The British government passed legislation making it illegal for textile machinery to be exported. Skilled engineers will also forbidden to leave the country but Slater, using a false name, emigrated to the United States in 1789.
Slater had a photographic memory and he soon got to work building the latest textile machines. In 1793 he helped establish America's first cotton factory at Pawtucket, Rhode Island. It was a great success and Samuel Slater was a wealthy man when he died in 1835.