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Responding to Relative Decline: The Plank Road Boom of Antebellum New York

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  • Majewski, John
  • Baer, Christopher
  • Klein, Daniel B.

Abstract

From 1847 to 1853 New Yorkers built more than 3,500 miles of wooden roads. Financed primarily by residents of declining rural townships, plank roads were seen as a means of linking isolated areas to the canal and railroad network. A broad range of individuals invested in the roads, suggesting that the drive for bigger markets was supported by a large cross section of the population. Considerable community spirit animated the movement, indicating that New Yorkers used the social capital of the community to reach their entrepreneurial aspirations.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal The Journal of Economic History.

Volume (Year): 53 (1993)
Issue (Month): 01 (March)
Pages: 106-122

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Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:53:y:1993:i:01:p:106-122_01

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Cited by:
  1. Levinson, David, 1997. "Case Study: Road Pricing In Practice," Institute of Transportation Studies, Research Reports, Working Papers, Proceedings qt0w06s4n2, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Berkeley.
  2. Klein, D.B. & Yin, C., 1994. "The Private Provision of Frontier Infrastructure: Toll Roads in California, 1850-1902," Papers 94-95-4, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  3. Klein, Daniel & Majewski, John, 2003. "America’s Toll Roads Heritage: The Achievements of Private Initiative in the 19th Century," Ratio Working Papers 30, The Ratio Institute.

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