Campus Units

Economics

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Accepted Manuscript

Publication Date

4-2018

Journal or Book Title

Explorations in Economic History

Volume

68

First Page or Article ID Number

119

Last Page

131

DOI

10.1016/j.eeh.2017.09.002

Abstract

The U.S. Civil War destroyed a substantial fraction of southern wealth and emancipation transferred human capital to the formerly enslaved. The prevailing view of most economic historians is that the southern planter elite was able to retain its relative status despite these shocks. Previous studies have been hampered, however, by limits on the ability to link individuals between census years, and scholars have been forced to focus on persistence within one or a few counties. Recent advances in electronic access to the Federal Census manuscripts now make it possible to link individuals without these constraints. In this paper, we exploit the ability to search the full manuscript census to construct a sample that links top wealth holders in 1870 to their 1860 census records. Although there was an entrenched southern planter elite that retained their economic status, we find evidence that the turmoil of the 1860s opened greater opportunities for mobility in the South than was the case in the North, resulting in much greater turnover among wealthy southerners than among comparably wealthy northerners.

JEL Classification

N3, N31, N4

Comments

This is a manuscript of an article published as Dupont, Brandon, and Joshua L. Rosenbloom. "The economic origins of the postwar southern elite." Explorations in Economic History 68 (2018): 119-131. doi: 10.1016/j.eeh.2017.09.002. Posted with permission.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Copyright Owner

Elsevier Inc.

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

Available for download on Monday, April 01, 2019

Published Version

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