Cotton spinning and power-loom weaving are the chief of numerous manufacturing industries, and there are large collieries in the vicinity.
The first power-loom for cotton manufacture was set up in North Providence in 1817.
The principal industry was weaving, but the substitution of the power-loom for the hand-loom nearly put an end to it.
The Cartwright memorial hall, principally the gift of Lord Masham, opened in 1904 and containing an art gallery and museum, commemorates Dr Edmund Cartwright (1743-1823) as the inventor of the power-loom and the combingmachine.
Another son of the first John Lowell, Francis Cabot Lowell (1775-1817), the founder in the United States of cotton manufacturing, was born in Newburyport on the 7th of April 1775, graduated at Harvard in 1793, became a merchant in Boston, and, during the war of 1812, with his cousin (who was also his brother-in-law), Patrick Tracy Jackson, made use of the knowledge of cotton-spinning gained by Lowell in England (whither he had gone for his health in 1810) and devised a power loom.