Capitalism's captives: The maritime united states slave trade, 1807-1850

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

The maritime interstate trade in bondspersons illustrates the contours of United States capitalism of the early nineteenth century as it developed between 1807 and midcentury. The saltwater trade between the Chesapeake and New Orleans comprised four stages corresponding to larger economic developments. An incidental slave trade rose in the context of the US ban on imported slaves, embargoes, and the growth of domestic commerce. An essential trade followed, growing in the post-War of 1812 transatlantic market for agricultural staples. It was carried on aboard vessels plying the so-called cotton triangle and also ships carrying regionally-specific goods and commodities between domestic ports. The 1830s witnessed a vertical trade exemplified by one slaving firm that responded to the swift expansion of credit and surging demand. Following the panic of 1837, market fragmentation led to a mechanical trade, which was also dependent on robust exports of slave-produced crops. Financial technologies propelled that development, and the maritime slave trade was nearly seamlessly integrated into the broader coastal trade.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)897-921
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Social History
Volume47
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

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slave trade
slave
capitalist society
state capitalism
embargo
market
ban
commerce
fragmentation
agricultural product
commodity
credit
nineteenth century
firm
demand
economics
Capitalism
Slave Trade
Captive

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this

Capitalism's captives : The maritime united states slave trade, 1807-1850. / Schermerhorn, Jack.

In: Journal of Social History, Vol. 47, No. 4, 2014, p. 897-921.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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