What does a cotton gin, invented by Eli Whitney, do?

The 1793 invention, the cotton gin, by Eli Whitney mechanically removed seeds from a cotton bloom without harming its fiber.

Previously, seeds had to be removed laboriously by hand. The invention led to an economic boom for the South by increasing the amount of cotton the southern states could provide to textile manufacturers.

It also cemented Southern dependence on the slaves who picked the raw cotton.