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Weaver Street

This was a street of thatched cottages in which hand loom weavers working in their own homes wove cotton thread, delivered to them by agents of cotton mill owners, into cloth. The agents then paid them and took the cloth to the mill owners for finishing and marketing. Most of the cotton was grown on slave plantations in the southern states of the USA. The weavers were political radicals, and many supported calls for the abolition of slavery in the USA. During the nineteenth century, the development of power-driven weaving machinery gradually displaced hand loom weaving. Its death-knell was the blockade of the cotton-shipping ports of the breakaway southern Confederacy at the outbreak of the 1861-65 American Civil War, which brought about the end of slavery.