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Becoming BourgeoisMerchant Culture in the South, 1820-1865$
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Frank J. Byrne

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780813124049

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813124049.001.0001

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Merchant Culture and the Political Economy of the Old South

Merchant Culture and the Political Economy of the Old South

(p.13) 1 Merchant Culture and the Political Economy of the Old South
Becoming Bourgeois

Frank J. Byrne

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter examines the political economy and the merchant families of the antebellum American South. It explores how commerce distinguished southern merchant families and their culture in the antebellum South and describes the various social classes that composed southern society. It explains that credit, debt, trade, and merchant-clerk relations ordered the lives of southern merchant families and the conventions of the retail trade distinguished these Southerners from the majority of their neighbors.

Keywords:   antebellum South, political economy, merchant culture, American south, merchant families, retail trade, merchant-clerk relations, debt, credit

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