Ask a Librarian

Marietta College Home Marietta College Library

 


Spinning Wheel Demonstration and Exhibit

When: 4 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 20
Where: Legacy Library, Second Floor

The exhibit will continue throughout the Fall Semester.

Dr. Michael B. Taylor will be discussing the history of spinning wheels and demonstrating their use. He has been collecting and writing about American spinning wheels for more than 40 years and has co-authored two books and more than 30 articles on the topic. Among his teaching responsibilities is a course, History of Management in America, which among other things looks at the development and use of textile machinery in the Industrial Revolution and the "putting-out" system which accompanied it.

Several spinning wheels from Dr. Taylor's collection of more than 50 wheels are on display on the second floor of Legacy Library. All of these wheels are "spindle" wheels and would have been used for spinning wool for woolen or worsted yarns or, in some cases, cotton. The process illustration will help the viewer understand the place of various tools in the production of woolen or worsted goods from sheep.s wool.

Many spinning wheels were patented in the period from 1790 to 1880. Unfortunately, the U.S. Patent Office burned to the ground in 1836. Dr. Taylor and others have been fortunate to discover missing patent records in libraries and museums. Of course, interesting patents can be found in patent office records from after the fire. This exhibit shows patent wheels and patents from throughout this period.

The Spinning Wheel Sleuth, www.spwhsl.com, where many of Dr. Taylor.s articles appear, is a quarterly publication for those interested in unusual wheels.