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Liverpool slave merchant entrepreneurial networks, 1725--1807


  • Katie McDade


Liverpool surpassed Bristol as Britain's premier slave trading port in the mid-eighteenth century, but the reasons for Liverpool's eventual dominance remain debated. This article utilises the theoretical framework of entrepreneurship and notions of capital applied within associational networks to determine whether or not Liverpool merchants had a ‘particular spirit of enterprise’ which enabled their success. An analysis of the trends in investment patterns of Liverpool slave voyages demonstrates that Liverpool merchants managed voyages in comparatively larger investment groups. Thus, they had greater access to knowledge, skills and resources, which allowed for more competitive advantages to their trade.

Suggested Citation

  • Katie McDade, 2011. "Liverpool slave merchant entrepreneurial networks, 1725--1807," Business History, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 53(7), pages 1092-1109, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:bushst:v:53:y:2011:i:7:p:1092-1109
    DOI: 10.1080/00076791.2011.590933

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