Tuesday, May 31, 2016

EBHS 2016 Conference Program Available

The Economic and Business History Society (EBHS) held its 41st annual conference on May 26-28, 2016, in Montreal, Canada. The program is now posted on-line as a PDF. The meeting featured panels on such topics as "Of Politics and Trade"; "Banking and Money in the Early 20th Century"; and "Systemic Issues in Economic History," as well as several sessions presented in French. The keynote address at the meeting was given by Johanne Burgess of the History Department at the University of Quebec at Montreal, where she teaches courses on the economic, social, and urban history of Quebec and Canada in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. For her talk, she spoke on "Business History and Montreal's Urban Landscape."

Friday, May 27, 2016

Over the Counter: Issue No. 26

Some links of interest from around the web:
Many researchers have used the very detailed Sanborn Fire Insurance maps; the  Michigan State University Library has compiled a list of links to repositories that have scanned portions of the maps. (Note that a large collection is available through ProQuest for a fee or university access; the MSU list generally refers to freely accessible sites.)

Another report from Mark Boonschoft on the Early American Manuscripts digitization project at the New York Public Library--all of interest to business historians.

A review from The Guardian of an exhibit at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, "America's Shakespeare."  David Smith talks with curator Georgianna Ziegler about Shakespeare and the American advertising industry.

Two pieces of interest by Emma Hart of the University of St. Andrews: on the Global Urban History blog she writes about "Vicissitudes of Globality: The Many Connections of Eighteenth-Century Charleston"; for the Omohundro Institute blog, she considers "The 'Offal' Difficulties of Writing Readable Economic History."

Via Slate's Vault, digitized maps of Chinese businesses in late 19th-century San Francisco

Also in Slate, Rebecca Onion offers a round-up of digitized materials from the black press; she particularly focuses on Black Quotidian: Everyday History in African-American Newspapers, curated by Matt Delmont.

The "Imagining Markets" project's third workshop was held at the University of Cambridge on April 7, 2016. The program, with abstracts of the papers, is available on the project website.

Forbes has published a discussion of Laura Phillips Sawyer's work on Edna Gleason, who became known as the “mother of fair trade” in the late 1920s.

As many readers know, Stephen Mihm writes regularly for the Bloomberg view. His posts are available from this link

Heidi Tworek writes, with Gabriel Pizzorno, about the History Lab project at Harvard University in the April issue of AHA Perspectives.
   Tworek also helped organize and participated this spring in a conference, "Communicating International Organisations in the 19th and 20th Centuries," at the European University Institute; Richard R. John spoke at this conference as well.

Also from AHA Perspectives, "History on the Download: Podcasting the Past," which discusses some well-regarded ventures, including "Who Makes Cents? A History of Capitalism Podcast."

Georgia Tech and the University of Georgia have created a US News Map that allows users to search the texts in the "Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers" project and visualize the results across space and time. Very easy to use, but users should be aware that the "Chronicling America" project has many gaps in coverage, so that results can't be viewed as definitive--but they are useful visualizations. An overview is provided by a Slate article on the News Map project.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

CFP: CHARM Conference 2017

The Conference on Historical Analysis and Research in Marketing (CHARM) will hold its next meeting on June 1-4, 2017, at Liverpool John Moores University. The theme of the meeting will be "Explorations in Globalization and Glocalization: Marketing History Through the Ages." According to the call for papers:
Both individual papers and entire panels on all aspects of marketing history, historic marketing, and the history of marketing thought in all geographic areas and all time frames are welcome. In accord with the Conference theme, we welcome papers that both examine the history of marketing as a discipline and also critically draw on marketing as a source in reconstructing the past.
    The deadline for submissions is December 18, 2016.
    Doctoral students with a particular interest in research methods in marketing history and marketing theory are invited to attend a full-day workshop that immediately precedes the conference. To be considered for this workshop, applicants should submit to Maria Kalamas by December 5, 2016, a statement of interest, a CV, a preliminary or final dissertation prospectus of no more than 10 pages, and a letter of support from the dissertation supervisor (or prospective supervisor).
     For a fuller description of possible topics, application procedures, and other information, please see the complete call for papers.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Digital Resource: Plantation Records On-Line

Often containing account books, diaries, planting information, and records of the births, deaths, and sale of enslaved workers, plantation records are a valuable resource for business historians. Although it is possible to access a selection of these materials via ProQuest's Plantation Records database, access requires a subscription. Libraries and other institutions are making progress in digitizing relevant holdings and making them freely available. The following provides a sampling of such projects:
Grenada Plantation Records, New York Public Library
Newton Plantation Collection, Barbados Museum and Historical Society
Henry Laurens Account Book, 1766-1773, College of Charleston Libraries
Journal of Charles Cotesworth Pinckney's Plantations, 1818-1819, College of Charleston Libraries
Drayton Papers, Drayton Hall
Thomas Middleton Plantation Account Book, 1734-1813, University of North Carolina Libraries
Manigault Plantation Journal, University of North Carolina Libraries
Hall Family Papers and Sugar Plantation Records, University of California San Diego Library
Greenwood Plantation Accounts, Portal to Texas History
Marx E. Cohen Plantation Journals, University of South Carolina Libraries
Thomas Thistlewood Papers, Beinecke Library, Yale University
Mason Family Account Book, George Mason University

Friday, May 20, 2016

PEAES Conference: “A Re-Union of Interests”

The 16th annual conference of the Program in Early American Economy and Society (PEAES), "A Re-Union of Interests: Political Economy in North America during the Revolution and Early Republic," will be held on October 6-7, 2016, at the Library Company of Philadelphia. The meeting  celebrates the publication of Cathy Matson and Peter Onuf’s 1990 work, A Union of Interests: Political and Economic Thought in Revolutionary America.  The conference announcement states:
In recognition of these two scholars’ prodigious scholarship, legacy of mentorship, and leadership in signal institutions that further early North American and Atlantic research, this conference draws together some of the finest scholars working in the field of late eighteenth and early nineteenth century political economy and economic culture. By breaking from old historiographical dichotomies and articulating a new perspective about the broadly defined economic interests and ideology in the early republic, A Union of Interests continues to spur fresh studies of the early republic’s political culture and economic development. Taking Matson and Onuf’s book as the point of departure, the conference will assess the field a quarter of a century later and showcase many of the most exciting new directions in the study of early North American political economy.
A keynote address will be delivered by John Larson of Purdue University. About one month before this conference, papers will be available online for registered attendees to read. For further information please contact PEAES director, Cathy Matson, at cmatson@udel.edu or Rick Demirjian at redemirj@camden.rutgers.edu. Website information, including the program, will be available soon at www.librarycompany.org/economics.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Reminder: WEHC First Call Closes on May 30

A reminder that the deadline for the first call for sessions for the next World Economic History Congress (WEHC), to be held in Boston, Massachusetts, on July 29-August 3, 2018, is May 30. The general theme of the meeting is "Waves of Globalization." According to the call for sessions,
The Executive Committee of the IEHA welcomes proposals from all members of the international economic history community, whatever their institutional affiliation or status, as well as from scholars in related disciplines. While seeking proposals for sessions that explore facets of [the] broad theme, we also welcome submissions on the economic and social histories of all places and periods, on the exploration of varied sources and methods, and on the theory and the uses of economic history itself. Furthermore, we invite members to employ and analyze diverse strategies for representing the past. . . . Given the diversity of our affiliated membership we encourage panel proposals that highlight scholarship emerging from economic history, business history, demographic history, environmental history, global and world history, social history, rural and urban history, gender studies, material culture, methodological approaches to historical research, history of economics and economic thought, and other related fields.
A second call for sessions will be issued after the first round decisions have been finalized in the winter of 2017.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Economic History Review: Women's Committee Virtual Special Issue

Collected to mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the first public gathering of the Women's Committee of the Economic History Society (EHS), this special issue (May 2015) of the Economic History Review makes available online articles (or short pieces) by Maxine Berg, Francesca Carnevali, Eleanora Carus-Wilson, Marian Dale, Elizabeth Gilboy, Katrina Honeyman, Pat Hudson, Jane Humphries, Anne Laurence, Elizabeth Levett, Eileen Power, Pam Sharpe, and Joan Thirsk. The Introduction, by Helen Paul, offers an extended discussion of women in the EHS and the profession generally, their writing, and their positions. Most of the essays can be downloaded directly; some require clicking on the "get PDF" button that appears after following the link from the table of contents.
    Interested readers can find more information about the Women's Committee on the EHS website.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Over the Counter: Issue No. 25

Materials of interest from around the web:
Cartografia, a blog devoted to historical maps, has done a series of posts highlighting the work of nineteenth-century French economic geographer and cartographer Charles Joseph Minard. "Mondays with Minard" contains several posts of interest.

The Stigler Center blog reported on last fall's conference at Harvard Business School, "The Crisis in the Economic Theory of the Firm," where scholars addressed the question: Is Milton Friedman’s dictum that firms that maximize shareholder value maximize social value as well still relevant in a post-Citizens United world?

Robert E. Wright published an article on the History News Network contesting the idea that economic growth rested on chattel slavery in the United States: "Freedom, Not Slavery, Is the Root Cause of Economic Growth."

"The Future of the African American Past" is a conference to be held on May 19-21 at the Smithsonian Institution in conjunction with the opening later in 2016 of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC. Among the several sessions will be "Slavery and Freedom," chaired by Eric Foner, and "Capitalism and the Making and Unmaking of Black America," chaired by Steven Hahn.

The History Company has a brief review of the recently opened Aviva Archive website, which provides a digital sample of the combined Commercial Union, General Accident, and Norwich Union archive, called "the most important insurance archive in the United Kingdom."

We are saddened to report the death, on March 1, 2016, of Peter Mathias of the University of Cambridge.

A number of books of interest have received recent attention in the media:
  • Edward Rothstein reviewed Empire of Things, by Frank Trentmann, for the Wall Street Journal
  • Peter James Hudson wrote a review essay, "The Racist Dawn of Capitalism" (covering Empire of Cotton: A Global History, by Sven Beckert; The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism, by Edward E. Baptist; River of Dark Dreams: Slavery and Empire in the Cotton Kingdom, by Walter Johnson; and The Price of Emancipation: Slave-Ownership, Compensation and British Society at the End of Slavery, by Nicholas Draper) for the Boston Review
  • Martha Howell reviewed The Richest Man Who Ever Lived: The Life and Times of Jacob Fugger, by Greg Steinmetz, for the New York Review of Books
  • Peter Conti-Brown discusses his new book on The Power and Independence of the Federal Reserve with Knowledge@Wharton; podcast also available AHA's Perspectives on History author Elizabeth Elliott examines Prince of Darkness: The Untold Story of Jeremiah G. Hamilton, Wall Street’s First Black Millionaire, with the author, Shane White
And in general, an excellent source for media reviews of relevant books is the NEP-HIS Blog Book Review site.

The Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society at the University of Chicago held a one-day meeting in March on "Political Economy in the Age of Enlightenment and Revolution: Interdisciplinary Approaches."

In February BackStory, the American history podcast, broadcast "Hard Times: A History of Unemployment."
The U.S. Bureau of the Census has digitized and made available the complete content of the Census Atlas of the United States.

In March EHESS hosted a workshop on "Transcending Fibers and Regions: Global Manufacture and Circulation of 'Cheaper' Cloth-Clothing, 17th-20th Centuries"; the program and abstracts of papers (in English) are available here.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Web Exhibit: R. R. Donnelly & Sons

"Printing for the Modern Age: Commerce, Craft, and Culture in the RR Donnelly Archive" is the digital portion of an exhibit mounted by the University of Chicago Library. As the site's introduction explains, the exhibit
explores the enormous impact that printing technology and print media have had on modern life. Materials in the exhibition are drawn from the RR Donnelley Archive, the historic corporate archive of R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company, the Chicago-based firm that has become the largest provider of print and print-related products and services in the world. The cumulative impact of RR Donnelley on modern American life has been remarkable. In nearly every aspect of home or business life, Americans have encountered RR Donnelley-printed products--Sears, Ward's or Penney's retail catalogs, city telephone directories, magazines from Time, Life, and Business Week to Sunset and National Geographic, best-selling books from trade publishers such as Random House and Penguin, sets of Encyclopaedia Britannica or World Book, promotional circulars in the local newspaper and direct-mail advertising, and financial documents and corporate publications.
Materials are divided into chronological and topical categories that cover the company's business history, technological advances, activity during the Second World War, printing of mail order catalogues, among many others. The text of the catalogue produced to accompany the exhibit has also been digitized.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Program Available: Omohundro Institute Annual Conference

"A Grand Jamaica Ball!" pub. by William Holland (London, 1802)
The 22nd annual conference of the Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture (OIEAHC) will be held at Worcester, Massachusetts, on June 23-26, 2016. Hosted by Worcester Polytechnic Institute and the American Antiquarian Society, the conference’s twin themes will be “Native American Transformations” and “Early America at Work.” The preliminary program is now available on line; a number of sessions feature topics of interest to business historians, including:
Session 3: “The Visual Culture of Advertising: Benevolence and Business in Early America"
Session 4: “Native American Material Histories:  New Approaches to Creating, Consuming, and Collecting"
Session 12: “Slavery Afloat and Ashore"
Session 15: “Work and Worship: Religion and the Early American Economy"
Session 25: “Deception in Early America"
For the complete program and information on registration and accommodations, please see the Conference website.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Colloquium: “Money, Power and Print,” 2016

Tredustan Court   © Copyright Humphrey Bolton and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
"Money, Power and Print: An Interdisciplinary Colloquium on the Financial Revolution in the British Isles, 1688-1776" will be held at Hay-on-Wye, Wales, on June 23-25, 2016. "Money, Power and Print" is an association of scholars interested in "interdisciplinary studies of contemporary attitudes toward the Financial Revolution in early modern Britain, specifically the rise of banks, paper money, joint-stock corporations, stock markets, and public debt." The schedule for the 2016 meeting is now available on the organization's website, along with information about accommodations. Friday afternoon sessions and dinner will take place at Tredustan Court, home of the wife of the polymath Joseph Harris, author of Essay upon Money and Coins (1757, 1758).
      Questions may be directed to meeting coordinator Chris Fauske (Department of Communications, Salem State University).

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Management and Organizational History on "The Historic Turn"

Volume 11 (May 2016) of Management and Organizational History is a special issue entitled "Re-visiting the Historic Turn 10 years later: Current Debates in Management and Organizational History." According to the authors of the introductory essay (Albert J. Mills, Roy Suddaby, William M. Foster, and Gabrielle Durepos),
Central to the first issue of MOH was a renewed call for a ‘historic turn.’ Ten years later, there is some question if the ‘historic turn’ has been fully realized or even adequately conceptualized. Nonetheless, a growing consensus around the need for a historical turn has arguably served to paper over some potentially significant differences and debates. In this special issue, we revisit the idea and progress of the notion of the historic turn in MOS through the eight contributing articles. We frame our discussion of the papers through a focus on the notion of the historic turn itself, the issue of critically rethinking MOS from an historical perspective, new turns and developments, MOH and contemporary thinking about the past and history, the performance of history, polyphonic constitutive historicism, fusions of methods and theoretical framing, and tales from the field.
Access to the full text of the essays requires a personal or institutional subscription, but the abstracts are available on-line. The table of contents and links to the abstracts are available here.

Monday, May 2, 2016

CFP: Society of Early Americanists 2017

The Society of Early Americanists’ 10th biennial conference will take place in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on March 2-4 2017. Proposals for traditional or experimental format sessions on all aspects of early America are welcome, but the program committee will be especially attentive to the question of the public in early America as well as the public place of early American studies today. Please visit the call for papers website for instructions on submitting proposals.
    The deadline for session proposals is May 9, 2016. The call for individual papers will go out in July, with a deadline of August 15, 2016.
    Questions may be addressed to 2017sea@gmail.com or laura-stevens@utulsa.edu.