitinsville, Mass., 
and in i860 his father-in-law called him to his assistance in the conduct 
of the machine works he had purchased in Holyoke, Mass., where he re- 
mained until January, 1854, when Mr. Whitin sold the works in Holyoke 
and became sole proprietor of the machine works at Whitinsville. Mr. 
Lasell, too, went to Whitinsville to take charge of the books and accounts, 
and to give such other assistance to Mr. Whitin as he might need in his 
declining years. In 1870, when the machine works were incorporated, Mr. 
Lasell was made the treasurer of the corporation, and, at the same time, he 
shared with ]\Ir. Whitin the care and responsibility of the office of president. 


which the enfeebled health of his father-in-law made necessary. In 1882 
Mr. Whitin died, and the directors at once elected Mr. Lasell president 
of the corporation, and he also continued to serve as treasurer up to 
January, 1886. It was largely under his inspiration and direction that the 
expensive additions to the works were carried on, and his success as a 
business man was as great as had been his grasp of the problem of teaching 
the young. In each of his enterprises he took wide and far-reaching views, 
and he believed in large accomplishments and in the possibilities of the 
future. He was also a master of details, and, in school or factory, he 
knew just what to do in an emergency and how to avoid confusion or 
.panic. In public affairs he was placed in varied offices of trust and 
responsibility, especially in financial trusts involving the welfare of widows 
and minor children as affected by the settlement of estates. 

Mr. Lasell left a widow and two sons, Chester Whitin Lasell and 
Josiah Manning Lasell, and two daughters, Catharine W., who married G. 
Marston Whitin, the treasurer of the Whitin Machine Works, and Jennie 
L., who married Dr. Ogden Backus, of Rochester, N. Y. 

He died suddenly at his home in \MiitinsviIle, I\Iass., March 15, 1886. 


George Crompton was born at Holcombe, near Bury, Lancashire, Eng- 
land, March 23, 1829. He was the son of William and Sarah (Low) 
Crompton, came to New England with his parents in 1839, and was edu- 
cated in the public schools of Taunton, Worcester, and at Millbury Academy. 

For a time he served as bookkeeper for his father, and, after his 
father's failure, was employed for a year in the Colt Pistol Factory at 
Hartford, Conn. Refusing an advantageous offer of advancement in this 
concern, he succeeded, after a personal visit to Washington, in getting an 
extension of his father's patent for seven years. He then formed a 
partnership with Merrill E. Furbush, and in 185 1 the new firm started the 
manufacture of looms in the Merrifield buildings in Worcester. 

The first looms this new firm built were (like the looms made by those 
who manufactured under licenses granted by his father, William Cromp- 
ton) narrow looms; that is, they were looms of about forty-eight-inch reed 
space. These looms ran at a speed of forty-five picks per minute, that is, 
forty-five weft or cross threads were woven every minute. In 1857 Mr. 
Crompton constructed and patented a broad loom, nearly double the width 
of the old loom, and he demonstrated that this new loom could be run at 
what was then considered the extraordinary speed of eighty-five picks per 
minute. This was a revolutionary improvement. The production of the 
loom had been quadrupled, for both the width and speed were doubled. 

On August I, 1859, the firm of Furbush & Crompton was dissolved 





with the understanding that the territory covered by the patents owned by 
the firm should be divided, so that J\Ir. Crompton would hold the New 
England States and New York, while the remainder of the United States 
should belong to Mr. Furbush. 

During 1861-65 IMr. Crompton added to his business of manufacturing- 
looms that of making tools for the manufacture of gim stocks, which 
were sold to gun makers, but at the end of the Civil War the entire resources 
of the works were again directed to the construction of weaving machinery. 
He took out over 100 patents for improvements on looms and for devices 
outside of his own business, likewise securing numerous patents in Europe. 
He exhibited his loom at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition, where he 
obtained a medal, and at the Paris Exposition in 1867, where all the leading- 
manufacturers of Europe were represented, he received a gold medal. 

Mr. Crompton in the late seventies introduced the Keighley dobby 
into this country. With Mr. Horace Wyman, who was associated with 
him, he improved this harness motion considerably, simplifying it and 
altering its position (which on English looms had always been in the 
centre of the arch) to the end of the arch, where it could be repaired or 
fixed more easily, and also getting rid of the annoyance of having the oil 
drop from this mechanism on the warp in the loom. With Mr. Wyman 
also, he invented and improved the well-known Crompton gingham loom, 
which has since then become the standard gingham loom of this country. 

Mr. Crompton was actively interested in civic and public afifairs, and 
served the city of Worcester as a member of the Council, 1860-1 : as an 
alderman, 1863-64. It was largely owing to his eflforts that the soldiers' 
monument, designed by Randolph Rogers, was placed in the public park. 
Mr. Crompton married, Jan. 9, 1853, Mary Christiana, daughter of Charles 
Pratt, of Hartford, Conn., and had twelve children. He died at Worcester, 
Mass., Dec. 29, 1886. 


William Crompton. son of Thomas and Mary (Dawson) Crompton, 
was born in Preston, Lancashire, England, Sept. 10, 1806. He was a 
practical weaver both by hand and power, an excellent cloth designer and 
an admirable mechanic. While still a young man he was made superintend- 
ent of the cotton mills at Ramsbottom-on-the-Irwell, Lancashire, where he 
gained a wide experience in the manufacture of cotton; his natural in- 
ventive talents evincing themselves in the improvements which he made 
on the machinery in this mill. 

In 1836, at the age of thirty, he came to the LTnited States in search 
of wider opportunities, and entered the employ of Messrs. Crocker and 
Richmond, at Taunton, Mass. Here, having been requested to weave a 


certain pattern of goods, which the looms in use there were not fitted to 
produce, he invented and made a loom of extremely novel design, in that 
it was the first loom in which the figure or pattern to be produced could be 
made up on what is known as a chain. This chain is a series of bars or 
lags, held together by links, so as to form a chain of bars, hence the name. 
On these bars or lags are rollers or pins, placed in such position that as 
the chain revolves it lifts, at certain predetermined intervals, levers, which 
in turn cause the harnesses to be raised in such order that the desired 
design or pattern is produced upon the loom. 

The loom invented by William Crompton overcame two great dis- 
advantages of the cam loom — the limitation of harness capacity and 
the necessity of changing the cams in order to change the pattern, because 
its construction made it possible in a very limited space to control and 
operate a great number of harnesses, and made it extremely easy to change 
from one pattern to another. Finally, by William Crompton's invention, 
any harness could be raised or lowered at any time, and exceedingly com- 
plicated patterns could for the first time be woven by power. Another inno- 
vation in this loom was that the warp was made to move up and down, this 
double motion giving more room for the shuttle to fly from side to side. For 
this invention Mr. Crompton received a patent numbered 491 and dated No- 
vember 23, 1837. Owing, however, to the general depression of the textile 
industry here, he went to England and obtained letters patent, and his looms 
were later put into operation in that country. 

In 1839 he returned to this country, with his wife, Sarah (Low) and 
his family, including his son George, and settled in Taunton. About this 
time the ]\Iiddlesex Mills, of Lowell, wishing to manufacture a cloth similar 
to a piece which liad been made by hand in France, requested Mr. Crompton 
to come to Lowell. Mr. Crompton accepted this invitation and applied 
his patented fancy harness motion to the looms in the mill, and demon- 
strated that with this motion the desired pattern could be woven. Thus, in 
1840, at the Middlesex Mills in Lowell, fancy woolens were, for the first 
time, zvoven by power. Mr. Crompton shortly after this entered into arrange- 
ments with Phelps & Bickford, makers of plain looms in Worcester, to man- 
ufacture his looms under a royalty, during the life of the patent, he himself 
operating a cotton mill in Northville, now a part of Worcester. This mill 
being destroyed by fire in 1844, Mr. Crompton went to Millbury, where he 
engaged in the manufacture of cotton and woolen cloth. A few-years later, 
becoming financially embarrassed, he retired from business and moved to 
Hartford, Conn. The great success that his son George made of the Cromp- 
ton looms brought about many imitations, especially in Continental Europe. 
All fancy power looms, excepting only Jacquard looms, still use the pattern 
chain originally invented by William Crompton, thus being in their most 
essential mechanism Crompton looms. 

Mr. Crompton died at \\'indsor. Conn.. IVIay i, 1891. 



Lucius James Knowles, inventor, was born in Hardwick, Massachu- 
setts, July 2, 1819, son of Simeon Knowles, a prosperous farmer. He 
was brought up on his father's farm, sent to the public school, and in 
due time to the Leicester Academy, where he completed three terms, and, 
when seventeen years of age, he found employment as clerk in a general 
store in Shrewsbury, and in 1838, although not of age, he was admitted 
to partnership. His leisure hours were devoted to perfecting various in- 
ventions, including musical instruments, steam engines, and a safety steam 
boiler feed regulator, which he perfected in 1840, and on which he obtained 
a patent. In 1840 he disposed of his interest in the Shrewsbury store and 
devoted himself to mechanical studies and experiments. He built an elec- 
tric engine, and, in 1842, turned his attention to the development of the 
science of photography, invented a camera and material for the use of 
photographers, and for the purpose of combining business with study, he 
operated a photographic gallery for two years, selling it out in 1844. He 
then engaged in the manufacture of thread at New Worcester, Mass., 
in the mill owned by Albert Curtis on the site of the Hale mill. His 
purpose was to put to practical use a spooling machine, invented by him, 
which done he removed to Spencer in 1S47 ^"d engaged in the manufacture 
of cotton warp yarn. He removed his business to Warren in 1849, where 
he added machinery for manufacturing woolen goods. He sold out 
his interest in the woolen manufacturing business in i860, having in 1859 
obtained a patent for an improved method of operating the valves of 
pumping engines, and the first steam pumps made under his patent were 
made for him by contract. The invention proving of great value in mining 
operations as well as for general use, he began to manufacture them in 
his own machine shop at Warren, in 1863, where he had the previous year 
begun the manufacture of his patented safety steam boiler feed regulator, 
invented in 1840. He had been led, in his business as a manufacturer, to 
study the power loom, and this refulted in the Knowles loom which made 
his name known throughout the textile manufacturing centres of Europe and 
America. In 1862 he induced his brother, Francis B. Knowles, to join 
him in the manufacture of the Knowles tape-loom. For this purpose 
they set apart a room in the pump works at Warren, and their first work- 
ing force was one wood worker and two machinists ; but the demand for 
the new loom soon caused the increase of both working force and room, 
and to obtain the latter he sold a half interest in his steam pump to the 
George F. Blake Company, of Boston, and the manufactory of pumps 
was transferred to that city. In 1866 the shops of the loom works were 
transferred to Worcester, in rooms on Allen's Court, and, in 1879, they 
were crowded for room and removed to the junction shops, and. later, 
to a new building on the corner of Tainter and Grand Streets, extending 


to the railroad tracks on Grand Street, in 1889. The business was con- 
solidated with that of the Crompton Loom Works, in 1897, and incor- 
porated as the Crompton & Knowles Loom Works with a capital of 
$3,000,000. The Star Foundry, of Worcester, was added to the combina- 
tion in 1897, and the Gilbert Loom Company in 1899. The Crompton close- 
shed loom, the Knowles open- shed loom, and the Gilbert loom, for weaving 
Kentucky jean^ and other coarse goods, gave employment to 1,500 skilled 
machinists, and the product of the works found a market in the principal 
manufacturing towns of the United States and Europe. 

Mr. Knowles served the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as a repre- 
sentative in the General Court, in 1862 and 1863; as a state senator in 1869. 
He served the city of Worcester as a member of the Common Council; was 
a director of the Central National Bank; in the State Mutual Assurance 
Company; president of the People's Saving Bank, and president of the 
Worcester Board of Trade. He received the honorary degree of M. A. 
from Williams College in 1865. 

Mr. Knowles died suddenly while on a visit to Washington, D. C, 
of neuralgia of the heart, Feb. 25, 1884. 


Francis B. Knowles was born in Hardwick, Mass., Nov. 29, 1823. 
His father, Simeon Knowles, was an industrious and well-to-do farmer, 
and his sons were accustomed to work on the farm and in the workshop. 

Francis was educated in the public schools and academy of his native 
town, and then taught the district school at Dana, Mass., through a winter 
term. His next school was at Gloversville, New York, but at the end of 
his first term he determined to change his occupation and obtained a posi- 
tion as travelling salesman for a glove manufacturer of Gloversville. He 
was most successful in this occupation, and on April i, 1845, he began the 
manufacture of buckskin gloves on his own account, meeting with con- 
siderable success. He subsequently engaged in the clothing business up to 
1862, when he removed from Gloversville, New York, to Warren, Mass., 
to take up the manufacture of looms in connection with his brother, Lucius 
J. Knowles, four years his senior, and the inventor of a pumping engine 
of special value in mining operations, of the safety steam boiler feed 
regulator, and of an improved loom which came into general use in many 
of the cotton manufactories of the United States and abroad. The two 
brothers formed a partnership, and F. B. Knowles devoted his whole 
time to the manufacture of his brother's loom, and saw the business expand 
from a small room in which three men worked, to an immense factory 


employing over 600 skilled workmen. The loom works at Warren were 
removed to Allen's Court, Worcester, Mass., in 1866, and to the junction 
shop, to secure needed room, in 187c). A new building was erected in 1889 
on the corner of fainter and Grand Streets, extending to the railroad 
tracks on Grand Street. 

The Knowles Loom Works and the Crompton Loom Works were 
consolidated and incorporated as the Crompton & Knowles Loom Works in 
1897, with a capital of $3,000,000. The Star Foundry was added to the 
concern in March, 1897, and the Gilbert Loom Company in 1899, and 
the combined business, as operated by the Crompton & Knowles Loom 
Works, Worcester, Mass., gave employment to about 1,500 hands in manu- 
facturing the Crompton close-shed and the Knowles open-shed looms, and 
the Gilbert loom to weave Kentucky jeans, cartridge belts, carpets and other 
coarse fabrics. The officers of the company in 1910 were : Charles H. 
Hutchins, president, and L. J. Knowles, treasurer, and the stock was held 
by forty-five individual stockholders. Mr. Knowles married, Dec. 23, 1845, 
Ann Eliza, daughter of David Poole. ATrs. Knowles died Feb. 24, 1865, 
and he married, secondly, April 23, 1867, Hester A., daughter of John 
Reynolds and Fanny Wightman Greene, of Worcester. The vigorous cli- 
mate of New England affected his health as he increased in age, and he 
found relief by spending his winters in Florida, where he became financially 
interested in the development of the town of Winter Park and he was 
one of the largest stockholders in the enterprise, which was incorporated 
as the Winter Park Company. 

Francis B. Knowles died in 1890. 


Charles Henry Hutchins was born in East Douglas, Mass., Jan. 13, 
1847; the son of Charles Hutchins, of Saco, Me., and Harriet N., daughter 
of Oliver Hunt, of East Douglas, Mass., a pioneer axe manufacturer in this 
country. Mr. Hutchins was educated in the public and high schools of 
his native town, and then put in two years in his father's axe factory, 
where he learned both practical mechanics and business system. The next 
two years he spent as a clerk in a country store in the town, after whfch 
he entered the dry goods house of Horace Sheldon & Co., of Worcester, 
with which establishment he remained from 1867 to 1874. 

On withdrawing from Horace Sheldon & Co., he organized the firm 
of C. H. Hutchins & Co., and engaged in the manufacture of tapes and 
webbings, the business soon afterwards being incorporated as the Hutchins 
Narrow Fabric Company. In 1884, he became a member of the firm of 


L. J. Knowles & Bro., loom manufacturers, of Worcester, after the death 
of Lucius J. Knowles, the senior member of the firm. On its incorporation 
as the Knowles Loom Works in 1835, he became treasurer of the cor- 
poration, and in 1890, on the death of Francis B. Knowles, his father-in-law, 
he succeeded him as president. In 1897, Mr. Hutchins became the first 
president of the new Crompton & Knowles Loom Works, of Worcester, 
the result of a consolidation of the Crompton Loom Works, of Worcester, 
and the Knowles Loom Works, in which arrangement he was the prime 

Mr. Hutchins was a man of large affairs in the manufacturing world, 
and was associated with many other important enterprises. From 1899 
he has served as president of the United States Envelope Company, the 
largest concern of its kind in the world. He served also as a director in 
national and savings banks and trust companies ; was one of the founders 
of the Hospital Cottages for children at Baldwinsville, Mass., and was 
a director of the Home for Aged Men and the Home for Aged Women in 
Worcester. He was a member of the Piedmont Congregational Church and 
an active supporter of church works. He married Eliza E. Knowles, 
daughter of the late Francis B. Knowles, in 1873. 


Edwin Tyler Marble, born in Sutton, Mass., Aug. 18, 1827. He was 
the eldest son of Royal Tyler and Ann B. (Clement) Marble. The family 
of Marble has long been identified with the town of Sutton. Samuel, the 
immigrant ancestor, settled in Andover before 1660, coming from Wales. 
He was a brick mason, making his own bricks, and was admitted a free- 
man in 1678. Freegrace. his son, was born about 1690, and his marriage 
to Mary Sibley was the first in Sutton. He was one of the original pro- 
prietors of the town, a brick mason, and helped to build the old State 
House in Boston. Malachi, son of Freegrace, and great-grandfather of 
Edwin T. Marble, was born in Sutton, where he became prominent. He 
enlisted April 11, 1759, in Colonel John Chandler's regiment, and during the 
French War was also in Captain Samuel Clark Power's company, Brigadier- 
General Ruggles' regiment. During the Revolution he was collector of 
taxes for Sutton. Andrew, grandfather of Edwin Tyler, was the oldest son 
of Malachi, and was born in Sutton in 1761. He was a mail-carrier between 
Boston and Hartford. Royal Tyler, father of Edwin Tyler, was fourth 
child of Andrew, born in Sutton in 1797. He built up a reputation 
throughout the country for his ability to raise prize stock, and he was 
much interested in the Worcester County Agricultural Society in its 

C^2^^^^^ ^ X'^ ^^^^^^J 


early days. He was commissioned lieutenant of the 5th regiment, Sept. 
20, 1826, and was captain of the Sutton rifles in 1830 and 1831. fle 
married Ann Bailey Clement, of Worcester, Sept. 27, 1825, she being a 
daughter of Moses and Sarah (Bailey) Clement, a descendant of old 
Essex County families. 

The subject of this sketch was educated in the public schools of his 
native town, and also at the Worcester County Manual Training School, 
that being the old name of the Worcester Academy, having removed to 
Worcester with his parents in 1841. At the age of eighteen he entered 
the machine- shop of Albert Curtis, where he served an apprenticeship of 
three years. He then worked in various machine shops in the city of 
Worcester as a journeyman, foreman and superintendent ; for some time 
he was in the employ of A. & S. Thayer, and afterwards was foreman for 
Thayer, Houghton & Co., manufacturers of machinists' tools. Later he was 
superintendeint for E. C. Cleveland & Co., manufacturers of woolen 
machinery. In 1850 he worked for a time in Shelburne Falls, but retained 
his residence in Worcester. In 1863 he entered into partnership with Mr. 
Albert Curtis, who had established the business in 1831, with John 
Simmons and Abel Kimball as his partners in the manufacture of ma- 
chinery for the finishing of woolen cloth, including shearing machines, 
brushing machines, gigs, nappers, etc., Mr. Curtis having continued the 
business with other partners or in his own name up to that time. The 
new firm, under the style of Curtis & Marble, began business in the same 
small shop on Webster Street where the junior partner had learned his 
trade ; Mr. Marble assuming tlie management of the machine shop and Mr. 
Curtis devoted his time to his woolen mills. The business grew steadily 
from that time on, the working force being largely increased and the 
partnership continued until April, 1895, when Mr. Marble bought the 
interests of Mr. Curtis and became sole proprietor. The Curtis & Marble 
Machine Co. was incorporated December 31, 1895, with a capital of $75,000, 
Mr. Marble being president and treasurer, and retaining these positions 
until his death. The other officers were his four sons : Edwin H. Marble, 
vice-president ; William C. Marble, secretary ; Charles F. Marble, cashier ; 
Albert C. Marble, superintendent. In 1897 an entire new plant was built 
at 72 Cambridge Street, and the business moved into a modern brick 
factory, the main building beirig three hundred feet long by sixty-four feet 
wide, where the company made a most extensive line of finishing machinery 
for all textile fabrics, and also wool burring, picking and mixing machinery. 

A republican from the organization of the party, Mr. Marble always 
took a prominent and active part in public affairs. In 1870 he was elected 
representative to the General Court, but declined a second term, and he 
served in the State Senate in 1887 and 1888. He was a member of the 
school board in i860, and again from 1872 to 1880; was elected to the 
common council in 1866 to 1868, and was a member of the Board of Alder- 


men from 1869 to 1872. He was six years a director of the Free Public 
Library, being president of the board the last year. He was an active and 
influential member of the Worcester County Mechanics' Association, which 
he joined in 1846, and was trustee during the intervening time (twelve 
years), and president in 1878 and 1879. His other interests were many 
and varied. He was a director of the Worcester Safe Deposit & Trust 
Co., which has grown into the Worcester Trust Co., of which he was a 
director until his death. He was trustee and vice-president of the Peoples' 
Savings Bank, and was for many years a member of the committee on 
investments. He was a member of the executive committee and vice- 
president of the Home for Aged Men from its organization in 1891, and 
president during 1909-10. He was a member of the Board of Trade and 
a director for many years; a member of Worcester County Agricultural 
Society; also a member of the National Association of Cotton Manufac- 
turers. He was affiliated with the Piedmont Congregational Church from 
1875 and served in many offices, being deacon for nearly thirty-five years. 
Mr. Marble married, in Shelburne Falls, Mass., October 23, 1850, 
Harriet Hamilton, daughter of Henry Prentice and Achsah H. (Clement) 
Chase. Her father was a descendant of Aquila Chase, immigrant and 
pioneer. She was a schoolteacher while in ^^'orcester and taught in the 
public schools. Mrs. Marble died in April, 1892. Their children were 
Edwin H., Harriet A., William C, Charles F. and Albert C. The four sons 
were associated with their father in business; the daughter, Harriet A., 
lived with her father, and died in 1906. Mr. Marble died July 3, 1910, after 
a brief illness, in his eighty-third year. 


Albert Curtis was born in Worcester, Mass., July 13, 1807. He was 
a son of Samuel and Eunice (Taft) Curtis, and descended through Samuel 
and Mary (Stone-Coggin) Ward Curtis. Ephraim and Mary, daughter of 
Isaac and Sibyl (C'ollins) Rice Curtis; Ephraim and Alary (daughter of 
David and Susanna Stone) Curtis; Joseph and Abigail (daughter of Cap- 
tain John and Sarah (Busby-Cakebread) Grout Curtis; from Henry Curtis, 
who came to New England in 1635 in the "Elizabeth and Anne," and 
settled at Watertown, Mass. He was then twenty-seven years old, and he 
married Mary, daughter of Nicholas Guy, of Upton Gray, Southampton, 
England, who came to New England in 1838 in the ship "Confidence" 
and settled at Watertown, Mass. Henry Curtis was a wheelwright by trade. 

Albert Curtis was the sixth son of his father, who died in 181 1 when 
the boy was very young. Albert, from the age of nine to thirteen, lived 


with an uncle in Auburn, where he attended district school in winter and 
assisted about the farm in summer ; he then went to reside with a relative 
in Tioga County, New York, where he followed the same routine of life. 
When seventeen years of age, he returned to Worcester, where he served an 
apprenticeship of three years in the shops of White & Boyden, manufac- 
turers of woolen machinery at South Worcester. At the close of his ap- 
prenticeship he was employed by the firm as a journeyman. In 1829 he 
went to Pittsburg, Pa., and returning to Worcester in 1831, entered into 
partnership with John Simmons and Abel Kimball, under the firm name 
of J. Simmons & Co., and engaged in the manufacturing of brushing, 
shearing and napping machines for finishing woolens. This partnership 
was dissolved in 1832, and thereafter the firm was known as Simmons & 
Curtis. In 1833 Mr. Curtis purchased Mr. Simmons' interest and carried 
on business alone until 1834, when he associated himself with Mr. William 
Henshaw. The firm was now known as Curtis & Henshaw and so con- 
tinued for four years. 

In 1840 Mr. Curtis purchased of Mr. Wheelock the water privilege 
and mill building and two full sets of satinet machinery. In 1842 this fac- 
tory, as well as his machine shop, was destroyed by fire, and he promptly 
rebuilt them, and in the same year built a factory, part of which he leased 
to Sumner Pratt for the manufacture of sewing thread. He acquired an 
equal interest in this business, and, in 1844, he bought out Mr. Pratt and 
put in looms for making cotton sheetings, and the following year built 
a large factory just south of this mill. In 1852 he bought the Trowhridge 
village and mill property with the large farm attached, these being situated 
about three-quarters of a mile from his other factories. Here, after 
making extensive improvements, he also began to manufacture sheetings. 

In 1857 he began the manufacture of satinets, and, in 1863, he took 
Edwin T. Marble into partnership in the manufacture of woolen ma- 
chinery, and this portion of his business was thereafter conducted under 
the firm name of Curtis & Marble, the junior partner assuming the active 
management of the machinery business, while Mr. Curtis continued with 
his mills. In 1895 Mr. Curtis sold his entire interest in the firm of 
Curtis & Marble to Mr. E. T. Marble, who then formed the corporation 
of Curtis & Marble Machine Company. 

He continued the manufacture of cotton sheetings at the Trowbridge 
Mill until 1870, when most of it was destroyed by fire, and it was re- 
constructed as a woolen mil). In 1871 Mr. Curtis fitted his other factory, 
built in 1845 ^"^ known as the South Mill, for the production of woolen 
goods, and, in 1871 put in looms for the weaving of horse blankets. 

In 1880 Mr. Curtis incorporated the mill property and water rights 
at New Worcester as the Curtis Manufacturing Company. 

Shortly after his death, in 1898, the controlling interest was bought 
by Charles G. Stratton, who, in 1009, sold the real estate and water rights 


to the Worcester Electric Light Company, who have razed the old build- 
ings and erected a modern electric power plant on the site 

Mr. Curtis built the first machine made in this country for shearing 
or trimming cotton goods. These machines were used to remove fuzz from 
cotton cloth, which in former times had been accomplished by singeing 
or burning. A shearing machine made in France was sent from Paw- 
tucket to be repaired ; this had one set of shears. Mr. Curtis made 
improvements and built machines superior for the purpose. The Curtis 
& Alarble machine has two to six sets of shears, and one machine cau do 
as much as twelve of the old type did in 1830. 

He was a member of the government of the old town of Worcester 
as selectman, 1840-41 : he was also a member of the first Common Council 
of the city in 1848, and an alderman in 1857, and was trustee of the 
City Hospital. He was for some time vice-president of the Worcester 
Society of Antiquity, and a member of kindred organizations. 

Mr. Curtis built the Curtis Chapel at Hope Cemetery, and presented 
it to the city. He was also liberal in his benefactions to the Old Men's 
Home, the Young Men's Christian Association, the Young Women's Chris- 
tian Association and to the Union Church. His gifts in other directions 
were liberal and numerous. 

Mr. Curtis married, 1832, Mrs. Sally K. Griffin, who died, leaving 
no children by this marriage. He married, in 1880, Mrs. Bancroft, widow 
of Rev. David Bancroft. Mr. Curtis died suddenly in Worcester, July 
27, 1898. 


Abraham Marland was born in Ashton Parish, Lancashire, England, 
Feb. 22, 1772, son of Jonathan and Martha (Lawton) Marland. His 
mother died in 1776, and her brother, John Lawton, a woolen manufacturer 
of Ashton, took charge of the boy and sent him to school until he was 
eight years of age, when he began his apprenticeship in the woolen mill. 
He was but fifteen years old when his uncle died, leaving him possessed 
of an excellent knowledge of the business, but entirely dependent upon 
himself for a livelihood. He readily obtained employment in another factory 
in the neighborhood, but shortly after went to Leeds, and in that place 
and at Holbeck, on the opposite side of the river, he was employed in 
woolen mills for four years. At the opening of the nineteenth century 
he embarked for America with his wife and infant child, arriving in 
Boston, Mass., September 17, 1801. He went directly to Pawtucket, 
R. L, where Samuel Slater was operating a mill for spinning cotton yarns, 
for the purpose of obtaining work or advice in regard to finding employ- 


ment for his skill and his savings. Slater advised him to invest his money 
in land and its cultivation, and not to risk it in the precarious business of 
a manufacturer. This was contrary to Marland's plans, and he determined 
to pursue the vocation of which he felt himself a master. The manufac- 
ture of wool was at a low ebb in America, and the attention of manu- 
facturers was directed to cotton, which was then much in demand as warp 
to be used with flax and wool, and for calico as a popular dress goods. 
His skill in spinning wool yarn served him in operating the spinning 
jennies for cotton yarn, and the next two years were spent in the Beverly 
Cotton Manufactory. In August, 1803, he removed to Lynnfield, where 
he engaged in manufacturing cotton yarns for knitting and weaving. This 
business he continued up to May, 1807, when he transferred his machinery 
to Abbot Village, Andover, Mass. He built a small mill fifteen by forty 
feet, two stories high, and in this conducted the business of the Abraham 
Marland Cotton Factory up to 181 1. Thomas R. Appleton was the selling 
agent for the cotton warp, filling and knitting yarns produced by the 
mill. In 181 1 Mr. Marland gave up the business of working in cotton and 
changed his carding and spinning machinery to that for working wool ; he 
also added looms adapted to weaving satinets and found profit in their 
manufacture up to the outbreak of the War of 181 2, when he adapted his 
mill to weaving army blankets. From 1813 to 1819 he was interested in a 
mill established by James Schofield at the mouth of the Cochicawick River, 
in North Andover. Later the depreciation in government bonds received in 
payment for blankets so decreased his profits that he changed the product 
of his mills to making flannels, which was his chief output thereafter. In 
1821 he secured from Peter C. Brooks a lease of the old powder mill 
erected in 1775-76 at Andover by Samuel Phillips, Jr., and transformed to 
a paper mill in 1789. The lease was to run for twenty years, and Marland 
erected on the site the first brick mill, the oldest of the present Marland 
Mills, and also a block of brick tenements for the operators. The machinery 
transferred from the old mill was supplemented by new machinery, and the 
mill was in full operation in the fall of 1822. The venture was profitable, 
and on September i, 1828, Mr. Marland purchased the pro])erty, including 
the mill privilege on both sides of the river, with the woolen -mill of 1822, 
the old paper mill, a grist mill and thirty acres of land. He erected a new 
mill in 1832, and in 1834 incorporated the business as the Marland Manu- 
facturing Company, with a capital stock of $60,000, the stockholders 
being Abraham Marland, his sons, John and William S. Marland, and his 
son-in-law, Benjamin H. Punchard. Abraham Marland was president of 
the corporation up to the time of his death, and Benjamin H. Punchard 
was the first treasurer of the company. Mr. Marland was a member of the 
Episcopal Church, and, there being no church in Andover, he carried out 
a long-cherished desire in 1835, when, with his sons and son-in-law, he 
secured the establishment of Christ Church and liberally supported it dur- 


ing its early days. He gave the lot adjoining the church for the site of a 
rectory and erected on it a commodious dwelling for the rector. With 
his son, John, he also gave the ground for a cemetery. Mr. Marland mar- 
ried, Feb. 3, 1800, Mary Sykes, of Holbeck, England. He died at Andover, 
Mass., Feb. 20, 1849. 


Robert Rogerson was born in Boston, Mass., Jan. 30, 1786; son of Dr. 
Robert Rogerson and grandson of the Rev. Robert Rogerson, who was born 
in Portsmouth, England, and about 1740 was sent as assistant collector of 
revenue by the home government to the American colony of Virginia. Rob- 
ert Rogerson was brought up in Boston, where he was educated in public 
and private schools. He was engaged in business on his own account as a 
wholesale merchant in American goods when he was twenty-seven years 
of age. His store in 18x3 was located at No. 21 Dock Square, Boston, 
and there, previous to that date, he had established in his store building 
machinery by which he manufactured cotton yarns. The power that moved 
his spinning frames was furnished by a horse kept quietly at work in the 
cellar of the building The business conducted in such limited quarters 
was successful as well as remunerative, and in 1813 he invested capital in 
the business of manufacturing cotton yarns by water-power by purchasing 
the Clapp Mill at North Uxbridge, Mass., removing his entire Boston 
spinning plant to that mill in 181 3. He operated the mill with few addi- 
tions in machinery or accommodations up to 1823. In 1820 he received 
into partnership Oliver Eldridge, who was interested in the investment of 
capital in various manufactories in Worcester county and elsewhere, and 
the firm of R. Rogerson & Company became the proprietors of the busi- 
ness of Robert Rogerson, of Boston, wholesale dealer in domestic and 
foreign dry goods, the business having in the mean time been transferred 
from Dock Square to 68V' State Street, and in 1823 R. Rogerson & Co. 
removed to 26 Merchants' Row, and in 1826 to 38 South Market Street. 
The Clapp Mill was removed in 1823 to the opposite side of the public 
highway to make room for a new stone mill, the building being 100 feet 
long, 40 feet wide and three stories high, with both basement and attic. 
The machinery was built on the premises in the best manner then known 
to manufacturers and regardless of cost, so as to insure as fine and per- 
fect goods as could be produced in the United States. In 1827 a second 
mill was erected, con.structed of like material and of the same dimensions 
and general appearance, on the opposite or eastern side of the Mumford 
River. To the mill erected in 1823 he gave the name "Crown Mill," and 


to that erected in 1827, "Eagle .Mill," the names having apparently been 
selected by the owner in compliment to both the country of his ancestors 
and his own native land The expense of building these two mills and 
laying out, building up and beautifying the village, created by the presence 
of two such flourishing mills, approximated $200,000. A contemporary 
writer describes these improvements in the following words : "The village 
has more the quality of perfection than almost any other manufacturing 
village in Massachusetts." Another says : "The whole village is laid out 
with so much taste that it attracts the notice of any stranger who may 
pass through it." Mr. Oliver Eldridge retired from the firm of R. Roger- 
son & Co. in 1827, and Handel Rogerson, a younger brother of the senior 
partner, took his place. On March 12, 1830, the business of Robert Roger- 
son, sole owner of the Crown and Eagle Mills, was incorporated under 
a special act of the legislature of Massachusetts as : "The Proprietors of 
the Crown and Eagle Mills," the incorporators being Robert Rogerson and 
Handel Rogerson, Robert Rogerson conveying the property to the corpora- 
tion for $225,000 and Handel Rogerson assuming the general management 
of the mill as resident agent. The financial crisis of 1837 put a stop to 
the continuous and accelerating prosperity of the mills. A writer mention- 
ing its effect on Mr. Rogerson's enterprise says: "The magnificent prop- 
erty that had been erected by his genius and enterprise, and through which 
he furnished the means of industry and emolument to many, passed into 
the hands of strangers." The creditors of Mr. Rogerson organized a new 
corporation, December 16, 1840, under the name of the Uxbridge Cotton 
Mills, the charter by the state of Massachusetts bearing date !March 20, 
1840, authorizing the sale of stock to the full sum of $100,000; Charles 
W. Cartwright, Henry Hall, James Read, George Morey, Daniel Denny, 
Benjamin Humphrey and Benjamin E. White, all prominent merchants 
and capitalists of Boston, owning the entire stock. The business of the 
Uxbridge Cotton Mills was conducted by the agents of these proprietors up 
to April I, 1849, when the mills were stopped. On May 8, 1840, the prop- 
erty was sold to Paul Whitin & Sons, of Whitinsville, who added the fine 
plant of the old Eagle and Crown Mills to their other successful cotton 
mills and cotton macliinery enterprises, using the charter and name of the 
Uxbridge Cotton T^lills corporation. In 185 1 the Whitins increased the 
capacity of the mills nearly one-half by the erection of a brick building 
120 feet long and of uniform width and height, with the two granite mills 
tmiting them by spanning the river with an arch, making the mills with 
the intervening structure 320 feet long. In -the settlement he made with 
his creditors, Robert Rogerson gave a preference to the employees and 
small creditors, mostly business men of ITxbridge of comparatively small 
resources ; his debts to such he paid in full, while between the capitalists 
of Boston and New York, who had enjoyed a profitable business connec- 
tion with him for many years, the loss was equitably shared. He removed 


his family from Boston to his farm at Uxbridge, near his mill, where he 
devoted liimself to the cultivation of the soil up to 1847, when he returned 
to Boston. In his home and social life he was known as a man of ex- 
tensive reading, of much thought, of public spirit, of deep interest in the 
welfare of the community and of his employees and dependents. In busi- 
ness he was stern, grave, reticent and far too independent. He was pos- 
sessed of rare musical talent, and his skill as an organist was displayed 
upon the fine organ given by him to the Unitarian Society of Uxbridge. 
He was president of the Handel & Haydn Society of Boston, the oldest 
and, during its existence, the foremost musical musical organization of the 
United States. Mr. Rogerson died in Boston, Mass., August 11, 1862, in 
the seventy-seventh year of his age. 


Arthur Theodore Lyman was born in Boston, Mass., Dec. 8, 
1832; son of George Williams and Anne (Pratt) Lyman; grandson of 
Theodore and Lydia (Williams) Lyman and of William and Mary (Wil- 
liams) Pratt, and a. descendant of Richard and Sarah (Osborne) Lyman 
through Captain Moses and Mindwell (Slieldon) Lyman, Rev. Isaac and 
Sarah Plummer Lyman and' Theodore and Lydia Williams Lyman, his 
paternal grandparents. Richard Lyman, the immigrant, came from High 
Ongar, Essex, England, to Charlestown, Massachusetts Bay, in the ship 
"Lion" in 1631, and in 1635 removed to Hartford Colony on the Connec- 
ticut River and thence to Northampton, Mass. The Lymans became promi- 
nent in the development of industrial and educational interests in New 
England and in public affairs of the commonwealth of Massachusetts. 
George Williams Lyman, who, with his father, had been engaged in trade 
with India, China, Europe and the northwest coast of America, became 
later largely intere.sted in manufacturing companies in Lowell, Lawrence 
and Holyoke. He was treasurer of the Lowell Manufacturing Company, 
1831-41 ; of the Hamilton Manufacturing Company, 1833-39; of the Apple- 
ton Company, and of the Lyman Mills, Holyoke, Mass. 

Arthur Theodore Lyman was prejjared for college in Boston and Wal- 
tham under private tutors, and was graduated from Harvard College with 
the class of 1853, receiving his master's degree in 1857. He entered trade 
as a clerk in the counting room of Samuel and Edward Austin, India 
Wharf, Boston, the firm being engaged in the East India trade, and after 
eighteen months' service he travelled in the various European countries for 
study and observation, 1855-56. On his return to Boston in 1856 he was 
engaged in the East India trade on his own account. In i860 he was made 

j:a^^£:s j^. z~-iMB en. 


treasurer of the Hamilton Manufacturing Company, chartered in 1825, 
which corporation his father had served in the same office, 1833-39. He 
was made treasurer of the Appleton Company, organized in 1828, of which 
company, also, his father had been treasurer. Arthtir T. Lyman served 
both of these corporations as treasurer up to the close of 1863. He then 
became selling agent for various cotton mills as a member of the firm 
of J. W. Paige & Co., Boston, and in 1866 accepted the treasurership of 
the Hadley Company, of Holyoke, Mass., serving until 1889. In 1881 he 
was chosen treasurer of the Lowell Manufacturing Company, holding the 
office until the union of the Lowell Manufacturing Company with the 
Bigelow Carpet Company in 1900. In 18S6 he served temporarily as treas- 
urer of the Tremont & Suffolk Mills, and likewise served temporarily the 
Merrimack Manufacturing Company. 

Mr. Lyman was a director of the Pacific Mills, Merrimack Mfg. Co., 
Lawrence Mfg. Co., Tremont & Suffolk Mills, Lowell Machine Shop, Boott 
Cotton Mills, Middlesex Company, Massachusetts Cotton Mills, Massa- 
chusetts Mills in Georgia, Dwight Mfg. Co., Bigelow Carpet Co., Boston 
Mfg. Co., Waltliam Bleachery /k Dye Works, being also president of many 
of those corporations. 

In addition to these various interests, he was director of the Massa- 
chusetts Hospital Life Insurance Company and of the Massachusetts 
National Bank, 1862-98. He also served as a trustee of the Provident In- 
stitution for Savings in Boston. He was elected President of the Boston 
Athenasum in 1899, having previously been secretary, treasurer and trus- 
tee. He was a member of the corporation of the Massachusetts Institute 
of Technology and was an overseer of Tlarvard College, 1892-99. He was 
aide-de-camp, with the rank of colonel, on the staiif of Governor Alexander 
H. Rice, 1876-79. 

Mr. Lyman married, on April 8, 1858, Ella, daughter of John Amory 
and Elizabeth E. (Putnam) Lowell, of Tioston, and their children in the 
order of their birth were: Julia, Arthur (Harvard, 1883), who became a 
lawyer and manager of real estate and other trusts; Herbert (Harvard, 
1886), who became the treasurer of the Hadley Company, Holyoke, Mass., 
was for a time manager of the New England office of the American Thread 
Company and was made treasurer of the Merrimac Manufacturing Com- 
pany in 1908; Ella (Mrs. Richard C. Cabot), member of the Massachusetts 
State Board of Education and of the Council of RadclifTe College ; Susan 
Lowell (died 1878) ; Mabel, and Ronald Theodore, who became treasurer 
of the Boston Manufacturing Company, Waltham. Mass., and of the Wal- 
tham Bleacherv & Dye Works. 



Erastus Brigham Bigelow was born at West Boylston, Mass., April 2, 
1814; son of Ephraim and Polly (Brigham) Bigelow. His father was 
a man of small means, and the boy, at the age of ten, found a place on 
a farm, where he worked hard for three years. In the winter he attended 
the district school, and what he there learned kindled on a naturally bright 
mind a desire for a liberal education, which could be obtained only through 
his own efforts, and for several years this was his sole aim and object. 

In 1827 his father established a mill for the manufacture of cotton 
yarns and put Erastus to work in the mill, where, at the age of fourteen, 
he invented a hand loom for weaving cotton webbing for suspenders. 
The demand for the webbing did not justify the employment of an oper- 
ator to work the machine, and he abandoned it. His next venture was 
the perfecting of a machine for making cotton cord, which earned the 
youthful inventor the sum of one hundred dollars the first year, but a de- 
cline in the demand for the article caused the abandonment of this machine 
also. Having bv these means acquired a small capital with which he paid 
for his tuition at the Leicester Academy, his progress was such that his 
teacher recommended a collegiate coin-se for the lad, but his father con- 
sidered a trade a surer and safer means of earning a livelihood. 

Averse to the occupation of spinning, Erastus went to Boston, where 
he obtained employment in the wholesale and retail establishment of S. F. 
Morse & Co. While there, he taught himself the art of stenography and 
compiled and published a book entitled "The Self-Taught Stenographer." 
He sold it readily in Boston, then took a partner and had a larger edition 
printed, but he failed to place this in the hands of the public and found 
himself heavily in debt. He was now eighteen years old. His father mean- 
while had formed a partnership with the celebrated John Smith, and a 
new mill had been built for their operations. This left the old mill idle, 
and Erastus entered into partnership with John Munroe and there estab- 
lished a twine manufactory. Bigelow & Munroe next ran a cotton factory 
at Wareham, Mass. : the venture ended disastrously at the end of nine 
months, and young Bigelow went to New York, where he studied the art 
of penmanship, and for some time earned a living by teaching it. This 
desultory sort of existence did not satisfy him, and he resolved to be- 
come a physician ; passed another winter in classical studies at Leicester 
and entered upon the study of medicine, in which he encountered many 
difficulties, owing to the lack of early [jreparation. 

His attention was now drawn to the possibility of perfecting a loom 
for the weaving of Marseilles or knotted quilts, having years before seen 
similar productions woven by the slow and necessarily costly process of 
the hand loom. He suspended his medical studies to solve this problem, 
and having constructed a satisfactory working model, proceeded to Boston 


in search of capital, interested Freeman, Cobb & Co., who were large im- 
porters of the article, and who agreed to pay for the English and Amer- 
ican patents and erect a mill for the manufacture of the fabric. Feeling 
assured that he would now be able to take a college course, he resumed his 
studies under a tutor; but Messrs. Freeman, Cobb & Co. failed in business, 
during a period of business depression, and it was difficult to raise money for 
new ventures. ]\Ioreover, his father had been unsuccessful in business and 
was now in declining health, and it was necessary that he should abandon 
all thought of college. 

Having accidentally seen the process of weaving coach lace by hand 
loom, the idea of a power loom occurred to him. First ascertaining the 
demand for the article in question, he set himself to the production of a 
machine which had up to that time been deemed impracticable, and within 
six weeks of the time of its conception he had the loom in successful oper- 
ation. This beautiful and complicated piece of mechanism involved all the 
essential principles of a more important one — the Brussels carpet loom — and 
its complete success brought the inventor at once into notice. Fairbanks, 
Loring & Co., of Boston; John Wright, of Worcester; Israel Langley, of 
Shirley, with Era.stus B. Bigelow and Horatio Bigelow, formed a com- 
pany for the purpose of building and running the looms, and were later 
incorporated as the Clinton Company. The Freeman, Cobb Co., having 
recovered from their financial embarrassments, were now desirous of con- 
tracting with Mr. Bigelow for a number of looms for the weaving of coun- 
terpanes ; but a new fabric having entered the market from England, Mr. 
Bigelow set about the invention of a power loom for the invention of this 
new^ kind of counterpane. Within six months it was in successful oper- 
ation, and a. small mill in Lancaster was filled with the machinery. This 
business of weaving spreads ha? been steadily prosperous and has grown 
to large proportions. 

Mr. Bigelow now took up the difi^icult problem of weaving ingrain or 
Kidderminster carpet by power looms, and he mastered this problem as he 
had mastered others. His first loom for two-ply ingrain carpets was set 
up within the year, and in matching .of figures and evenness of surface sur- 
passed the hand loom. Its average production was twelve yards per diem. 
A second loom produced eighteen yards. Still unsatisfied, he produced a 
third machine with essential variations which produced from twenty-five 
to twenty-seven yards a day. This loom was set to work in 1841. In the 
autumn of that year, he visited England and brought back many sugges- 
tions of practical value, so that the several manufacturing corporations of 
Lowell, in 1842, created a new office with a liberal salary and appointed 
him to fill it, his duties being to advise and suggest improvements in con- 
sultation with the agents of the respective companies. This brought forth 
some important changes, which were adopted by all the cotton companies 
of Lowell. Other interests absorbed his time so fully that he resigned this 


charge at the end of a year and a half and the office dropped out of 

During that period he bad built a mill for the Lowell Company to 
operate his power loom; and thus started the first successful power loom 
carpet factory noted in the annals of manufacture. 

In 1842-3 Mr. Bigelow projected a new mill at Lancaster for the 
weaving of ginghams. Its buildings covered four acres of ground and 
were filled with machinery of the most perfect character, much of which 
was invented, and all of which was adjusted by ]\Ir. Bigelow. The Mer- 
chants' Magazine of that period thus wrote of the establishment : "It is de- 
servedly rated as the most perfect establishment in the LInited States." 
During the three years he was thus occupied, he made nine distinct im- 
portant inventions, all of which were patented and put in operation. He 
now paid another visit to Europe, and on his return in 1848 proceeded to 
develop and perfect the Brussels carpet power loom, which he varied so 
as to produce also Wilton tapestry and velvet tapestry carpets. Specimens 
of his carpet were shown at the Exhibition in London, England, in 1851, 
but were put in too late to receive a prize, though full justice was done 
to Mr. Bigelow as the prior inventor of a successful power loom for the 
weaving of carpets, and his productions were pronounced more perfect than 
that of any hand loom. Alessrs. Crossley & Sons immediately made an 
arrangement for placing the looms in their immense manufactory at Hali- 
fax, England, and they ultimately bought the patent rigjits for the LTnited 
Kingdom. Over fifty patents were taken out by Mr. Bigelow for his 
various inventions. 

Mr. Bigelow was elected a member of the Boston Historical Society 
in 1864, and in 1869 he made a presentation to that society of six volumes, 
entitled "Inventions of Erastus Brigham Bigelow, patented in England 
from 1837 to 1 868,'' in which were collected the printed specifications of 
eighteen patents granted to him in England. Later in life, he made a study 
of the tariff and of taxation in general, and published various articles bear- 
ing on those questions. In 1862 he prepared a scheme of universal tax- 
ation throughout the Laiited States by means of stamps ; and in 1863 pub- 
lished a brochure entitled "The Tarifif Question, Considered in Regard to 
England and the other Interests of the United States." 

Mr. Bigelow's published writings mostly treat of political economy, in 
a manner very characteristic of his analytical skill, being precise in state- 
ment and clear in style. He contributed to the press in 1852, "Remarks 
on the Depressed Condition of Manufactures in Massachusetts, with Sug- 
gestions as to its Cause and Remedy;" in 1862 a large quarto entitled, "The 
Tariff Question Considered in Regard to the Policy of England and the 
Interest of the United States;" in 1869 an address, "The Wool Industry 
of the LTnited States;" in 1877, "The Tariff Policy of England and the 


United States Contrasted;" in 1878, "The Relations of Labor and Capital," 
an article in the Atlantic Monthly. 

In politics he was generally conservative, never an active partisan, 
and in later life he proclaimed his independence of party. He was in i860 
nominated by the Democrats of the Fourth District as their candidate for 
Representative to Congress, but his opponent, Alexander H. Rice, secured 
the election by a small plurality. 

He was one of the founders of the National Association of Wool 
Manufacturers and its first president, a member of the American Academy 
of Sciences, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the London Society 
for the Encouragement of the Arts, Manufactures and Commerce. He 
was one of the founders of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

About ten years before his death he bought an estate at North Con- 
way, N. H., to which he gave the name of Stonehurst. He married, first, 
Susan W. King, who died in 1841, leaving an infant son who survived her 
for six years; second, Eliza Frances, a daughter of Colonel David Means, 
of Amherst, N. H., by whom he had one daughter, Helen, who was mar- 
ried to Rev. Dr. Daniel Merrinian, pastor of the Central Congregational 
Church, Worcester, Mass. 

Mr. Bigelow died in Boston, Mass., December 6, 1899. 


Horatio Nelson Bigelow was born at West Boylston, Mass., Sep- 
tember 13, 1812. He was the son of Ephraim and Mary (Brigham) Bige- 
low, and grandson of Abel Brigham. His father, a farmer and wheel- 
wright, was in very moderate circumstances, but his mother, "Polly" Brig- 
ham, was a woman of marked character and native dignity. The boyhood 
of Horatio Bigelow, as of his more widely celebrated brother, Erastus, was 
one of toil, and his educational opportunities were f ew ; two years at the 
Bradford Academy completing them. He worked upon the farm and in 
the neighboring mills, and at the age of twenty had so far mastered the 
technical details of cotton manufacture that in 1832, when his father started 
a small factory on the Nashua, he became its overseer. In 1834 he was 
made overseer of the Beaman Mill, and in 1836 he was called to Shirley 
as general superintendent of a cotton factory there. 

About 1837 he removed to Clintonville. Having a small capital, in 
company with his brother Erastus, he leased the vacant buildings and 
water power of the defunct Lancaster Cotton Company, and in March. 
1838, the Clinton Company was incorporated by John Wright. H. N. Bige- 
low and Israel Longley. Floratio Bigelow was the general manager from 


the inception of the business, being relieved during the years 1849-50-51 
by C. W. Blanchard. 

From the time of his settling at Clinton, H. N. Bigelow occupied a 
house known as the Plant Mansion, and he was the master-spirit in the 
enterprise of building up the new town socially as well as industrially. 
Though his load of responsibility was exceptionally heavy in the estab- 
lishing of various new and untried manufactures, he found time to prove 
his solicitude for the future comeliness and prosperity of the busy town, 
which owes a large debt of gratitude to his fostering care. 

His energy ha'itened the forming of the first church society and the 
building of a little chapel for its use in the grove adjacent to his residence. 
He was hitnself an Orthodox Congregationalist, but he gave generously both 
support and money to other denominations. He urged the building of 
commodious schoolhouses and a radical improvement in the local school 

H. N. Bigelow, in addition to filling the office of general manager of 
the various enterprises xmdertaken by his brother and himself, accepted 
various public trusts, which he performed with unswerving integrity and 
diligence. He was the first postmaster of the village and represented the 
town at the general court during the first two years of its corporate exist- 
ence. He was the first president of the Savings Bank, vice-president of 
the First National Bank, a director of the Worcester and Nashua Rail- 
road Company, the City Bank, and the ^Mechanics' Mutual Insurance Com- 
pany of Worcester. 

Mr. Bigelow married, September 4, 1834, Miss Emily Worcester, and 
had four children, two of whom died young. His widow survived him 
for many years, and his two sons, Henry H. and Charles B. Bigelow, in- 
herited their father's administrative capacity and succeeded him as manag- 
ing agents of the Bigelow Carpet Co. After three years of invalidism, Mr. 
Bigelow died at his home in Worcester, January 2, 1868. 


Henry Parker Fairbanks was born in Boston, Mass., Sept. 7, 
1808. He was a son of Stephen and Abby (Parker) Fairbanks, a grand- 
son of Israel and Anna (Buckman) Fairbanks, great-grandson of Israel 
and Elizabeth (Whiting) Fairbanks, and descended through Joseph and 
Abigail (Deane) Fairbanks, Joseph and Dorcas Fairbanks. John and Sarah 
(Fiske) Fairbanks, from Jonathan and Grace (Lee) Fairbanks, of Med- 
ford, Mass. This Jonathan came to Boston from England in 1633, and 


later settled in Dedham, being one of the earliest pioneers, and was one 
of the signers of the covenant when the town was established and named. 

Henry P. Fairbanks attended the Boston schools, where he acquired 
the distinction of being a Franklin Medal scholar. Mr. Fairbanks was a 
hardware saddlery merchant in Boston, but resided in Charlestown. In 
1849 he became associated with Erastus B. and Horatio N. Bigelow as a 
partner in the firm of H. N. & E. B. Bigelow, who began the manufacture 
of carpets in Clinton, Mass., and was selling agent of that company up to 
the time of his death in 1854. 

A Whig in politics, Mr. Fairbanks was an earnest, active worker for 
his party, and was a member of the State Legislature in 1847 3^s a repre- 
sentative from Charlestown ; he was a member of Governor Clifford's 
Council in 1853. ^^^ ^"^'"^^ '^^^'^ ^ member of the city government of Charles- 
town from its organization in 1847, ^"d for five years previous to his death 
was president of the Common Council. Pie was a member of the Massa- 
chusetts Charitable Mechanics' Association, a member of the Harvard 
Church, member of the Standing Committee from 1841 till his death, at 
which time he was also president of the Charlestown Lyceum, an institu- 
tion in which he took a deep interest. 

He married Mary Hurd Skinner, August 7, 1832, and had nine chil- 
dren, five of whom survived him. His son, Charles Francis Fairbanks, be- 
came treasurer of the Bigelow Carpet Company. 

Mr. Fairbanks died of scarlet fever, February 14, 1854, at the early 
age of fortv-five. 


Frederick Ayer was born in Ledyard, Connecticut, Dec. 8, 1822; 
son of Frederick and Persis (Cook) Ayer. (See sketch of James Cook Ayer. 
Ibid.) He was brought up in Ledyard, Conn., where he attended school 
and also a private academy in Baldwinsville, New York, and in 1839 '^S" 
came a clerk in the store of John T. Tomlinson & Co., Baldwinsville, N. Y., 
and in 1842 was admitted to partnership in another store of John T. Tom- 
linson & Co., in Syracuse. In 1845 he formed a partnership with the Hon. 
Dennis McCarthy, of Syracuse, N. Y., as McCarthy & Ayer, and remained in 
business in Syracuse, N. Y., up to 1855, when he removed to Lowell, Mass., 
to become a partner in the drug and proprietary medicine business of J. C. 
Ayer, the firm becoming J. C. Ayer & Co., of which his brother. Dr. James 
Cook Ayer, was the head. In 1877 the business was incorporated as the 
J. C. Ayer Company, and he was made treasurer of the corporation, hold- 
ing that office up to 1893, when he resigned to give his entire time to his 
growing financial interests, including the cotton manufacturing business at 
Lowell and Lawrence. 


He had, in conjunction with his brother, Dr. James C. Ayer, purchased 
the controlHng interests in the Tremont Mills and Suffolk Manufacturing 
Conipaaiy, of Lowell, Mass., in 1871, and consolidated the two companies 
as the Tremont & Suffolk Mills, and in June, 1885, he purchased at auction 
the Washington Mills at Lawrence, RTass. These mills had been known as 
the Bay State Mills up to the panic of 1857, and were celebrated for their 
product of "Bay State" shawls. Under Frederick Ayer's management, as 
president, one year, and as treasurer the mills were pronounced "the most 
perfect wool factory in the world," and were already known as the first 
to embark in the manufacture of all-wool fabrics, known as cashmeres, in 
America, in the manufacture of which the French had achieved such mar- 
vellous results. He was at one time president of the Portage Lake Canal, 
and for many years its treasurer, and he was also connected with the 
Lake Superior Ship Railway & Iron Company as a director, and for sev- 
eral years as both treasurer and secretary. In his home city, Lowell, he 
served as a director of the Old Lowell National Bank, Merchants' National 
Bank, as vice-president of the Central Savings Bank and as a director of the 
New England Telephone Company from its organization. He was one 
of the organizers, and for several years the treasurer of the Lake Superior 
Ship Canal Railway & Iron Company, and was one of its directors until 
it was merged into the Keweenaw Association. He served on the board 
of aldermen of the city in 1871, was chairman of the Board of Health, 
and in that office was credited with having been instrumental in checking 
and eradicating an epidemic of small pox in the city. In 1906 Mr. Ayer 
was a director and vice-president of the American Woolen Company (New 
Jersey), director and president of the American Woolen Company of New 
York, trustee and vice-president of the Central Savings Bank of Lowell, 
Mass. ; director and president of the Lowell & Andover Railroad, director 
and president of the J. C. Ayer Company, and director of the Tremont 
and Suffolk Mills, Lowell, Mass., of the United States Mining Company, 
of the International Trust Company, of the Boston Elevated Railway Com- 
pany, and of the Columbian National Life Insurance Company. He was 
a member of the Algonquin Club, Beacon Society and Country Clubs, of 

He married in 1858 at Syracuse, N. Y., Miss Cornelia Wheaton. She 
died in 1878. Children of this marriage were : Ellen W., James C, Charles 
F., and Louise R. He married again at St. Paul, Minn., Miss Ellen Ban- 
ning. The children of this marriage were three : Beatrice B., Katharine and 
Frederick, Jr. 



Jacob Rogers was born in Exeter, N. H. He was the son of Col. 
John and Mary Poor (Cram) Rogers, and grandson of Judge Nathaniel 
Rogers. Colonel John Rogers was a graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy, 
cashier of the Old Exeter P)ank from 1808 to 1830, a colonel of the Fourth 
Regiment of militia, and chairman of the Board of Selectmen from 1817 
to 183 1 and was prominently connected with the leather industry. 

The subject of this sketch, Jacob Rogers, was educated at Phillips 
Exeter Academy, after which he spent several years at sea in long voyages 
to India and China. He settled in Lowell when about twenty, where he 
was connected with his brother, John, in the hardware business. There 
he remained until 1875, when he became president of the Railroad National 
Bank of Lowell, retiring from the presidency several years before the bank 
was merged with the other Lowell banks, but still serving as a director. 
He was treasurer of the Lowell Gaslight Compa"ny from 1870, when he 
was elected president, an office from which he retired in 1003. He was 
also a director of the Stony Brook Railroad from 1875. Mr. Rogers was 
president of the Kitson Machine Company from 1885 to 1905, when the 
property was sold to the Lowell Machine Shop. In 1901 he was elected 
president of the Tremont iv Suftolk Mills of Lowell, of which he had long 
been a director. He was also a director of various Lowell corporations, 
including the Appleton Company, Massachusetts Cotton Mills in Georgia, 
Merrimack Manufacturing Co., of the Traders' & Mechanics' Insurance 
Co., a director of the Hide & Leather Bank until that institution was 
merged in the .State National Bank of Boston, and vice-president of the 
Mechanics' Savings Bank of Lowell, Mass. 

With Frederick F. Ayer he served as trustee of the estate of Dr. J. C. 
Ayer for many years. In politics he was a staunch Republican, and in 
1864-5 he was elected to the House of Representatives. In 1875 ^^ was 
elected a member of the Lowell Board of Aldermen. He married in 1868 
Mar}' Howard, daughter of James G. Carney, of Lowell, and had three 
children : Mary Carney, Alice Poor and John Jacob. 


James Cook Ayer was born in Ledyard, Conn., May 5, 1818: son 
of Frederick and Persis (Cook) Ayer, grandson of Elisha and Hope (Fan- 
ning) Ayer and of James and Persis (Herrick) Cook, and a descendant 
from John Ayer, who settled at Haverhill, Mass., early in the history of 
the colony. Elisha Ayer (1757-1853) was a soldier in the war of the 


Revolution. Frederick Ayer (1792-1825), who participated in the War 
of 1812, was a manufacturer of woolen and cotton goods, being a pioneer 
in these industries in New England. James Cook Ayer spent his early 
life in Preston, Conn., and Lowell, Mass. He was educated at Lowell 
High School and Westford (Mass.) Academy and at the University of 
Pennsylvania, where he took his degree as M.D., 1839. He began his busi- 
ness life as a druggist and manufacturer of proprietary medicines in Lowell, 
Mass., in 1840, using the name of Ayer on all the products from his labora- 
tory and advertising them extensively ; being in reality the pioneer in effec- 
tive advertising in newspapers and by means of almanacs that would be 
read in the household and preserved for future reference, in which he 
spent hundreds of thousands of dollars. He acquired a business in which 
he accumulated millions, and in 1877 this business was incorporated as the 
J. C. Ayer Company. In 1870 he became treasurer of the Tremont and 
of the Suffolk Manufacturing Companies, with mills at Lowell, and at the 
time separate corporations, and he helped to effect the consolidation of 
these two interests as the Tremont & Suffolk Mills, with a capital of $1,200,- 
000, in 1871, when he was elected treasurer of the new corporation, re- 
signing the position after a few months, but continuing as a director and 
large stockholder, as he had been in the separate corporations. He built 
the Lowell and Andover Railroad, which added greatly to the prosperity 
of the city of his adoption. 

Mr. Ayer was married November 3, 1850, to Josephine Mellen, 
daughter of the Hon. Royal and Direxa (Claflin) Southwick, and 
their three children were : Frederick Fanning Ayer, Henry Southwick Ayer 
and Lesley Josephine Ayer. Mr. Ayer erected a beautiful home in Paw- 
tucket Street, Lowell, and in 1892 his widow, then a resident of Paris, 
France, and his son, Frederick F. Ayer, of New York City, presented the 
property to the "Home for Young Women and Children," then housed on 
John Street, and the institution founded in 1876-7 was carried on as "The 
Ayer Home for Yoimg Women and Children." 

'Mr. Ayer was afflicted with brain trouble late in life, which caused his 
death, July 3, 1878. 


Richard Kitson was born in Cleckheaton, Yorkshire, England, in 
1814; the son of John Kitson, a card clothing manufacturer. He received 
a fair education in the schools of his native place and then joined his father 
in the manufacture of cards for combing. He assisted his father in mak- 
ing and patenting a machine for the manufacture of needle-pointed card 
teeth, which revolutionized the manufacture of card clothing. The patent 
expired in 1849, '"icl financial losses brought about by the dishonesty of 


others placed both father and son in business straits. Consequently, when 
Francis Calvert, of Lowell, Mass., U. S. A., who at the time was visiting 
Cleckheaton for the purpose of examining the Kitson cards, proposed that 
Richard go back with him to Lowell with the view of establishing a card 
clothing business there, the young man accepted, and as a result had the 
honor of manufacturing the first needle-pointed card clothing in America. 
Mr Kitson next remodeled and thereby improved the picker then in use, 
and at the same time invented a single cotton-opening machine which came 
into universal use in the cotton mills throughout New England. Whitin 
and other inventors and manufacturers of lappers had used beaters up to 
the time Kitson introduced his needle-pointed cylinder. Through Mr. Kit- 
son's inventive genius, the principle afterward applied in the "trunk sys- 
tem" for opening and cleaning cotton fibre was next introduced. Lentil 
i860 all of his machines had been made by outside manufacturers, but the 
increasing demand prompted him to erect a shop wherein to manufacture 
these machines himself. This he did, and the business so prospered that, 
in 1874, it was incorporated under the style of the Kitson Machine Com- 
pany, Mr. Kitson becoming president and holding office up to the time of 
his death. Mr. Kitson was a man of great mechanical genius, and to him 
the textile world owes much for the advancement made in the manufacture 
of machines for the manipulation of cotton. 

While in England Mr. Kitson married Sarah Reynolds, who accom- 
panied him to America. Six children were born of this union, one of 
whom, Emma, became the wife of Thomas Stott, a card clothing manu- 
facturer of Lowell. Mr. Kitson was survived by his wife and two chil- 
dren, Charlotte and Mrs. Stott. He died in Lowell, Mass., July 14, 1885. 


William Alvord Burke was born in Windsor, Vt., July 7, 181 1, the 
son of Benjamin and Roxana (Alcord) Burke, a grandson of Solomon 
Burke, one of the first settlers of Windsor, Vt.. and a descendant of 
Richard and Mary (Parmenter) Burke, of Sudbury, Mass., who came to 
this country about the year 1660. 

His early education was obtained in the public schools and at the 
Academy of Josiah Dunham at Windsor, Vt., where he very early exhibited 
unusual powers for the acquisition of knowledge and began the study of 
Latin at the early age of seven years. It was his ambition to pursue a 
collegiate education, but circumstances not favoring such a course, upon the 
removal of his parents to Nashua, N. H., at the age of fifteen he entered 
the machine shop of the Nashua Mfg. Co., where he worked for several 


years, and also in the shops of the Locks and Canals in Lowell, Mass. 
(now the Lowell Machine Shop), up to January, 1834, when he was placed 
in charge of the machine shop of Ira Gay & Co., of North Chelmsford, 
Mass. ; here he remained for two years. He was appointed Master Mechanic 
of the Boott Cotton Mills, of Lowell, Mass., in 1836, where he remained 
for three years, when further promotion awaited him in his selection as 
Master Mechanic of the newly erected machine shop of the Amoskeag Mfg. 
Co., of Manchester, N. H. He put into successful operation, and had 
charge of these works for si.x years. His position necessitated the design- 
ing and building of cotton machinery, which afterwards became a chief 
occupation of his life; as at this time it was impossible to obtain any 
machinery from England, he was, therefore, left to his own resources, 
or to the very few and crude drawings obtained elsewhere. 

In 1845, the shops of the Locks and Canals in Lowell, Mass., 
were sold to a corporation, which later became known all over the 
world as the Lowell Machine Shop, and Mr. Burke was invited by 
those who knew his ability to take charge and develop the business. 
These works were then, and still remained for many years, the largest of 
their kind in the United States. In this charge Mr. Burke remained 
for seventeen years. During that time the shop made nearly every sort 
of machinery from a sewing-machine to a locomotive; but their principal 
business was then, as it became altogether later on, the building of 
cotton machinery. In 1862 he was elected agent of the Boott Cotton 
Mills, of Lowell, Mass., in which he had previously been master mechanic, 
where he remained for si.x years, his administration proving an emi- 
nent success. In 1868 he resigned, and was offered the treasurership 
of the Suffolk Manufacturing Company, and Tremont ]\rills (now known 
as the Tremont and Suffolk Mills) of Lowell. Here he remained for two 
years, but circumstances not proving congenial, he resigned and shortly 
afterwards was appointed assistant treasurer of the Great Falls Mfg. Co., 
of Somersworth, N. H., and the Dwight Mfg. Co., of Chicopee, Mass. 
Here also he remained for six years supervising the renovation and re- 
building of the mills, and placing them in a condition where they have 
since become among the most successful mills in the country. 

In 1876, Mr. Burke received his last appointment, as treasurer of the 
Lowell Machine Shop, of which in his earlier years he had been the first 
superintendent. Here he remained until declining years advised him that 
his work as an active business man was over, and he resigned in 1885. 
During his treasurership, almost every building was remodeled and enlarged, 
some new ones were added and the working force was largely increased. 
Mr. Burke was frequently consulted on matters pertaining to cotton 
manufacturing, and he was director of many of the most successful cotton 
manufacturing corporations. He was one of the charter members of the 
New England Cotton Manufacturers' Association { now known as the 


National Association of Cotton Manufacturers) and one of its first vice- 
presidents, from 1865 to 1873. He was one of the original corporators 
of the Mechanics Savings Bank of Lowell, Mass., and its first president 
from June, 1861, to June, 1886, when he retired. 

He took but little active part in politics, but served his city as alderman 
for two years during the Civil War. 

Mr. Burke was twice married, first to Catherine French, of Bedford, 
N. H., by whom he had five children; and second to Elizabeth Mary Derby, 
who survived him, but died in February, 1900. 

Mr. Burke died in Lowell, Mass., May 28, 1887, at the age of seventy- 
six years. 


David Anthony Brayton, prominent in the business and financial 
enterprises of Fall River, was born on the 2d of April, 1824, in the 
village of Swansea, Massachusetts, and died in London, England, on the 
20th of August, 1881. He was the son of Israel and Kezia (Anthony) 
Brayton, and his ancestry includes many of the pioneers of Rhode Island 
and Massachusetts, men who were foremost in the annals of New Eng- 
land. His uncle, David Anthony, was the first agent of the Fall River 
Manufactory, one of the two original cotton mills built in Fall River 
(then called Troy), in 1813. He was also a relative of Dexter Wheeler, a 
promoter of this corporation, who had already spun yarn by horsepower 
in Rehoboth as early as 1807, and of Nathaniel Wheeler, one of the founders 
of the Troy Cotton and Woolen Manufactory, the other corporation or- . 
ganizing in 1813. 

David A. Brayton, who received his name from his maternal grand- 
father, David Anthony, obtained the rudiments of a practical education in 
the schools of Fall River and Somerset, Massachusetts. The marked 
intelligence which he early displayed, combined with his diligence and 
close application, placed him in the front rank among his associates at 
school, and before reaching his majority he was well equipped for the 
active duties of life. While yet a minor he showed his aptitude for 
business, and began his independent efforts by shipping a cargo to Cuba, 
going there in the same vessel. In later years he carried on an extensive 
business with the West Indies, importing molasses and sugar in vessels, 
of which he was the principal owner. 

In 1849 lie became interested in the discovery of gold on the Pacific 
Coast, and sailed for California in the ship "Mary Mitchell" in August of 
that year. On returning to Fall River in 1850 he engaged in the manu- 
facture of flour, with Silas Bullard as partner, and erected the Bristol 


County Flour Mills, the first industry of its kind in this part of Massa- 
chusetts, of which he afterwards became the sole proprietor. 

As its name indicates, the First National Bank of Fall River was 
the first in this section of Massachusetts established under the National 
Bank Act and was organized January 23, 1864. To David A. Brayton 
this institution owes its origin and to it he, gave his valuable counsel, serv- 
ing as a member of the Board of Directors from its organization until 
his death. 

Mr. Brayton was an acknowledged leader of men, endowed with 
sterling integrity, clearness of intellect, and sound judgment; a man of 
diversified interests, with a comprehensive grasp of the details of every 
enterprise with which he was connected. He realized the great progress 
which had already been made in the cotton industry since its advent into 
Fall River in 181 1; he readily foretold the possibilities of its future 
growth, and appreciated the advantages aflforded by the extensive harbor 
and the natural water supply of the city. In 1865, just after the Civil War, 
confident of success in this undertaking, David A. Brayton, with his 
brother, John S. Brayton, and his nephew, Bradford M. C. Durfee, planned 
the erection of large cotton mills. A charter of incorporation was granted 
them on Feb. 15, 1866, under the name of Durfee Mills, so-called in honor 
of Bradford Durfee, whose son was the largest stockholder. Eleven acres 
of land were purchased, bordering upon the stream from which Fall River 
obtains its name, and the foundation of this manufactory was laid. As a 
result of the indefatigable energy and business ability of David A. Brayton, 
Durfee Mills Number One was completed and in full operation in 1867 ; 
in 1871 mill Number Two was built upon the same plan ; in 1880 Durfee 
Mills Number Three, somewhat smaller than the others, was added, and 
these formed, , at the time of their erection, the largest print cloth plant in 
a single enclosure in the country. He was Treasurer of this corporation 
from its organization until his death, and this group of granite buildings, 
with its commanding presence, is a lasting monument to the foresight, 
wisdom, and undaunted perseverance of David Anthony Brayton. 

One of the greatest achievements of his life, possibly the greatest, 
next to the erection of the Durfee Mills, was the result of his investment 
in the Arnold Print Works, at North Adams, Massachusetts, in 1876, at a 
time when that corporation had gone into bankruptcy. This failure had 
caused great depression. Mills were closed, men were idle, and Mr. 
Brayton's purchase of this large plant was a lasting benefit and stimulus to 
the town of North Adams, giving confidence to its business enterprises 
and employment to its people. A new organization was formed with David 
A. Brayton as president (and largest stockholder), Albert C. Houghton as 
treasurer, William A. Gallup, clerk, and Caleb G. Evans, originator of 
designs and seller of goods. Several years later, at a dinner given by Mr. 
Gallup, who for twenty-five years had been connected with the Arnold 


Print Works, the President of this corporation, Albert C. Houghton, paid 
the following tribute to the memory of Mr. Brayton : "Another name 
of even higher incentive to us is that of David A. Brayton, the restorer, 
as Mr. Arnold was the originator of the industry we represent. At the 
time of hardest trial, when friends were faint and foes were fierce, he took 
upon himself our jeopardy, and gave his capital and his business fame 
to our support. A man of calmest and most far-sighted judgment, upright, 
straightforward, of indomitable will, resistless energy and creative business 
intuition ; the serene and chiseled features of that portrait are the fit outward 
presentment of the most remarkable business associate and leader the 
Arnold Print Works has had." 

Mr. Brayton, at the time of his death, was director in several other 
corporations ; namely. Fall River Iron Works Company, which at that time 
was devoted exclusively to the iron industry; the Metacomet Manufactur- 
ing Company, Fall River Machine Company, Fall River and Providence 
Steamboat Company, Fall River Gas Company and the Fall River Manu- 
facturers' Mutual Insurance Company. 

As a citizen Mr. Brayton was ever alert to the best interests of the 
city, supported every effort for the growth and prosperity of the com- 
munity, and his successful career made an indelible impression upon the 
commercial development of Fall River. 

He was an active member of the First Congregational Qiurch, and 
prominent in the promotion of its work and welfare. He was unosten- 
tatious in his benevolence, and liberally assisted those worthy of his aid. 

David A. Brayton was married in Fall River, ^lay i, 1 851, to Nancy R. 
Jenckes, daughter of John and Nancy (Bellows) Jenckes. They had five 
children, Nannie Jenckes, David Anthony, John Jenckes, Elizabeth Hitch- 
cock and Dana Dwight Brayton. 


Thomas Jefferson Coolidge was born in Boston, Mass., August 23, 
1831 ; son of Joseph and Ellen Wayles (Randolph) Jefferson. His first 
ancestor in America, John Coolidge, came from England in 1630 and settled 
in that part of Massachusetts Bay Colony known as Watertown, which 
embraced all the territory on the borders of the Charles River beyond 
Newtowne (Cambridge). He was made a freeman of Watertown in 1636, 
and soon after acquired considerable property in Boston. His descendant 
in the seventh g-eneration, Joseph Coolidge, was born in Boston, in 1798, 
and was graduated from Harvard College A. B. 1817 and A. M. 1820. Upon 
leaving college, he travelled in Europe, and while at Pisa he became ac- 


quainted with Lord Byron, who in his journal of 1821 records an account 
of his friendship with the young American. Thomas Jefferson CooHd^e, 
his fourth son, was named for his ilhistrious great-grandfather, the third 
President of the United States and author of the Declaration of Indepen- 
dence. He, with his brother, Sidney, was instructed at the best schools of 
Geneva and Dresden, and the boys remained in Europe for eight years. 

In 1847, Thomas Jefifer.son Coolidge entered the sophomore class of 
Harvard College, was graduated A.B., 1850. and took his master degree 
in course. He had a decided preference for trade, his father being a 
china merchant, and on leaving college he secured a clerkship in the store 
of William Perkins, in Boston. In 1853 he left the employ of this gentle- 
man to become a partner with Joseph P. Gardner in the East India trade, 
under the firm name of Gardner & Coolidge. Later he became interested 
in banking and manufacturing enterprises. In 1858 he was elected presi- 
dent of the Boott Cotton Mills Company, operating large mills at Lowell, 
and he rescued that corporation from financial straits, and placed it upon a 
prosperous and successful footing. He resided in France from 1865 to 
1867, when he returned to Boston and became treasurer of the Lawrence 
Manufacturing Company, operating five mills at Lowell. He resigned this 
position in 1880 to assume the presidency of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa 
Fe Railroad, and it was again his mission to resuscitate a flagging industry. 
He piloted it through the period of depression, and, in 1882, when it was 
again upon a firm basis, he resigned. On returning to America from France, 
he temporarily assumed the presidency of the Oregon Railway and Naviga- 
tion Company. He returned to the manufacturing business the next year, 
and became identified with large New England cotton manufactories, includ- 
ing the Armory, the Dwight and the Amoskeag Manufacturing Corporations, 
being treasurer of the latter for a time and president afterwards. He also 
served as a director in the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad, in the 
Boston & Lowell Railroad, and in numerous other railroad enterprises. He 
was a director in the Merchants' National Bank, of Boston, and the Old Col- 
ony Trust Company, and served as treasurer and manager in various philan- 
thropic associations. Harvard Corporation elected him as overseer in 
1886, and he was re-elected in 1891. He served the city of Boston as Park 
Commissioner, 1875 and 1876; was a delegate to the Pan-American Con- 
gress in 1889; was appointed, April 28, 1892. by President Harrison, U. S. 
Minister to France as successor to Hon. Whitelaw Reid, resigned ; and he 
served up to the close of Mr. Harrison's administration in 1893. He was 
a member of the Anglo-American Commission which met at Quebec, Aug. 
25, 1898. 

Mr. Coolidge gave to the village of Manchester-by-the-sea, the location 
of his summer residence, a public library building costing $40,000, and to 
Harvard University he gave, in 1884, the Jefferson Physical Laboratory, 
which building was erected at a cost of $115,000. He received the honorary 



degree of LL.D. from Harvard in 1902. He was a member of the Somerset 
Club, of Boston, and the Harvard and University Clubs, of New York, 
and he gave generously to the various public charities of Boston. 

Mr. Coolidge married, in 1852, Hetty S., daughter of the Hon. William 
(1786-1862) and Mary Anne (Cutler) Appleton, and a descendant from 
the emigrant ancestor, Samuel Appleton (1586-1670), who came from 
Little Waldinfield, England, in 1635, was made a freeman in Ipswicli, 
Mass. Bay Colony, May 25, 1636, and was deputy to the General Court 
in 1637. Their son, T. Jefferson, Jr., became president of the Old Colony 
Trust Company, and their three daughters married Mr. Lucius Sargent, 
Mr. Frederick Sears, Jr., and Mr. Thomas Xewbold. 


William Wallace Crapo was born in Dartmouth, Mass., May 16, 1830; 
son of Hon. Henry Howland and Mary Ann (Slocum) Crapo, and a de- 
scendant of Peter Crapo, who married Penelope White, May 31, 1704. 
Henry Howland Crapo was also a native of Dartmouth, born of parents who 
were in humble circumstances, and, self-taught, he became a surveyor and a 
school teacher, removed to New Bedford, where he held the offices of town 
clerk, treasurer and collector of taxes for nearly twenty years. In 1857 he 
removed to Flint, Michigan; in 1862 was elected mayor of that city, served 
for two years as state senator, and in 1864 was elected governor of the 
state and held that office for four years. 

William Wallace Crapo was the only son in a family of ten children. 
He acquired his preliminary education in the public schools of New Bedford 
ajid at the Friends' Academy; was fitted for college at Phillips Academy, 
Andover, and was graduated from Yale in the class of 1852. He decided 
to make the law his profession, attended the Dane Law School at Harvard, 
and studied law in the office of the Hon. John Clifford, of New Bedford. 
February, r855, he was admitted to the Bristol bar; April, 1855, he was 
elected city solicitor of New Bedford, and held that office for twelve con- 
secutive years. He followed the practice of his profession in New Bedford ; 
alone, 1855-62; as senior of the firm of Crapo & Stone, 1862-69; as a 
member of the firm of Marston & Crapo, 1869-78, and as senior member 
of the firm of Crapo, Clifford & Clifford, from 1878. 

In 1856 he entered the political field, making his maiden speech in 
behalf of John C. Fremont, the first candidate of the Republican Party for 
President, and later in the same year he was elected to the Massachusetts 
House of Representatives. In 1857 he was strongly urged to accept nomina- 
tion as the Republican candidate for State Senator of his district, but his 


pressing professional duties compelled him to decline the honor. He 
rapidly advanced to a notable prominence in his profession, in which he 
acquired a high reputation. He was actively interested in the growth and 
prosperity of the city of New Bedford, was a prominent factor in the es- 
tablishment of its water works, and from 1865 to 1875 was chairman of 
the Board of Water Commissioners. 

During the Civil War he heartily supported the government, and during 
the whole period of its duration gave freely of his time, energy and means 
to the Northern cause. 

Mr. Crapo's interest in cotton manufacturing began with his invest- 
ments in the Wamsutta Mills in 1846. Later he was chosen a director of 
that corporation, and, in 1889, was chosen to succeed Andrew G. Pierce 
as its president, and has served in that capacity up to present time (iqii). 
In 1892 he acquired an interest in the Potomska Mills, in 1882 in the 
Acushnet, and in 1893 "^ t'^^ Hathaway Mills, all of New Bedford, and 
served on the directorate of each of these corporations, and also as president 
of the Potomska Mills (1911). 

Mr. Crapo's deservedly high reputation as a man of weight and ability 
rests pre-eminently upon the services he rendered his party and the people at 
large in the National House of Representatives. Being elected to fill a 
vacancy in the Forty-fourth Congress, he was re-elected to the three suc- 
ceeding Congresses and declined renomination in 1882. He was a member 
of the Committee on Foreign Affairs in the Forty-fifth Congress, and a 
member of the Committee on Banking and Currency in the Forty-sixth ; 
as chairman of the same committee in the following Congress, he rendered 
valuable service in obtaining the passage of the bill for extending the 
charters of the national banks, to which there was great and determined 
opposition. He was also influential in obtaining the removal of the tax on 
the capital and deposits of banks and bankers and in securing the direct 
application of the law to the national banks. He bore a conspicuous part 
in various other legislative measures of importance, and the purity and 
integrity of his motives and conduct in both public and private aiTairs was 
conceded by all. He was several times mentioned as a possible candidate 
for gubernatorial honors, and his failure to receive nomination is attributed 
largely to his aversion to the employment of the ordinary political methods 
of the day. Mr. Crapo was an active champion of the New Bedford fish- 
ing interests, and strongly recommended the abrogation of the fishing 
articles of the treaty of Washington. He was an elector-at-large from 
Massachusetts on the Republican National ticket in 1904, and in the 
Electoral College that met in 1905 he cast the vote of the Massachusetts 
electors for Theodore Roosevelt as President of the United States. From 
the outset of his career he was called upon to fill many positions of trust 
which demanded the exhibition of those qualities of sagacity, prudence and 
good judgment which he possessed in such large measure. He was guardian 


and trustee of many estates, president of the Mechanics' National Bank, of 
New Bedford, from 1870 to 1904; he became a director of the International 
Trust Company, of Boston, in 1883, and was for some years a vice-president 
of that institution, his successor being Frederick Ayer. Has been president 
of the New Bedford I'nstitution for Savings since 1896. He was also 
President of the Flint and Pere Marquette Railroad Company. 

A diligent student of the early history of the colony, he made many 
valuable contributions to the historical literature of his state, especially 
in regard to Dartmouth, and delivered a masterly address on the occasion 
of the centennial celebration of that town in 1864. 

Yale University conferred upon him the honorary degree of LL.D. in 
1882. He was a member of the Massachusetts Historical Society, and 
served as president of the Old Dartmouth Society. 

Jan. 22, 1857, Mr. Crapo married Sarah Davis, daughter of George 
and Serena (Davis) Tappan, of Newburyport. Arthur Tappan (1786- 
1865), the educationalist and anti-slavery agitator, Benj. Tappan (1773- 
1857), U. S. Judge and U. S. Senator for Ohio, and Henry Philip Tappan 
(1805-81) president of the University of Michigan, were all of this same 
Tappan family. The children of William W. and Sarah Davis (Tappan) 
Crapo were: Henry Howland and Sanford Tappan, who became general 
manager of the Flint and Pere Marquette Railroad. 


John Howard Nichols was born in Kingston, N. H., December 18, 
1837, son of Nicholas and Mary (Barstow) Nichols. His early life was 
spent in his native town and in Exeter, N. H., where he attended the 
Phillips Academy. On completion of his course he taught school for one 
year at Stratham, N. H. When eighteen years of age, he came to Boston 
and engaged as clerk with a tea importing house on Central Wharf. Here 
he came under the notice of John L. Gardner, who recognized his sterling 
qualities, and in 1858 engaged the youth as supercargo on the bark 
"Arthur," which was about to sail around the Cape to China. Some four 
months later, upon Mr. Nichols' arrival in that country, he received a 
letter from Mr. Gardner requesting that he remain in China as special 
agent for the house. Mr. Nichols accepted and spent ten years in all in 
the East, returning to visit America once during that time. He was the 
first merchant to import tea to America from the Island of Formosa, 
following up the opening of the various ports of Japan with successive 
visits to the Empire and studying the possible effects of the new market on 
American trade. He resigned his position of Eastern representative in 


1868, and returned to America, devoting his attention to the importing 
of Japanese and Chinese teas. In January, 1876, he disassociated himself 
from this business to accept the treasurership of the Dwight Manufacturing 
Co., Chicopee, Alass. Under Mr. Nichols' management this corporation 
became one of the most profitable textile manufactories in New England. 
Mr. Nichols established a branch cotton mill at Alabama City, Alabama, 
and through this means added greatly to the earnings of the corporation. 
During his twenty-nine years of management the capacity of the mills 
was increased from 120,000 to 200,000 spindles; dividends to the amount of 
$3,324,000 were paid, and a debt of $300,000 on the plant gave place to a 
surplus equal to the amount of the capital stock. In July, 1905, Mr. 
Nichols resigned as treasurer to become president, filling this place until 
his death in September of the same year. In 1886, upon the urgent request 
of some of his associates, Mr. Nichols became treasurer of the Great Falls 
Manufacturing Company, and the same success which marked his manage- 
ment of the Dwight Manufacturing Co. was achieved with the Great 
Falls Mfg. Co.; during the fourteen years Mr. Nichols was treasurer the 
plant was rehabilitated and the surplus largely increased, in addition to 
substantial dividends paid out during this period. At the time of his 
death, Mr. Nichols was also president of the Manchester Mills, Man- 
chester, N. H., and the Lyman Mills, Holyoke, Mass. 

In memory of his son, Howard Gardner, who after graduating 
from Harvard in 1892 took charge of the erection of the Alabama mills of 
the Dwight Manufacturing Co., and through the co-operation of his father 
created the model mill village in Alabama, and who met with a fatal ac- 
cident while engaged in the performance of his duties, Mr. Nichols erected 
at Alabama City a Public Library Building. He gave to the Hale Hospital, 
Haverhill, Mass., when that edifice was rebuilt in 1900, the administration 
building, also in memory of his son ; and erected and dedicated to the 
memory of his father and mother a public library in his native village, 
Kingston, N. H. 

March 15, 1870, Mr. Nichols married Charlotte Peabody, daughter of 
Daniel, and Charlotte (Tenney) Kimball, a descendant of Richard Kimball 
(1595-1675), who immigrated from Ipswich, England. Four children were 
born of this union, one son, Howard Gardner, and three daughters : 
Eleanor, who married Dr. Henry O. Marcey, Jr. ; Grace ; and Charlotte, 
who married Edwin Farnham Greene, treasurer of the Pacific Mills. 

Mr. Nichols died at his home in Newton Mass., September 15, 1905, 
being survived by his widow and three daughters. 




Stephen Greene was born at Hope, Rhode Island, September 27, 
1 85 1, the second son of Alvin and Maria (Arnold) Greene. In October. 
1856, the family removed to Yarmouth, Maine, where they remained until 
January, 1859. They then returned to Rhode Island, Mr. Greene engaging 
as superintendent of a brick cotton mill in White Rock, owned by Messrs. 
Babcock & Morse. The subject of this sketch, while in Maine, had 
attended school a portion of the time, and on returning to Rhode Island 
continued with his elementary studies in the district school. \Mien he 
was twelve years of age, he built the fires, cared for the schoolhouse and 
assisted in teaching the lower classes. He next attended the Westerly High 
School, and upon graduation, having at various times worked under his 
father in cotton mills, he was engaged by Babcock & Morse as "doffer" 
and "spare hand.'' He soon aspired to a life higher than that of a mill- 
hand, and his close attention to duty won him promotion as "second-hand" 
of the spooling-room and dressing-room. He also watched the mill at 
noon and rang the bell to call the operatives from dinner. In addition, he 
studied music and became a proficient player on the melodion and church 
organ. When sixteen years old, he was made overseer of the carding room. 
In the autumn of 1870, with his brother Benjamin, he visited New York, and 
while there obtained a phrenological chart which greatly influenced his 
determination to take up the business of civil engineering. He subsequently 
entered Brown University, his examination admitting him to the second 
year's class in the civil engineering course, and he was graduated B. P. 
with the rank of Phi Beta Kappa, 1873. The same year he began work in 
the office of N. B. Schubarth, architect and engineer of Providence. He 
was married Dec. 15, 1874, to Natalie L., daughter of his employer. 

In April, 1875, Mr. Greene accepted a position in the office of D. M. 
Thompson & Co., mill architects and engineers, and the same year he 
became superintendent of construction of the Hills Grove Mills, erected 
by Thomas J. Hill. At Hills Grove was born his first son, Edwin Farnham 
Greene. In November, 1879, he returned to Providence, to take a position 
in the office of A. D. Lockwood & Co., Mr. Lockwood being recognized as 
the successor to David Whitman, deceased, as the leading mill engineer 
of New England. In Providence, his son, Stephen Harold, was born 
April 27, 1880, and Everett Arnold, May 14, 1885. On March i, 1882, 
Stephen Greene became a member of the firm of Lockwood, Greene & Co., 
of Providence, the members of the firm being Amos D. Lockwood, J. W. 
Danielson, and Stephen Greene. During the first year of this partnership, 
he made an extended tour through the Southern States, and with so 
magnetic a pusher in the field, the business of the firm rapidly increased. 
In the spring of 1884 Mr. Lockwood died, and while his son-in-law, Mr. 
Danielson, the other partner, continued in the firm as advisor, the business 


was virtually in the hands of the young mill engineer. He was at this 
time instrumental in organizing, on the foundation of the Ocean Mill 
property at Newburyport, Mass., the Whitefield Mills, with Seth M. Mil- 
liken as a principal stockholder, and in November, 1886, he removed his 
family to Newburyport and took an active part in the organization and 
operation of the new mill as treasurer, and also continued an engineering 
office through which he could keep in touch with the great manufacturing 
world, of which he had already become a prominent factor. The White- 
field Mills venture was not financially successful, and he determined to 
remove the machinery to the South, and take advantage of the proximity 
of the mill to the cotton fields and cheap labor. This was the pioneer 
movement of transporting an entire Northern cotton mill to Southern soil, 
and the prosperous Spartan Mill of Spartanburg, S. C, was the result. 
He removed his engineering office to Boston in January. 1890, and became a 
middleman between the two sections, and Lockwood, Greene & Co. built most 
of the large mills in the South and added two million spindles to that section, 
or one-third of the spindle capacity of the entire South. The firm also 
reorganized the mills of the Pepperell Mfg. Co., the Chicopee Mfg. Co., and 
the Androscoggin Mills. 

Mr. Greene was a director of many of the largest and most successful 
mills in the South and North and a director of several of the insurance 
companies. He designed the plants of the Crompton & Knowles Loom 
Works, the Plymouth Cordage Co., the Saco & Pettee Machine Shops, the 
Atlas Tack Company's factory, Ginn & Company's Publishing Plant, the 
American Optical Company's buildings, and many other prominent plants. 
After 1890 he resided in Newton Centre, where, in 1893, another child, 
Frederick Hartwell, was born. Mr. Greene died in Newton Centre, Nov. 
7, 1901. 


Edwin Farnham Greene was born in Hills Grove, a suburb of 
Providence, Rhode Island, February 9, 1879, the eldest son of Stephen 
and Natalie L. (Schubarth) Greene and grandson of Alvin and Maria 
(Arnold) Greene, and Niles B. and Elizabeth C. (Reed) Schubarth. (See 
sketch of Stephen Greene, Ibid.) Until November, 1886, the subject of 
this sketch lived in Providence, R. I. He then removed with his family to 
Newburyport, Mass., his father having been instrumental in organizing 
the Whitefield Mills of that city. Edwin Farnham Greene attended the 
public schools in both his native town and Newburyport. and then became 
a pupil at the Worcester Academy, being graduated in 1897. Subse- 
quently, he entered Brown University, and completing his course, received 

£M^ BiTE' i? IVILCS^fS <3 BRU ATjr 

qY cn^' o/ ^ty<^ 


the degree of A. B., in 1901. November 7, 1901, his father died, and in the 
beginning of the following year Edwin Farnham Greene was elected to 
succeed him as president and member of the firm of Lockwood, Greene & 
Co., a position which he still holds (1911). From July, 1905, to December, 
1907, he served as treasurer of the Dwight Manufacturing Company, and 
in October, 1906, accepted the office of treasurer of the Lawton Mills 
Corporation. This position he resigned in March, 1908, having the pre- 
vious November been elected to the treasurership of the Pacific Mills. 

Other offices held by Mr. Green in 191 1 were: director of National 
Shawmut Bank ; Old Colony Trust Co. ; Boston & Maine Railroad ; Nyanza 
Mills; Boston Mfrs. Mutual Fire Insurance Co.; American Mutual Liabil- 
ity Insurance Co.; Dwight Mfg. Co.; Great Falls Mfg. Co.; Lawton Mills 
Corporation; The Dallas Mfg. Co.; Colonial Securities Co., trustee of 
Worcester Academy and Brown University. 

June 20, 1903, Mr. Greene married Charlotte, daughter of J. Howard 
and Charlotte Peabody (Kimball) Nichols, and in 1910 had two children, 
John Gardner, born October 28, 1904, and Edwin Farnham Greene, Jr., 
born July 14, 1910. 


Thomas Goodall was born in the town of Dewsbury, Yorkshire, 
England, September i, 1823, son of George and Tabitha Armitage Goodall. 
The subject of this sketch was left an orphan when a mere infant, and at 
a very early age was placed in a woolen mill as an apprentice, where he 
remained for eleven years; by 1840, being then seventeen years old, he had 
mastered the details of the business and had charge of the buying of 
materials and the disposing of the product. When he became of age, he 
started out to work for himself with all of his belongings tied up in a bundle 
and only five shillings in his pocket. In 1844 he set up in business for 
himself and met with a fair degree of success. 

In 1846 he came to the United States, resided for a brief time in 
Connecticut and then removed to South Hadley, Mass., where he obtained 
a good position which he later resigned in favor of a needy countryman 
with a large family, and went to Rhode Island, where he remained nearly 
two years. He then returned for a short time to South Hadley, but in 
1849, he went to West Winchester, N. H. Finding the business oppor- 
tunities of that place inadequate to his ambition, he removed in 1852 to 
Troy, N. H., where he engaged in the manufacture of satinets and beavers, 
to which he added the manufacture of horse blankets, of which he was the 
pioneer in this country, being the first to manufacture shaped horse blankets 


and put them up fifty in a bale, fie presented many bales of blankets for 
the soldiers of the Union in the Civil War and also for the Navy. 

In 1865 he sold his plant to a syndicate of Keene, N. H., manufacturers, 
who have carried on the work to the present day. Mr. Goodall then paid 
an extended visit to his native land, and while there engaged in the ex- 
portation of lap-robes manufactured expressly for the United States and 

He made numerous trips to the United States on business, and at length 
determined to establish a factory for the production of the goods he had been 
exporting from England, and purchased in 1867 from William Miller and 
James O. Clark, of Sanford, Me., a flannel factory and grist and saw-mill, 
with the entire water privilege of the Mousam controlled by them at this 
point, and early in the following year had two sets of cards and ten looms 
in operation, with fifty operatives producing carriage robes and kersey 
blankets. The Sanford Mills now employ about 1,500 operative.*, and the 
growth of the Goodall enterprises which had their inception in this first 
venture of Thomas Goodall have converted the rustic farming village of 
Sanford into an important commercial centre. 

In 1884, Mr. Goodall resigned his position as president of the Sanford 
Mills Corporation. In 1895 he retired from business and relinquished his 
interest in favor of his sons, Louis B., George B., and Ernest M. 

April 29, 1849, Mr. Goodall married Ruth, second daughter of Jerry 
Waterhouse, a leading manufacturer of South Hadley, Mass., and had five 
children, Louis Bertrand and George Benjamin (twins), Ernest Montrose, 
Ida May, and Lila Helen, the last two dying in infancy. Mr. Goodall died 
at Sanford, Me., May 11, 1910, his three sons surviving him. 


Charles Lewis Hildreth was born October 9, 1823, in Concord, New 
Hampshire, being the son of Elijah and Isabella (Caldwell) Hildreth. The 
family of Hildreth is of English origin, some of its members coming 
to this country at a very early period. Richard, the common founder of 
the Hildreth family in the United States, was a pioneer settler in j\Iassa- 

When the subject of this sketch was about three years old, the family 
moved to Nashua, N. H., where he attended Grace's private school until he 
entered Appleton Academy at New Ipswich, N. H. After completing his 
educational course, Mr. Hildreth went to Lowell, and, as an apprentice in 
iron working, for three years served at the Lowell Machine Shop, and 
then became a contractor in the same shop, During