The Market Revolution

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American History I
The Market Revolution During the late 1700’s, the United States was no longer a possession of Britain, instead it was a market for industrial goods and the world’s major source for tobacco, cotton, and other agricultural products. A labor revolution started to occur in the United States throughout the early 1800’s. There was a shift from an agricultural economy to an industrial market system. After the War of 1812, the domestic marketplace changed due to the strong pressure of social and economic forces. Major innovations in transportation allowed the movement of information, people, and merchandise. Textile mills and factories became an important base for jobs, especially for women. There was also widespread economic growth during this time period (Roark, 260). The market revolution brought about economic growth through new modes of transportation, an abundance of natural resources, factory production, and banking and legal practices. Transportation was a large factor in the market revolution. During the years of 1815 and 1840, there were many forms of improved transportation. Roads, steamboats, canals, and railroads lowered the cost and shortened the time of travel. By making these improvements, products could be shipped into other areas for profit (Roark, 260). Steamboats set off a huge industry and by 1830, more than 700 steamboats were in operating up and down the Ohio and Mississippi River (Roark, 261). Steamboats also had some flaws, due to the fact of deforesting the paths along the rivers. Wood was needed to refuel the power to the boat. The carbon emissions from the steamboats polluted the air (Roark, 261). The building of roads was a major connecting point for states. There were some arguments of who would pay for these new roads. Federal money was not allowed for state roads unless the road was a connector road between states. This made it very hard for the individual states to come up with the money.



Cited: Roark, James L. et al., eds. The American Promise: A Compact, Vol. I: To 1877. 3rd edition. Boston and New York: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2007.

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