Workshop of the World

stories of industry in & around Philadelphia

Available from Oliver Evans Press, 101 E. Possum Hollow Rd., Wallingford, PA 19086. Payment must accompany order. Add appropriate postage. Volume discounts (10+) available.

Pasted Graphic 2 The Young Mill-Wright and Miller's Guide, Oliver Evans (1795).
In this revolutionary book, Oliver Evans proposed inventions and devices designed to fully automate and streamline the operation of flour mills. Written in plain language with easily understood plates, it became one of the most heavily used technical handbooks of the entire nineteenth century. Practical designs were supported by theoretical and experimental data conducted by Evans and his associates. Reprinted fifteen times between 1795-1865. This reprint of the first edition faithfully reproduces the original high-quality drawings, including two fold-out plates. Additionally, Eugene S. Ferguson, noted authority on Evans and his inventions, has provided an informative introduction.
—Facsimile reprint of the first edition published in 1795, 472 pages, 265 plates, including two fold-outs. Oliver Evans Press, 1990. $30 + $4 postage.

Pasted Graphic 1 The Abortion of the Young Steam Engineer's Guide, Oliver Evans (1805). Oliver Evans discussed his latest invention, the high pressure steam engine. Evan's designs were used in steamboat engines and high pressure mill engines in numerous textile mills, saw mills and other manufactories across the country. Evans also predicted the widespread use of solar energy and described a refrigeration cycle for producing cold water and ice. Evans used the term "abortion" because of his frustration with his inability to issue a larger and more detailed treatise on the subject. Eugene S. Ferguson, noted authority on Evans and his inventions, has provided an informative introduction.
—facsimile reprint of the first and only edition, published in 1805. 159 pages, 4 plates. Oliver Evans Press, 1990. $16 + $4 postage.

Pasted Graphic 3 Workshop of the World—A Selective Guide to the Industrial Archeology of Philadelphia (1990).
"Workshop of the World" was the proud claim of Philadelphia's industries and manufacturers for close to a century after the Civil War. During these years, the city's many neighborhoods supported hundreds of mills and factories which gave it a diversity of production that was unmatched anywhere in the world. In Philadelphia, there were hard goods produced, such as tools, furniture, automobile bodies, locomotives, ships, precision instruments, and toys. Soft goods were also produced in the more than 700 small and large plants across the city. These goods, which included clothing, linens, blankets, rugs, hats, and hosiery, also contributed to the grand claim of Philadelphia as the "Workshop of the World."

Since the 1950s, Philadelphia has changed; the city's economy is no longer tied as strongly to its industrial greatness. Companies are leaving the city, and blocks of buildings that once housed large industries are sitting vacant. As the city approaches the twenty-first century, the industries that made Philadelphia great are being replaced by other forms of business and the shape of the city is evolving to reflect these changes.

Workshop of the World reflects on some of Philadelphia's industries by examining the city on a neighborhood by neighborhood basis; it then provides examples of some of the industries found across the city. The range of sites is diverse, indicating the variety of industries that once existed, and still exist, in Philadelphia.
—Oliver Evans Press (1990). 368 pages, 172 photos, 16 maps, 147 sites, index, 6" x 9", paperbound. $25 + $4 postage.

Workshop of the World Revisited (2007).
An update of all the industrial sites covered in Workshop of the World (1990), with new sections on the history and proposed development along the Delaware River, and an in-depth review of surviving industrial sites in fast-gentrifying neighborhood of Northern Liberties.
—Oliver Evans Press (2007). $13 + $3 postage.

Purchase both
Workshop of the World—A Selective Guide to the Industrial Archeology of Philadelphia (1990) and Workshop of the World Revisited (2007) for $35 + $4 postage.

Also available:

Pasted Graphic 7 A Place to Live and Work—The Henry Disston Saw Works and the Tacony Community of Philadelphia, by Harry C. Silcox.
The remarkable story of Henry Disston's saw manufacturing company and the factory town he built. Using original letter books, shop committee meeting notes, photographs and a wealth of other documents, Silcox provides a rare view of the rise and fall of one of America's largest family owned businesses. He also describes the company's interdependence with Disston's paternalistic neighborhood of Tacony.
—Penn State Press (1994). $28 + $4 postage.

Pasted Graphic 8 Making Arms in the Machine Age—Philadelphia's Frankford Arsenal, 1816-1870, by James J. Farley.
Traces the growth and development of the United States Arsenal at Frankford, PA, from its origin in 1816 to 1870. During this period, the arsenal evolved from a small post where skilled workers hand-produced small-arms ammunition to a full-scale industrial complex employing a large civilian workforce. Farley uses the history of the arsenal to examine larger issues, including the changing technology of early nineteenth century warfare, the impact of new technology on the United States Army, and the reactions of workers and their families and communities to the coming of industrialization.
—Penn State Press (1994). 142 pages, illustrations, 6" x 9", hardcover. $25 + $4 postage.

Pasted Graphic 4 Oliver Evans—Inventive Genius of the American Industrial Revolution, by Eugene S. Ferguson.
A thorough and well-illustrated introduction to the life, achievements and inventions of Oliver Evans (1755-1819).
—Hagley Museum (1980). 72 pages, illustrations, 7" x 8-1/2", paperbound. $12 + $3 postage.

Pasted Graphic 5 The Fairmount Waterworks, by Jane Mork Gibson.
Published on the occasion of the exhibition
"The Fairmount Waterworks, 1812-1911" (July 23-September 25, 1998), celebrating the restoration of the waterworks.
— Philadelphia Museum of Art, Bulletin Vol. 84, #360-361 (Summer 1998). 48 pages, well illustrated with color and black & white plates, technical drawings and maps, 8-1/2" x 11". Limited quantities, $10 + $3 postage.

Oliver Evans Letter to Samuel Huntington, Ohio Governor, 1810
Improvements on the Art of Manufacturing Grain into Flour or Meal, by Oliver Evans. —Reprint of 1791 broadside, enlarged to 23" x 19".
Both items packaged together, $5 + $5 postage.

Poster—1990 SIA Conference in Philadelphia. $5 + $3 postage

Fairmount Waterworks Belt Buckle. $20 + $4 postage.