Was McCellan a Coward or....

Sep 2012
1,216
Tarkington, Texas
Duncanness, between the time Texas won independence and it was admitted into the US, it was selling most of its wheat crop to the UK. The British Government was trying to drive a wedge between Texas and the US by giving Texans special treatment. There was no railroads to transport the crops. There was some boats and wagons that were used. There was a Riverboat service between Galveston and New Orleans. I vaguely recall the Texans sending Jim Bowie after San Jacinto.

Pruitt
 
Nov 2019
228
Memphis TN
The slaves tied up a lot of credit that could have been put to other uses.

The slaves put a lot of wealth into very few hands and that wealth tended not to circulate. If Southern wealth was more broadly distributed it would have circulated more. In the North, Person A bought something from Person B for $100. Person B used the same $100 to buy something else from Person C. Person C used the same $100 to buy something from Person D. That's $300 of economic activity. In the South a slave created $100 of wealth for his master. The master spent that $100 importing a luxury good from the North or from Europe. No one else in the South benefited because the wealth didn't circulate in the South.
Yes but just like today, the billionaires control a crazy percentage of the economy..

I don’t know why your trying to downplay the economic effect ...




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Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
4,973
Dispargum
I don’t know why your trying to downplay the economic effect ...
Because I've never heard the argument before that Northerners wanted to abolish slavery to increase white wages in the North. If anything it was the reverse - Northern whites feared free blacks would move North and take away white jobs.
 
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Jun 2017
724
maine
I think he's referring to a cash-based economy. Whether you call a farmer's income a wage or profit, it's still cash and works the same way in the economy. Most soldier-aged farmers were probably more correctly farm hands, not proprietors. One of the major differences between the Northern and Southern economies in the 1840s and '50s was the rapid expansion of market farming in the North and the persistence of subsistence farming in the South. Market farming refers to selling a crop for cash rather than the farmer eating it himself.
OK, I've done research on Maine's agricultural economy (as a former president of our local historical society, I know what the situation was in this town). The state's situation was pretty much the same. Because if its poor soil and adverse weather, Maine's agricultural economy was pretty limited (even today, agricultural products don't even make the list of top exports). The Maine Historical Society describes farming before the Civil War as "subsistence"; farmers grew for themselves, bartered with neighbors and augmented their livelihood by part time work (in the winter) with logging, etc. The agricultural system was called "mixed husbandry". I know from going thru census records, the farm hands were members of the farming family. The first railroad in Maine was 1833 and they developed rapidly; however they served mainly timber interests as well as a developing industrial base in the Maine south and along the Maine rivers.

Our little town was 3/5 agricultural. After the ACW, the other 2/5 did surge ahead and produced a first class furniture-making business. But the farmers were left behind and today the town has several good apple orchards and some specialty farming--and that's it. For neighboring towns, the experience was pretty parallel. Only Aroostook County (way up in the north) was a major exporter of agricultural products (potatoes)--and that came after ACW.

So, I guess I'll go back to my original statement. Maine was no better off than the South when it came to subsistence farming. The economic difference came the War. But it was an interesting exercise and I thank you for introducing me to a new idea. :)
 

Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
4,973
Dispargum
Yes, since making my posts about the Northern economy in general, I've looked up the Maine economy in particular and you're right. Market farming seems to have come to Maine more slowly than other places in the North. What does your local knowledge tell you about store-bought vs home made clothes or factory made vs home made furniture in the 1850s?
 
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Jun 2017
724
maine
Yes, since making my posts about the Northern economy in general, I've looked up the Maine economy in particular and you're right. Market farming seems to have come to Maine more slowly than other places in the North. What does your local knowledge tell you about store-bought vs home made clothes or factory made vs home made furniture in the 1850s?
Furniture is a problem issue because the town's earliest commercial enterprise was making furniture. It becomes a chicken-and-egg situation--did furniture making develop here because the locals were so good at it OR were they good at it because they had found some incidental work in that endeavor? I've cataloged in many a piece that came from the farming areas: the furniture was all home-made and all impressive (of course, we take only what is donated and no family is going to donate a poorly made and shabby piece).

In all areas of the town, all clothing was home-made; it the late 1880's some shirt-making operations appeared but "store-bought" clothing was not considered to be very good. This weekend, we had our annual Christmas Open House for the town; we had some of our more spectacular pieces of clothing on display. I must admit that I have always been impressed that those early women could spend 10-12 hours out in the fields, then come home and create these wonderful items by candlelight.
 
Nov 2019
228
Memphis TN
Because I've never heard the argument before that Northerners wanted to abolish slavery to increase white wages in the North. If anything it was the reverse - Northern whites feared free blacks would move North and take away white jobs.
“Perhaps the most influential reform effort of the 19th century was abolitionism. It never attracted many followers; only two percent of northerners were abolitionists, and white southerners rejected the movement. Despite their small numbers, the abolitionists had a profound influence on the debate over slavery in the United States.
Sources”



I have never heard anyone with a history degree claim otherwise.. and that is not a shot at you.. I just mean on documentaries and lectures and such..



From my understanding even among those 2% civil rights were unpopular.




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Nov 2019
334
United States
“Perhaps the most influential reform effort of the 19th century was abolitionism. It never attracted many followers; only two percent of northerners were abolitionists, and white southerners rejected the movement. Despite their small numbers, the abolitionists had a profound influence on the debate over slavery in the United States.
Sources”



I have never heard anyone with a history degree claim otherwise.. and that is not a shot at you.. I just mean on documentaries and lectures and such..



From my understanding even among those 2% civil rights were unpopular.




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If one defines abolution as equal rights the term evokes small support in the 19th century, but if one defines it as rejection of slavery the number jumps greatly. Of Northern states greater than 60% wanted slavery to end immediately, and numbers in the south that often were near to 20%.
 
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Nov 2019
334
United States
Northern European immigration of the late eighteenth century and early 19th century had a profound influence in northern views about slavery. As a member of a family from Sweden whose family were indentured slaves within their home country forced to purchase their own freedom, it manifestly influenced their perceptions of slavery, a much more inhumane practice here against African-Americans.
 
Nov 2019
334
United States
Conversely the other half of my family, some who came as early as the Mayflower (one was the pilot); most became abolitionists because of religious views. One of my Great-Grandfathers was none other than General James Clinton and am a great-grand nephew of Vice-President George Clinton.

I have many family members who died in both the revolutionary war, and the Civil War, many who served under Grant at Vicksburg.

Washington wrote a letter to one my many great great Uncle's thanking him for his service as a Brigadier General of the Militia at Boston.

Conversely my wife's family fought 1/2 for the North and 1/2 for the South, they actually fought on opposite sides at Vicksburg. One of her forbearers was Brigadier General Moore, of Moore's Brigade.
 
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