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HUMAN CLOTHING, DYEING, AND CALICO PRINTING.*
The great objects for which nine clothed by the Omnipotent Power and tenths of the human species are toiling sent forth to procure their own food.through their probationary state are This he has procured by the unremitfood and raiment, and they have been ting exercise of his physical powers, improved in quality and enhanced in while the divine part of his nature has quantity, in proportion to the advance mostly contributed to the multiplication of civilization. Articles of clothing of clothing. In the earlier stages of are now at the command of the lowest the human race, the animals slain for members of society, which, but a cen- food furnished incidentally the matetury, since, were scarcely within the rials for clothing. To detach the reach of crowned heads. It is some- wool, and to form it into a cloth, as a what remarkable that nearly all the substitute for skin, was a great advance, great inventions of modern times, the and to transfer the colors of the vegemost singular triumphs of the human table kingdom to their clothes, so as to intellect over matter, have tended to relieve the monotony of the natural copromote the production of clothing, by lor, would soon suggest itself. Even substituting machinery for labor, and savages, unacquainted with cloth or its economy in time and outlay in the man- manufacture, stain their persons with veufacture of wearing apparel. In the getable dyes. The art of cloth manuproduction of our food very little ad- facture has, however, in the last centuvance has been made in the same di- ry, made more rapid advances than durrection. That is to say, improvements ing the previous five thousand years, and have indeed been made on the rude this has been through the exercise of the implements of husbandry common to human intellect. The great inventions former ages, but the amount of manual in machinery that have taken place in labor necessary to bring forth a certain the last 50 years
, have wonderfully inquantity of food has not been materially creased the production of cloths. In diminished. On the other hand, through fact, cotton may be said to have become the exercise of his intellect, man has important as an article of clothing, only been enabled to work up the five great in that period, and solely through the raw materials, wool, flax, hemp, silk aid of machines, perfected in different and cotton, into a limitless variety of countries. The cotton gin of Whitney clothing, adapted to all tastes, ages, first made the raw material available, climates and conditions, in a continual- and the card machine of Whitney, of ly increasing supply, and at the same which John Randolph remarked, that time comparatively dispensing with it seemed to act as if animated by a manual labor. In considering these soul, promoted the carding ; the jenfacts, we find something analogous to ny of Hargrave, and its improvement the condition of our first parents, when by Arkwright, gave the means of spinthey incurred the Divine displeasure. ning, and the steam-engine of James From that time forth, they were to pro- Watt, furnished the power to move vide themselves with food and raiment. these wonderful machines. With these Adam heard the Divine mandate— mighty laborers, vast quantities of cloth “ In the sweat of thy face shalt thou have been furnished of almost every vaeat bread”—but "unto Adam also and riety of texture, and every quarter of to his wife, did the Lord God make the world has been supplied with suitcoals of skins and clothed them." The able clothing. Not less wonderful have progenitors of the human race were been the improvements in the art of dye
* Practical Treatise on Dyeing and Calico Printing : including the Latest Inventions and Improvements: also, a Description of the Origin, Manufacture, Uses, and Chemical Properties of the various animal, vegetable and inineral substances employed in these arts; with an Appendix, &c. By an Experienced Dyor, assisted by several scientific gentlemen ; with Engravings on steel aud wood. Harper & Brothers, New-York. VOL. XIX.NO. C.
ing and printing those cloths. To printed goods made in the United Kinggive them a variety of bright and per- dom. This tax was 3fd. or about 7 cts. manent colors, the science of chemistry per square yard, and yielded a duty of has been drawn upon with eminent suc £2,022,258; in 1828 a drawback was cess, and each advance in that sci- allowed on all goods exported, and this ence has been fraught with increased drawback amounted in the same year to facilities to the dyeing process.
In £1,360,069; the balance, £662,189, the case of dyeing and printing cali- or about $3,000,000, constituted a direct coes, it happens, however, that it has tax upon all British prints consumed in had to encounter the greatest difficul- the United Kingdom. The drawback ties from government oppression, both thus allowed on exports, has been apin France and the United States, as pealed to in this country by those who well as in England. It was not until misunderstood its motive, as a proof of 1736, that the restrictions imposed by any allowance made by the British govthe Parliament of England against ernment to undersell American prints. wearing printed fabrics were repealed; The tax on the consumption of prints, and in 1750, only 50,000 pieces of prin- was, however, the least evil with which ted goods were made in England, often the manufacturers had to contend. In the warp was linen, there being no order to levy the tax, it was necessary means of spinning cotton strong enough to prevent all printing of goods, except for that purpose. The printing of cot- under a license from the government, ton introduced into Lancashire and wlien allowed, a revenue officer about the year 1770, and from that was stationed in the works to pry into time the business progressed. The and overlook all its operations. In adquantity printed in England was ac- dition, there were heavy duties on cocurately ascertained up to 1831, bylor material. Notwithstanding these means of the tax imposed on all prin oppressions, the manufacturers made ted goods. By the returns, the yards great progress. In the United States, made in 1796 were 20,621,797 ; in the government, since 1815, has adopt1814, 124,613,472; and, 347,450,299 ed a more effectual mode of preventing yards in 1830, of which amount, 199,- the growth of calico printing as a sepa799,466 yards were exported, and 148,- rate business. It is by imposing a tax 650,833 retained for home consumption. upon the printing cloths, in order to proThe tax on printed cottons was remov tect the cotton spinner; as, for instance, ed in 1831, since, when, the quantity the present tariff levies a duty of six made has not been so accurately ascer cents per yard on the white cottons, tained. The exports in 1845, had, and of nine cents per yard on printed; however, risen to 310,850,697 yards, that is to say, the American cotton or nearly as much as the whole pro- printer is obliged to pay six cents, or 100 duction in 1830; 500,000,000 yards is per cent. more for the cloth to print probably the English production now, than his English rival. This is called and 175,000,000 that of the United States. protection. Now, in spite of these opThe product of these two nations is pressions, England, France and the therefore 675 millions yards, against 22 United States, have each contributed to millions in 1800; or from 14 yards each the common stock of knowledge, inveninhabitant of both countries, the pro- tions and irnprovements, which have duction has increased to 16 yards per produced the results we have witnessed head. This large production has been in the vast increase of production and accompanied by a great and continuous decrease of price. The inventions and fall in prices. The average export discoveries are of three classes-1st. price from England was, in 1820, 27 cts. The preparation and working up of the per yard, and in 1845, 9 cts. per yard; raw material into white fabrics. 2nd. and the quality of the latter was greatly In the machinery for transferring designs superior to the former. These results upon the cloth-and, 3dly. Thechemical were brought about solely by improve- preparations for imparting brilliant and ments in science in different countries, durable colors to those designs. In the in spite of the discouragements of the first class are embraced the cotton gin governments. As, for instance, in Eng- of Whitney, a native of Massachuseits, land, up to 1831, as we have stated, an who obtained his patent, 1792. Up to excise tax was laid upon every yard of that time, the labor of cleaning cotton
from the seed was so great as to make introduced in 1808, gave a great imthe article too costly for cultivation, and pulse to the business. The next great not more than ten million pounds were improvement was in the means of then produced in the United States.- printing several colors at one operation. This first made the raw material avail. At first only one color could be imparable to any considerable degree. The ted to one pattern on the cylinder; next operation, that of carding the cot- within five years, five colors more were ton, was facilitated by the invention of printed at one operation. While these the card machine, by an American ci- great improvements were progressing tizen. By this the old laborious pro in the means of producing cloth, and cess of sticking the cards by hand was su- imparting designs to it, advances no perseded and cylinder cards introduced. less astonishing were made in the proThese two inventions were essential to duction and application of colors. This supply the spinning jenny of Arkwright, latter branch of the business is perdriven by the steam-engine of Watt, haps the most scientific and interesting with the raw material for spinning, and of all, and is well worthy the study even the power-loom of Dr. Cartwright for of those who have no connexion with weaving the yarn into cloth. Each one calico printing as a business. of these inventions was necessary to
We have briefly sketched the leadthe other, and each greatly accelerated ing events that have conspired to prothe production of cloth, and the dimi- duce such wonderful results in the manution of the amount of manual labor nufacture of cotton. It is to be obrequisite in the production of clothing. served, that each and all of the great While the supply of cloth was thus un inventions and discoveries in all the dergoing this prodigious increase, the branches, were the results of individual art of printing it, although of very an- genius in all countries. The United cient origin, first sprung into impor- States, England and France, have all tance. The old mode of printing the contributed the most important elecloth, was for the operator to stretch ments in the manufacture. The conthe cloth upon a table before him, hav- tributions of France have been mostly ing in his hand an engraved block, to in chemical discoveries, and in the apwhich he applied the color, and then plication of profound science to useful pressed it with his hands upon the purposes. With them the principles of cloth. In making the next impres- calico printing have been profoundly sion, he was careful to place his block studied by the eminent chemists, who, so that the figure should match the im- educated in the Parisian schools of pression already made. This was a science, are kept constantly employed slow process, and was improved by ap- by the manufacturers in experimentplying mechanical power to the blocks ing upon colors; as thus, to obtain good by a contrivance that was a substitute colors upon goods, it is indispensable for twenty expert hands, that is to say, that it be of a pure white; to obtain one hand with the machine would do this, the old process of bleaching cotton the work of twenty without it. The required three months. M. Berthollet, wooden blocks were superseded in 1785 of Paris, in 1785, first introduced chloby metallic cylinders. The entire sur rine as a bleaching agent, by which the face of the cylinder was engraved with process has been reduced to a few the required pattern, which was a very hours instead of months. This process expensive operation, but the machine was carried to England by James did as much work in a few hours as Watt, the inventor of the steam-engine, formerly occupied weeks. A complete as applied to factories. The modern revolution was effected in this matter by bleaching powders are the result of that Mr. Jacob Perkins, of Massachusetts, discovery. It is self-evident, that one who invented the mode of engraving of the inventions and discoveries that the pattern upon a small steel cylinder, has been made in either branch, has called a die. From this cylinder the pat- done more for the advance of manufactern is transferred over the entire surface turing than all the government encouof a copper cylinder, and any number of ragement ever dreamed of. To make them may be made at a small expense manufactures progress, it is only necesfrom one die, and worn cylinders are sary to disseminate the knowledge of all easily renewed. This new invention, its departments, to spread among the
people the information. So far from toward which so many have been attracted this, the selfish mole-like policy of pro- by erroneous deductions and false conclutection has been to bury in the bosoms sione. of a few wealthy men the secrets they characters and uses of the various Animal,
4. To set forth the actual properties, buy from needy inventors, and to tax Vegetable and Mineral substances employthe public for their support. A new
ed in dyeing and the auxiliary arts ; and era has now dawned upon the world,
5. To define the various chemical and and perfect freedom of enterprise, with technical terms employed in the dye-bouse, dissemination of knowledge, are about print-work, &c." to give an impulse to manufactures greater than ever. The great inven The promises contained in the pretions to which we have above alluded, face, are well kept in the text, and the have been confined to comparatively whole subject matter is made not only few persons.
The world at large useful to the practical dyer, but from knows nothing of them. Thousands, the manner with which it is treated, who would be attracted to such employ- awakens an interest in the community ments by becoming interested in the at large. In opening the nature of the wonderful details, are ignorant of their dyeing process, the author remarksexistence. In this view, we hail with pleasure the appearance of the work “Did each dye-drug impart its own coof which the title is at the head of this lor to cloth, and did there exist a sufficient article, and to which we are indebted variety of these drugs for the various for some of the facts above mentioned. simple art, as it would only be necessary
shades of colors, dyeing would be a very We have read the work with intense
to dissolve the dye-stuff and impregnate interest, and regard it as of more im- the goods. But so far from this being the portance to the success of manufactures case, if we except indigo, there is scarcely in this country than the most skilfully a dye-stuff that imparts its own color to contrived tariit, even if such laws have goods; way, the most part of the dyethe good effect some statesmen ascribe drugs used have so weak an affinity for to them, which, however, we deny.- cotton goods especially, that they imparı
The book skilfully connects the inter- the name of a dye. These circumstances esting science of chemistry with the render dyeing sufficiently intricate, and practical operations of the dye-house.- make it more dependant upon science; Hitherto the former has been in the indeed, it is only by the nicest arrangehands of philosophers, and the latter in ment of a few chemical laws, that the those of practical men, who were apt dyer is enabled to turn to advantage the to regard with distrust the speculations various coloring matters of which he is in of the book-men. In the work before possession. When the dyer finds that us, the practical dyer becomes the sci- there is no affinity between the goods and entific chemist. All that is useful in any coloring substance which is put into
his possession, he endeavors to fiod a the science, becomes at once familiar to
third substance, which has a natural atthe workman. Before giving a few traction for the cloth and coloring matextracts, highly interesting to the gene- ter, so that by combining this substance ral reader, we will take from the au with the cloth, and then passing the cloth thor's preface the plan of his work. through the dyeing solution, the coloring
matter combines with the substance which “ In the following treatise the author is upon the goods, and constitutes a dye.has endeavored
This third substance used, and which acts 1. To reduce the whole theory of dyeing as an intermediate, combining two inimito the utmost simplicity and accuracy.
cal bodies, is termed a mordant, from the 2. To classify, arrange and define colors, French mordre, which siguities, to bite, in order to enable those who are pursuing from an idea which the old dyers had that the related branches of study, as well as
the substances bit or opened a passage the artist, to comprehend more easily the into the fibres of the cloth, giving access nature of each particular hue, tint and to the color. And although the theory of shade, and the relation it bears to the pri- their action is now changed, the term is mary elements of light, darkness and co- still continued, and perhaps farther inveslor.
tigation will prove the term most applica3. To elucidate each particular subject in ble." such a manner as, it is hoped, will impart
" The bases or oxides which are in genesubstantial knowledge to those seeking it, ral use, and which appear to succeed best, and at the same time exhibit those shoals are alumina, the oxides of tin, and iron;