The Marie Antoinette Dress that Ignited the Slave Trade
By the end of the century, cotton and muslin had nearly completely replaced silk as the fashionable fabrics of choice. Yet the fall of silk and rise of cotton had implications that reached much further than the borders of France. The Indian cotton industry could no longer keep up with demand, so Europeans were forced to look elsewhere for their supply. Up until the end of the 18th century, tobacco, rice, and other food products dominated the American agricultural industry. That all changed when the demand for cotton suddenly skyrocketed.