Urbanization and mechanization, and all the downsides they brought with them, had continued in Great Britain in the years since the Luddite Rebellion. In response, a radical group plotted to assassinate the Prime Minister's entire cabinet.
Because of its functionality in providing needed clothing for humans, knitting has been around for a long time. Exactly how long isn't entirely clear, but we do know a good bit about how knitting has traveled with us humans through time.
The Luddite uprising was a series of protests in northern England, in which workers smashed machines in mills and factories. This wasn't the first organized violence against mechanization, but Luddites are the most infamous of all the machine-breakers.