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Woollen Factory by Bookish

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Upper Canada Village, Eastern Ontario, Canada

"Although the various ways of making woollen cloth are age-old in tradition, it was not until the middle of the 19th century that mechanization was applied to many of them on any grand scale. The first settlers in Upper Canada were not unaware of the advances being made in woollen cloth manufacturing in Britain and the United States, but it was some years before an increasing tide of immigration could provide sufficient labour, markets and raw material to make the operation of mills profitable.

In the early 1800s small water-powered mills began to offer settlers' wives some relief from the tedious and unpleasant tasks of carding and fulling by hand. By the 1840s woollen mills and factories had made their appearance in Upper Canada. These mills were able to clean and card wool, spin it into yarn, and weave and fold cloth. Like most other mills, they were water-powered.

Historically, woollen mills employed both men and women, with unequal pay. Women were generally favoured for this industry, to reduce the cost of labour. Likewise, the drive towards the reduction in labour costs meant the implementation of machinery (the powered looms, carding machines, spinning machines, etc.) modeled after the process of mechanization already in use in the United States. During this time, children under the age of 16 formed a large part of the workforce in textile factories.

Evidence suggests that the Asselstine family was involved in the manufacture of woollen material from the first quarter of the 19th century. The Asselstine Factory was run as a family business, employing up to 12 men and women. It produced yarn, batts for quilt filling, blankets, tweeds, flannels, wool sheeting and stripe carpeting.

The woollen mill is presently used as a functional exhibit for the production of blankets and textile goods."

"Founded in 1961, Upper Canada Village is one of the largest living-history sites in Canada. Here, we endeavor to depict life in a rural English Canadian setting during the year 1866. Featured are over forty historical buildings, many moved here prior to flooding of the “Lost Villages” during the St. Lawrence Seaway development project. These include homes, functioning mills and trades workshops."
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  1. Harno0:38
  2. Robbos0:40
  3. lindaant0:42
  4. PLG19580:42
  5. Diannepuzzle0:42
  6. bookish0:44
  7. downsman0:46
  8. wjl10150:46
  9. JUNKMAN0:48
  10. KatieZn0:52


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Thanks, Janet & Patti. I think all these living history museums are great. I've really been enjoying Cathy's (cevas).


Fascinating! Thanks, Francine!


Another very interesting collage for us, thanks Francine. That village must be wonderful.
Hugs to you ♥


My pleasure, Jo. We saw the tv series on another channel ~ ShowCase. Though it's well done, my preference was still the books. Thanks; wishing you a great day too. Yours, on another indoor day, hot and muggy. :)


Thank you for showing us this interesting series Francine!
I just love the Outlander series! I can't wait for the next book!! She is an amazing author!!
Did you get to see the T.V. series? I don't get that channel, (Starz, it's a pay channel). I think it is out now on a CD. Have a great day!! :)


My pleasure, Ardy. It wasn't a term known to me before I read Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series.


Thanks, Francine. I had to look up fulling but I knew about carding. One can learn a lot on Jigidi.

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