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New deal or no deal in the Cotton South: The effect of the AAA on the agricultural labor structure

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Author Info

  • Depew, Briggs
  • Fishback, Price V.
  • Rhode, Paul W.

Abstract

The Agricultural Adjustment Act has often been held responsible for the rapid reduction of share tenants and sharecroppers (laborers paid shares of the crop) during the 1930s. However, this conclusion has come with limited empirical backing. We shed new light on the consequences of this New Deal policy by empirically testing the role that the AAA cotton reduction program had on the displacement of share tenants and sharecroppers in the Cotton South. The results suggest that the AAA played a significant role in the displacement of black and white sharecroppers and black managing tenants even though it was a violation of AAA contracts for landlords to displace these workers.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Explorations in Economic History.

Volume (Year): 50 (2013)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 466-486

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Handle: RePEc:eee:exehis:v:50:y:2013:i:4:p:466-486

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622830

Related research

Keywords: New deal; Agriculture; Share tenancy; Discrimination;

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References

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  1. Gordon B. Dahl, 2005. "Early Teen Marriage and Future Poverty," NBER Working Papers 11328, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Fishback, Price V., 1989. "Debt peonage in postbellum Georgia," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 219-236, April.
  3. Alston, Lee J. & Ferrie, Joseph P., 2005. "Time on the Ladder: Career Mobility in Agriculture, 1890 1938," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 65(04), pages 1058-1081, December.
  4. Ransom, Roger & Sutch, Richard, 1979. "Credit merchandising in the post-emancipation south: Structure, conduct, and performance," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 64-89, January.
  5. David Card, 2000. "Estimating the Return to Schooling: Progress on Some Persistent Econometric Problems," NBER Working Papers 7769, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Fishback, Price V. & Horrace, William C. & Kantor, Shawn, 2005. "Did New Deal Grant Programs Stimulate Local Economies? A Study of Federal Grants and Retail Sales During the Great Depression," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 65(01), pages 36-71, March.
  7. Alston, Lee J., 1981. "Tenure choice in Southern agriculture, 1930-1960," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 211-232, July.
  8. Alston, Lee J & Ferrie, Joseph P, 1993. "Paternalism in Agricultural Labor Contracts in the U.S. South: Implications for the Growth of the Welfare State," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 852-76, September.
  9. Alston, Lee J. & Higgs, Robert, 1982. "Contractual Mix in Southern Agriculture since the Civil War: Facts, Hypotheses, and Tests," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 42(02), pages 327-353, June.
  10. Fishback, Price V. & Horrace, William C. & Kantor, Shawn, 2006. "The impact of New Deal expenditures on mobility during the Great Depression," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 179-222, April.
  11. Reid, Joseph D., 1973. "Sharecropping As An Understandable Market Response: The Post-Bellum South," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 33(01), pages 106-130, March.
  12. Suresh Naidu, 2010. "Recruitment Restrictions and Labor Markets: Evidence from the Postbellum U.S. South," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(2), pages 413-445, 04.
  13. Whatley, Warren C., 1983. "Labor for the Picking: the New Deal in the South," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 43(04), pages 905-929, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Shawn Kantor & Price V. Fishback & John Joseph Wallis, 2012. "Did the New Deal Solidify the 1932 Democratic Realignment?," NBER Working Papers 18500, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Kitchens, Carl, 2013. "The effects of the Works Progress Administration's anti-malaria programs in Georgia 1932–1947," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 567-581.

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