In this third volume of collected papers, Jacob Price explores the structural and political relations of the Atlantic trade in the 18th century. A first selection on mercantile activity, blends research on the records of individual firms with aggregate customs data to show that definitive advantages of scale encouraged the concentration of trade into fewer and larger hands in sectors like tobacco, sugar and slaves. These studies also show the importance of credit to the development of trade, a theme taken up in the section on monetary issues, reprinting the author's well-known paper on multilateralism with a specifically written supplement ’Multilateralism Revisited’. A final section on the politics of customs reform gives the contemporary political background to the records which Price has explored so thoroughly.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; Colonial trade and British economic development, 1660-1775; What did merchants do? Reflections on British overseas trade, 1660-1790; The great Quaker business families of 18th-century London: the rise and fall of a sectarian patriciate; English Quaker merchants and the war at sea, 1689-1783; Directions for the conduct of a merchant’s counting house, 1766; Multilateralism and/or bilateralism: the settling of British trade balances with ’the North’, ca. 1700; Multilateralism revisited: a further note on the settlement of British trade balances with ’the North’, ca. 1660-1760; The Bank of England’s discount activity and the merchants of London, 1694-1773; Glasgow, the tobacco trade, and the Scottish customs, 1707-1730; The exicse affair revisited: the administrative and colonial dimensions of a parliamentary crisis; Index.
regarding all three volumes by Price: 'All the essays in these three volumes bear the badge of Price’s scholarship. The research behind them is meticulous- broad in scope, profound in depth, complete...In these three volumes we have selections from the beginnings of a life’s work, a report from the first half-century, a hint of what is yet to come.They constitute a landmark of scholarship produced by the model scholar..’' Economic History Review, Vol. LI 'Overseas Trade and Traders is a useful, reasonably priced volume for British economic, political, and social historians. Scholars will appreciate the breadth of Price’s work over forty years, as the articles and essays provide an excellent sample of the development of his research interests as they relate to seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Britain. Moreover, the volume nicely balances republication of Price’s more well-known and accessible publications..with equally important essays found in collections and journals perhaps more obscure to British historians.' Albion, Vol. 30, No. 2 'The most distinguished historian of early modern British imperial overseas trade of this or any earlier generation, Jacob. M. Price has long been known as a historical essayist par excellence. Distinguished by their solidarity, careful and imaginative analysis of data, precision of argument, attention to context, and lucid prose style, his essays have served two generations of early modern British overseas historians as a model of what an essay should be and how it can shed new light upon a field. For that reason, as well as because of the defining importance of many of the essays in several areas of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century imperial history, these three volumes of Price’s collected essays are an especially welcome addition to the proliferating literature on the early modern British world...one has to applaud the press for undertaking a project of this scope and scholarly importance.' The International