NCERT Class 8 History Chapter 7: Weavers, Iron Smelters and Factory Owners YouTube Lecture Handouts

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Watch Video Lecture on YouTube: NCERT Class 8 History Chapter 7: Weavers, Iron Smelters and Factory Owners

NCERT Class 8 History Chapter 7: Weavers, Iron Smelters and Factory Owners

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  • Surat was major trading port – Dutch & English in early 17th century but declined in 18th century

  • 2 crafts and industries crucial during industrial revolution – textiles (mechanized production made it foremost industrial nation in 19th Century) and iron & steel (Growing from 1850s – Britain was called as “Workshop of World”)

  • Late 18th century – Company was buying goods in India and exporting to Europe to make profit (later manufactured goods flooded in India)

Indian Textiles

  • Around 1750 – Before British conquered Bengal – India was world’s largest producer of cotton textiles – known for quality and craftsmanship – traded in SE Asia, West & Central Asia

  • Patola – woven in Surat, Ahmedabad & Patan – highly valued in Indonesia

Image of Patola Saree

Image of Patola Saree

Image of Patola Saree

  • Muslin – fine cotton cloth from India by Arab traders in Mosul, Iraq

  • Calico – cotton textile from Calicut, Kerala by Portuguese

  • 1730 – Order for 5,89,000 cloth pieces with 98 cotton and silk varieties (woven cloth pieces were 20 yards long & 1 yard wide) – 2 year advance orders were placed

  • Printed Clothes named as:

  • Chintz (colorful, flowery design in Masulipatnam – exported to Iran)

Image of Chintz

Image of Chintz

Image of Chintz

  • Cossaes (or khassa)

  • Bandanna (brightly coloured and printed scarf for the neck or head – previously for tie and dye – Rajasthan & Gujarat)

Image of Bandanna

Image of Bandanna

Image of Bandanna

Jamdani (decorative motifs woven on loom in grey and white – Dacca & Lucknow)

Image of Jamdani

Image of Jamdani

Image of Jamdani

  • Other cloths noted for place of origin - Kasimbazar, Patna, Calcutta, Odisha, and Charpoore

  • Early 18th century – Europeans were worried about popularity of Indian textiles and protested import

  • 1720 – Ban on Chintz in England & known as Calico Act

  • England started production – 1st to grow under government protection was calico printing industry (Indian designs were imitated on white muslin or unbleached Indian Cloth)

  • 1764- Spinning jenny (wheel turned and rotated all spindles – single worker can operate many spindles) invented by John Kaye – increases productivity of traditional spindles

  • 1786 – invention of steam engine revolutionized weaving

  • Indian textiles dominated trade till 18th century – Dutch, French & English made profits & purchased cotton and silk by importing silver (after British gained political power in Bengal, no more imports occurred & revenue was collected form peasants and zamindars)


  • Tanti weavers of Bengal

  • Julahas or momin weavers of north India

  • Sale and kaikollar and devangs of south India

  • Skills passed from one generation to another

  • Spinning done by women (spun on charkha & rolled on takli – woven into cloth by weaver)

  • Dyeing of thread by dyer called rangrez

  • Printed – block printing by chhipigars

Decline of Indian Textiles

  • Competition from British textile in European markets

  • Export was difficult due to higher duties

  • By early 19th century- English goods ousted Indian & Indian weavers lost employment (Bengal was worst hit)

  • By 1830 – British cotton cloth flooded Indian Market

  • By 1880 – 2/3rd of all cloths worn by Indian were produced in Britain (affected weavers and spinners)

  • Aurangs (warehouse) were abolished

  • However it didn’t die completely – as borders and traditional woven patterns couldn’t be produced by machines (was in demand by middle class and rich)

  • Also coarse cloth used by poor was not produced in machines

  • Late 19th century – Sholapur (West India) & Madura (South India) – as major textile centers – Mahatma Gandhi boycotted foreign goods and charkha was center of tricolor flag adapted by INC in 1931

  • Weavers who lost job became agricultural laborers – some migrated to cities and others to plantations in Africa & S. America

  • New cotton mills - Established in Bombay, Ahmedabad, Sholapur, Nagpur and Kanpur

  • 1854 – 1st cotton mill in Mumbai – export of raw cotton, black soil, later mills were established

  • By 1900 – 84 mills in Mumbai – mainly by Parsis & Gujarat is

  • 1861 – Mill in Ahmedabad

  • 1862 – Mill in Kanpur

  • Spurt came in WW-I when textile imports from Britain declined & Indian factories were asked to produce for military

Sword of Tipu Sultan

  • Now in England Museum

  • Made of high carbon steel – Wootz steel (South India) – sharp edge with flowing water pattern (from small carbon crystals embedded in iron)

Image of Sword of Tipu Sultan

Image of Sword of Tipu Sultan

Image of Sword of Tipu Sultan

  • Wootz steel made in smelting furnaces (iron mixed with charcoal is kept in small clay pots under temperature control) – derived from Francis Buchanan

  • Anglicised version of ukku (Kannada), hukku (Telugu) and urukku (Malayalam)

  • Michael Faraday who discovered electricity and electromagnetism – studied for 4 years the properties of Wootz steel

  • Required specialized technique of refining iron

  • Smelting by men

  • Bellow (equipment that pumps in air) to keep charcoal burning by women

  • Slowly these furnace abandoned as colonial govt. prevented people from entering reserved forests (source of charcoal)

  • Some areas they had to pay high tax to enter forest & so income was reduced

  • By late 19th century – Iron & steel was imported from Britain – lowered demand from local craftsman

Iron & Steel Plants in India

  • 1904 – Charles Weld (American geologist) & Dorabji Tata (Eldest son of Jamestji Tata) travelled to Chhattisgarh for iron ore deposits – they met Agarias (carrying basket loads of iron ore) – finally found Rajhara hills (finest ores in the world)

  • But this region was dry and water was required for running factory

  • Large area cleared near River Subarnarekha to establish Jamshedpur – TISCO started here in 1912 (steel imported from Britain, railways expanded)

Image of Iron and Steel Plants In India

Image of Iron and Steel Plants in India

Image of Iron and Steel Plants In India

  • 1914 – WW-I broke out and Britain supplied steel for war & imports declined. TISCO produced shells and carriage wheels for war

  • By 1919 – 90% steel was brought by colonial government and it became biggest steel industry within British Empire

  • Later, demand for government protection increased

Industrialization in JAPAN

  • Japan supported growth of industries in contrast to India which was expanding market for colonial goods

  • 1868 – Meiji regime – Japan must industrialize to resist Western domination; postal service, telegraph, railway and steam shipping were developed

  • Large industries were first started by government and then sold off at cheap rates to business families

  • India – Colonial domination created barriers to industrialization

  • Japan’s industrial development was linked to military needs

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