Industrial Revolution Inventions

May 8, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: History, European History, Europe (1815-1915), Industrial Revolution
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While Thomas Savery patented the first crude steam engine in 1698. Thomas Newcomen improved on this design. However, it wasn't until Scotsman James Watt improved on the steam engine in the second half of the 18th century steam engine is able to harness the energy of steam to move machinery. It is a fairly clean source of energy. Steam engines were used to great effect to run locomotives and steamshipsSteamships and steam locomotives allowed for the quicker transportation of raw materials that could be used to produce finished goods.

In the 1870s, two inventors Elisha Gray and Alexander Graham Bell both independently designed devices that could transmit speech electrically (the telephone). Both men rushed their respective designs to the patent office within hours of each other, Alexander Graham Bell patented his telephone first. Elisha Gray and Alexander Graham Bell entered into a famous legal battle over the invention of the telephone, which Bell won. By June 1875 the goal of creating a device that would transmit speech electrically was about to be realized. They had proven that different tones would vary the strength of an electric current in a wire. To achieve success they therefore needed only to build a working transmitter with a membrane capable of varying electronic currents and a receiver that would reproduce these variations in audible frequencies

The non-electric telegraph was invented by Claude Chappe in 1794. This system was visual and used semaphore, a flag-based alphabet, and depended on a line of sight for communication. The optical telegraph was replaced by the electric telegraph, the focus of this article. In 1809, a crude telegraph was invented in Bavaria by Samuel Soemmering. He used 35 wires with gold electrodes in water and at the receiving end 2000 feet the message was read by the amount of gas caused by electrolysis. In 1828, the first telegraph in the USA. was invented by Harrison Dyar who sent electrical sparks through chemically treated paper tape to burn dots and dashes

Hand sewing is an art form that is over 20,000 years old. The first sewing needles were made of bones or animal horns and the first thread was made of animal sinew. Iron needles were invented in the 14th century. The first eyed needles appeared in the 15th century  The English inventor and cabinet maker, Thomas Saint was issued the first patent for a complete machine for sewing in 1790. It is not known if Saint actually built a working prototype of his invention. The patent describes an awl that punched a hole in leather and passed a needle through the hole. A later reproduction of Saint's invention based on his patent drawings did not work. In 1810, German, Balthasar Krems invented an automatic machine for sewing caps. Krems did not patent his invention and it never functioned well.  Austrian tailor, Josef Madersperger made several attempts at inventing a machine for sewing and was issued a patent in 1814. All of his attempts were considered unsuccessful.  In 1804, a French patent was granted to Thomas Stone and James Henderson for "a machine that emulated hand sewing." That same year a patent was granted to Scott John Duncan for an "embroidery machine with multiple needles." Both inventions failed and were soon forgotten by the public.  In 1818, the first American sewing machine was invented by John Adams Doge and John Knowles. Their machine failed to sew any useful amount of fabric before malfunctioning

The cotton gin is a machine designed to remove cotton from its seeds. The process uses a small screen and pulling hooks to force the cotton through the screen. It was invented by Eli Whitney on March 14, 1794, one of the many inventions that occurred during the American Industrial Revolution. However, earlier versions of the cotton gin had existed since the first century. It was improved over time from a single roller design to a double roller machine The cotton gin made the cotton industry of the south explode. Previous to its invention, separating cotton fibers from its seeds was a labor intensive and unprofitable venture. However, after Eli Whitney unveiled the cotton gin, processing cotton became much easier resulting in greater availability and cheaper cloth. However, the invention also had the by-product of increasing the number of slaves needed to pick the cotton thereby strengthening the arguments for continuing slavery. Cotton as a cash crop became so important that it was known as King Cotton and affected politics up until the Civil War.

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