A Changing World

A Changing World

Grear change had come over Ameri ca and indeed the world while.

Captain Sturgis lived our his long life of service to his principles of humanity and fair dealings.

Among a host of other things, rhe China trade had changed. Ar first several nations had been in volved in the fur trade to China.

In 1791 five-Spain, France, Russia, Bri tain and rhe UShad been at loggerheads over trading rights on the No rthwest coast.

Britain and the US, the survivors of these showdowns, settled down to an uneasy,

occasionally cooperative, occasionally confrontational coexistence in the Northwest.

In the years 1795-1804, the scholar John Scho field informs us in his book Hail Columbia (Oregon Historical Press),

thar of 59 fur trading voyages, fully 50 were American.

This was nor a matter of accessibili ty, for England was for all practical purposes as close as Boston or New Yorkro the Northwest by the Cape Horn road,

bur the British had begun to concentrate on the India/China trade.

This American dominance in the fur trade did nor last long, as the sea otter populatio n dwindl ed away rapidly under American assault.

Samuel Eli ot Morison, in his classic Maritime History of Massachusetts, cites 18 Boston vessels on the Northwest coast in 1821.

By 1830, he notes o nly 2 vessels in the trade, and by 1837, he says, rhe trade was “a thing of the past. “

New York, meanwhile, forged ahead in other fields, creating a marker in Lower Manhattan which bent the force lines of trade.

The booming industrialized mills of England’s Midlands created an insatiable demand for cotton grown in America’s agricultural South.

Southern plamers needed No rthern funds to finance their cro ps and soon lea rn ed to accept New Yo rk marketing and transportation as well.

So as Southern cotton we nt to England via New York, industrial products, from books and hunting guns to hoes and plows,

came back to the Southern ponsin the New York ships.

And after the Louisiana Purchase of 1803, in which Napoleon, locked in allout war against the British,

sold a vast tract of land west of the Mississippi ro rhe Uni red Stares for desperately needed cash,

New York packers began to serve rhe American Gulf Coast pons.

Due to these coastal trades and the burgeoning trade with Britain, which was fast becoming Earth ‘s first industrial nation,

New York became the place to bring what you had to sell and rake away what you had to buy.

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