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The Little Engine That Could I sell here gentlemen what all the world desires power Matthew Boulton once boasted speaking of his steam engine factory James Watt Boultons business partner significantly improved an inadequate form of the steam engine and marketed his new more fuel-efficient invention Ashton 25 Better engines were produced and more uses were found for steam-power Steam power fueled the Industrial Revolution by cutting manufacturing costs of goods significantly and quickening production Ashton 26 The world was no longer dependent on manpower and horsepower The steam engine forced the creation of railroads and improved transportation while causing a noticeable change in the economy These changes clearly affected the way that people lived and thought about industry This vital ingredient of the Industrial Revolution is still recognized as one of the greatest inventions of the time Steele 47 The cost-effective and portable steam-engine powered the Industrial Revolution and consequently led to a significant change in Western commerce The steam engine transformed the manufacturing world by making work significantly cheaper and more accessible Prior to using steam power only animals humans wind or moving water could be used to create power However animals and humans can not be harnessed together in large numbers to effectively create enough power Wind and moving water both were usually found in the deep countryside therefore once the goods reached the cities the cost was extremely high Gordon 144 One steam engine was able to do the work of hundreds of horses Siegel 18 On account of the steam engine it was the first time in history that power was virtually limitless This source of power was not only mighty but inexpensive William Blake an economist during the rise of the steam engine wrote Even a fit person can produce only a horsepower-hour of work per day today a laborers daily wage can buy 1000 horsepower-hours of steam-generated electricity Watkins 105 This realization by factory owners led to
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