Gabriela Villa Nova Silva & Lauren Gutierrez
The cottage industry was developed to take advantage of the farmers' free time and use it to produce quality textiles for a reasonable price. To begin the process, a cloth merchant from the city needed enough money to travel into the countryside.
Cottage industries developed in cities around 1870, resulting in the harsh tenement housing system. Immigrant families lived and worked in these crowded, unsafe apartment buildings. They worked for extremely low wages, usually making garments. This system lasted until around 1920, when better management of factories made home-produced goods less competitive.