WORSTED AND WOOLLEN MANUFACTURES WOOL .Wool is a modified
See also:form of hair, distinguished by its slender, soft and wavy or
See also:curly structure, and, as seen under the micro-
See also:scope, by its highly imbricated or serrated
See also:surface . At what point an animal fibre ceases to be hair and becomes wool it is impossible to determine, because the one by imperceptible gradations merges into the other, so that a continuous chain can be formed from the finest and softest
See also:merino to the rigid bristles of the
See also:wild boar . Thus the
See also:fine soft wool of the Australian merino merges into the
See also:cross-bred of New Zealand; the cross-bred of New Zealand merges into the long
See also:English and lustre wool, which in turn merges into
See also:alpaca and
See also:mohair-materials with clearly marked but undeveloped scale structure . Again, such animals as the camel and the Cashmere
See also:goat yield
See also:fibres, which it would perhaps be difficult to class rigidly as either wool or hair . • Wool is one of the most important of the textile fibres . Owing to the ease with which it may be spun into
See also:thread, and the com- fort derived from clothing made of wool, it would naturally be one of the first textiles used by mankind for clothing .
See also:Ancient records prove the high antiquity of wool textures and the early importance of the
See also:sheep . The different kinds of wool and the
See also:cloth made from them in antiquity are described by Pliny and referred to by other writers, and among the arts which the
See also:British Isles owe to the Romans not the least important is the
See also:spinning and
See also:weaving of wool . The sheep certainly was a domestic animal in Britain long before the
See also:period of the
See also:Roman occupation; and it is probable that some use was made of sheep skins and of wool . But the Romans established a wool factory whence the occupying army was supplied with cloth-
See also:ing, and the value of the manufacture was soon recognized by the Britons, of Whom Tacitus remarks, " Inde etiam habitus nostri honor et frequens toga " (Agric. c . 21) .
The product of theWinchester looms soon established a reputation abroad, it being remarked that " the wool of Britain is often spun so fine that it is in a manner comparable to the spider's thread." This reputation was maintained throughout the
See also:middle ages, and the fibre was in
See also:great demand in the Low Countries and other
See also:continental centres . There are many allusions to woollen manufactures in England in early times; but the native
See also:industry could not
See also:rival the products of the continent, although the troubles in various
See also:industrial centres, from
See also:time to time, caused skilled workers in wool to seek an
See also:asylum in England . In the time of
See also:William the Conqueror Flemish weavers settled under the
See also:protection of the
See also:queen at Carlisle, but subsequently they were removed to
See also:Pembrokeshire . At various subsequent periods there were further immigrations of skilled Flemish weavers, who were planted at different places throughout the
See also:country . The cloth
See also:fair in the
See also:church yard of the priory of St Bartholomew was instituted by
See also:Henry II.;
See also:gilds of weavers were established; and the exclusive
See also:privilege of exporting woollen cloth was granted to the city of
See also:London .
See also:Edward III. made
See also:special efforts to encourage wool
See also:industries . He brought weavers, dyers and fullers from
See also:Flanders; he himself wore British cloth; but to stimulate native industry he prohibited, under
See also:pain of
See also:life and
See also:limb, the exportation of English wool . Previous to this time English wool had been in large demand on the continent, where it had a reputation exceeded only by the wool of Spain . The customs duties levied on the export of wool were an important source of the royal revenue . Edward III.'s prohibitory
See also:law was, however, found to be unworkable, and the utmost that both he and his successors were able to effect was to hamper the export
See also:trade by vexatious restrictions and to encourage much
See also:smuggling of wool . Thus while Edward III. limited the right of exporting to
See also:merchant strangers, Edward IV. decreed that no
See also:alien should export wool and that denizens should export it only to
See also:Calais . Legislation of this kind prevailed till the reign of
See also:Elizabeth, when the
See also:free exportation of English wool was permitted; and
See also:Smith, in his
See also:Memoirs of Wool, points out that it was during this reign that the manufacture made the most rapid progress .
In 166o theabsolute prohibition of the export of wool was again decreed, and it was not till 1825 that this law was finally repealed . The results of the prohibitory law were exceedingly detrimental; the production of wool far exceeded the
See also:consumption; the price of the raw material fell; wool-"
See also:running " or smuggling became an organized
See also:traffic; and the whole industry became disorganized . Extraordinary expedients were resorted to for stimulating the demand for woollen manufactures, among which was an
See also:act passed in the reign of
See also:Charles II. decreeing that all dead bodies should be buried in woollen shrouds—an enactment which remained in the
See also:Book, if not in force, for a period of 120 years . On the opening up of the colonies, every effort was made to encourage the use of English cloth, and the manufacture was discouraged and even prohibited in
See also:Ireland . It was not without reason that the
See also:attention of monarchs and legislators was so frequently directed to the wool industries . Wool was indeed " the flower and strength and revenue and
See also:blood of England," and till the development of the
See also:cotton trade, towards the end of the 18th century, the wool industries were, beyond comparison, the most important
See also:sources of
See also:wealth in the country . Towards the close of the 17th century the wool produced in England was estimated to be worth £2,000,000 yearly, furnishing £8,000,000 worth of manufactured goods, of which there was exported about £2,000,000 in value . In 1700 the official value of woollen goods exported was about £3,000,000, and in the third quarter of the century the exports had increased in value by about £5oo,000 only . In 1774 Dr
See also:Campbell (
See also:Political Survey of Great Britain) estimated the number of sheep in England at Io,000,000 or 12,000,000, the value of the wool produced yearly at £3,000,000, the manufactured products at £12,000,000, and the exports at £3,000,000 to £4,000,000 . He also reckoned that the industry then gave employment to 1,000,000 persons . These figures, in the
See also:light of the dimensions of
See also:day industries, may appear small, but they
See also:bore a predominant relationship to the other great sources of employment and trade of the period . In 1800 the native
See also:crop of wool was estimated to amount to 96,000,000 lb; and, import
See also:duty not being imposed till 1802, the quantity brought from abroad was 8,600,000 lb, 6,000,000 lb of which came from Spain .
In 1825 the importation of colonial wool became free, the duty leviable having been for several previous years as high as 6d. per lb, and in 1844 the duty was finally remitted on
See also:foreign wool also . Sheep were introduced at
See also:Jamestown in Virginia in 'floe, and in 1633 the animals were first brought to Boston . Ten years later a fulling
See also:mill was erected at
See also:Rowley, Mass., Wool in " by Mr Rowley's
See also:people, who were the first that set
See also:America. upon making cloth in this western
See also:world." The factory woollen industry was, however, not established till the close of the ,8th century, and it is recorded that the first
See also:carding machine put in operation in the
See also:United States was constructed in 1794 under the supervision of
See also:John and Arthur
See also:Schofield . For centuries the finer wools used for cloth-making throughout
See also:Europe had been obtained from Spain—the home of the famous merino breed
See also:developed from races of sheep originally introduced into the Peninsula by the Moors . Till Merwool . ino ~' early in the Igth century the superiority of
See also:Spanish merinos remained unchallenged, but the
See also:Peninsular War and its attendant evils produced a depreciation of quality concurrently Wool in Britain . with the introduction of Saxon and Silesian wools, which suddenly the merino wool characteristics . The most marked development in this direction was effected by the introduction of the United States merino or
See also:Vermont breed . Opinions differ as to the wisdom of this introduction . The
See also:weight of fleece carried per sheep has been remarkably increased, and the fact that up to the present weight multiplied by price per lb paid in London or elsewhere has been entirely in favour of first and second cross Vermonts, has undoubtedly influenced breeders in its favour Against this must be placed the fact that the Australian-Vermont merino cross produces a sheep of unstable physique, naturally unable to withstand drought, and—worst of all so far as London is concerned—producing a fleece very difficult to
See also:judge for yield of pure scoured wool . Again, the Australian-Vermont first cross is very liable to produce a very strong botany wool, while what is required is a long but fine wool technically termed a long and shafty 6o's to 64's quality . Hardly second in importance to
See also:Australia as a wool-growing country comes South America, or more correctly
See also:Argentina along with
See also:Patagonia, Punta Arenas and the Falkland Islands .
In most years Australia has produced the Sout woolh/n greater bulk, but just occasionally S . America has come America outtop and is likely to do so more frequently in the future owing to the remarkable developments there taking place . The
See also:history of the introduction of the merino sheep into S . America may be briefly summed up as follows . In 1842
See also:Henri Solanet, a Frenchman, began to shear the comparatively few sheep
See also:round Buenos Aires . His example was soon followed by Edouardo Olivera and Jose Platter . The idea almost at once came to these pioneers of importing well-bred rams, and as S . Afherica is essentially a Latin country it was but natural that the French flocks of Rambouillet should be first
See also:drawn upon . With the development of the
See also:meat trade—just as in the case :of Australia and New Zealand—a larger
See also:carcass was then sought after . This led to the introduction of the Lincoln ram and the development of cross-bred flocks about the
See also:year 1885 . Perhaps this cross was favoured owing to the skill of the
See also:Bradford spinners, who made excellent use of the cross-bred wool produced . Flocks of sheep were first introduced into the Falkland Islands in 1867 .
The pasturage here being limited, the flocks have probably attained their limit, but from the Falkland Islands flocks have been passed on to Punta Arenas, where there is practically unlimited pasturage . Thechief centres from which wool from S . America comes to Europe are Buenos Aires, which exports chiefly long and cross-bred wools,
See also:Montevideo, which exports chiefly merino wools, and the Falkland Islands and Punta Arenas, which export mostly wools of the finer type . The industry is largely in the hands of Englishmen . Unfortunately, however, the British manufacturer early took a dislike to the Buenos Aires, &c., wools, and consequently these wools go largely to the continent of Europe . To-day they by no means merit their previous
See also:bad name, and the Bradford comber and spinner are endeavouring to make up for lost opportunities .
See also:Prior to the introduction of the merino sheep into Australia it had been introduced into S . Africa by the Dutch . There the
See also:climate was not so helpful as was that of Australia . The newly acclimatized sheep appears to have
See also:cast its Sowouth ol in wool at about the fifth generation and to have generally Africa. deteriorated, necessitating the reintroduction of fresh blood form Europe . In this manner have been developed the Cape flocks and the considerable Cape wool trade—largely centred at
See also:Port Elizabeth, East London, Cape
See also:Town, Mossel
See also:Bay and Port
See also:Natal . The country is evidently specially adapted for the rearing of the merino type of sheep, as cross-bred Cape wool is practically unknown .
See also:white Cape wool, on the other
See also:hand, betokens a quality of whiteness no doubt due to the atmospheric and pasturage conditions . Cape wools are also known as non-felting wools, and consequently are largely employed in the manufacture of flannels . In 1907 most marked endeavours were being made to develop the Cape flocks by the introduction of some thousands of Australian merino sheep . The opinion of wool experts was that the Cape had a great future before it as a wool-producing country . supplanted the product of Spain . The Spanish merino sheep had been introduced into Saxony by the elector in 1765, and by judicious
See also:crossing with the best native
See also:race developed the famous electoral breed . Merinos were carried to Hungary in 1775, and to France in 1776, and in 1786 Daubehton brought them to Rambouillet, whence a famous race developed . In 1802 the first merinos known to have
See also:left pure descendants were taken to the United States, and in 18o9-1810 an importation (4000) of merino sheep was made . The introduction of the merino sheep into the United States was an important move, but its results are not to be compared with the results of the introduction of the merino sheep wool in into
See also:Australasia about the end of the 18th century and Austral-
See also:main. into South America a little later . It is probable that the marked improvement in the appearance of the first sheep taken out by the early colonists suggested the possibilities of Australia as a wool-growing country . As has been noted above, marked endeavours were being made at this time to extend the merino breed of sheep, so that it was but natural that this woof In breed should be given the first
See also:chance . That marked Australia. success did not attend the first endeavours is shown by the fact that the London Colonial Wool Sales originated in the
See also:necessity of selling Australian wools just for what they would bring under the
See also:hammer, as distinct from the private treaty method of selling and buying the more highly priced continental merinos .
It should here be noted that the Australian fine wools were first shipped from Botany Bay, hence the now universal term " botany " for fine wools . The colonists were not to be repressed however, and eventually, through the endeavours ofCaptain MacArthur,
See also:Sir J .
See also:Banks, the Rev .
See also:Marsden and others, the merino breed became established on a
See also:firm basis, and in a comparatively
See also:short time Australian wools were no longer a
See also:drug on the market . The
See also:evolution was not to stop, however, with the development of merino flocks and the exporting of merino wool . No doubt early in the 19th century the possibilities of raising larger sheep on the better coastal pasturage was naturally suggested . Until about 1885 this tendency was largely repressed owing to the demand for merino as distinct from cross-bred wool . In other words wool was the dominating factor . But with the possibilities and the development of the frozen meat trade from 188o to 1890 this
See also:condition was changed, and the tendency to breed a large sheep with a valuable carcass and mediocre wool
See also:grew apace . New Zealand was specially adapted for this development; thus New Zealand frozen mutton completely dominated New Zealand wool . In this manner it came about that cross-bred wool supplanted merino wool to a very considerable extent throughout Australasia . This
See also:change would have been serious for the wool comber and spinner had not the Bradford combers, spinners and manufacturers put their
See also:shoulder to the
See also:wheel and developed a world-wide renown for their cross-bred tops, yarns and fabrics .
Again the change was not altogether for the bad so far as the Australian sheep was concerned . Sheep-breeding developed into a realscience, and remarkable results were obtained with such crosses as Merino-Lincoln, Merino-
See also:Leicester, Merino-
See also:Shropshire; all probably originating in the first place in the
See also:desire to produce a large-bodied early-fattening sheep, but later developing into a strenuous endeavour to develop more useful types of wools . Thus the wool produced from the first cross Merino-Lincoln might be very defective judged from a pure merino stand-point, but by breeding back to the merino practically none of the useful merino characteristics were sacrificed, while length of
See also:staple was added and the weight of the fleece perhaps doubled . A somewhat different evolution has taken place in later years with reference to the interior sheep stations . The merino sheep will thrive where a larger sheep would starve, hence its value for the stations where
See also:bush dominates all vegetation . But the merino sheep is a " wool " sheep, not a " frozen mutton " sheep, hence all crossing here was carried out with the idea of simply developing the weight of fleece and if possible retaining Large quantities of wool also come from the East and from Russia, while even
See also:Iceland contributes its
See also:quota . It is interesting to note that, notwithstanding all the developments instanced, Europe still maintains its supremacy as the chief wool-producing continent, though, as the wool is largely manufactured locally, one hears little of
See also:European wools . The following
See also:statistics give an idea of the development of the colonial and foreign wool trade as gauged by the London wool sales:
See also:Bales . Bales . 1814 . 165 187o 673.314 1824 I,62o 1890 1,509,666 1834 . 16,926 1901 I,602,726 1840 44502 1903 .
1,319,365 185o . 158,558 It must not be forgotten, however, that a large quantity of S .
See also:American, W .
See also:Russian, &c., wools, along with mohair and alpaca, come through Liverpool, and consequently are not taken into account here . With reference to wools grown in the United
See also:Kingdom the truth seems to be that a fine short wool has never been produced . English wool is known the world over as being of a long and lustrous type, which was doubtless that so much in demand in the middle ages . That it was as long and lustrous as the typical Leicester or Lincoln of to-day is doubtful, as the new Leicester breed of sheep was only fully developed by Mr Bakewell after the year 1747, and the latter day Lincoln was even a later development of a similar character . What the exact type of English wool or wools was prior to the 18th century will probably never be decided, but from the closing years of that century there is no difficulty in being fairly precise . As already remarked, the long and lustrous wools are the typical English, being grown in
See also:Yorkshire, Nottingham-
See also:shire, Devonshire, &c., in fact in all those districts where the pasturage is
See also:rich and specially fitted for carrying a heavy sheep . It is claimed that the lustre upon the wool is a
See also:direct result of the environment, and that to take a Lincoln sheep into Norfolk means the loss of the lustre . This is partially true, but it is perhaps better to take a larger view and remember that the two influencing factors are race and environment: which is the more potent it is impossible to say . Attempts were made in the 18th century to develop a fine wool breed in England,
See also:George IV. importing a number of merino sheep from Spain .
See also:discovery was soon made that it was impossible to maintain a breed of pure merinos in Great Britain, but the final outcome was by no means unsatisfactory . By crossing with the indigenous sheep a race of fairly fine woolled sheep was developed, of which the present day representative is the Southdown—a sheep which feeds naturally on the
See also:Downs of
See also:Sussex, &c., forming a marked contrast to the artificially
See also:turnip-fed Lincoln, Leicester, &c., sheep . Following the short, curly Southdown but rather longer, come such as the Sussex,
See also:Oxford and Hampshire Down sheep; these are followed by such as the Shropshires and Shropshire crosses, Kent and Romney
See also:Marsh, until at last the chain from the Southdown to the Lincoln is completed . Of course there are several British wools not included in this chain . Scotch or black-
See also:face wool is long and rough, but well adapted for being spun into
See also:carpet yarns . Welsh wool has the peculiarity of early attaining its limit of shrinkage when washed, and hence is specially chosen for flannels .
See also:Shetland wool is of a soft nature specially suited for knitting yarns, while Cheviot wool—said to be a cross between merino sheep saved from the
See also:wreck of the Great
See also:Armada and the native Cheviot sheep—has made the reputation of the Scottish manufacturers for tweeds .
See also:North wool—wool from an animal of the Border Leicester and Cheviot breed—Ripon, Wensleydale and Teasdale wools are also specially noted as lustre wools, Ripon and Wensleydale wools being, by many
See also:judges, considered
See also:superior so far as lustre is concerned to Lincoln and Leicester . Such remarkable advances have been made in the weights of fleeces carried by sheep of particular breeds that it is difficult tosay if finality has been reached . The following
See also:list gives
See also:average weights: Shetland . . 4lb Cashmere . . 4 oz .
In 1885 the average weight of wool per sheep per year was about 5 lb, while 7 to 8 lb is now the average weight . Roughly speaking the weights of Australian fleeces are to-day about
See also:double as compared with 1885 . The prevailing
See also:colour of sheep's wool is white, but there are races with black,
See also:brown, fawn, yellow and
See also:grey shades of wool . For manufacturing purposes generally white wool is,
See also:physical of course, most valuable, but for the homespuns, which character-in earlier times absorbed the bulk of wool, natural istks of
See also:colours were in many cases used with
See also:good effect . In woo-domestic spinning, knitting, and weaving, natural colours are still largely taken
See also:advantage of, as in the cases of rough yarns, Shetland knitted shawls, Highland tweeds, &c . As has already been indicated, the distinction between wool and hair lies chiefly in the great fineness, softness, and waved delicacy of woollen fibre, combined with a highly serrated surface . These peculiarities are precisely the characters which give wool its distinctive value as a textile fibre, the mest distinctive characteristic of all being the serrated structure which specially belongs to wool and markedly
See also:aids the important
See also:property of felting, upon which many of its applications depend . The serrations of wool and the wavy structure it assumes are closely connected, those wools which have the greatest number of serrations being usually most finely waved in structure . The appearance presented by wool under the microscope is shown in
See also:figs.,-6 (
See also:Plate) . Under the influence of moisture and pressure, aided by alkalis or acids, masses of wool thoroughly
See also:mat together, by the mutual inter-locking of the fibres . It is thus that the shrinking and thickening of woollen textures under washing is accounted for, the capacity of wool cloth for felting or fulling being due to this condition of the fibre, possibly along with a certain shrinkage of the true fibre mass . The serrations are most numerous, acute, pointed and distinct in fine merino wools, as many as 2800 per in. being counted in specimens of the finest Saxony wools .
In the Leicester wool of England, on the other hand, which is a longbright staple, the serratures are not only much fewer in number, counting about 1800, but they are also less pronounced in character, so that the fibre presents a smoother, less waved character . In some inferior wools the serrations are not so many as 500 per in . A similar difference may be noted in the fineness of the fibres . The finest wool has a diameter of from -Folo-o to ok in., whilst coarse Algerian wools may rise to a maximum diameter of about TIT in . Other distinguishing qualities of good wool consist in uniformity and strength of fibre with freedom from
See also:tender or weak portions in its length, a condition which not unfrequently arises from
See also:health in the sheep, or is due to violent
See also:climatic changes . In ill-bred wool there may also be found intermingled " kemps " or dead hairs—straight, coarse, dull fibres which show conspicuously among the wool, and become even more prominent in the manufactured and dyed goods, as they will not take dye . Wool also possesses a softness of
See also:touch and an
See also:elasticity both in the raw and manufactured condition which distinguish it from all other fibres . In length of staple it varies very much, attaining in combing wools to a length of as much as 15 to 20 in . In dealing with wool from a
See also:practical point of view it must be recognized that it is by no means a
See also:body, but has a somewhat complex physical structure . Its composi- Chemical tion in the raw state may be said to be threefold. characters Thus there is the wool-yolk—what may be termed a istics of natural impurity; the wool-
See also:fat, which is not only woot present in the yolk but also permeates the fibre and seems to give it its plastic and soft handle; and the
See also:cell structure proper of the fibre . The natural impurity or wool-yolk is truly a skin product and is a
See also:protector of the wool-fibre rather than
See also:part of the true fibre substance . The wool-fat also may be regarded as Wool in other countries .
British wools . Weight of Average Fleece . Merino (Australian) 6 lb Merino (South American) 62 lb Merino-Lincoln 8-lo lb Breed . Breed . Weight of Average Fleece . Southdown 6 lb Lincoln I2 lb
See also:independent of the true fibrous substance, but it is well to recognize that if the wool-fibre be entirely freed from the wool-fat it loses its plastic and elastic nature and is considerably damaged . In cleansing wool the true fibre mass may be disturbed and partially destroyed not only by dry but also by " wet "
See also:heat, and may be entirely disintegrated by means of alkalies, &c., with heat . The wool-fibre will almost free itself from the natural impurities—the yolk—in the presence of tepid
See also:water . This is taken advantage of in the various steeping
See also:machines placed on the market, which partially scour the wool by means of its own yolk—principally through the potash salts present . According to
See also:Hummel the composition of the average wool-yolk is as follows: Moisture; . . 4 to 24% Dirt . . 3 to 24% Yolk .
. . . 12 ,, 47% Wool-fibre . . . 15 „ 72% The potash salts are usually recovered from the
See also:wash-water products and a marked
See also:economy thereby effected . The natural wool-fat—popularly known as " lanoline "—may be partially got rid of in the steeping
See also:process, but it is almost invariably necessary to free the wool still further from it by actually scouring the wool on either the " emulsion " or " solvent " method, in either case the
See also:action being largely physical .
SAMUEL WOODWARD (179o-1838)
WILLIAM WOOLLETT (1735-1785)
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