The Consequences of Cotton in Antebellum America

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About the Book

In 1846, political economist Karl Marx wrote that “without cotton, you have no modern industry.” Indeed, before the American Civil War, cotton brought wealth, power and prosperity to both America and Europe. Giant industries in the northern U.S., extensive shipping networks up and down the Atlantic Coast and to Europe, new inventions and revised applications of old machines—all sprang from the success of King Cotton. This thoughtful study traces the impact of southern cotton on most of the important facets of life in antebellum America, including employment, international relations, agriculture, shipping, the U.S. economy, Native American relations, and the subjugation of humans. This one plant fashioned the way of life of the South and profoundly affected the destiny of the entire American people.

About the Author(s)

William J. Phalen holds a Ph.D. in American history from Rutgers University. He lives in Staten Island, New York.

Bibliographic Details

William J. Phalen
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 212
Bibliographic Info: 10 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7700-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1490-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Preface  1

Introduction  3

1. Mechanization  11

2. Transportation  30

3. The Founding Fathers  46

4. Slavery  62

5. The Impact of Tariffs  78

6. The Effect on the Economy  95

7. Mills in the North  117

8. Mills in the South  137

9. The International Situation  152

Conclusion  171

Chapter Notes  177

Bibliography  191

Index  201


Book Reviews & Awards

“Phalen seeks to reveal the critical role cotton played in antebellum development, making the author’s conclusions available to a wider audience in an easy to read and understand format…well written…recommended”—Choice.