In what ways would the American people respond ro rhe new methods of doing business?

135 THE IMPACT OF MECHANIZATION (1889)

hour giving but a single turn to his knife, which separates a joint. . . . A hundred others are on the same floor with him, each doing what may seem a trilling portion of the work, but before the carcass, which came in on one side in quarters, leaves the room, it is entirely bere{t of bones, and then wheeled away in small pieces ready for the curing and the canning. . . . In this cise the division is made into the various pieces familiar to household providers, viz., loiru, ribs . . . “Extra mess” is composed of chucks, plates, rumps and flanks, and the time of curing is twenry-four days. All hams are cut into three pieces, or”one-set”; time of curing, sixty days. Plates are cut into five pieces. Loins, ribs, and shoulders are also sold to the city butchers. “Prime” tallow is made from the kidney and caid fat only, while “regular” tallow is made from the other fat, bones and trimmings. Glue factories and fertilizing establish- ments use up the bones and refuse, and the hides find their way to the tan- neries. Not a scrap of the animal is wasted, or fails to yield some revenue to the buver.

136

The lmpact of Mechanization (1889)

The rapid adaptation oJ machinery Jor mass production created signifcant transforma- tions in the Aweican econoffiy in the post-CivilWar period.The author oJ thefol- Iowing exeerpt, Dauid A.Welk, realized the consequences of the machine age for both the business community anil society. His background as an inuentor, publisher of scien- tfic information, political actiuist, and a foremost economist who aduised Presidents Uncoln, Carfeld, and Crant on business and eurrency natters gave Wells a unique per- spectiue to obserue the technological changes taking place anil to analyze their implica- tions. In his book Recent Economic Changes, WeIk ofered a coffifttentary on the grouing size of businesses and how that afected the nature of enterprise. Wells was also among the ftst eeonomists to retognize that machines dkplaced workers-creating “technologieal unemployment”-4nfl that business was changing American society. His obseruations indicate that both business and society were adjusting to the technological progress of the time.

Ques t i ons t o Cons ide r

1. According to DavidA.Wells, what were the most dramatic changes tak- ing place?

2. For what reasons does’Wells call these changes a “total revolution”?

3. To what extent can the common person participate in the economic advances described here?

4. In what ways would the American people respond ro rhe new methods of doing business?