Some may be surprised to see what is considered an inferior known invention to my list, but look at the impact Eli Whitney's little invention had with this country: until then, slavery was just morally wrong. With his cotton-picking machine effective at producing twenty bails of cotton for every one created by slave labor, he made slavery economically unfeasible as well. Needless to say, in demonstrating to southern plantation owners they no more needed slaves to harvest their crop, he also hastened the advent of the Civil War, however no important advance in the human condition is ever without its price. Jeff Danelek is just a Denver, Colorado author who writes on many subjects having related to history, politics, the paranormal, spirituality and religion. To see more of his stuff,
‘As much as the 1840s, you can pay a picture artist handsomely to create themselves appear less ugly and more heroic than they certainly were in true to life; with the introduction of photography, however, all that went the window. Suddenly people could be photographed while they really appeared: dour, unsmiling, grainy, and never happy to locate themselves stuck surviving in the nineteenth century. Top Greatest Inventions of the 19th Century. Plus, by the 1890s the initial movie cameras have been introduced, showing people while they looked once they moved about in the cheerless century as well. I suppose that's progress…of a sort.'
Where would we be without electricity—or the light bulb? Probably sitting in the soft glow of our kerosene lantern wondering why the toaster isn't working. Clearly, the advent of electricity in the waning years of the nineteenth century had an enormous impact on society, for this not just reduced the fire danger by replacing gas-fed street lamps with non flammable electric light bulbs, but paved the way in which for sets from the tv screen and the radio to the refrigerator and the curling iron. Needless to say, in addition, it brought us the electric chair, but that's another story.
Alongside steam and breech-loading guns came the greatest revolution in shipping in thousands of years: the replacement of sail and wooden ships with great behemoths belching smoke and wrought in riveted iron. So swift and complete was this transformation that by the end of the century sail was considered a quant anachronism while even the smallest freighters were being built out of metal and powered by massive steam-engines. Its affect warfare was even more immense, with Trafalgar-like battles between scores of ships of the line spewing cannon balls at one another from a few hundred feet apart being replaced by metal monsters hurtling shaped charges at one another from miles away. Nearly as romantic as in Nelson's day, but spectacular none-the-less.
Though the trusty old musket and front-loading cannon had been around for centuries, it wasn't before the mid-nineteenth century that the firearm really came into its own to end up being the epitome of innovative technology for its era. First was the advent of rifling, which improved both accuracy and range; then it absolutely was the invention of the cartridge, which did away with powder and flints and managed to get possible to increase the rate of fire exponentially; and finally it absolutely was the advent of breech loading, which managed to get possible to load a rifle or cannon from the back rather than from the front. Put all of them together and you've got carnage on a large scale, which was to be, in many ways, the scourge of the twentieth century.
While steam remained the primary power source throughout the century, by the finish of the 1880's its successor—the internal combustion engine—was making its first appearance, both in the shape of the gasoline powered four-stroke engine and the better diesel engine. Top Greatest Inventions of the 19th Century. Though both weren't yet developed enough and remained largely underpowered during the waning years of the nineteenth century, they certainly were to lay the foundation not only for the best demise of the steam engine, but for numerous industries people during the time could only imagine: the automobile, the airplane, and even the five-speed, multi-level adjustable lawn mower. Plus, despite all of the bad press fossil-fuel powered engines get nowadays, they produced a hundred times less pollutant than coal-fed steam engines.
Though under development in Europe for quite a while, the telegraph was developed independently in the United States by Samuel Morse and his assistant, Alfred Vail, in 1837. (It was actually Vail who invented Morse code, which makes it difficult to understand why it isn't called Vail Code.) By 1843 Congress—in an unusual moment of far-sightedness—appropriated the amount of money to wire the united states and the others is history. How made it happen change things? Consider that Lincoln got word of the end result of the Battle of Gettysburg within hours of the guns falling silent and could order his field commanders to new battlefields in a matter of minutes from the telegraph office several doors down from his office in the White House. Before that, such things would took days as well as weeks to accomplish.
The idea that a person's voice could travel via a wire was considered something comparable to witchcraft when it was proposed, but by the time Alexander Graham Bell patented his “electric telegraph” in March of 1876, it had been not just a reality, but was to forever change the country. Top Greatest Inventions of the 19th Century. Now it had been possible for people to interrupt other people's meals or buy them from the bathtub from the comfort of their particular parlor. The only real question that really needs to be asked, however, is who to be real the first ever to design a functional phone? Was it Johann Reis in 1861? Antonio Meucci in 1871? Elisha Gray in 1876? The matter remains hotly debated to this day, though in the long run, does it surely matter?
Needless to say, for the steam engine to own any practical application, it had to operate a vehicle something, and that something—at least at first—was the locomotive. First appearing in the United States in 1829 with the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad's Tom Thumb demonstration locomotive, by the center of the century literally hundreds of engines were operating in the united kingdom and by the finish of the nineteenth century, the whole nation could be crossed by rail in a matter of days. To comprehend the locomotive's impact, just try to visualize the nineteenth century without its familiar smoke-belching engines chugging along endless expanses of iron track and see the manner in which you do. It could truly be stated that in many ways, it had been the locomotive that made America what it had been and is today.
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