|Building Needed||Great Estates|
A machine used to "separate the wheat from the chaff" in a very literal fashion.
The harvesting of any cereal crop is only one part of the work. Threshing is the backbreaking process of separating the grain from the stalks: work that takes as long as the gathering-in of the crop itself. The horse- driven machine takes the grain, separates it from husk and stalk, and then collects it. The work of many men is done in seemingly no time at all, and with less wastage.
Historically, Scottish inventor Andrew Meikle's (1719-1811) threshing machine was not an immediate success, but the design soon improved. Its inner workings can be deduced from its other name of "thrashing machine!"
It was not popular among the rural working classes, as many lost their jobs. The 1830 Swing Riots included machine breaking by the dispirited and desperate rural poor, mirroring the urban Luddite riots that targeted mills. "Captain Swing", the mysterious leader and figurehead of the rioters, probably never existed as a single individual, making "him" impossible to trace and catch!