[15] Calico and chintz, types of cotton fabrics, became popular in Europe, and by 1664 the East India Company was importing a quarter of a million pieces into Britain. The Indian subcontinent was looked to as a possible source of raw cotton, but intra-imperial conflicts and economic rivalries prevented the area from producing the necessary supply. Demand for British cotton slumped, and during the interwar period 345,000 workers left the industry and 800 mills closed. Annual business revenue stimulated by cotton in the U.S. economy exceeds $120 billion, making cotton America’s number one value-added crop. COTTON INDUSTRY IN AMERICA. All the same tools were invented to work it also, including combs, bows, hand spindles, and primitive looms. [15], Handheld roller cotton gins had been used in India since the 6th century, and was then introduced to other countries from there. [25], The largest manufacturing industry in the Mughal Empire was cotton textile manufacturing, which included the production of piece goods, calicos, and muslins, available unbleached and in a variety of colours. [59] The main producer of cotton, as of December 2016, is India, at 26%, past China at 20% and the United States at 16%. When Alexander the Great invaded India, his troops started wearing cotton clothes that were more comfortable than their previous woolen ones. The factories that were required to produce cotton became a legacy of the time – Sir Richard Arkwright at Cromford built the world’s first true factory to produce cotton. [20], The worm gear roller cotton gin, which was invented in India during the early Delhi Sultanate era of the 13th–14th centuries, came into use in the Mughal Empire some time around the 16th century,[21] and is still used in India through to the present day. Karl Marx, who frequently visited Lancashire, may have been influenced by the conditions of workers in these mills in writing Das Kapital. Boll weevils, insects that entered the United States from Mexico in 1892, created 100 years of problems for the U.S. cotton industry. It made it possible for the cotton industry in America to grow from an annual revenue of $150,000 to $8 million in the early 1800’s. Anglo-French warfare in the early 1790s restricted access to continental Europe, causing the United States to become an important—and temporarily the largest—consumer for British cotton goods. India had a 25% share of the global textile trade in the early 18th century. [5][6], The oldest cotton textiles were found in graves and city ruins of civilizations from dry climates, where the fabrics did not decay completely. Cotton played an important role in the history of India, the British Empire, and the United States, and continues to be an important crop and commodity. [12] The Indus Valley civilization started cultivating cotton by 3000 BCE. This resurgence in the textile industry did not last long, and by 1958, Britain had become a net importer of cotton cloth. The South continued to be a one-crop economy until the 20th century, when the boll weevil struck across the South. The southern states after the Civil War were still a one crop industry. The British Raj declared khadi subversive; damaging to the British imperial rule. As the cotton industry boomed in the South, the Mississippi River quickly became the essential water highway in the United States. [27] Indian cotton textiles were the most important manufactured goods in world trade in the 18th century, consumed across the world from the Americas to Japan. The history of cotton in America began back in 1556 when it was cultivated by American settlers in Florida. It was cheaper than silk and could be imprinted more easily than wool, allowing for patterned dresses for women. The industrial revolution in England and the invention of the cotton gin in the U.S. paved the way for the important place cotton … [30] In contrast, there was very little demand for European goods in Mughal India, which was largely self-sufficient, thus Europeans had very little to offer, except for some woolens, unprocessed metals and a few luxury items. This did help to bring economic growth to the southern states of America, but America would no longer be the largest producer of cotton in the world. The Indian version of the dual-roller gin was prevalent throughout the Mediterranean cotton trade by the 16th century. Searchable copies of nearly all of the main medieval Arabic dictionaries are online at, Splitstoser et al, Early pre-Hispanic use of indigo blue in Peru, 2016, TeachingAmericanHistory.org "Cotton is King", Textile manufacture during the Industrial Revolution, Cotton production in the United States § History, India's boycott of British cotton products, Diplomacy of the American Civil War#Cotton and the British economy, French National Centre for Scientific Research, https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/2/9/e1501623.full, "Ancient Egyptian cotton unveils secrets of domesticated crop evolution", India's Deindustrialization in the 18th and 19th Centuries, "Cotton textiles and the great divergence: Lancashire, India and shifting competitive advantage, 1600–1850", "King Cotton in Alabama: A Brief History", http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=1722, "How the American Civil War Built Egypt's Vaunted Cotton Industry and Changed the Country Forever", "We Don't Cotton to Boll Weevil 'Round Here Anymore", "Boom to Bust – The Decline of the Cotton Industry", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=History_of_cotton&oldid=999760036, Articles with unsourced statements from February 2018, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 11 January 2021, at 20:42. Aksumite King Ezana boasted in his inscription that he destroyed large cotton plantations in Meroë during his conquest of the region. Because cotton needed a warm climate, the southern states of America is the ideal place to plant and harvest it. In the non-slave-owning states, farms rarely grew larger than what could be cultivated by one family due to scarcity of farm workers. From field to feeling, our cotton has come a long way. Modernization of the industry was attempted in 1959 with the Cotton Industry Act. The knowledge of cotton weaving was spread to northern Italy in the 12th century, when Sicily was conquered by the Normans, and consequently to the rest of Europe. By the 1850's cotton was easily available at the corner store and sold by hundreds of different suppliers. The various species of cotton grown as agricultural crops are native to most subtropical parts of the world and were domesticated independently multiple times. Beckert writes that cotton manufacturing “was the first major industry in human history that lacked locally produced raw materials.” As British manufacturing skyrocketed, so too did the demand for (and price of) raw cotton. [51] It was thought that the Civil War caused the Lancashire Cotton Famine, a period between 1861–1865 of depression in the British cotton industry, by blocking off American raw cotton. [38][39][40] British colonization also forced open the large Indian market to British goods, which could be sold in India without tariffs or duties, compared to local Indian producers, while raw cotton was imported from India without tariffs to British factories which manufactured textiles from Indian cotton, giving Britain a monopoly over India's large market and cotton resources. Manned by slaves introduce third ( night ) shifts cotton industry history Arabic during medieval times is very complex is... 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