Check sibling questions
  • In 1854, the first cotton mill in Bombay was set up and went into production two years later.
  • Four mills were at work with 94,000 spindles and 2,150 looms till 1862.
  • The jute mills also came up in Benga l around the same time.
  • First Jute mill was set up in 1855 and another one seven years later.
  • Elgin Mill was started in Kanpur in the 1860s followed by a Cotton mill which was later set up in Ahemdabad. 
  • By 1874, the first spinning and weaving mill of madras began production.

4.1 The Early Entrepreneurs

  • From the late 18th century, the British in India began exporting opium to China and took tea from China to England.
  • Businessmen who were involved in this trade had visions of developing enterprises in India.


Dwakarnath Tagore - Teachoo.jpg


  • In Bengal, Dwakarnath Tagore made his fortune in the China trade before he turned to industrial investment, s etting up six joint-stock companies in the 1830s and 1840s. 
  • Dwakarnath Tagore believed that India would develop through westernization and industrialization.
  • Parsis like Jamsetjee Nusserwanjee Tata and Dinshaw Petit who built huge industrial empires in India , accumulated their initial wealth partly from exports to China, and partly from raw cotton shipments to England.
  • Seth Hukumchand , a Marwari businessman who set up the first Indian Jute mill in Calcutta in 1917 , also traded with China. 
  • But the colonial power over Indian trade tightened , they were barred from trading with Europe in manufactured goods, and had to export mostly raw materials and food grains.
  • Three of the biggest European Managing Agencies were Bird Heiglers& Co., Andrew Yule, and Jardine Skinner & Co . These agencies mobilized capital, set up joint-stock companies, and managed them.

4.2 Where Did the Workers Come From?

  • With the expansion of factories , the demand for workers increased .
  • Getting jobs was always difficult , even when mills multiplied and the demand for workers increased
  • The numbers seeking work were always more than the jobs available.


A Head Jobber - Teachoo.jpg

  • Industrialists usually employed a jobber to get recruits . The jobber was an old and trusted worker.  
  • Jobber got people from his village , ensured them jobs , helped them settle in the city, and provided them money in times of crisis
  • The jobber became a person with some authority and power . He began demanding money and gifts for his favour and controlling the lives of workers.

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Davneet Singh

Davneet Singh has done his B.Tech from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. He has been teaching from the past 13 years. He provides courses for Maths, Science, Social Science, Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science at Teachoo.