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 controversy over the consequences of early industrialization on criteria of residing in the course of the a long time ahead of the Civil warfare. Its individuals display that the combination antebellum economic system used to be turning out to be quicker than the other huge financial system had grown before.Despite the dramatic fiscal progress and upward push in source of revenue degrees, questions stay as to the overall caliber of existence in this period. was once the advance in source of revenue generally shared? How did fiscal development have an effect on the character of labor? Did greater degrees of source of revenue bring about more advantageous wellbeing and fitness and toughness? The authors handle those questions via examining new estimates of work strength participation, actual wages, and productiveness, in addition to of the distribution of source of revenue, top, and nutrients.

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57 respectively, somewhat slower than the farm shares in both periods. In the period 1820 to 1840, however, the comparative results diverge noticeably. 10 percent per year. I’ The erratic pattern of growth in Lebergott’s farm labor force produces its corollary in the growth of labor productivity. Is 10. Gallman was suspiciousof the Lebergott series because it showed changes in the farm labor force that seemed inconsistent with the changes in the rural population. The disparity seemed greater in the antebellum period, when the farm share of the labor force declined by substantially more percentage points than the rural population share.

8. Since David’s conjectural estimates rest on this series, its use here highlights the impact of the new labor force figures. As indicated in the notes to table 1, however, I have made some minor adjustmentsto the Towne and Rasmussen figures. 92 Sources: Lebergott (1966, table 1; 1984,66); and the Appendix below. Note: David’s estimates are identical with Lebergott’s in the years 1810, 1830, and 1850. In other years the differences between the David and Lebergott figures are small. David’s total labor force estimates (ir thousands) are 1,700 in 1800, 3,165 in 1820, 5,707 in 1840, and 11,180 in 1860; the farm figures ir those respective years are 1,406, 2,500, 3,617, and 5,950 (David 1967, appendix table 1).

The Deane and Cole estimates show much more rapid growth and a much different relative standing. Using the narrow measure of output, the American figure exceeded the British in 1774 by about 14 percent (about $8 in 1840 prices). With the much more rapid British growth underlying the Deane and Cole series, the income levels were brought to rough equality by 1793 and remained in that relative position until 1810, with the British subsequently moving ahead by 7 percent in 1820 and about 20 percent in 1830 and 1840.

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