Slavery and American Agricultural History

  title={Slavery and American Agricultural History},
  author={Gavin Wright},
  journal={Agricultural History},
  • Gavin Wright
  • Published 1 October 2003
  • History
  • Agricultural History
This essay considers the role of slavery in American agricultural history by examining the impact of political decisions during the period when the boundary between free and slave states was not yet settled. This boundary was not dictated by geographic imperatives. In Kentucky, an early "beach-head" in the bluegrass district allowed slavery to become firmly entrenched, even in a state where the majority of farmers held no slaves. On the other hand, slavery was vigorously debated in all of the… 

Tables from this paper

The Cotton Boom and Slavery in Nineteenth-Century Rural Egypt

The “staples thesis” argues that institutions in a given region could be explained by the nature of production of its prevailing staples, whereby slavery is likely to emerge in “slave-conducive”

Shaping Ideology and Institutions: Economic Incentives and Slavery in the US South∗

The US South was both economically reliant on slave labor and at the forefront of its ideological and political defense. This paper shows that economic conditions shaped the support for slavery.

Could Thomas Jefferson Have Ended Slavery? An Economic Analysis

Could slavery have ended early on without a civil war? That is the counterfactual question considered herein. More specifically, could Thomas Jefferson, a slaveholder himself, have convinced the

How the Legacy of Slavery Survives: Labor Market Institutions and Human Capital Investment*

This research examines the impact of slavery on long-run development and its detailed mechanism which consists of two key components: labor market institutions and human capital investment. Using

Slavery, Capitalism, and the Problem of Misprision

  • P. Coclanis
  • History, Economics
    Journal of American Studies
  • 2018
One of the most interesting scholarly developments in historical circles over the course of the last few years has been the unanticipated rise of the field known as the “new history of American

Slave Systems: The comparative economics of slavery in the Greco-Roman world

A comparative perspective improves our understanding of the critical determinants of the largescale use of slave labor in different sectors of historical economies, including classical Greece and the

The Profitability of Slave Labor and the "Time" Effect

(ProQuest: ... denotes formulae omitted.)For over fifty years, the profitability of slave labor - an issue almost wholly identified with investments in slavery in the southern United States - has

Seeking the Middle in a Sectionalizing America: James Dinsmore and the Shaping of Regional Cultural Economies, 1816-1872

ii Acknowledgements v Introduction 2 Chapter One: Between Worlds: The Unmaking of a New Englander 9 Chapter Two: The “Principle of Hope”: Exploiting Opportunities on the Periphery of the Old South 44

Naturalization of Slavery and Discrimination in the United States: An Analysis of the Roles of Protestantism, Capitalism and Social Darwinism in the Formation of Demeaning Black Stereotypes

: After the first encounter between the Occident and the non-white, non-Christian subjects in the fifteenth century, the Western mind began to Otherize blacks through a deliberate exaggeration of

The Fiscal Origins of Comparative Inequality Levels: An Empirical and Historical Investigation

This research exploits novel evidence on current and historical inequality dynamics, as well as an instrumental variable (IV) strategy (founded on historical settler mortality à la Acemoglu et al.),



Democracy and Slavery in Frontier Illinois: The Bottomland Republic

Democracy and Slavery in Frontier Illinois: The Bottomland Republic. By James Simeone. (DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press, 2000. Pp. x, 289. $38.00.) In the years following their state's

Slaves without Contexts@@@Many Thousands Gone: The First Two Centuries of Slavery in North America

In the late 1990s, most Americans, black and white, identify slavery with cotton, the deep South, and the African-American church. But at the beginning of the 19th century, after almost 200 years of

Slaves as Fixed Capital: Slave Labor and Southern Economic Development

ACCORDING to Eugene D. Genovese: "Slavery requires all hands to be occupied at all times."'1 The statement implies that the requirement is peculiar to slavery, differentiating it from other forms of

Geographical Inquiry and American Historical Problems.

Introduction: the practice of geographical history 1. The ecological causes of the Virginia mortality crisis, 1607-1624 2. Why the Puritans settled in New England: the problematic nature of English

The Settlement and Growth of the Colonies: Population, Labor, and Economic Development

INSTITUTIONS OF SETTLEMENT In the years following its establishment of a settlement at Jamestown in 1607, the Virginia Company set out to build an agricultural colony that would earn profits for

Turnover Cost and the Distribution of slave Labor in Anglo-America

  • C. Hanes
  • History, Economics
    The Journal of Economic History
  • 1996
In the eighteenth-century British Empire and the antebellum South, slaves were concentrated in domestic service and rural enterprises like agriculture and ironworks. I argue that employers in these

Without Consent or Contract: The Rise and Fall of American Slavery. By Robert William Fogel · New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1989. 539 pp. Charts, maps, illustrations, tables, notes, references, and index. $22.50

sively, a victim of the institution he sought so desperately to protect" (p. 199), and he summarizes the major points of his thesis with Ruffin again as the example. Missing throughout the book is

The Relative Productivity Hypothesis of Industrialization: The American Case, 1820-1850

The American Northeast industrialized rapidly from about 1820 to 1850, while the South remained agricultural. Industrialization in the Northeast was substantially powered during these decades by

The Political Economy of the Cotton South: Households, Markets, and Wealth in the Nineteenth Century.

The impact of cotton and slavery in the nineteenth century American South was so dramatic and enduring that neither the region nor the nation has yet escaped from the influence of that era of