Friday, April 22, 2016

History: The Year is 1771

I've uploaded year 1771 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

Where Are They Today? -- Revolution is on the back-burner so let's see what a few prime movers of the American Revolution are doing right now.

Great Scott! It's Groundhog Day! -- A great poet is quoted in a comedy movie starring Bill Murray... Groundhog Day!

The First Factory -- The new carding machine is set up to use water power. They are mass-producing cotton fiber to be made into yarn.

Where Are They Today?

For the next few years the situation in the American colonies will simmer. The embargo of British goods has lost some momentum as tariffs are rescinded or reduced. So let's look at where key people of the American Revolution are this year...
  • Alexander Hamilton is a 15-year-old bastard. He is also a bookkeeper at an import-export business in the West Indies. One of the partners is ill so Hamilton takes over. He berates captains for not meeting their schedules... AND THEY TAKE IT! This kid is going far, but there is no glory in bookkeeping which causes Hamilton to remark, "I wish there was a war." [1]
  • George Washington is 39-years-old and has taken the embargo on British goods about as far as it can go. He is diversifying his farming from tobacco into wheat and horse trading. His slaves are fishing and raising chickens in order to feed themselves. He talks about "The Cause" (meaning liberty) but not revolution... yet. [2]
  • James Madison has graduated from Princeton at 20-years-old. Frankly, he hates the law but Thomas Jefferson has sent him some interesting books on ancient Greece and democracy. Oh, dear. Madison is getting ideas. [3] [4]
  • Henry Knox has opened The London Book-Store in Boston. It features books on military tactics. Knox is 21-years-old and a personable guy. John Adams will frequent the bookstore. During the American Revolution, Adams will be the Secretary of War and Knox will be a colonel and later a general for the artillery. [5]

Great Scott! It's Groundhog Day!

Sir Walter Scott, is born this year in Scotland (of course) to a mother who loves poetry. His fame as a poet and novelist will range far and wide. He will be the founder of a new type of literature... the historical novel. He will be the author of Rob Roy and Ivanhoe. He will also author the poem, "The Lady of the Lake" from which Fredrick Douglass will derive his last name. The Presidential theme "Hail to the Chief" will come from the same poem. Also the phrase "Great Scott!" will be a reference to Walter Scott. [6] [7]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Sir Walter Scott is very quotable so here are a few quotes...
  • Tell that to the marines--the sailors won't believe it.
  • A miss is as good as a mile.
  • Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive.
  • To the timid and hesitating everything is impossible because it seems so.
  • Success or failure in business is caused more by the mental attitude even than by mental capacities.
And, of course, the famous quote from the movie, Groundhog Day (1993) in the diner as Phil is stuffing his face, Rita quotes...
The wretch, con-centered all in self,
Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
And, doubly dying, shall go down
To the vile dust, from whence he sprung,
Unwept, unhonored, and unsung.
Rita ends with, "Sir Walter Scott!"
Phil laughs so Rita asks, "What? You don't like poetry?
Phil responds mockingly, "I love poetry. I just thought that was Willard Scott. I was confused." [8] [9]

The First Factory

Richard Arkwright has made improvements to the original carding machine and has taken on a partner to establish the first modern factory. The carding machine is used to separate the fibers of cotton or wool by turning a crank. The fibers are then suitable to be made into yarn. Now the machine is water-powered. It may not seem like much but compared to the way it was done in the past, they are producing piles and piles of cotton and wool without requiring a lot of trained labor. They turn the crank and money practically falls out the other end. [10]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Richard Arkwright is sometimes called the Father of the Industrial Age but several people earned that honor, such as James Watt, who patented an improvement to his steam engine around the same time. When they finally linked the steam engine to the crank of the carding machine they were able to site factories based on where they could get cheap labor or ease of product shipping rather than looking for those few spots with running water to power the cranks.

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1771, Wikipedia.

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