Notes on the Geography of The United Kingdom: Manchester: Photo 6
The Rochdale Canal (1804-6) extended the Bridgewater Canal eastward from Manchester across the Pennines; in conjunction with a third canal, the Calder and Hebble, it linked Liverpool to Hull on the east coast. Here's the Rochdale Canal in the district called Ancoats, a couple of miles east of central Manchester. The McConnel and Kennedy mill opened here in 1797--not long after the granddaddy of them all, Richard Arkwright's mill of 1780. In 1825, the eminent German architect Karl Schinkel wrote that "at Manchester since the war 400 large new factories for cotton spinning have been built, several of the size of the Royal Palace in Berlin, and thousands of smoking obelisks of the steam engines 80 to 180 feet high destroy all impression of church steeples." (Quoted in Lancashire: Manchester and the South-East, by Clare Hartwell, Matthew Hyde, and Nikolaus Pevsner, 2004, p. 258). A decade later, Alexis de Tocqueville came by and reported that three-quarters of McConnel and Kennedy's 1,500 workers were women and children.
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