Industrial Revolution Essay, Research Paper
The industrial revolution occurred in the late 1700s and the early 1800s. England was the leader of the nations with France following right behind. The United States was left in their dust. In fact, we weren t ahead of England till 1900. Though the American economy only boosted in this time we never fell back towards the past.
The industrial revolution made the U.S. a country. It was a competitor with the stronger countries. England hated the U.S. for two reasons the first is they gained their independence from them, and they could often make their goods less expensive then England so therefore sell them cheaper. An example of this is textiles; England ended up being one of the United State s main customers.
The industrial revolution brought out inventions like the textile industry, spinning machines, steam engines, weaving machines, railroads, and many other advances in technology. These were invented in many different countries, and all the others found ways to improve them and make it better for themselves. Though England tried to keep their inventions where they had started. They tried to maintain a monopoly over their discoveries and skills. In the early 1800s it was against the law for skilled craftsman to leave the country. Nevertheless, hundreds of skilled workers and manufacturers left Britain, taking their knowledge with them. They thought that they had a better chance of making money in the United States then at home.
The impact it had on families was that many moved around factories. Like the textile mills again communities were built around the mills so that they would never have to travel to go to work, and the whole family would work there at least with the Slater system. The population in these rural areas began to skyrocket with immigrants hoping for a better life. In earlier years children started working at the age of 7. In England children would stand on corners and factory owners could pick the children they wanted to work for their factories. The mills and factories also employed their parents too; in a way supervise them, and make sure they are not misbehaving or injuring themselves. Though, women and children received lower wages then the men for doing relatively the same work. Many times children would become crippled and deformed from unsafe machines. Most of all the factory employees were unskilled workers so their pay was diminutive.
The work day was about twelve to fourteen hours a day six days a week which was similar to domestic times, but it was a much more personal work environment in domestic tims, and in the larger factories that became impossible there were too many workers to get to know them all. Then the machines made the workday very monotonous with the machines making it impossible to take breaks.
Women in this time were able to work. Before this women were not working except in farming families or other rare circumstances. Women were paid much less than men were in almost any factory or mill situation. They were usually between the ages of fourteen and nineteen. In many cases women lived in boarding houses which took them out of their small cities and villages. This made it possible for girls to meet and marry men outside their cities. This was beneficial to them, because they have a better chance of meeting a middle class man that might be able to give them a better life than they previously had.
Factory families were still considered low class. In fact, the only people on these areas that were not low class were the owners or the people who managed the factory. At this time low class was much larger then upper or middle class, but it was an improvement. People were actually making money, and were able to support their families. Some believe that by keeping them poor that promoted the revolution. If they had paid better and other jobs in the area paid better then they would not work as hard. (The World Book Encyclopedia, 1996) The lower class was not even allowed to vote in England.
The workers did not share in the prosperity of the time, but the middle and upper class gained all of the benefits. Fortunes were made for many people in this time. This raised the standards of living among the middle class. Education was more important, because of the demand for engineers and clerical workers. The products that were made during this time were to provide new comforts for the people (at least the ones who could afford them.)
The industrial revolution indirectly helped increase many cities population. As many people of the middle and upper classes enjoyed better diets and lived in more sanitary housing, they suffered less from disease and lived longer. The condition of the working class also improved, though not as much. The upper and middle class consisted of inventors, scientists, bankers, engineers, and the people who backed up an invention by supporting them with funding.
The Industrial Revolution brought upon great changes throughout the world. It gave hope to the people that they could make a living, and no longer live in poverty. It made many people richer than they could have ever imagined. It made men with great ideas into great men, in fact, rich men.
This revolution started the creation of the world today. Since the 1800s new advances are becoming known daily. Technology has not yet seen a break in the world, and things are getting better and more convenient for the consumer. The only big difference is the unskilled workers are getting paid much better. Like at GM their employees can make more money than many with bachelor s degrees. To me this seems sad. I appreciate the work they do, I drive a Chevy, but I am paying to go to school to be able to make a good living for me and my children. When they just have to be lucky enough to apply when they are hiring.
I believe without what we see as the small advances that happened in this time we would be so far behind to what we are today. We would probably still be riding around in horses and buggies. I am personally very happy it did, because I enjoy all the modern conveniences it has brought to all of our lives.
The World Book Encyclopedia/ article by Eric E. Lampard/ copyright 1996/ pg 186-195