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How did the historian interpret the forge mill needle site and is it an accurate representation of working conditions in the nineteenth century?

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Introduction

How did the historian interpret the forge mill needle site and is it an accurate representation of working conditions in the nineteenth century? I think that the Forge Mill needle museum is an accurate representation of working conditions in the nineteenth century because the mill has been left as it is since it was decommissioned and has been used as a museum ever since. The outside of the mill has been changed by the putting in of handrails a recent addition of a walkway from the north to the west wing these are not reliable pieces of evidence. The water-wheel is still active and powers the mill. The outside of the mill is an accurate interpretation because it has only been changed in the ways mentioned earlier. The top floor of the museum has been renovated and changed into an exhibition for different types of needles, what is now the museum was the needle furnishing shop and was used to prepare the needles for shipping. ...read more.

Middle

I know that this evidence is accurate because there is a lot of primary evidence at the site for example the building itself. The scouring mill a show good development of the working conditions because is contains the machines used to do the scouring but also some of the earlier equipment used as well. The basement was used to do many things, the final polish of the needles after they had been hardened, this was the forge mill's main job, the machines that were used still function today although they are too expensive to have running all the time. The conditions in the scouring mill were dark, dank, dusty and, in the winter, very cold and wet. Another thing that the basement was used for pointing the needles, this was an arduous process that was very damaging to the health of the pointers. ...read more.

Conclusion

The interpretation of the mill seems accurate as the mill still stands and there are engravings of the work of the mill and written accounts, also, which help to paint a mental picture of the conditions of the mill. The development of mill life is shown be the machines that were used as the industry developed from simple hand tools to large machines that were not popular with the workers because, the thought that since they were safer they would decrease their wages, this was the case for pointers in particular, originally only hand tools would have been used in needle manufacture, the working conditions of the mill continued to be dreadful because of all the metal dust floating about. In conclusion the interpretation of the Forge Mill Needle Museum is a good one because the buildings that the primary evidence is drawn from are all still standing and in the same condition as they were when the needle industry went out of business. ...read more.

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