The Industrial Revolution
By: Kayla Sriver
What was the Industrial Revolution, and where did it begin?
The Industrial Revolution began in the 18th century in England, and it was the time of a great increase in the output of machine-made goods. Before this time, almost all jobs were performed solely by hand, but new inventions made it possible to get things done by machine. After it's beginnings in England, the Industrial Revolution spread to Continental Europe and North America.
The majority of England's land used to be covered in farmland, but during the 1700's this land was bought by wealthy landowners and they used it to improve farming techniques. This was the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. The reason this started in England was because of the large deposits of coal and iron ore, and they were politically stable. They were also the worlds leading colonial power at this time. They could provide raw materials as well as manufactured goods. Besides farming, one of the biggest innovations of the Industrial Revolution was the textile industry as well as the first factory and new forms of transportation. New jobs were popping up all over and houses were being built. As these jobs opened up, more and more people moved into the city. The higher classes were better off and their living conditions were even improved, but I can't say the same for the poor and working classes. Houses were being built, but there were very cramped living conditions. They gained a very little salary and the jobs were extremely dangerous. Children worked as well and were used for highly dangerous tasks. Many craftsmen lost their jobs to a machine that took their place. Because of overcrowding, the living conditions were polluted and unsanitary leading to the spread of many diseases. Although conditions were poor, the end result was amazing and led to the expanding of inventions and greater job opportunities and lives. Industrialization was well established in the rest of Europe and North America by the mid 19th century. And by the early 20th century, America became the world's leading industrial nation.
Who Were the First Inventors, and What Were Their Inventions?
How did their inventions change the way people did things? Were the changes positive, negative, or both?
Along with these dangerous working conditions, living in the city wasn't much of a step up. There were overcrowding problems which led to unsanitary and all around poor living conditions as well as the spread of many diseases. The middle and lower classes kept moving into the city and worsened these issues. There was no work out in the country, so the only way they could live was to move into the city and find a job. They got very little money and their living conditions only worsened. It was a very bad time for people to live in these filthy cities, but as time went on, living conditions gradually became better as well as communication and transportation. People were able to move to different cities faster, and this even helped the spread of cities and the colonies. By the end, vaccines were being invented and public health was an issue that was starting to be covered and acted upon. Communication to other sides of the country became easier and everything slowly started to fall into place.