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The First Industrial Revolution. 1760-1820/1840. Historical Significance of the First Industrial Revolution.

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The First Industrial Revolution

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The First Industrial Revolution


Historical Significance of the First Industrial Revolution

• An ancient Greek or Roman would have been just as comfortable in Europe in 1700 because daily life was not much different – agriculture and technology were not much changed in 2000+ years

• The Industrial Revolution changed human life drastically

• More was created in the last 250+ years than in the previous 2500+ years of known human history

What was the First Industrial Revolution?

• The Industrial Revolution was a fundamental change in the way goods were produced, from human labor to machines

• The more efficient means of production and subsequent higher levels of production triggered far-reaching changes to industrialized societies

Industrial Revolutions

  • Dates

  • First Industrial Revolution

    • 1760-1820/1840

  • Second Industrial Revolution

    • 1860’s-1910’s


  • Before the Industrial Revolution, people relied on the horse and their own feet to get around.

  • With the invention of the steam locomotive, transportation took a huge step forward.

  • The first two major railroad companies were the Union Pacific and Central Pacific Railroads.

Passenger carriers

An original steam engine

Steam locomotive


  • With the invention of the spinning jenny and the power loom, the textile industry took off.

  • Clothes could now be made far faster than ever before.

Textiles: Spinning wheel

  • The spinning wheel was the first invention, but it was very slow.

  • Threads were spun one at a time, by hand.

The spinning jenny

  • The spinning jenny could spin up to eight thread at time. The spinning jenny was much faster than the spinning wheel.

The Spinning Mule

  • The spinning mule used water power to spin the thread, which was much faster than doing it by hand.

  • More cloth could now be made.

The Power Mule

The power loom

  • The power loom used water power to weave cloth

  • People could make a lot of cloth quickly.

A cotton factory


  • Advances in agriculture were also made.

  • The invention of the seed drill allowed farmers to plant many more seeds much more quickly.

  • The reaper allowed farmers to harvest their crops more efficiently.

  • More crops could now be grown feeding an increasing population.

The seed drill

The reaper

  • The reaper was used to cut down the harvest. As you can see, it would take a long time to do it by hand.

The mechanical reaper

The mechanical reaper was a lot faster than doing the hand reaper

The Second Industrial Revolution


An Age of Invention

  • From 1865 to 1905 the US had a surge of industrial growth which became known as the Second Industrial Revolution

  • What is the importance of the date 1865?

  • This new era began with numerous discoveries and inventions that spurred growth in manufacturing, transportation, and Americans everyday life

  • As Coal spurred the initial industrial revolution,steel and oil made the second industrial revolution possible

  • Steel was used in the construction of heavy machinery that mass produced goods

Railroad tracks


Building frames


( the more steel was produced the cheaper it was to buy)

Steel was used for…


  • With the invention of steel, buildings could be made much taller.

  • Steel was much harder than iron, which would bend if made too tall.

  • The steel industry created many new products, and led to the invention of the car.

Smoke stacks of a factory

A melting plant

Stronger longer lasting rails

Stronger bridges

Taller multi-story buildings

More Jobs

people moving into cities

This led to…


  • Railroads- linked isolated areas to the rest of the country

  • Steel was so affordable it led to the railroads laying more tracks

  • {Prior to the Civil war railroads in the U.S. averaged 100 miles in length}

  • The first transcontinental railroad was completed in1869

  • Completed by Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroad companies

Effects of better transportation

  • First railroads provided many of the country’s jobs

  • Building locomotives and rail cars spurred on the steel industry

  • Better faster transportation out west increased western settlement

  • Towns sprang up around railroad stations

  • Companies could now sell products nationally

The Car

  • Also known as the Horseless Carriage

  • {Innovations in Oil led to motors and the car}

  • Combustion engine powered by gas was invented in 1876

  • Use of car was limited due to high cost



  • The internal combustion engine also led to advancements in flight

  • Orville and Wilbur Wright developed one of the first working airplanes

  • Dec. 17, 1903 near {Kitty Hawk North Carolina, Orville made the first piloted flight}

  • It lasted 12 seconds and went 120 feet, in a powered plane

Telegraph and Telephone

  • Telegraph invented by Samuel Morse 1837

  • Telegraph grew with the railroad and offices were located in train stations and strung wires along the railroad lines

  • Alexander Graham Bell in 1876 patented the telephone

  • Created jobs for women needed as operators

  • Bell Telephone became one of the longest lasting monopolies

Andrew Carnegie

  • Andrew Carnegie became a millionaire in the steel business by putting all his competitors out of business.

  • He created U.S. Steel in Pittsburg.

John D. Rockefeller

  • John D. Rockefeller became the richest man in the world in the oil business.

  • He created Standard Oil Company.

  • Oil began being used in all types of machines, like cars.

Henry Ford

  • Henry Ford invented the first practical car, the Model T.

  • The car had been invented earlier, but Ford was the first to make the car affordable.

In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, child labor was used throughout the world, particularly in industrializing countries.

Child labor there was primarily used in the textile industry.

Factory Conditions for Children in the U.S. in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries

  • Factory owners preferred using children for some tasks because of their small size.

  • It was more profitable for factory owners to employ children than skilled adults.

  • Lack of sleep and an averaged eighteen-hour work day in the U.S. contributed to mistakes and injuries.

  • Some children in the U.S. were mentally and physically abused by their supervisors, and their safety was neglected by factory owners who cared more about profit than well-being.












In the U.S., in 1830, 55 % of mill

workers in Rhode Island

were children.

The Lowell mills employed mostly young women with an average age of fifteen to eighteen.












In the U.S., people started to

question child labor, but laws

were not established until

much later. Child+Labor+Coal+Mines.jpg












In the U.S., the first state child

labor law was established in


Photographed by Lewis Hine:

Children in Massachusetts under the age of fifteen had to attend school for three months.












In the U.S., states began

limiting children to a ten-

hour workday. . .

. . . but the laws were not always enforced!












In the U.S. the National Labor

Law Committee forms, and

child labor law reform


Photographed by Lewis Hine: about/Pages/History.aspx

Child working as a spinner.












In the U.S., a new federal

child labor law sets a

minimum age for

employment . . .

Photograph by Lewis Hine: Wc2.htm

Child Labor in the Industrial Revolution

During the Industrial Revolution, families needed each member to contribute financially. This even included children due to the high demand for labor. However, children were mistreated, overworked, and accrued minimal wages for their work.


  • Children as young as six years old worked for little or no pay

  • Children were subject to working long hours in factories with terrible working conditions

  • American children worked in large numbers in mines, glass factories, textiles, agriculture, canneries, home industries, and as newsboys, messengers, bootblacks, and peddlers.

  • Children who lived in rural areas not only worked on their family farm, but were also hired by other farmers

  • In 1890, 1.5 million children under the age of 15 were working in industrial jobs and in 1910, it reached to 2 million children

  • Children developed serious health problems such as being underweight, curvature of the spine, and tuberculosis

  • In 1836, the first state child labor law was created by Massachusetts, which required children under the age of 15 that worked in factories to attend school at least 3 months out of the year

  • 1938 Federal regulation of child labor was achieved in Fair Labor Standards Act

  • For the first time, minimum ages of employment and hours of work for children are regulated by federal law

  • In 1904, the National Child Labor Committee was formed by socially concerned citizens and politicians

  • The National Child Labor Committee was chartered by Congress by 1907

Historical Significance:

  • The child labor of the Industrial Revolution is historically significant to us because if people of America did not recognize and reform against child labor, we would not be able to go to school. We would probably have to work to contribute financially and economically for our family. In addition, children would have to work in conditions that would be unsuitable and be paid little for their hard work.


With only one provider of a good or service consumers would have to pay top dollar for the item they needed and most of the time it was a poor quality item. (Standard Oil)

The Definition

  • a persistent market situation where there is only one provider of a product or service.

  • Monopolies are characterized by a lack of economic competition for the good or service that they provide and a lack of viable substitute goods.

Modern Monopoly: AT&T

  • The largest provider of both local and long distance telephone services, wireless service under the brand Cingular Wireless, and DSL Internet access in the United States.

  • Although the corporation is considered SBC renamed, most of its major subsidiaries were part of AT&T.

  • AT&T lacks the control it once had, which had been the reason for the anti-trust suits that led to the 1984 breakup.

Labor Unions

  • The rise of Labor Unions was a reaction to the employers exploiting workers, which allowed employees to demand fair treatment.


  • People came to the United States for:

    • Fertile land

    • Job and Economic opportunities

    • Religious and Political freedom

    • Freedom from rising taxes

  • Immigrants came from Europe as well as Asia.

Irish Immigrants

  • Potato Famine – Ireland 1845–1849

  • American Republican Party 1843 – Know Nothing Movement

  • Restrictions against Catholics


  • More diversity within the United States.

  • Inventions and ideas that came from immigrants.

  • Carnegie – libraries and schools

Environmental Issues of the Industrial Revolution

The Industrial Revolution influenced many factors to the increase of our economy but also devastated the growth of our environment creating a world-wide crisis to the future of our society


  • For traditional families it became harder because it eventually led outside of the usual home.

  • Pollution, deforestation, and the destruction of animal and plant habitats continued to increase

The Use of Mechanics

  • The burning of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gases has added to the excessive amount of carbon dioxide and other gases in the atmosphere.


  • Many gases, especially Carbon Dioxide, have slowly been increasing since the 18th century thus contributing to what scientists like to call the “greenhouse effect”; which is slowly raising the average temperature of the Earth.


One Result of the Industrial Revolution

  • Thanks to the chemical fall-outs caused by the industrial activities, the Maine Department of Environmental Protection says that it is no longer safe for pregnant women and children to eat any freshwater fish from any of Maine’s many lakes.

Situation of cities and countryside prior and during the Industrial Revolution.

The abolition of slavery forced plantation owners to pay for labor.

Rich plantation owners saw more profit in the developing industry than in agriculture.

More workers are needed in the cities to operate the new machines.

People in the countryside were competing for few jobs.

People started to view cities as a place to start over and improve their situation.

New ideas about city designing. Utopia.

Situation of cities and countryside prior and during the Industrial Revolution

Effects of the industrial revolution on the urban development

  • Great numbers of people started to move from the U.S. countryside toward the cities.

  • The cities not adequated for such great numbers of people were unable to provide basic human needs such as running water, proper sewage and effective trash disposal system.

  • New ideas on city design started to appear

  • Architects starting applying some of this new ideas in the currently exicting cities.

  • Some bold architects toyed with the idea of creating cities from scratch using this new ideas

The End

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