American Economic Growth and Standards of Living before the by Robert E. Gallman, John Joseph Wallis

By Robert E. Gallman, John Joseph Wallis

This benchmark quantity addresses the talk over the results of early industrialization on criteria of dwelling in the course of the many years ahead of the Civil battle. Its participants reveal that the mixture antebellum financial system was once becoming speedier than the other huge economic system had grown before.Despite the dramatic financial progress and upward thrust in source of revenue degrees, questions stay as to the final caliber of existence in this period. used to be the advance in source of revenue generally shared? How did financial progress impact the character of labor? Did larger degrees of source of revenue bring about more desirable health and wellbeing and toughness? The authors deal with those questions by way of examining new estimates of work strength participation, actual wages, and productiveness, in addition to of the distribution of source of revenue, peak, and foodstuff.

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The rates of growth reported here were calculated from the unrounded figures. 34This is barely slower than that for the first two decades of the nineteenth century, but noticeably below the rates that prevailed thereafter. All of this early growth, however, was concentrated in the period after 1793. 35 34. 5 percent per year. 35. If Gallman’s higher estimate ($70) were the true figure for 1774, then the turmoil was much more serious. Jones’s lower figure ($51) implies that the economy experienced a healthy advance during the period.

Lebergott (1966) developed the estimation procedures and produced the initial estimates, while David (1967) revised some of the figures, especially those for 1800. There is now very little difference between the two series. The biggest discrepancy was in the estimate for 1800, but Lebergott now accepts David’s revision (Lebergott 1984, 66). David had adjusted Lebergott’s slave labor estimate in 1820, 1840, and 1860, but subsequent investigation indicated the correction was unnecessary (Weiss 1986b).

The total labor force is the sum of the workers in five population components; free males aged 16 and over, free females aged 16 and over, free males aged 10 to 15, free females aged 10 to 15, and slaves aged 10 and over. Each estimate of the number of workers is the product of the group’s population and its specific participation rate. The levels and changes in the total labor force are nearly identical in the two series, with the figures differing by 2 percent or less in every year (see table 1.

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