American Clyde, The

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  • Pub No.: 5422
Harpers Magazine/The 1870's Scottish Clyde, the famous ship-building area and its American, arguably more inventive, counterpart.

"The Scottish Clyde--The Clyde sung of poets, and famous for ship-bilding--is the commercial entrance of Scotland. Approaching from the sea, the stranger is charmed by the beauty and majesty of the scenery. . . . The American mind delights always in experiments and is ever restless for improvements. The Englishman built his inconvenient and disabreeable little iron paddle boats for the Thames,a nd has never seet fit to change the models. He excuses himself for his lack of enterprise by saing, "the old patterns are on hand--why make new ones?" Even the pleasure-boats that yearly take millions of excursionists through the Scottish lakes are marvels of discomfort, and it was only when they began to be made on American Plans, and new patterns wree tried, that the boats beame famous. . . . This country [America] is the land of trees. Wooden ships may always be built here, but beneath our forests lie the fast and almost untouched treasures of our iron mountains. We ahve the skilled labor, the iron,a nd the great river--a new and better Clyde. Already at Wilmingon, on a branch of the Delaware are two yards equipped with every facility for iron ship-building. At Chester is a grrat yard that may justly make the country pround; and at Philadelphia is still another yard, from which have gone grat and notable vessels. The Clyde master may point to his swarms of laborers, but we have something better--the inventive mind that realizes a thousand arms in a single machine. We have men and machiner and a future."

28 pages

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