Soft fiber obtained from the seed pod of the cotton plant. Was first known in India about 3000 B.C., and was considered very rare and precious. Today it is one of America’s greatest crops, and is spun into yarn and thread, woven and knitted into fabrics. Different types of cotton have different fiber lengths. Usually, the longer the fiber, the better the quality of cotton.

Absorbent – Cotton batting made highly absorbent by chemically removing the natural waxes. Used for medical purposes.
Acala — Mexican variety introduced into U.S. Medium staple cotton grown in the southwestern states.
American – Upland cotton grown in this country. It forms bulk of world’s crop. Fiber runs from 3/4″ to l/Z”.
American Peeler Cotton — Longer staple (l 1/4″) used for combed yarns and fabrics, ie., lawns, dimities, broadcloths.
American Pima Cotton — A cross between Sea Island and Egyptian. Grown in Arizona. Brownish color. Fine strong cotton. (Averages 1 3/8″ to l 5/8″). Used for airplane, balloon cloths and for tire fabrics.
China — Harsh, wiry, very short staple. Can be mixed with wool for blankets. Limited uses.
Egyptian — Fine, lustrous, long staple cotton. Several varieties usually brown in color. (l 2/S” average). Used in U.S. for thread and fine fabrics.
Indian – Cotton grown in India, for many years the consistent second largest cotton producing country. The Indian cottons imported are generally of the harsh, short staple type (8/10″ to 9/10″) for such uses as blanket filling.
Sea Island — Finest of all cotton. White, silky (l-3/5″ Average staple), which is spun into yarns as fine as 300s for lace yarns. Originally grown on small islands off the coast of the Carolinas and in the southern lowlands along the coast.



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