Fact File about the Invention of the Spinning Jenny: Date of Invention: 1764 *** Name of Inventor: James Hargreaves *** Lifespan of Inventor: 1720 - 1778 *** Nationality of Inventor: English *** Historical Period: Industrial Revolution (1700 - 1860) *** Category:
Clothing and Textiles *** Country of Origin: England *** Facts about the Inventor, James Hargreaves, and
his famous invention ***
Fact 1: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The Spinning Jenny was invented by James Hargreaves in 1764 during the Industrial Revolution era of inventions (1700 - 1860) which was a leading addition to advancements made in the area of Textiles.
Fact 2: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? Prior to the invention of the Jenny in 1764, there was
the Spinning Wheel, a small domestic spinning machine with a single spindle that
is driven by hand or foot. The Spinning Wheel turned plant and animal fibers
into thread or yarn, which were then woven into cloth on a loom.
Fact 3: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The Spinning Wheel is believed
originated in China c.1270 and was introduced into Europe in the late 13th
Fact 4: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? Englishman John Kay (1704-1764)
invented the flying shuttle in 1733 that allowed weavers much wider fabrics and
to produce material much faster than ever before using mechanized machine looms.
However, the process of creating material was still slow because the spinning of
yarn was still done by hand, one thread at a time on the spinning wheel.
Fact 5: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The Spinning Jenny was the first
machine to improve upon the spinning wheel allowing eight threads to be spun at
once instead of one. It was inexpensive to make and made production much
Fact 6: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The inventor of the 'Jenny', James Hargreaves, was born on December 13, 1720 in Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire, England
and died on April 22, 1778.
Fact 7: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The early years of James Hargreaves were spent in Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire, England where he was raised by his family. James Hargreaves
never attended school and was illiterate.
Fact 8: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? James Hargreaves started work in
the clothing trade as a child, probably working from his home during the period
in time when the spinning and weaving of cloth was carried out by people in
their homes, leading to the term 'Cottage Industry'.
Fact 9: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? Hand weavers could only weave a
cloth as wide as their arm span so if cloth needed to be wider, then two people
would be required for the task, usually an adult working with a child.
James Hargreaves no doubt worked as a hand loom weaver as a child.
Fact 10: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The working lives of James Hargreaves
and all other clothing workers changed when the flying shuttle was
invented in 1733 allowing weavers to work with much wider fabrics and to produce
Fact 11: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? James Hargreaves worked as a
hand loom weaver, a task undertaken by strong men. worked as a hand loom weaver
His suitability for the task is confirmed by a description of James Hargreaves
as a "stout, broadest man of about five-foot ten, or rather more".
Fact 12: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? Records indicated that James
Hargreaves was married and he and his wife had 13 children. (The name of the
'Jenny' is said to be derived from the name of one of his daughters who worked
in the family's 'cottage industry').
Fact 13: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The story of the invention of the Spinning Jenny
begins with an accident. Legend tells that his daughter Jenny, accidentally
knocked over over the spinning wheel. The spindle, a stick used to twist the
yarn in spinning, continued to revolve and it gave James Hargreaves the idea
that a whole line of spindles could be operated using just one wheel.
Fact 14: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? James Hargreaves developed a
multi-spindle spinning frame that started off with eight spindles. He called his
machine the Spinning Jenny. The machine used eight spindles onto which the
thread was spun, so by turning a single wheel, the operator could now spin eight
threads at once. (Later improvements were made to the original machine that
increased the number of spindles to eighty).
Fact 15: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The 'Spinning Jenny' was a
great invention and James Hargreaves began to successfully sell his time saving
machine to neighbours. However, not everyone appreciated the new device and hand
spinners, who could not afford to buy a ' Jenny', feared unemployment and
subsequently broke into his home and destroyed a number of jennies.
Fact 16: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? Frightened by the attack, and
fearing for the safety of his family and his business, James Hargreaves moved
over one hundred miles away to the town of Nottingham in 1768.
Fact 17: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? He went into partnership with a
man called Thomas James and built a small mill in which they could use the
jennies to spin yarn for hosiers (sellers of hose or stockings).
Fact 18: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? James Hargreaves had never
patented his invention of the Spinning Jenny, and he quickly realized that
others had stolen his idea and were producing their own machines. As an
illiterate man James Hargreaves would have not understood the importance of
patents, but it is quite probable that his partner Thomas James did because he
applied for a patent for his Spinning Jenny on June 12, 1770.
Fact 18: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? By the time he received his
patent number 962 their were numerous copies of his machine.
Fact 19: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? James Hargreaves died on April 22, 1778
by which time over 20,000 Spinning Jenny machines were being used in Great
Fact 20: Who invented the Spinning Jenny? The British inventor and
industrialist Sir Richard Arkwright (1732 - 1792) developed an improved machine
for carding cotton in 1775 and helped to create the factory system of
manufacture. Another British inventor Samuel Crompton, (1753 - 1827) improved
the design of the Spinning Jenny and invented the 'spinning mule' in 1779, which
enabled the large scale manufacture of high quality yarn and thread.
Fact 20 - Impact: How did the Spinning Jenny impact the world? The impact of the invention of the Spinning Jenny was a leading step to improving the field of
cloth making by speeding the production of cloth, increasing the amount of
available textiles and boosting the economy.
Fast Info and Fact File: Country of Origin: England *** Name of Inventor: James Hargreaves *** Nationality of Inventor: English *** Date of Invention: 1764 *** Lifespan of Inventor: 1720 - 1778 *** Invention Era: Industrial Revolution (1700 - 1860) *** Type: Textiles *** The Inventor and Invention ***