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The Cynosure

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The text is taken from my copy of FIELDS, FACTORIES AND WORKSHOPS: or Industry Combined
with Agriculture and Brain Work with Manual Work
, Thomas Nelson & Sons, London, Edinburgh, Dublin and New York, 1912.

B. FRENCH IMPORTS .. . . . . . . . . . . . .422
About one-tenth part of the cereals consumed in France is still imported; but, as will be seen in a subsequent chapter, the progress in agriculture has lately been so rapid that even without Algeria France will soon have a surplus of cereals. Wine is imported, but nearly as much is exported. So that coffee and oil-seeds remain the only food articles of durable importance for import. For coal and coke France is still tributary to Belgium, to this country, and to Germany; but it is chiefly the inferiority of organization of coal extraction which stands in the way of the home supply. The other important items of imports are: raw cotton (from £12,440,000 to £18,040,000 in 1903-1910), raw wool (from £15,160,000 to £23,200,000), and raw silk (from £10,680,000 to £17,640,000), as well as hides and furs, oil-seeds, and machinery (about £10,000,000). The exports of manufactured goods were £80,000,000 in 1890, and in subsequent years from £119,000,000 to 137,000,000. Exports of textiles, exclusive of yarn and linen, £29,800,000 in 1890, and £34,440,000 in 1908-1910; while the imports of all textiles are insignificant (from £5,000,000 to £7,000,000).

The growth of industry in Russia will be best seen from the following:-

1880-81. 1893-94. 1910.
Cwts. Cwts. Cwts.
Cast iron . . . . . 8,810,000 25,450,000 61,867,000
Iron . . . . . . . 5,770,000 9,700,000
(iron and steel) 61,540,700
Steel . . . . . . . 6,030,000 9,610,000
Railway rail . . . 3,960,000 4,400,000 10,408,300
Coal . . . . . . . 64,770,000 160,000,000 530,570,000
(imports of coal) from 80,000,000 to 100,000,000
Naptha . . . . . . 6,900,000 108,700,000 189,267,000
Sugar . . . . . . . 5,030,000 11,470,000 28,732,000
Raw cotton, home grown 293,000 1,225,000 3,736,000
Cottons, grey, and yarn 23,640,000 42,045,000 86,950,000
Cottons, printed . 6,160,000 7,720,000 37,680,000

1900. 1908.
All cottons . . . . . £56,156,000 £94,233,000
All woolens . . . . . 19,064,000 25,388,000
Linen . . . . . . . . 7,076,600 9,969,000
Silk . . . . . . . . . 3,335,000 3,969,000

The recent growth of the coal and iron industries in South Russia (with the aid of Belgian capital) was very will illustrated at the Turin Exhibition of 1911. From less than 100,000 tons in 1860, the extraction of coal and anthracite rose to 16,840,460 metric tons in 1910. The extraction of iron ore rose from 377,000 tons in 1890 to 3,760,000 tons in 1909. The production of cast iron, which was only 29,270 tons in 1882, reached 2,067,000 tons in 1910, and the amount of refined iron and steel and their produce rose from 27,830 tons in 1882 to 1,641,960 tons in 1910. In short, South Russia is becoming an exporting centre for the iron industry. (P. Palcinsky, in Russian Mining Journal, 1911, Nos. 8 and 12.)

D. IRON INDUSTRY IN GERMANY. . . . . .. . . 423
The following tables will give some idea of the growth of mining and metallurgy in Germany.
The extraction of minerals in the German Empire, in metric tons, which are very little smaller than the English ton (0.984), was :-
1883. 1893. 1910.
Tons. Tons. Tons.
Coal . . . . . . . . 55,943,000 76,773,000 152,881,500
Lignite . . . . . . . 14,481,000 22,103,000 69,104,900
Iron Ore . . . . . . 8,616,000 12,404,000 28,709,700
Zinc Ore . . . . . . 678,000 729,000 718,300
Mineral salts (chiefly potash) 1,526,000 2,379,000 9,735,700

Since 1894 the iron industry has taken a formidable development, the production of pig-iron reaching 12,644,900 metric tons in 1909 (14,793,600 in 1910), and that of half-finished and finished iron and steel, 14,186,900 tons; while the exports of raw iron, which were valued at £1,195,000 in 1903, doubled in seven years, reaching £2,250,000 in 1910.

A few years ago the cotton industry in the United States attracted the attention of the Manchester cotton manufacturers, and we have now two very interesting works written by persons who went specially to the States in order to study the rapid progress made there in spinning and weaving.*

*T.M. Young, The American Cotton Industry. Introduction by Elijah Helm, Secretary to the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, London 1902; and T.W. Uttley, Cotton Spinning and Manufacturing in the United States: A report . . . of a tour of the American cotton manufacturing centres made in 1903 and 1904. Publications of Manchester Universty, Economic Series, No. II., Manchester, 1905.

These two inquiries fully confirm what has been said in the text of this book about the rapid progress made in the American industry altogether, and especially in the development of a very fine cotton-weaving machinery. In his preface to Mr. Young’s book, Mr. Helm says: “The results of this inquiry may not incorrectly be called a revelation for Lancashire. It was, indeed, already known to a few on this side of the ocean that there were wide differences between the methods and organization of American and English cotton-mills. But it is only between the last three or four years that suspicion has arisen amongst us that our competitors in the United States have been marching faster than we have in the path of economy of production.”
The most important difference between the British and American methods was, in Mr. Helm’s opinion, in “the extensive use of the automatic loom.” Mr. Young’s investigation on the subject left no doubts that the employment of this loom “substantially reduces the cost of production, and at the same time increases the earnings of the weaver, because it permits him to conduct more looms” (p. 15). Altogether, we learn from Mr. Helm’s remarks that there are now 85,000 automatic looms running in the United States, and that “the demand for weavers is greater than ever” (p. 16). In a Rhode Island mill, 743 ordinary looms required 100 weavers, while 2,000 Northrop (or Draper) looms could be conducted by 134 weavers only, which means an average of fifteen looms for each weaver, and altogether these looms are spreading very rapidly. But it is not only in the looms that such improvements have been introduced. “The spinning frames,” we are told by Mr. Young, “containing 112 spindles a side, were tended by girls who ran four, six, eight, or ten sides each, according to the girl’s dexterity. The average for good spinners was about eight sides (896 spindles)” (p. 10).
In a New Bedford fine-spinning mill the ring-spinners were minding 1,200 spindles each (p. 16).
It is important to note the speed at which the cotton industry has been developing lately in the States. The census of 1900 gave a total of 19,008,350 spindles. But in 1909 we find already 28,178,860 spindles for cotton alone (34,500,000, including silk, wool, and worsted). And, what is still more important, most of this increase fell upon the Southern States, where machinery is also more perfect, both for spinning and weaving, and where most of the work is being done by the whites. In a South Carolina print-cloth mill, containing 1,000 Draper looms, the average for narrow looms was 15 looms to each weaver. (T.W. Uttley, l.c., pp. 4, 50, etc.)
As for the American competition in the Chinese markets, Mr. Helm gives imposing figures.


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