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Besides the above buildings, we have our machine-shop, carpenter's shop, mills for grinding dye-woods, calenders for glazing, a dye-house, machine room, with three printing machine rooms, &c. for airing the goods after printing, with water power not half employed.
The madder dye house mentioned above, 286 feet long by 50 wide, I believe to be the largest ever built for that purpose; the main shaft frame water wheel being more than 300 feet long. Hoping this will give you some insight how far we have proceeded in calico printing, I remain your obedient servant, J. TAYLoR.
P.S. on the manufacturing of shirtings and fine printing cloths:—The two brothers, Joseph and Benjamin Marshall, having dissolved partnership, Benjamin Marshall at Troy has now all the factories; he makes the finest shirtings in the country, called the New York mills shirtings, besides the finest printing cloths.
Before the commencement of the printing bnsiness, the cotton manufacture was considered in a precarious condition; so that no one ventured on the finer fabrics, but since calico printing has been established, the cotton manufactures in the United States may safely be considered as built on a permanent basis.
The home consumption of cotton prints is immense; already the English and French articles have left our stores; and shortly printed goods will be sent to South America and other markets. Calico printing must therefore be considered of immense importance, both to the culture and manufacture of cotton. It is but yet in its infancy, and is capable of vast extension and improvement.
After the manufacture of the cloth is complete, there is the important process of bleaching to be undergone by all cotton goods, by which the rough, gray, and dirty fabric brought in by the weaver, is converted into the smooth and snowy cloth ready for the hands of the sempstress. The processes vary a little in duration and frequency, according to the quality of the cloth to be bleached. Every thing is done by machinery or by chemical agents, and the large bleach works require steam engines of considerable power. Human hands only convey the cloth from process to process. There is much beauty in many of the operations; and great skill is needed in the mere disposition of the several cisterns and machines, so that the goods may pass through the processes with the smallest expenditure of time. Large capital has been expended in many of the bleach works in England; and extraordinary perfection has been attained in the machinery and in all the details of the arrangements; strict method and order prevail; the managers are men of science, who are eager to adopt every che
mical and mechanical improvement that may occur to themselves or to others. So greatly has bleaching been cheapened and quickened by the discoveries of modern science, that it costs only one cent a yard on the cloth bleached and finished.
Mr. Baines states that “the Americans print few of their cloths;” this must have referred to past information. From the calculations I have been able to make, one hundred and twenty millions of yards have been printed in the United States the last year, ending the 1st of April, 1836. And the prospect of an advance in quantity and quality is very great, as the demand justifies every exertion and improvement. In Rhode Island and Massachusetts the printing establishments are very considerable:–P. Allen, Providence; Sprague, Cranston; Crawford Allen, Pawtucket; one at Lowell, one at Taunton, and one at Fall River; one at Dover, New Hampshire; two at East Madden, Cheshire, two or three in New Jersey, and ten or twelve in Pennsylvania. The bleaching business is generally connected with the calico printing, as is the case of the Marshall's at Hudson."
* The repeal of the print duty in England has proved highly beneficial, having given a stimulus both to production and to improvement. To the consumer it is a great relief, especially to the poor, as a woman can now buy a useful and respectable printed dress for half-a-crown, which before the repeal of the duty was a third more. A printed dress of good materials and a neat pattern, with fast colours, may now be bought for two shillings, or forty-seven cents. The large print works of Lancashire are among the most interesting manufactories that can be visited. Several of the proprietors or managers are scientific men; and being also persons of large capital, they have the most perfect machinery and the best furnished laboratories. All the proceeses through which the cloth has to pass, from the state in which it is left by the weaver, till it is made up a finished print ready for the foreign or home market, are performed in these extensive establishments. The bleaching, the block printing, the cylinder printing, the dyeing, the engraving both of blocks and cylinders, the designing of patterns, and the preparation of colours, all go on within the same enclosure. Some of the print-works employ as many as a thousand work-people. The order and cleanness of the works, and the remarkable beauty of most of the operations, impress the visiter with admiration and surprise.
The plate annexed represents the series of changes from the formation of the egg to the death of the silk moth. We shall explain it with reference to the figures that are marked upon it. 1. The egg, or the development and birth of the silk-caterpillar. 2. The silk-worms, during the first age, till their first moulting. 3. Rearing of the worms in the second age. 4. The worms in their third age. 5. Rearing of the silk-worm in the fourth age. 6. The rearing of the silk-worms during the fifth age, until the completion of the cocoon. 7. A species of silk-worm of a dark gray colour, with singular marks. 8. The cocoons. 9. Two open cocoons, or cocoons with their grubs. The upper one contains only the shell of a developed chrysalis, but in the lower is seen the immature chrysalis, with the skin of the late moth. 10. A cocoon, from which the butterfly is near emerging. 11. A cocoon from which the butterfly has already escaped. 12. Two butterflies in the act of coupling. 13. The female moth laying eggs. 14. Raw silk, of a yellow or white colour. 15. Here is represented the excremental substance of the silkworm, in its first and last age. The silk-worm is a robust little animal, and its organisation is