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Item Number:
50 min.
Closed Caption:
A & E Entertainment
For a soft, fuzzy, white fiber, cotton has played a starring role in history. As well as being one of the most useful of materials, cotton has created empires, helped launch at least one civil war, jumpstarted the Industrial Revolution, and become the world's most ubiquitous fabric (you must be wearing at least a piece of it right now). Follow the jaunt cotton makes "from dirt to shirt", as they say in the textiles trade, and the lesser-known journey it makes into thousands of products, including gunpowder, cattle feed, plastics, photographic film, lipstick, and ice cream. We also examine cotton's historical place beginning with its ancient origins, especially India, and examine the many innovations in which cotton had a hand, like the cotton gin, which separated cotton from seed and also had a hand in both oppression and progress in both America and England. And don't forget that evil critter, the boll weevil!

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