The Industrial Revolution was a period from 1750 to 1850 where innovations in agriculture, manufacturing, mining, transportation, and technology had a profound effect on the social, economic and cultural conditions of the times. It began in Great Britain, then consequently expand throughout Western Europe, North America, Japan and the rest of the world.
Why did the Industrial Revolution begin in Great Britain?Firstly, at the time period, agriculture in Britain was more commercialized than in any other place. British agriculture had been transformed by new techniques, new products, and new patterns of property holding. This commercialized agriculture was more productive and thus produced more food for the growing population.
Secondly, there was a growing supply of available capital in Britain. London had become one of the most significant centers for international business as well as leaderships for the transfer of raw material, capital, and manufactured products throughout the world. There also were new ideas in England which aided the movement. One of these was the growing interest in scientific investigation and invention, Britain had a big number of creative inventors that made machines that helped the Industrial Revolution, such as the steam engine and the dynamo.
Another was the doctrine of laissez-faire, or letting business alone. This doctrine had been growing in favor throughout the 18th century. It was especially popular after the British economist Adam Smith. For centuries the government had controlled commerce and industry down to the smallest detail. Now many Englishmen had come to believe that it was better to let business be regulated by the free play of supply and demand rather than by laws.
Thus the English government for the most part kept its hands off and left business free to adopt the new inventions and the methods of production which were best suited to them. Britain,unlike the rest of Europe,did not have a system of internal tolls and tariffs, so goods could be moved freely to wherever the best market was. There were also some social and cultural causes too. In Britain, the pursuit of wealth was seen as a worthy goal,Great Britain has an extremely productive and wealthy agricultural system.
Other important factor also that helped Britain, was its excellent position as an island, which not only helped its business, but also keep apart it from continental wars. In conclusion,the Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain because there were many new invention’s. There were improvements in agriculture, new forms of technology made, there was a good labour supply, transportation was majorly improved, Britain was getting a good supply of raw material, there was a new business government, and their were capitals with money to invest in new factories.
EXPANSION OF THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION The Industrial Revolution occurred only in Britain for about 50 years, but it eventually spread to other countries in Europe,United States, Russia, and Japan. British entrepreneurs and government officials restrict the export of machinery, manufacturing techniques, and skilled workers to other countries but the technologies spread by attracting British experts with lucrative offers, and even contraband by the transmite of secrets to other countries. By the mid-19th century industrialization had spread to France, Germany, Belgium, and the United States.
The earliest center of industrial production in continental Europe was Belgium, where carbon,iron, textile, glass, and armaments production flourished. By 1830 French firms had employed many experienced British workers to help establish the textile industry, and railroad lines began to appear across western Europe. Germany was a little later in developing industry, mainly because no centralized government existed there yet, and a great deal of political discomfort made industrialization difficult.
However, after the 1840s German carbon and iron production go through the roof, and by the 1850s an extensive rail network was under construction. After German political unification in 1871, the new empire rivaled England in terms of industrial production. Industrialization began in the United States by the 1820s, retarded until the country had enough laborers and money to invest in business.
Both came from Europe, where overpopulation and political revolutions sent immigrants to the United States to seek their fortunes. The American Civil War (1861-1865) retarded immigration until the 1870s, but it estimulated the need for industrial war products, from soldiers’ uniforms to guns to railroads for military transport. Once the war was over, cross-country railroads were built which allowed more people to visit and tour America. The United States had abundant natural resources:
land, water, carbon and iron and after the great wave of immigration from Europe and Asia in the late 19th; it also had the labor. During the late 1800s, industrialization spread to Russia and Japan, in both cases by government initiatives. In Russia the most impressive creation was the Trans-Siberian line constructed between 1891 and 1904, linking Moscow to the Pacific Ocean. The railroads also gave Russians access to the empire’s many coal and iron deposits, and by 1900 Russia ranked fourth in the world in steel production.
The Japanese government also pushed industrialization, hiring thousands of foreign experts to instruct Japanese workers and mangers in the late 1800s. Railroads were constructed, mines were opened, a banking system was organized, and industries were started that produced ships, armaments, cotton, chemicals, and glass. By 1900 Japan was the most industrialized land in Asia.