The Industrial Revolution in America

Automobiles, Mining and Petroleum, Textiles

by Kevin Hillstrom and Laurie Collier Hillstrom


The Industrial Revolution was the wellspring from which the modern United States emerged. But look closer at specific industries and you will see the nation confronting the inevitable side effects of modernization for the first time, among them urbanization and a shift from a farm-based economy (textile manufacturing), labor unrest (mining and petroleum), and pollution and rampant consumerism (the automobile industry).

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Cover image for The Industrial Revolution in America

September 2006


Pages 884
Volumes 3
Size 6x9
Topics American History/General
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    Hardcover: £94.00/101,00€/A$156.00

Covers the emergence of the automobile manufacturing, mining and petroleum, and textile industries and their separate and interconnected roles in the overall Industrial Revolution that transformed the United States and the world.

This three-volume set from ABC-CLIO's Industrial Revolution in America series draws on the latest research to tell the stories of the industry that started the United States down the road toward economic revolution (textiles), the industry that represented the revolution’s ultimate destination (automobiles), and the industry that fueled the journey by turning the nation’s natural resources into sources of wealth and power.

How did the mid-19th century “bicycle boom” pave the way for America’s car culture? What role did the mining industry play in settling the West? Why did Thomas Jefferson find the rise of textile manufacturing troubling? What roles did other industries play in the phenomenal development of these three—and vice versa? The answers to these and other probing questions lie in this remarkable set.


  • Sidebars take readers deeper into intriguing topics by spotlighting primary documents such as Walter Reuther's account of the infamous 1937 "Battle of the Overpass," tracts decrying working conditions in New England textile mills, and a firsthand account of Henry Ford's development of the Model T
  • Historic photographs depict major events and leading entrepreneurs, inventors, and labor leaders including Walter Chrysler, Henry Ford, Alfred Sloan, John D. Rockefeller, and Francis Cabot Lowell


  • Looks at the American automobile industry as the culmination of the Industrial Revolution, where the pioneering techniques of its founding fathers (Ford, Chrysler, Sloan) still resonate today
  • Explores the long bloody history of labor conflict in the mining industry (especially coal mining) and the ways it shaped labor-management relations in other industries for decades to come
  • Explains the North-South dynamics of the textile industry, with the raw materials coming from the South and the manufacturing concentrated in the Northeast
Author Info

Kevin Hillstrom and Laurie Collier Hillstrom are professional writers. Their published works include all six volumes in ABC-CLIO's The World's Environments series as well as the Encyclopedia of Small Business (second edition) and the first edition of the Encyclopedia of American Industries.

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