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The Pre-Civil War American economy (War Strategy)

Updated on March 2, 2012

Operation Great Idea

In reference; the operative economic theory, of the pre-Civil War period, was a set of ideals known as mercantilism or cobertism. There is a fixed amount of wealth in the world, represented by gold and silver. Within trading partners, each would be issued specific amounts. During trade, if one society or king received more, the other giving, one would acquire less after the transaction. This action would produce a feeling of inadequacy and this form would be given the term greedy. This term would produce anxieties, which would provide a root or seed for a trade of war.

Put This System In-Work

An empire needed a few positions to perform as a presence within this greedy system. First, his system needed a mother country; provider of military training and naval support, while producing manufactured goods. Most popular, during this time, was the trade in tropical areas; where most of the products produced were not normally provided in the acclimated climate of the homeports. In comparison to the Europeans, African slave laborers were most needed and utilized in these difficult survival areas of the tropics.

The theory is good, but not feasible for imperial administrators of London, Paris, and Madrid. Meanwhile, the Dutch became productive with India, and the sugar islands of the Caribbean; continued to provide slaving stations along the African Coast and along the North American seaboard of the Atlantic.

Colonial masters learned that white servants could easily escape and drift into anonymity. In addition, the experiment using Native Americans failed; escaping back to their tribes. Africans were acceptable because of their identifiable shade, while in a majority white society. These cultures were considered away from their original homeland, as well. White masters converted their slaves to Christianity, in order to bring these “heathens” hope for salvation.

In contrast, American slaveholders decided saving souls meant losing bodies; most colonies passed laws declaring Christian baptism as no longer being the pathway to freedom. A saying is of slaves: Christianity might put them on the stairway to heaven, but it didn’t save them from hell on earth.


This practiced exercise looks good on paper. With eyes closed it works, economically. The focus, at this point, absolutely appears to be a sound military movement, as expected. Expeditions providing freedom and hope for some citizens and participants, until the expected inevitable eyeball grows curious as to the complete origin and destination of the actions being performed; even if the ligaments are considered confidential, classified or even top secret.


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    • skagitqg75 profile image

      skagitqg75 6 years ago from United States

      There are more articles that relate to that subject matter. Enjoy.

    • valleyforge84 profile image

      valleyforge84 6 years ago

      Thought provoking. Wish it was longer.