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Progressive Enlightenment The Origins of the Gaslight Industry, 1780-1820

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ISBN-10: 0262016753

ISBN-13: 9780262016759

Edition: 2012

Authors: Leslie Tomory

List price: $34.00
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Description:

In Progressive Enlightenment, Leslie Tomory examines the origins of the gaslight industry, from invention to consolidation as a large integrated urban network. Tomory argues that gas was the first integrated large-scale technological network, a designation usually given to the railways. He shows how the first gas network was constructed and stabilized through the introduction of new management structures, the use of technical controls, and the application of means to constrain the behavior of the users of gas lighting. Tomory begins by describing the contributions of pneumatic chemistry and industrial distillation to the development of gas lighting, then explores the bifurcation between the Continental and British traditions in distillation technology. He examines the establishment and consolidation of the new industry by the Birmingham firm Boulton & Watt, and describes the deployment of the network strategy by the entrepreneur Frederick Winsor. Tomory argues that the gas industry represented a new wave of technological innovation in industry because of its dependence on formal scientific research, its need for large amounts of capital, and its reliance on business organization beyond small firms and partnerships--all of which signaled a departure from the artisanal nature and limited deployment of inventions earlier in the Industrial Revolution. Gas lighting was the first important realization of the Enlightenment dream of science in the service of industry.
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Book details

List price: $34.00
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 3/2/2012
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 368
Size: 7.50" wide x 9.50" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.562

Leslie Tomory, an aerospace engineer, a historian, and a consultant in the nonprofit sector, is currently a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at McGill University.

Preface
Abbreviations
Introduction
The Roots Of Gas Lighting
Gas Lighting And Pneumatic Chemistry
Industrial Distillation
A Question Of Scale
Boulton & Watt
Building A Network
Frederick Winsor And The National Light And Heat Company
The Gas Light And Coke Company
Conclusion
Notes
Bibliography
Index