Fields, Factories, and Workshops : Appendix F : Cotton Industry in Germany

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(1842 - 1921) ~ Russian Father of Anarcho-Communism : As anarchism's most important philosophers he was in great demand as a writer and contributed to the journals edited by Benjamin Tucker (Liberty), Albert Parsons (Alarm) and Johann Most (Freiheit). Tucker praised Kropotkin's publication as "the most scholarly anarchist journal in existence." (From : Spartacus Educational Bio.)
• "The fatherland does not exist.... What fatherland can the international banker and the rag-picker have in common?" (From : "The Conquest of Bread," by Peter Kropotkin, 1906.)
• "...outside of anarchism there is no such thing as revolution." (From : "Revolutionary Government," by Peter Kropotkin, 18....)
• "As to parliamentary rule, and representative government altogether... It is becoming evident that it is merely stupid to elect a few men, and to entrust them with the task of making laws on all possible subjects, of which subject most of them are utterly ignorant." (From : "Process Under Socialism," by Peter Kropotkin, 188....)


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Appendix F

 Photo by Mikael F, CC BY-NC-ND License

Photo by Mikael F,
CC BY-NC-ND License



Dr. G. Schulze-Gaewernitz, in his excellent work, The Cotton Trade in England and on the Continent (English translation by Oscar S. Hall, London, 1895), called attention to the fact that Germany had certainly not yet attained, in her cotton industry, the high technical level of development attained by England; but he showed also the progress realized. The cost of each yard of plain cotton, notwithstanding low wages and long hours, was still greater in Germany than in England, as seen from the following tables. Taking a certain quality of plain cotton in both countries, he gave (p. 151, German edition) the following comparative figures:-

England. Germany.
Hours of labor 9 hours 12 hours
Average weekly earnings of the operatives 16s. 3d. 11s. 8d.
Yards woven per week per opera tive 706 yards 466 yards
Cost per yard of cotton 0.275d. 0.303d.

But he remarked also that in all sorts of printed cottons, in which fancy, colors and invention play a predominant part, the advantages were entirely on the side of the smaller German factories.

In the spinning mills the advantages, on the contrary, continued to remain entirely on the side of England, the number of operatives per 1,000 spindles being in various countries as follows (p. 91, English edition):-

Per 1000 spindles.
Bombay 25 operatives.
Italy 13 "
Alsace 9.5 "
Mulhouse 7.5 "
Germany, 1861 20 "
" 1882 8 to 9 "
England, 1837 7 "
" 1887 3 "

Considerable improvements had taken place already in the ten years 1884-1894. "India shows us, since 1884, extraordinary developments," Schulze-Gaewernitz remarked, and "there is no doubt that Germany also has reduced the number of operatives per 1,000 spindles since the last Inquest." "From a great quantity of materials lying before me, I cull," he wrote, " the following, which, however, refers solely to leading and technicallay distinguished spinning mills :-

Per 1000 spindles.
Switzerland 6-2 operatives
Mulhouse 5-8 "
Baden and Wurtemberg 6-2 "
Bavaria 6-8 "
Saxony (new and splendid mills) 7-2 "
Vosges, France (old spinning mills) 8-9 "
Russia 16-6 "

The average counts of yarn for all these were between twenties and thirties."

It is evident that considerable progress has been realized since Schulze-Gaewernitz wrote these lines. As an exporter of cotton yarn and cottons, Germany has made rapid strides. Thus, in 1903, she exported £1,625,000 worth of cotton yarn, and £15,080,000 worth of cottons. For 1910 the figures given by the Statistisches Jahrbuch for 1911 were already £2,740,000 and £18,255,000 respectively.

From : Anarchy Archives


November 30, 1911 :
Appendix F -- Publication.

January 16, 2017 19:20:16 :
Appendix F -- Added to

June 16, 2019 16:33:51 :
Appendix F -- Last Updated on


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