Eli Whitney and the Cotton Gin The Cotton Problem Eli Whitney was an American who lived long ago. When he was young, not much cotton was grown in the American South. The South had good weather and soil for growing cotton. But planters could not make money from it. Cotton has seeds that must be picked out before it can be sent to market. The only way to do that was by hand. A person with nimble, or quick and light, fingers could clean only one pound of cotton in a day. It took many people to prepare a large crop for market. Planters thought cotton could be an important crop in the South. They just needed a machine to pick out the seeds. Eli Whitney’s Solution Eli Whitney thought he could make such a machine. Until he began to work on it, Whitney had never seen raw cotton or cotton seeds. So he began to experiment. He faced many problems. For example, he had to make his own tools. It took months to make his first model. One model was stolen. At last, in 1793, Eli Whitney finished his machine. He called it the cotton gin. A cotton gin could clean more cotton in one day than one hundred people could clean by hand. The cotton gin cleaned better, too. Everyone saw how useful the machine was. Planters all through the South began to raise larger crops of cotton. What type of passage is this? A. mystery B. nonfiction C. folktale D. directions

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it would be nonfiction 

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