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Reshaping The Landscape: The Impact And Diffusion Of The Tractor In American Agriculture, 1910 1960

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  • Olmstead, Alan L.
  • Rhode, Paul W.

Abstract

This article analyzes the revolutionary impact the tractor had on rural America and examines the economic, technological, and institutional factors governing the machine s diffusion. Our simultaneous-equation regression model helps decipher the complex relationship between farm scale and diffusion. In addition, analyzing diffusion as a capital replacement problem reveals that the shift to the new technology was far more rapid than what has generally been thought and provides a new perspective on the long co-existence of both horses and tractors on farms.

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Bibliographic Info

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

Volume (Year): 61 (2001)
Issue (Month): 03 (September)
Pages: 663-698

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Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:61:y:2001:i:03:p:663-698_03

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Cited by:
  1. Richard Hornbeck & Suresh Naidu, 2012. "When the Levee Breaks: Black Migration and Economic Development in the American South," NBER Working Papers 18296, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Richard H. Steckel & William J. White, 2012. "Engines of Growth: Farm Tractors and Twentieth-Century U.S. Economic Welfare," NBER Working Papers 17879, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Richard C. Sutch, 2008. "Henry Agard Wallace, The Iowa Corn Yield Tests, And The Adoption Of Hybrid Corn," Working Papers 200807, University of California at Riverside, Department of Economics, revised Jun 2008.
  4. Richard C. Sutch, 2008. "Henry Agard Wallace, the Iowa Corn Yield Tests, and the Adoption of Hybrid Corn," NBER Working Papers 14141, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Ruttan, Vernon W., 2002. "Productivity Growth In World Agriculture: Sources And Constraints," Staff Papers 14176, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  6. Francisco Alvarez-Cuadrado & Markus Poschke, 2011. "Structural Change Out of Agriculture: Labor Push versus Labor Pull," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 127-58, July.
  7. George Grantham, 2010. "What'S Space Got To Do With It? Distance And Agricultural Productivity Before The Railway Age," Departmental Working Papers 2010-04, McGill University, Department of Economics.
  8. Rodolfo E. Manuelli & Ananth Seshadri, 2014. "Frictionless Technology Diffusion: The Case of Tractors," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(4), pages 1368-91, April.
  9. Rodolfo Manuelli & Ananth Seshadri, 2003. "Frictionless Technology Diffusion: The Case of Tractors," NBER Working Papers 9604, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Mundlak, Yair, 2003. "Economic Growth: Lessons From Two Centuries Of American Agriculture," Discussion Papers 14986, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management.
  11. Alston, Julian M. & Pardey, Philip G. & Ruttan, Vernon W., 2008. "Research Lags Revisited: Concepts and Evidence from U.S. Agriculture," Staff Papers 50091, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  12. Lucy Badalian & Victor Krivorotov, 2009. "Economic development as domestication of a geoclimatic zone: The historic East-West divide and the current trends towards its closure," Journal of Innovation Economics, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(1), pages 13-48.

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