Questions which concern the historical management, distribution, and usage of resources; why a particular resource, or state of production, occurred in a certain way.

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3
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0answers
30 views

Employment statistics in Germany since mid-19th century

What is the most reliable source of employment statistics in Germany? I am interested in the time period starting from mid-19th century all the way to present days.
0
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2answers
60 views

Other than coffee and tobacco what major product became Cuba's source of wealth in the 18th century?

How did the Industrial Revolution affect the production of this commodity? What, if any, affect did the Great Depression have on the industry?
5
votes
1answer
110 views

How long did it take to build earth dikes with low-tech tools?

Let's say you're in charge of a group of laborers anywhere from the Iron Age to the Middle Ages. Your job is to build a dike made of earth, a couple of meters high and presumably about the same width ...
4
votes
1answer
98 views

What did Central America export in the early 20th century other than coffee and bananas?

Coffee and bananas dominated the Central American economy after the turn of the century, accounting for 75% of the region's exports in 1930. Central America became very dependent on the fortune of ...
3
votes
1answer
613 views

Income distribution of major combatants before and after WWII?

This question about GDP per capita of major combatants before and after WWI made me wonder how these GDPs were distributed. Do we know the Gini coefficient (or a similiar metric) for the major ...
2
votes
2answers
106 views

Ratio of population to military size throughout European history? [closed]

I realise that this is a fairly broad question, but I am trying to get a sense of the ratio between the total population and the size of the military that societies could support at different times ...
1
vote
1answer
178 views

What is the average price, in silver, for a loaf of bread through history?

I would like to build a graph for the price of a loaf of bread based on exchange of silver. My research has shown that some items or commodities have remained very consistent when priced against other ...
-4
votes
2answers
126 views

Germany's “Economic Miracle” [closed]

I heard, but cannot verify, that some economists call what Hitler did for Germany's economy an "economic miracle." This claims (my emphases): Hitler's Economic MiracleThe real reason for World ...
6
votes
3answers
312 views

Why was the government expenditures of the Roman Empire very low compared to modern governments?

I was trying to compare the military spending of the Roman empire in the 1st century with modern military spending and how much of a burden that was to Roman people. The Wikipedia page of the ...
2
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2answers
141 views

Russian war reparations from Germany post WW2 [closed]

Is there any record of negotiations(if any), regarding war reparations from Germany to Russia following WW2, if there were reparations paid by Germany to Russia following WW2, do they have an impact ...
8
votes
2answers
198 views

Medieval farmer's metal tools

What metal woodworking tools should I expect to find in the household of a 14th century well-off peasant farmer from Hampshire? (Answering more broadly is acceptable, but it might help to give this ...
3
votes
3answers
343 views

Was the Stock Market Crash of 1929 a cause or result of the Great Depression?

Did the Stock Market Crash of 1929 effectively cause the Great Depression, or were there economic factors already in place at that time such that the Greet Depression would have happened anyway, and ...
1
vote
1answer
247 views

How did Asian Americans manage to become richer than an average American? [closed]

By "richer" I mean higher median income. Large-scale immigration of Asians to the United States began in the 19th century. In the beginning, most of them were poorer than an average American. ...
8
votes
1answer
343 views

How did the Germans get homes again after WWII?

After a large number of homes were destroyed in the war, how did the average German become a homeowner again? I know about the Marshall Plan, but this question does not refer to how the economy in ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

How was security on the Silk Road between China and the West maintained?

From the 2nd century BC to the beginning of the 15th century the Silk Road (or more correctly roads, as there were alternative routes) was the primary trade route between China and the West. One ...
7
votes
2answers
218 views

What is the largest overnight depreciation?

What is the largest overnight currency depreciation? How large, which currency and when? When examining historical records of currency depreciation, it is helpful to have a better understanding of ...
4
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2answers
193 views

What is the first example of a Western government passing a sin tax?

What is the first example of a Western government passing a sin or vice tax -- that is, a tax passed primarily to discourage consumption of certain goods due to moral, not economic, concerns? ...
8
votes
1answer
464 views

Impact of the Berlin Wall to GDR

"No one has the intention of erecting a wall!" - Walter Ulbricht, June 15,1961. The Wall was erected anyway, because more than 2.6 million East Germans escaped to West Berlin or West Germany from ...
-1
votes
2answers
67 views

What is it called when a Corporation purchases the rights to something to prevent it's production, to increase profit [closed]

What is it called, when a Large Business or Corporation sees that some product, invention, or medicine will destroy or reduce the size of their market or consumer base; and they either purchase the ...
2
votes
1answer
224 views

How did Yugoslavia economically survive the Cold War

During the time of Cold War, both USA and USSR have a program to help their allied country economically. For USA, they have a policy called "Marshal Plan" which is aimed to support democratic country ...
2
votes
3answers
365 views

When did the majority of Americans stop living on farms? [closed]

I know defining a farm is tricky. I will, of course, take any definition available. If I could pick, I would say that if there is one person working full-time outside of a household, that household is ...
7
votes
1answer
268 views

Was slavery really on the way out in the antebellum USA?

Gail Jarvis, in an encomium to the Dunning School writes: William A. Dunning fervently opposed slavery but his reading of the trends of the times led him to the conclusion that the institution ...
8
votes
3answers
550 views

Why was gold so popular and valuable back when it did not have many real world uses?

I'm talking about back when it was first starting to get discovered, like 2000 B.C. (roughly). Gold was being used for coins, jewellery and more. It was a very well known commodity and accepted ...
6
votes
0answers
57 views

What was the Nove / Millar debate, how is it important to the historiography of the Soviet Union?

The Nove / Millar debate was a debate amongst economic historians in the 1970s, where the Western understanding of Soviet economic development in the 1920 and 1930s was seriously revised. In ...
7
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3answers
2k views

What is the current U.S. monetary standard? [closed]

Despite my greatest efforts, I could not find any information about what standard the U.S. is using at this time. Apparently, we used to be on a gold standard. What about now? Do we even have a ...
5
votes
1answer
164 views

Did the Nazis have any unique or especially effective economic policies?

The Nazi rule in Germany is associated with (among many, many other things) a sudden and powerful economic resurgence. This is especially impressive since it happened in a country that was ...
3
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1answer
67 views

Power over the centuries: spiritual vs. political vs. economic

I recently attended a presentation on the shift in power over the centuries. The speaker argued that ... the power in the middle ages was in the churches, i.e., the priests and, thus, in the ...
3
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2answers
96 views

What is “the dead credit”?

I was reading the Wikipedia page for the Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth and this picture was featured to demonstrate the diverse society. It is propably a parody of various pictures called ...
11
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2answers
251 views

Were US exports in the early 1800s paid for with metal or with paper?

In the early 1800s, when people in the US exported goods to Europe, how were those goods paid for? What did the buyers actually send back on ships crossing the Atlantic to pay for the goods? I can ...
5
votes
0answers
60 views

What property relations existed between peasants and those who took from peasants in early Ottoman rule in Anatolia?

What property relations existed between peasants and those who took from peasants in early Ottoman rule (1300-1450) in Anatolia? How was social surplus extracted from peasants, by who, with what ...
1
vote
0answers
81 views

Have economic sanctions prevented or inhibited wars? [closed]

The current escalation of armed conflicts and the complex geopolitical landscape keeps me thinking on how to avoid future wars. The only long term definitive solution I could think of is replacing ...
1
vote
0answers
99 views

How did people from pre-industrialization era perceive “success in life”? [closed]

My assumption is that the industrial revolution had contributed to the current generally-held understanding of "success in life": go to prestigious university, get a good job, make good money. Now, ...
10
votes
2answers
225 views

The effect of the Panic of 1837 on financial/banking policy

Were there any direct or immediate financial/banking policies made because of this recession? I've read that a combination of factors helped get America out of the Panic, but it never mentioned a ...
3
votes
1answer
52 views

How did the Abbey of Cluny derive revenue from William of Aquitaine's hunting preserve?

My understanding is that traditionally most monasteries were extensions of the Roman villa system, owning land and the labor of the attached peasants -- the same economic basis as the aristocracy. ...
5
votes
3answers
232 views

Was there really a labor shortage in the USA until 1970?

After watching several video lectures made by Richard D. Wolff I noticed he frequently draws historical events as evidence to base his arguments on. One thing he mentions frequently (in several ...
10
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2answers
2k views

How wealthy was Singapore at its independence (1965)?

According to this article Is Singapore the Perfect Country for Our Times? Singapore's defining achievement is summed up in the title of its longtime leader Lee Kuan Yew's memoir, From Third ...
8
votes
1answer
143 views

Inflation Rate in Spain and Portugal during 16th century

What was the yearly/monthly inflation rate in Spain and Portugal during 16th century? Is there data for the amount of silver or gold possessed by the crowns during that period? How much did it ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Gap between poor and rich in the Roman Empire

Was the difference in purchasing power between the poor and the wealthy in the Roman Empire, greater than or less than than the difference between rich and poor people in modern western economies? ...
2
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0answers
48 views

How were FDR's economic policies as Governor of New York contradictory?

I have read in a number of Roosevelt's biographies that as Governor of New York, Roosevelt was not so aware of how economics works. He recognized that radical change was needed to respond to the Great ...
1
vote
0answers
21 views

Land concentration in Columbia

I am looking for elaboration for the following passage, which I found in Wikipedia: "In 1968 and 1969 alone, the INCORA issued more than 60,000 land titles to farmers and workers. Despite this, ...
8
votes
7answers
722 views

How close were the living standards of India compared to England during the medieval period?

India, China and the African continent today are mostly associated with poverty in Europe, the US and so on. Looking at India specifically, did it during the medieval era share a similar standard of ...
0
votes
2answers
317 views

Was slavery economically most efficient system in the ancient/agricultural era? [closed]

I mean slavery in ancient civilizations, for example Greece, Rome, Egypt. Not considering moral aspects at all, but considering economic reasons and agricultural nature of economic activity.
3
votes
2answers
73 views

Why did overestimated coins led to inflation and well-estimated coins to deflation?

It is said in Debt, the first 5,000 years by David Graeber (chapter 4, note 2) that when the value of metal coins represented exactly their weight, the result was deflation. The author says that when ...
2
votes
0answers
24 views

Ratio of commerce to residence in preindustrial towns

Is there any research that has attempted to estimate the ratio of commerce to residence, or of shopkeepers to residents in other trades, for preindustrial towns? Or are there old census sources where ...
-1
votes
3answers
424 views

Why only in the last few hundred year has science and technology progressed like it has [closed]

Man has been on the Earth for millions of years. But in only the last few hundred years, science has made major advances: the average life expectancy expanded, electronics, transistors, ...
11
votes
2answers
205 views

Are there instances where collective farming has actually brought benefit to the population

I was reading a few articles about population growth and famines and thereby discovered that some of the recent famines where caused by government policies, among which I read at least twice (USSR and ...
4
votes
3answers
268 views

How did an input of resources in 16th century Spain contribute to inflation?

My history book claims that the flow of Silver from the New World to Spain in the 16th century contributed to an inflation. However, that seems very unintuitive. How could gaining resources lead to a ...
5
votes
2answers
143 views

Was COMECON involved in economic imperialism and if so, to what extent?

Disclaimer: I am not 100% sure if it was COMECON, it might be another Soviet apparatus. I recall reading about how the Soviet Union forced her Eastern European satellites into very lucrative and ...
8
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2answers
3k views

Were soldiers in the World Wars paid?

There have always been professional soldiers however during the world wards there were vast conscription to encourage young men to join up for "King and Country". Presumably there was some sort of ...
6
votes
3answers
190 views

What containers were used for food prior to the industrial era?

Today, when you go shopping, most of the food are kept in plastic or paper containers (or tin can). What types of containers were used to sell, transport and keep the food before plastic ? and ...