In Lowell, MA there is a National Historical Park dedicated to the history of textiles in the region. The town was planned specifically for the textiles industry in the 1820s. There is a system of canals winding through a vast campus of mills and dormitories. Expansive brick buildings stretch for blocks, winding through the town. It's a gem of a National Park and worth the visit.
It's not just the buildings that are significant. The history of the people who worked in these mills is equally, if not more fascinating. The mill workforce was largely comprised of young women from rural counties around New England. They came to Lowell to find employment of a kind that didn't exist before: wage-labor.
At the time, 1840s, working for wages was a new type of lifestyle for women. It offered freedom, to a certain degree, but was also hard and sometime dangerous work. Most women worked at the mills for under three years and then moved on to other things (marriage, moved to another town, moved back to their home town).
I visited the Boott Cotton Mills Museum, part of the larger National Historical Park, to see first hand what it would have been like to be a "mill girl" during the industrial revolution. They have working looms and an interactive exhibit to explain what it would have been like to be engaged in the work of the booming textiles industry that swept through New England during the industrial revolution.