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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2answers
78 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?
7
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1answer
143 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 ...
7
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1answer
142 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 ...
2
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1answer
98 views

Credible historic description of how the daily life was for the middle-class during the financial crisis of 1929 [closed]

I am trying to find out how life could change for the middle-class today if we had a high-impact financial crisis. Please help-me / let me know if this question could be rephrased better.
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3answers
2k views

GDP per capita of major combatants before and after WWII?

Perhaps this is difficult to measure and maybe not even a good metric for anything meaningful, but what was the GDP and GDP per capita for nations around the world immediately before World War II? ...
5
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1answer
727 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 ...
15
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3answers
707 views

Why did the British not introduce the sterling in India?

The question is about the adoption of currency during imperialist rule. Why did the British persist with the local currency, the rupee? What impediments did the British face in implementing the ...
3
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2answers
244 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
401 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 ...
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2answers
531 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 ...
7
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3answers
496 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
219 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
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2answers
349 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 ...
5
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2answers
196 views

What were the first “Big Banks” in the United States?

The large financial institutions of the world have dominated the news cycle for the past few years, and it got me thinking, what were the first large banks in the US? I am interested in hearing about ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How rich were carpenters in the Roman province of Iudaea in the 1st century AD?

According to the Biblical account, Jesus was the son of a carpenter, Joseph of Nazareth (Matthew 13,55). Apparently carpenters were not among the wealthy. Be that as it may, how rich could a ...
7
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3answers
412 views

During 1790-1800, was it legal to pay workers using whiskey?

As is well known, in frontier regions whiskey was regarded as an indispensable necessity to life, health and happiness, at the point that it usually had to substute for specie as a medium of exchange: ...
7
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2answers
384 views

Examples of censorship causing economic decline [closed]

I am writing a blog post about knowledge banning, either by state censorship or by self-imposed censorship, like the US Comics Code Authority of the 20th century. My focus is moral censorship, ...
4
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3answers
691 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
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1answer
501 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. ...
11
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1answer
1k 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 ...
14
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2answers
2k 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 ...
10
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2answers
341 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 ...
8
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2answers
286 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 ...
10
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4answers
1k views

How did New York become the financial hub of America?

Why did New York become the financial hub of America, rather than one of the other big cities?
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2answers
220 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
322 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 ...
9
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1answer
2k 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 ...
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7answers
1k 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 ...
12
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3answers
518 views

What was the size of surface of a cereal crop needed per man per year during the Dark Ages in Western Europe?

If I'm a peasant during the dark ages, what surface (in meters (<- I am in advance on my time)) I need to farm to get enough cereal (for bread and brew) ? how many cereals (in kg (<- again, I'm ...
9
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3answers
1k 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
492 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 ...
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2answers
77 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
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3answers
420 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
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3answers
3k 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 ...
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7answers
7k views

Why did the United Kingdom industrialize first?

What factors made the United Kingdom the first to industrialize? Was it simply the importance and benefit of its position in the global community for trade?
4
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1answer
88 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 ...
4
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2answers
110 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 ...
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4answers
738 views

Does History confirm that prosperity, capitalism, and some form “democracy” or representative republican form of government always go hand in hand?

Many historians, politicians and economists find a link between the economic success of a nation and its form of government. For example, the idea that the USA's form of government was responsible ...
12
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2answers
400 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
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0answers
76 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 ...
5
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5answers
421 views

Historical examples of energy wars

Energy sources and resources like oil and coal are vital for the survival of modern civilizations. Are there any good historical examples of wars, or low intensity armed conflicts, over the control ...
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0answers
101 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
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0answers
127 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, ...
3
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1answer
59 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
444 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
3answers
335 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 ...
3
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0answers
71 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 ...
2
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0answers
26 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, ...
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2answers
177 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 ...
0
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2answers
413 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.