Located in the county of Greater Manchester, Bolton is at the hub of the borough, which lies in the northwest of the Manchester metropolitan area and rises in the north to the Pennine foothills. By the 16th century Bolton was known for woolen textiles, but by the 18th century cotton had replaced wool, and the production of yarns and fabrics was increasing. Samuel Crompton, a native of Bolton, invented in 1779 the spinning mule, which revolutionized spinning, and Bolton’s first spinning mill was opened in 1780. By the mid-19th century Bolton was an important center for textiles and coal mining as well as papermaking, bleaching, engineering, and a range of other industries.
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