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Accounting practices of the St. Joseph Lead Company: 1864-1900


  • Glenn Vent
  • Ronald Milne


This paper presents the results of an inquiry into the accounting practices of the St. Joseph Lead Company during the nineteenth century. For several decades following its incorporation in 1864 the St. Joseph Lead Company maintained a very crude double-entry bookkeeping system that lacked detailed cost accounting records. In fact, there is little evidence of any type of industrial accounting prior to 1890 when a direct cost responsibility accounting system was established. Thus, the industrial accounting procedures of the St. Joseph Lead Company appear to have lagged far behind the practices of the contemporary British and American mining firms which have been the objects of recent studies. The investigation thereby reveals considerable diversity in the industrial accounting practices of the American mining industry during the second half of the nineteenth century.

Suggested Citation

  • Glenn Vent & Ronald Milne, 2000. "Accounting practices of the St. Joseph Lead Company: 1864-1900," Accounting History Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(2), pages 97-128.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:acbsfi:v:10:y:2000:i:2:p:97-128 DOI: 10.1080/095852000411005

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hoskin, Keith W. & Macve, Richard H., 1988. "The genesis of accountability: The west point connections," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 37-73, January.
    2. N/A, 1996. "Note:," Foreign Trade Review, , vol. 31(1-2), pages 1-1, January.
    3. Hopper, Trevor & Armstrong, Peter, 1991. "Cost accounting, controlling labour and the rise of conglomerates," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 16(5-6), pages 405-438.
    4. Chandler, Alfred Jr. & Daems, Herman, 1979. "Administrative coordination, allocation and monitoring: A comparative analysis of the emergence of accounting and organization in the U.S.A. and Europe," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 4(1-2), pages 3-20, January.
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