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A todo vapor : mechanisation in Porfirian Mexico : steam power and machine building, 1862 to 1906. Aviles-Galan, Miguel Angel 2010

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A TODO VAPOR: MECHANISATION IN PORFIRIAN MEXICO. STEAM POWER AND MACHINE BUILDING, 1862 TO 1906.  by  Miguel Angel Aviles-Galan  B.A., Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico, 2002 M.A., The University of British Columbia, 2004  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY  in  THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (History) THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver) February 2010  © Miguel Angel Aviles-Galan, 2010  Abstract This dissertation develops readings and interpretations about technological artifacts and machines in relation to mechanical engineering, and social, political, and material culture during the Porfiriato, that period in Mexican history associated with the rule of Porfirio DIaz between 1876 and 1910. It is argued that the PorfIriato facilitated the mechanical revolution of the country that transformed the life experience of Mexicans. To describe the process of Mexico’s mechanisation, this dissertation examines the case of an iron foundry, the Fundición de Sinaloa (The FundiciOn or ES), that was established in Mazatlán, State of Sinaloa, by the early 1870s.  It is argued that this  foundry was the site where technological adaptation of steam engineering took place leading to the development of a system for the construction of machines. As a result, from 1891 to 1906, the foundry produced diverse tools and machinery by adapting state-of-the-art thermodynamic technology and machines. The analysis of the Fundición took shape through the interpretation of original engineering drawings and photographs of steam machines built in the workshops of the foundry in Mazatlán.  In addition, other archival documents and secondary sources  were consulted, including the accounts of those who witnessed and experienced the socio-cultural effects of technoscientific artifacts in Mexico at the turn of the nineteenth century. In order to interpret this rich and complex body of evidence, this dissertation utilises, in combination, Actor-Network-Theory, Technological Systems, and visual analysis as theoretical frameworks. It is argued that machines are historical actors that interact with social groups through the creation of networks. In turn, these interactions establish diverse sociotechnological arrangements while shaping the ways in which machines and artifacts are understood and conceptualised across cultures and time. Finally, it is explored how, by the end of the nineteenth century, there was a favourable combination of local and international conditions that constituted the historical context for this case of technological adaptation.  Table of Contents Abstract  .  ii  Table of Contents  iii  List of Tables  v  List of Figures  vi  List of Illustrations  vii  Acknowledgements  xi  Dedication  xii  Introduction  1  Chapter-Station 1: Under the Metallic Skin of Machines  23  Station 1.1. Mechanical Conundrums: French and American Engineering  27  Station 1.2. Paths of Machine Building  36  Station 1.3. Building Steam Engines  40  Station I .4.Machines in Sociotechnical Contexts  48  Chapter-Station 2: Small, Powerful, and Well Constructed: Steam Machines Built at the Fundición de Sinaloa 62 Station 2.1. Showcasing Mexican Engines in the World’s Expositions  63  Station 2.2. Building a System for Building Machines  70  Station 2.3. Metal Casting, Machine Construction and Tool Making  74  Station 2.4. Situated Practice: American, British, and Mexican Machine Builders  91  Station 2.5. The Corliss Steam Engine Company of the USA  94  Station 2.6. British Machine Builders  96  Station 2.7. Mexican Engines: FundiciOn de Sinaloa  97  Chapter-Station 3: From Paper to Steel: Negotiating Visual Representations of Machines 103 Station 3.1. Visualising Steam Engines and Boilers  113  Station 3.2. Negotiated Views: Plans and Real Machines  123  Chapter-Station 4: The Moving Gears of the Fundición de Sinaloa  130  Station 4.1. The Context of Machine Building  132  Station 4.1.2. Building Business Partnerships  135 III  Station 4.2. Building the Fundición de Sinaloa  .139  Station 4.3. Alejandro Loubet y CompañIa  153  Station 4.4. Francisco Echeguren, Hermana y Sobrinos  156  Station 4.5. Joaqumn Redo Balmaceda  159  Station 4.6. Workers & Employees  164  Station 4.7. Negotiations between the Echegurens, the Redos and Loubet  166  Station 4.8. Negotiations between the FundiciOn de Sinaloa and the Mexican Government  170  Chapter-Station 5: Mechanisation in Porfirian Mexico  185  Station 5.1. Framing Mechanisation  187  Station 5.2. Mechanisation, Fomento and Material Progress  191  Station 5.3. Administration of Material Progress  217  Station 5.3. Contested Space: The Government Contract and the FundiciOn  229  Chapter-Station 6: The Mechanical City  246  Chapter 7: Sublime Artifacts: Aesthetics of Machines in Porfirian Material Culture 271 Station 7.1. Photographic Investigation of Porfirian Machines  278  Station 7.1 .1. Content and Context of Photographs of Machines  280  Station 7.1.2. Materiality and Meaning of Photographs of Machines  283  Chapter-Station 8: Conclusion  292  Works Cited  388  Appendix 1: Critical Theory for the Analysis of Technology  422  Appendix 2: Steam Technoscience  428  iv  List of Tables Table 1: Patents of Inventions or Innovations on Steam and Electric Technologies.. ..306 Table 2: Annual Machinery Production, FundiciOn de Sinaloa: 1891-1 906  307  Table 3: Classification of Engines by Horsepower Units, FundiciOn de Sinaloa 1891-1906  308  Table 4: Classification of Boilers by Horsepower Units, FundiciOn de Sinaloa 1891-1906  309  V  List of Figures Figure 1: Advertising of machinery and products made by the Fulton Iron Works of San 310 Francisco, California, 1889 Figure 2: International late-nineteenth century  Actor-Networks  of  Steam  Technoscience  during  the 311  Figure 3: Local Actor-Networks of Steam Technoscience during the late-nineteenth century 312 Figure 4: Interplay between International and Local Actor-Networks of Steam Technoscience during the late-nineteenth century 313 Figure 5: Interconnectedness between International and Local contexts in relationship to Steam Machines and the positioning of the FundiciOn de Sinaloa 314 Figure 6: Transverse section of a simple expansion, double-acting, high pressure steam engine 315 Figure 7: Local I Inside Actor-Networks established by A. Loubet, F. Echeguren, and J. Redo, owners of the FundiciOn de Sinaloa 316 Figure 8: National Actor-Networks established by A. Loubet, F. Echeguren, and J. Redo, owners of the FundiciOn de Sinaloa 317 Figure 9: SecretarIa de Fomento in 1877  318  Figure 10: Secretaria de Fomento in 1882  319  Figure 11: SecretarIa de Fomento in 1894  320  vi  List of Illustrations Map 1: Port and City of Mazatlán in 1897  321  Map 2: Map of Mexico showing the location of the state of Sinaloa and Mazatlán where 322 the FundiciOn de Sinaloa was established Illustration 1: Canada de Metlac (1897). Oil painting by José Maria Velasco Gómez 323 (1840-1912) Illustration 2: “La EvoluciOn Industrial” from the book Mexico, su evoluciOn social, edited 324 by Justo Sierra, 1900-1901 Photographs of Engines built by the Fundición de Sinaloa: El- E17 Photograph of Engine 1: Horizontal, single cylinder  325  Photograph of Engine 2: Horizontal, single cylinder  326  Photograph of Engine 3: Vertical, single cylinder  327  Photograph of Engine 4: Vertical, single cylinder  328  Photograph of Engine 5: Horizontal, single cylinder  329  Photograph of Engine 6: Horizontal, single cylinder  330  Photograph of Engine 7: Horizontal, double-acting cylinder  331  Photograph of Engine 8: Horizontal, double-acting cylinder  332  Photograph of Engine 9: Horizontal, single cylinder  333  Photograph of Engine 10: Horizontal, single cylinder  334  Photograph of Engine 11: Horizontal, single cylinder  335  Photograph of Engine 12: Horizontal, single cylinder  336  Photograph of Engine 13: Horizontal, single cylinder  337  Photograph of Engine 14: Horizontal, single cylinder  338  Photograph of Engine 15: Horizontal, single cylinder with reinforced bed frame  339  Photograph of Engine 16: Vertical, single cylinder  340  Photograph of Engine 17: Unfinished horizontal, single cylinder  341 VII  Photographs of Boilers built by the Fundición de Sinaloa: BI- B15 Photograph of Boiler 1: Scottish type  342  Photograph of Boiler 2: Scottish type  343  Photograph of Boiler 3: Cornish type  344  Photograph of Boiler 4: Scottish type  345  Photograph of Boiler 5: Two Scottish type boilers  346  Photograph of Boiler 6: Vertical Cornish type  347  Photograph of Boiler 7: Cornish type  348  Photograph of Boiler 8: Cornish type  349  Photograph of Boiler 9: Corn ish type  350  Photograph of Boiler 10: Cornish type  351  Photograph of Boiler 11: Two Cornish type boilers  352  Photograph of Boiler 12: Scottish type  353  Photograph of Boiler 13: Vertical Cornish type  354  Photograph of Boiler 14: Cornish type  355  Photograph of Boiler 15: Corn ish type  356  Photographs of Drawings of Engines built by the Fundición de Sinaloa: DEl- DE9 Drawing of Engine 1: Section view of steam engine number 1 (1892)  357  Drawing of Engine 2: Orthogonal and plan views of a portable steam engine, number 10 (1892). Stone crusher based on the Blake model 358 Drawing of Engine 3: Profile and plan views: steam engine number 15 (1893)  359  Drawing of Engine 4: Plan view: compound air compressor, engines 25 and 26(1894). 360 Drawing of Engine 5: Plan view: horizontal engine number 42 (1897)  361  Drawing of Engine 6: Profile and plan views: horizontal engine number 48 (year unknown)  362  Drawing of Engine 7: Orthogonal views: horizontal air-pump number 8 (1892)  363 VIII  Drawing of Engine 8: Plan view: compound engine number 54(1899)  364  Drawing of Engine 9: Profile and section views: vertical engine number 60 (1900)  365  Photographs of Drawings of Boilers built by the Fundición de Sinaloa: DBI-DB 8. Drawing of Boiler 1: Profile, plan and section views: horizontal, fired-tube, Scottish boiler number 1 (1892)  366  Drawing of Boiler 2: Profile, plan and section views: horizontal, fired-tube, Scottish boiler number 5 (1892)  367  Drawing of Boiler 3: Profile, plan and section views: horizontal, fired-tube, Scottish boiler number 12 (1892)  368  Drawing of Boiler 4: Profile and plan views: vertical, fired-tube, number 29 (1894)  369  Drawing of Boiler 5: Profile, plan and section views: horizontal, fired-tube, Scottish boiler number