Some would argue that the decline of manufacturing industry in the USA contributed to Mr Trump’s surprising victory in the Presidential election*. Others might say that manufacturing’s decline was due in part to the tardy adoption of the international system of measures. Here we look at some of the quirks of ‘English measures’, a throw back to the USA’s colonial past and still widely used in America today.
In the early years of the twentieth century, both US customary (USC) and metric measures were seen by some in Britain as threats to the survival of the Imperial system. The end of Empire saw metric supplant Imperial, while USC has endured. Could it become the saviour of the few Imperial measures that survive in the UK, despite the differences between the two systems?
The comment by Han Maenen on the previous article reminds us that this is the 200th anniversary of a decree which ended temporarily the use of the metric system for everyday purposes in France and elsewhere.