Skip to main content


Showing posts from June, 2011

Digital Resource: Japanese Yearbook on Business History

For many years, the Business History Society of Japan published the Japanese Yearbook on Business History , an English-language scholarly journal. In 2004, the Society renamed its journal Japanese Research in Business History , in order to reflect a more wide-ranging focus. Volumes 1-20 (1984-2003) of the original journal and volumes 21-24 (2004-2007) of its new incarnation have now been digitized, and the contents are available on-line without restriction. (Users should note that the year designation of volumes 1-20 is off by one year, so that the dates are given as 1985-2004; however, the volume numbers are correct and agree with the complete contents listing available from the BHSJ website.)    Researchers might also be interested in other contents of the site, which is hosted by the Journal@rchive . Operated by the Japan Science and Technology Agency, the site aims to make available Japanese research on all subjects. It currently contains over 200 journals , many of them in En

European Historical Economics Society Program Now Available

Guinness Storehouse interior The European Historical Economics Society (EHES) is holding its annual conference on September 2-3, 2011, in Dublin at the Guinness Storehouse . The detailed program is now available, as well as information about registration, lodging, and other details. Robert Allen will offer a keynote address on "Why Are Some Countries Rich and Others Poor?" Other highlights include two sessions (in groups 4 and 5) on business history and a roundtable on the Industrial Revolution featuring Robert Allen, Nicholas Crafts, Deirdre McCloskey, and Joel Mokyr. Papers will be posted to the website as they are received.

"FRESH" CFP and Schedule of Upcoming Meetings

The next meeting of FRESH (Frontier Research in Economic and Social History) will be held in Antwerp, Belgium, on October 28, 2011. The keynote speaker will be Jan Luiten van Zanden of Utrecht University, who will talk about “The North Sea Area and the Origins of ‘Modern Economic Growth,’ 1200‐1800.”    FRESH meetings are aimed at researchers in any field of economic and social history. The meetings are based on the belief that it is helpful for scholars to present their ongoing research at an early stage—normally before it is published as a working paper and certainly before publication in books or journals. The main aim of the meetings is to gather researchers in a friendly and collegial environment where they can present their research and receive constructive criticism from their peers.    Prospective speakers should submit a one‐page abstract and a short CV to Jord Hanus (email: ) no later than July 31, 2011 . Notification of acceptance will be given by mi

Full EBHA 2011 Program Now Available

The program for the 2011 meeting of the European Business History Association (EBHA), which will be held in Athens, Greece, on August 24-26, has now been posted. The theme for the meeting is "Business Finance and the State in the 20th Century: European Comparisons in Historical Perspectives, Crisis and Transformation." Also available on the meeting website are details about accommodations, travel, and registration.    For those wishing to plan ahead, the EBHA has announced that the 2012 meeting will be held in Paris, France, August 30-September 1. The theme will be "Business Enterprises and the Tension between Local and Global." A full call for papers will be posted when it becomes available.    And even further ahead, plans are in the works for a joint EBHA-BHC meeting in Miami, Florida, scheduled for June 24-27, 2015.

Digital Resources: Political/Editorial Cartoons

Political cartoons have many uses, particularly in teaching. They provide a quick visual statement, and they also invite discussion, not only of the immediate topic, but of many aspects of the period in which they were drawn. Several collections are on-line, some of which may be searched via relevant keywords such as "business," "railroads," etc. A few websites of interest: Political Cartoons from the Library of Congress (The LOC blog also has an essay on teaching with political cartoons: "Seriously Funny," with an excellent link to the term "political cartoon" searched in the Prints and Photographs Division) American Political Prints, 1766-1876 (HarpWeek at the Library of Congress) ( HarpWeek also lists other freely available topics on its website) Railroad Cartoons (Mark Aldrich, Smith College, with commentary) Treasury of Fine Art, Political/Editorial Cartoons (Ohio State) Thomas Nast (Ohio State) Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and

Richard White's Railroaded Attracts Media Attention

We mentioned here earlier Richard White's op-ed piece on high-speed rail , in which he drew on his new work on the transcontinental railroad. The recently published book, Railroaded: The Transcontinentals and the Making of Modern America (W. W. Norton, May 2011), has been attracting general media attention. White and the book were featured on the June 13 broadcast of the Diane Rehm Show on NPR , and it has been reviewed for Slate by Donald Worster and by John Steele Gordon for the Wall Street Journal . White himself has now offered his assessment on the Page 99 Test website. Excerpts from the book are available on the Norton site.     Business historians will be cheered by White's remarks in one of his notes: Most American historians have relegated the study of corporations to the subfield of business history. Business historians have thrived on the neglect of their colleagues and created an impressive body of literature that should be better integrated into the larger

Call for Papers: APEBH 2012 Conference

The next Asia and Pacific Economic and Business History (APEBH) Conference, sponsored by the Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand (EHSANZ), will be held February 16-18, 2012, in Canberra at the Australian National University (ANU).  The theme is "Economic Integration: Historical Perspectives from Europe and the Asia-Pacific Region," though proposals on other topics will be considered. "Researchers across a broad range of disciplines are warmly welcomed. Early career researchers are encouraged to participate. The conference organizers are particularly interested in attracting papers that examine developments in countries and regions in the Asia-Pacific region and papers that provide an international comparative perspective." The call for papers further states: . . . throughout history, processes of economic integration of factor and product markets occurred through both informal and formal processes. They occurred across regions within countries a

CHORD "Food and Beverages" Conference Website Available

Kitchen Still Life, c. 1650 The Centre for the History of Retailing and Distribution (CHORD) at the University of Wolverhampton is holding a conference on "Food and Beverages: Retailing, Distribution, and Consumption in Historical Perspective," on September 7-8, 2011, at the Telford Campus. The conference website is now available, with program, abstracts of the papers, and information on registration, lodging, and area activities. Session topics include: The provision of food in the early-modern period Distribution networks Drinking dens? New perspectives on clubs and public houses, c. 1600-2000 Introducing novelty and innovation Trade cultures Individualism and the state Family businesses Food technologies Gendering the retail and consumption of alcohol in comparative perspective Symbolic meanings and consumer preferences Consumption Foreign cuisine For additional information, please contact Laura Ugolini at .

New Digital Resource from Hagley: Industry along the Brandywine

The Hagley Museum and Library recently launched "Delaware’s Industrial Brandywine," an online project produced by the library with support from the Delaware Industrial History Initiative, the Delaware Humanities Forum, and the National Endowment of the Humanities. The goal of the project is to fully document businesses that benefited from the unique geography of the Brandywine River along its eight-mile stretch in Delaware. Currently, the database holds over one hundred records of individual businesses that operated on the Brandywine from the seventeenth to the twentieth century. The site can be searched or browsed by people, industry type, or date range. The majority of the sources for the project have also been digitized and can be accessed from the project site. There is also an interactive map that allows visitors to learn about industries in specific locations.    The project is ongoing and additional information will be incorporated as it is uncovered. The Ha

The Uses of Inventories: “Human Well-Being and the Industrious Revolution”

Sheilagh Ogilvie of the Department of Economics at the University of Cambridge is the principal investigator on an ERSC-funded project, " Human Well-Being and the Industrious Revolution : Consumption, Gender, and Social Capital in a German Developing Economy, 1600-1900." The project investigates consumption and well-being over three centuries through a microeconomic analysis of two communities—the town of Wildberg in the Württemberg Black Forest and the village of Auingen in the Swabian Jura. The heart of the project is a close examination of estate inventories from the regions. In the words of the project description: How do consumption, production and reproduction interact to improve human well-being? The project addresses this question by exploring the theory of the ‘Industrious Revolution’ – the idea that after about 1650 Europeans shifted time out of leisure and household production into market work and consumption, thereby preparing the way for modern economic growt

EHA 2011 Meeting Program and Information Available

The annual meeting of the Economic History Association (EHA) will be held this year in Boston, Massachusetts, on September 9-11; the theme of the meeting is "Crises and Turning Points." The full meeting brochure , containing information about travel, accommodations, and the preliminary program, has now been posted. An on-line registration form will be available later this week; the pre-registration deadline is August 15, 2011 . All inquiries about the EHA 2011 meeting should be directed to the Meetings Coordinator, Jari Eloranta, by email ( ) or phone (828-262-6006).

Labatt Brewing Donates Archives to the University of Western Ontario

Good news for business historians, as Ontario-based Labatt Breweries announced that it had given a major portion of its corporate archives to the University of Western Ontario, where the collection will be organized and maintained by the university's Archives and Research Collection Centre . Even more promising, the company also donated $200,000 to the university toward digitizing the collection. In the words of the press release : Until four years ago, the material Labatt had gathered since its founding – along with other materials acquired as a result of acquisitions of smaller Canadian breweries over the years – resided in thousands upon thousands of boxes, drawers and filing cabinets across the country. Amongst some of the collection, the artifacts include John Labatt’s personal letter book (1883-1906) containing company correspondence; a brewery book (1884-1895) providing details of daily production and year-end summaries; a stereoscopic slide viewer (1950s) used to train sta

Business and Economic History at the 2011 Berkshire Conference

The 2011 Berkshire Conference on the History of Women will meet June 9-12, 2011, at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. This year's theme is “Generations: Exploring Race, Sexuality, and Labor across Time and Space.” The full program , which is now available on the conference web site, contains a number of sessions of interest to BHC members. Of most direct interest is Session 176, “Managing Women: The Challenges of Iintertwining Gender and Business History”; the full panel contains: Facilitator: Angel Kwolek-Folland , University of Florida Susan Yohn , Hofstra University    Diversity as a Business Strategy (or How Liberal Feminism Saved American Capitalism in the Late 20th Century) Nancy Marie Robertson , Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis    The Invisible Hand and the Velvet Glove: Women’s Departments in American Banks Amy Froide , University of Maryland, Baltimore County    The Business of Investing: The Public Stock Portfolios of Female Investors in

June 2011 Issue of Enterprise & Society Now Available

The on-line version of the June 2011 issue of Enterprise & Society is now available at the Oxford University Press journals site. Essays include: Giovanni Favero , “Business Attitudes Toward Statistical Investigation in Late Nineteenth Century Italy: A Wool Industrialist from Reticence to Influence” Bianca Murillo , “ ‘The Devil We Know’: Gold Coast Consumers, Local Employees, and the United Africa Company, 1940–1960” Pierre-Yves Donzé , “The Hybrid Production System and the Birth of the Japanese Specialized Industry: Watch Production at Hattori & Co. (1900–1960)” Neil Rollings , “Multinational Enterprise and Government Controls on Outward Foreign Direct Investment in the United States and the United Kingdom in the 1960s” Full access requires a subscription (included in BHC membership), but extracts or abstracts of all the essays and reviews are freely available on the contents page .