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Creating Maryland’s Paper Money Economy, 1720-1739: The Role of Power, Print, and Markets


  • Farley Grubb

    () (Department of Economics,University of Delaware)


The British North American colonies were the first western economies to rely on legislature-issued fiat paper money as their principal internal medium of exchange. This system arose piecemeal across the colonies making the paper money creation story for each colony unique. It was true monetary experimentation on a grand scale. The creation story for Maryland, perhaps the most unique among the colonies, is analyzed to evaluate how market forces, media influences, and the power of various constituents combined to shape its particular paper money system.

Suggested Citation

  • Farley Grubb, 2008. "Creating Maryland’s Paper Money Economy, 1720-1739: The Role of Power, Print, and Markets," Working Papers 08-16, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:dlw:wpaper:08-16.

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Farley Grubb, 2003. "Creating the U.S. Dollar Currency Union, 1748–1811: A Quest for Monetary Stability or a Usurpation of State Sovereignty for Personal Gain?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1778-1798, December.
    2. Smith, Bruce D, 1985. "Some Colonial Evidence on Two Theories of Money: Maryland and the Carolinas," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1178-1211, December.
    3. Grubb, Farley, 2004. "The circulating medium of exchange in colonial Pennsylvania, 1729-1775: new estimates of monetary composition, performance, and economic growth," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 329-360, October.
    4. Schweitzer, Mary Mckinney, 1980. "Economic Regulation and the Colonial Economy: The Maryland Tobacco Inspection Act of 1747," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 40(03), pages 551-569, September.
    5. Mirowski, Philip, 1981. "The Rise (and Retreat) of a Market: English Joint Stock Shares in the Eighteenth Century," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 41(03), pages 559-577, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Farley Grubb, 2012. "Is Paper Money just Paper Money/ Experimentation and Local Variation in the Fiat Paper Monies Issued by the Colonial Government of British North America, 1690-1775: Part I," Working Papers 12-07, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.
    2. Farley Grubb, 2012. "Chronic Specie Scarcity and Efficient Barter: The Problem of Maintaining an Outside Money Supply in British Colonial America ," Working Papers 12-08, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.
    3. Farley Grubb, 2012. "Is Paper Money Just Paper Money? Experimentation and Variation in the Paper Monies Issued by the American Colonies from 1690 to 1775," NBER Working Papers 17997, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item


    Colonial Maryland; Commodity Money; Dual Currency; Economic History; Export Controls; Monetary Policy; Paper Money; Tax Policy; Tobacco Trade.;

    JEL classification:

    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
    • N11 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913
    • N21 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913
    • N41 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913

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