Tag Archives: Samuel Slater

today’s birthday: Eli Whitney (1765)


Eli Whitney (1765)

Whitney was the inventor of the cotton gin, a mechanical device that separates cotton fiber from its seeds. His invention, which had immense economic and social ramifications, brought great wealth to many others, but little to Whitney himself. In 1798, he built a firearms factory, and his products were some of the first to have standardized, interchangeable parts. Why did Whitney’s ginning company go out of business only three years after he received his cotton gin patent? More… Discuss