The New Student's Reference Work/Lowell

Low′ell (lō′el), a manufacturing city in Middlesex County, Mass., is on Merrimac River, 25 miles northwest of Boston. The river has a fall of 33 feet, which gives it fine water-power, and it is one of the largest manufacturing cities of the country. There are boot and shoe factories, nearly one hundred cotton and woolen mills and the largest carpet manufactory in the country, turning out 4,000,000 yards of carpeting a year. Other manufactures are leather, paper, iron goods, patent medicines, chemicals and carriages. Lowell manufacturers have been noted for their care of their work-people. In early days the operatives were gathered from the country around, and largely were the sons and daughters of New England farmers. They lived in boarding-houses carefully managed, attending evening schools and lectures, publishing local journals, and having the use of free reading rooms and libraries. The large foreign emigration now supplies a permanent manufacturing population; but the system of good homes and advantages for study and recreation is followed by many of the large corporations. The city pays much attention to education; the value of its school-property exceeds $1,600,000; and on elementary education it expends annually over $400,000. It maintains a public library with over 65,000 volumes. Lowell was made a city in 1826. Population 106,294, a gain of 12 per cent. over the previous decade.