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Lowell History: Visitor Observations 1827-1913

Observations of Lowell by John Walter, 1867


The next day we went by an early train to Lowell
, the principal seat of the cotton manufacture, and the pet child of American Protection. It is an enormous village rather than town, of some 50,000 inhabitants, and mostly belongs to the Merrimac Company, who have the entire command of the water power, and possess the principal cotton mills in the place. We went over the largest of these establishments, which was in full work and in admirable order. We also visited a carpet manufactory belonging to another company. The carpets appeared to be strong and useful, very superior to
Kidderminster, but not equal to Brussels. Whatever may be said about the policy of the system which has brought this place into existence, there can be but one opinion as to its outward and visible results. It would probably be difficult to name any other seat of manufacturing enterprise in which the health, cleanliness, and comfort of the population were so conspicuously displayed.