Sunday, June 13, 2010

june 13, 1810 (wed.)

Mr. Jefferson got word from his cousin, George Jefferson, that more rods of iron are on their way for his nail factory. The nailery, which has been in operation since 1794, isn't really a factory full of large steam-powered machines, like the new spinning and weaving factories one hears about in England. Rather, it more resembles a smithy, although there is a simple machine to cut the iron to proper lengths. About ten or so enslaved teenaged boys work there. The nails are not only used at Monticello, but are also sold locally. Mr. Jefferson hopes that this profit-making business can help pay off his debts, that it can provide a more steady income than he gets from agriculture, which is dependent on widely fluctuating weather and market conditions.

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