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Papermaking in Eighteenth Century France: Management, Labor, and Revolution at the Montgolfier Mill, 1761 1805. By Leonard N. Rosenband. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000. Pp. xv, 210. $39.95


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  • Crowston, Clare
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    Until now, the Montgolfier family s best-known historical legacy has been the name they lent to the hot-air balloon, whose development they sponsored in the 1780s. Leonard Rosenband s achievement in this book is to elucidate the industrial enterprise that laid the foundation for that adventure. In the second half of the eighteenth century, the Montgolfiers owned and operated one of the most important papermaking manufactures in France, centered in Vidalon-le-Haut in northern Languedoc. As Rosenband acknowledges, the Montgolfiers were hardly representative of the French papermaking industry. The scale of their operations, concentration on high-quality paper, and determination to compete with superior Dutch products all clearly distinguished them from their lesser brethren. Nonetheless, Rosenband claims that in their reliance on the same production techniques, division of labor, and well-organized journeymen, the Montgolfiers have much to teach us about the papermaking industry as a whole and, indeed, about the overall process of industrialization in France.

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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): 04 (December)
    Pages: 1115-1117

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    Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:61:y:2001:i:04:p:1115-1117_00

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