Chapter 16: The Transatlantic Economy, Trade Wars, and Colonial Rebellion

October 20, 2007

Two separate but interrelated rivalries existed in Europe in the mid-18th century: between Austria and Prussia for Central Europe and between Great Britain and France for commerce and colonies. The wars were long and expensive. Ultimately, Prussia won Central Europe and Great Britain established a world empire. The expense of these wars led every major European government after 1763 Peace of Paris to establish new tax policies. These reforms led to the American Revolution, enlightened absolutism on Continent, continuing nancial crisis in France, and Spanish reform in America.


Periods of European Overseas Empires

Four stages of outside world contact since Renaissance. 1. Discovery, exploration, conquest, and settlement of New World. (a) Also included penetration of Southeast Asian markets by Portugal and Netherlands. (b) Ended by 1700. 2. Mercantile Empires (a) Rivalry among Spain, France, Great Britain. (b) Created large navies and resulted in many (c) These war became

naval wars. linked to Continental wars.
of slave trade with West Africa.

(d) Slavery fundamental in rst two stages. i. Slave population blacks imported from Africa or born to black


iii. Slaves brought their culture. (e) Atlantic economy and society were European and African.

Three centuries

Americans marginalized.



(f ) Both British and Spanish (g) Ended during 1820s.

colonies declared independence.

3. New formal empiresdirect European administration of indigenous in Africa and Asia. (a) Also included new European settlement: South Africa, Algeria. (b) Based in trade, national honor, Christian missionary, military. (c) Formally based on 4. Decolonization (1950+) 5. Huge disproportional impact in 450 years before decolonization. (a) Treated indigenous as inferior. (b) Destroy existing culture due to greed, religion, politics. its colonies and U.S. today. (c) Ships and gunpowder facilitate supremacy. These acAustralia, New Zealand,

free labor

, but indigenous still treated harshly.

tions remain signicant factors in relationship between Europe and


Mercantile Empires
1. Navy and merchant marine key to mercantile empiresempires for prot, not settlement. 2. Spain controlled mainland South America (except Brazil, Dutch Guiana). (a) Controlled Florida in North America. (b) Control Central America, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, eastern Hispaniola (Dominican Republic). 3. British controlled North Atlantic seaboard, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Bermuda, Jamaica, Barbados. Trading posts on Indian subcontinent. 4. French controlled St. Lawrence River valley, Ohio and Mississippi River valleys. Western Hispaniola (Haiti), Guadeloupe, Martinique, posts on India and West Africa. 5. India seemed to be huge potential European market and source of spice and calico. 6. Dutch control Suriname (Dutch Guiana), Cope Colony (South Africa), Sri Lanka, Bengal. (a) Most importantly, controlled Javan trade.


(b) Opened these markets in 1600s. (c) Huge empire disproportionate to wealth, importance, and size of United Netherlands. (d) Daring sailors and technological innovations facilitate.


Mercantilist Goals

1. Mercantilism invented by later critics and opponents. 2. Regarded gold and silver as ultimate measure of wealth. 3. Assumed scarcity and limits, zero-sum game. Only modest growth possible. Predated industrial/agricultural revolution. 4. Both home and colonists see colony as inferior partner. (a) Exclusive trade. (b) Governments use navigation laws, taris, bounties to prohibit trade with other monarchs. (c)

National monopoly.

5. Messy in practice; by 18th century, mercantilist assumptions fallen. (a) Spain could not produce enough for South America. (b) Production in British American colonies challenged European industries. (c) English colonists could buy sugar more cheaply from French West Indies. (d) Everybody hoped to break others' monopoly. (e) Golden age of smugglers. Governments could not control subjects' actions.


French-British Rivalry
Lawrence River valley, upper New England, Ohio River valley.

1. Settlers coveted St.

2. Conict over fur trade, shing, alliance with Natives. 3. Heart of rivalry in

West Indies.

(a) Jewels of empire: tobacco, cotton, indigo, coee,


(b) Unlimited demand for sugar; for a time, unlimited riches to plantation owner. (c) Slavery essential for prot.


4. India (a) Traded through charter companies (legal monopolies). (b) English East India Company, French Compagnie des Indes. (c) Indian trade only marginal, but still tried to make prot. (d) Some see India as springboard to larger markets: China. (e) Trading posts called factories, granted by Indian governments. (f ) Indian states decayed in mid-18th. i. Joseph Dupleix (1697-1763) (French) and Robert Clive (17251774) encouraged lling power vacuum. ii. Each company began to take government powers. 5. Dutch maintained monopoly in Indonesia.


The Spanish Colonial System

Had rigid laws, but actual practice was informal. Monopoly frequently breached. Primary purpose until 1750s was to supply Spain with metals.


Colonial Government
(Mexico) and Peru.

1. Council of the Indies and monarch nominated


of New Spain

2. Viceroys executed laws issued by Council of the Indies. 3. Viceroyalty divided into audiencia (subordinate judicial council). Many local ocials. Corregidores led municipal councils. 4. Ocers represent patronage. Monarchy usually gave positions to Spanishborn. 5. Hierarchical; nearly all power ow down.


Trade Regulations
trade. (a) Only Cádiz port authorized for Am. trade. (b) Most inuential institution. (c) Worked closely with Consulado (Merchant Guild) of Seville.

1. Casa de Contratación (House of Trade) in Seville regulated New World

2. Complicated system maintain monopoly.


(a) Flota (commerce eet) escorted by warships carry Spanish merchandise to few specic ports (Portobello, Veracruz, Cartagena). (b) No authorized ports on Pacic. (c) Loaded with bullion, spent winter in fortied Caribbean ports, sailed back. (d) Imperfect but external trade illegal. (e) Colonists forbidden to directly trade with each other.


Philip 5 1700-1746
(r. assert monopoly.

Colonial Reform Under the Spanish Bourbon Monarchs
) tried to use French administrative skill to re-

(a) Spanish patrol vessels tried to suppress American smuggling. (b) Led to war with England in (c) Established viceroyalty of

1739 New Granada


(d) Wars exposed vulnerability of Spanish empire.


Charles 3

(e) Defeated in


Convinced that system had to be reformed.

(r. 1759-1788)  most important imperial reformer.

(a) Royal ministers instead of councils.

1765 1776 

abolished Seville monopoly; opened ports other than Cádiz.

(c) Opened more South American and Caribbean ports. (d) Authorized trade between American Spanish ports. (e)  Viceroyalty of La Plata.

(f ) Introduce intendant system. (g) Reforms worked to stimulate economy. 3. Reforms brought empire under more direct Spanish control. (a)


enter New World to ll posts.

(b) More merchants went. (c) Organized to benet Spain;

were second-class. Their resentment would lead to rebellion.


(European descent born in colony)



Black African Slavery, The Plantation System, and the Atlantic Economy
1. Slavery exist in parts of Europe since ancient; little stigma until 1700s. Mediterranean traditional sole source of slaves. 2. After Ottoman conquest Constantinople in ported.


, no white slaves ex-

3. Portuguese import African slaves from Canary Islands and West Africa. 4. 16th century +: slave labor became fundamental social and economic.

Africa(ns) drawn inextricably into West.


The African Presence in the Americas

1. Severe labor shortage; settlers did not want to work, Native Americans

2. Spanish and Portuguese quickly turn to slaves. slowly.

English colonies more

3. Slave markets on West African Coast from Senegambia to Angola. (a) Political and military conditions and wars in Africa create slave supply. (b) Dynamic African societies exercising power relations by enslaving


The West Indies, Brazil, and Sugar 1619
a century of slavery before and slavery went hand in hand.

other Africans.

(a) Far more slaves into West Indies, Brazil than North America. Over Jamestown slaves.

(b) Population equaled or surpassed whites in multi-racial communities. (c) In Spanish colonies, slavery declined. (d) Increased in Brazil, Caribbean for sugar and gold mining. Prosperity

i. Early 1700s: 20,000 new slaves / yr. ii. 1725: 90% Jamaica black slaves. (e) Low fertility rate of slaves and high death rate. i. Continuous import needed. ii. New African arrivals characteristic; brought African culture to infuse.



Slavery and the Transatlantic Economy
17th; England in late 17th and 18th.

1. Portuguese and Spanish most involved in slave trade in 16th; Dutch in

2. Triangle trade: (a) European goods (often gun) traded for slaves in West Africa. (b) Slaves taken to West Indies; traded for sugar and tropical products; shipped to Europe. (c) Also went to New England for sh, rum, and lumber to trade for sugar in West Indies. 3. Cotton, tobacco, and sugar (and their consumer goods) all depended on slavery. 4. Political turmoil in African like civil wars in Gold coast area increased slave supply. (a) Dispute over succession. (b) Some captives sold to slave traders at ports. (c) African leaders conducted slave raids to raise money for weapons. (d) Wars often deep in interior; still aect development of America.

Kingdom of Kongo

and in


The Experience of Slavery

1. Perhaps > 9M slaves  largest forced intercontinental migration in his-

2. Unspeakably bad passage; cramped, bad food, 3. Always more men


. Later,

→ could not preserve traditional extended family.

tried to recreate even though not actual family. 4. Owners preferred old slaves/descendants. Sold for more. 5. New slaves seasoning. Discipline; understand no longer free. (a) New names. (b) Learn new skills. (c) Learn European language (to an extent). (d) Some apprenticed to older slaves. (e) Others broken by working of eld gangs. (f ) Generally, North American owners only bought recently-arrived slaves seasoned in Indies.



Language and Culture
(a) Plantation isolated; but could visit other slaves on market days. Thus, recently arrived slaves could sustain their own culture for a while. (b) More people spoke African language south of W. Indies. Take over two generation for European languag. (c) Language tie

solidarity. Organized



i. Basis for African religious communities. A. Some stayed Muslim. B. Organized lay religious brotherhoods that did charity in slave community. ii. Elect kings and queens. iii. Enabled communication during revolts. A. South Carolina revolt believed to have communicated


Daily Life

through drums


tried to suppress drums.

(a) Diered from colonies. (b) Portugeuse fewest protection. (c) Spanish church tried to protect, but more concerned about Native. (d) British and French had slave codes, but more assuring dominance. Limited protection. (e) Legislation intended to

prevent revolt.

(f ) Corporal punishment permitted. (g) Forbiddent to gather in large group. (h) Marriages not recognized by law; children belonged to master of parent. (i) Hard agricultural labor, poor diet and housing. (j) Families could be separated.


Conversion to Christianity

(k) Today, accepted that life sucked equally for most slaves.

(a) Spanish, French, Portugeuse: Catholic. (b) English: Protestant (various denomination). (c) Slaves must accept society and natural hierarchy of master at top. (d) Organized African religion disappeared. (e) Some practices survived: belief of nature, cosmos, witchers, conjurers, healers, voodoo.



crushed non-European values in context of New World economics and society. European Racial Attitudes
(f ) Like Native Americans, (a) European settler consider blacks savage. (b) Others look down because they were slaves. (c) Culture negative connotation of black. (d) Created unique society dependant on slave labor and racial dierence. Had not existed before. (e) Ended: i. 1794  Slave Revolt of St. Dominique ii. 1807  British outlaw slave trade iii. Latin wars of independence iv. 1863  Emancipation Proclaimation v. 1888  Brazilian emancipation (f ) Still have to deal with problems of slavery today.


Mid-Eighteenth-Century Wars
1. Unstable relations. 2. Assumed war benecial. 3. Professional armies and navies; rarely aected civilians much. harm domestically. 4. Conclusion of war simply to recover to ght again. 5. Overseas empires and central Europe overlapped and inuenced each other. Did not


The War of Jenkin's Ear

1. Spanish took monopoly seriously, patrolled, and searched English ships. 2.


1731 1738 

Fight during search;

in brandy.

Robert Jenkins's 1739

ear cut o. Carried ear 

Showed ear repeatedly to Parliament demonstrating atrocity.

Lobbied to get rid of Spanish intervention. 4. Walpole could not resist pressure; went to war.

5. Inherently minor, but due to circumstances, opened a series of world-wide wars until .




The War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48)
treated Habsburg as just another state rather than dominant power. Up-

1. Frederick 2 invaded Habsburg set balance of power.



Upset pragmatic sanction; he


Maria Theresa Preserves the Habsburg Empire
(a) Did not retake Silesia but preserved Habsburg power. (b) Granted privileges to nobility to win support. i. Recognized Hungary as most important. ii. Promise Magyar nobility local autonomy. (c) Preserved state but at cost to central monarchy. (d) Hungary would continue to be troubled. Weak monarchy

had to


France Draws Great Britain into the War
(a) France united Jenkins Ear and Austrian Succession. (b) Aggressive nobles pressue Cardinal emy. (c) attack and support Prussia against Austria, traditional French en-

promise Hungary concessions.


(1653-1743) to scrap British

Fateful decision.
i. Aiding Prussia helped new, powerful German state. Could and would later threaten France. ii. Brought Britain into continental war; they wanted to make sure



Netherlands were Austrian, not French.  France supported Spain against Britain in New World.

(e) French military badly divided. Lost colonies to Britain to focus on war with Austria. (f )

1748  Aix-la-Chapelle
Peace in Europe. 

war end stalemate. Prussia keep Sile-

sia, Spain continued to let Britain sell slaves in Spanish colonies.


The Diplomatic Revolution of 1756

1. France and England informally ght over Ohio River valley.



French and Indian War (1755). George 2 (r. 1727-1760) Jan 1756 Convention of Westminster
response to American conict.  10

Led to

thought French might attack Hanover in

with Prussia; defensive al-

liance to prevent foreign troops entering Germany states.

(a) Geroge 2 feared French.


May 1756 

(b) Frederick 2 feared alliance of Russia and Austria. France and Austria sign defensive alliance.

(a) Unthinkable before. (b) France agreed because Frederick had not consulted with French ministers before allying with Britain.


Frederick the Great Opens Hostilities

The Seven Years' War (1756-1763)

(a) Aug. 1756 invaded Saxony. Considered this preemptive against conspiracy but create the alliance that he feared.


the Great two factors 1762  Peter 3 1763  Treaty of Hubertusburg William Pitt's (the Elder, 1708-78) Strategy for Winning North America
(c) Leadership (known as Frederick saved Prussia: after this war) and i. Britain gave substantial money. ii. Elizabeth of Russia (r 1741-62) died. peace. (d) change. Prussia clearly powerful. (a) Gave tons of money to Frederick the Great. (b) German conict diverted French from colony. plains of Germany. (c) Wanted all of America east of Mississippi. (d) Sent over nial war.


France, Austria, Sweden, Russia, smaller German states

ally to destroy Prussia.

Successor Tsar

(killed in same year) admired Frederick and immediately

ended war with no border 

Won America on


English and colonial troops; highest ever for colo-

(e) Cooperated with coloniesrealized they could defeat French. (f ) French could not direct similar resources. i. Corrupt administration. ii. Military and political leadership in Canada divided. iii. Could not suciently supply forces. iv.  French were defeated on


Plains of Abraham.


(g) Also captured French West Indies. 1755-60. (h) Defeated France's India of

French trade fell by 80% from

1757 Battle of Plassey.


The Treaty of Paris in 1763
River valley.

(i) Never had any European power experience such world-wide victory.

(a) Less victorious than battleeld. (b) Pitt no longer in oce; replaced by Earl of Bute. (c) Britain get Canada, Ohio River Valley, eastern half of Mississippi



(d) Some Indian colonies returned; Guadeloupe and Martinique returned.

(a) 10,000s soldiers and sailors died in major battles across globe. (b) Prussia took Silesia and turned Holy Roman Empire empty, at great sacrice. (c) Habsburg power depedent on Hungary. (d) France no longer great power. (e) Spanish Empire intact, but British still wanted its markets. (f ) British East India compay power over decaying states.


new territories in New World.

Britain became world power until


(g) Domestic Crises i. France desperate for reform. ii. Everybody had to increase revenue.


The American Revolution and Europe

Evolved from revenue-collection problems common to all powers in Seven-Years' War. French support of colonies worsened French debt.


Resistance to the Imperial Search for Revenue

1. Two imperial problems after 1763 Treaty of Paris: (a) Cost of maintaining empirecould not maintain alone. Colonies pay because they're beneciaries. (b) New territory to organizeSt. Lawrence to Mississippiget rid of French and Native.



3. 4.

1764  Sugar Act 1765  Stamp Act 1765 1766  Repeal

rigorous collection of lower tax. Smugglers tried

in Admiralty court w/o jury.  legal docs, newspapers, etc. 

Stamp Act Congress  protest; fear if colonial government ex-

ternally funded, colonists would lose control. (a) Inuenced by Sons of Liberty. (b) Refused to import British goods. stamp act;


Declaratory Act

still held power to legislate

6. Pattern: (a) Parliament approve legislation. (b) American resist w/ reasoned argument. (c) Parliament repeal; start over. (d) With each clash, less reconcilable. Americans think more liberty.



The Crisis and Independence 
Charles Townshend  colonial import laws.

2. Sent customs agents and troops to protect. 3.

1770  Boston Massacre

5 citizen killed.

4. Repealed except one on tea. 5.



pass what known as

Intolerable Acts.

(a) Close Boston. (b) Reorganize Massachusetts. (c) Allowed quartering. (d) Remove trials of customs ocers. 6. Quebec Act  Quebec include Ohio River Valley. 7.


1774  First Continental Congress 1775. 1775  Second Continental Congress
Lexington, Concord too much tension; began to lead colonies. (a) George III declare rebellion. 

couldn't reconcile. Battles of 

still seek reconciliation, but

(b) Paine's Common Sense convince public.


9. 10.


Apr. 1776 1781 1778 1779 1783 Treaty of Paris
at Yorktown. (a) (b)

(c) Organize colonial army, navy.  Open American ports. 

End American Revolution; Washington defeat Lord Cornwallis 

Ben Franklin persuade French to support. 

Spanish join against Brit.  13 colonies free.


American Political Ideals

1. Look to English Revolution of 1688; similar to rebellion against Stuart. 2. Justify aristocratic rebellion to support popular revolution. 3.


ideals, derived from Locke.

4. Commonwealthmean  British political writers, intellectually rooted in radical Puritan revolution. (a) John Trenchard (1662-1723) (b) Thomas Gordon (d. 1750)  Cato's Letters criticize Walpole 

corrupt and undermined liberty. (c) Parli tax simply nance corruption. (d) Standing army part of tyranny. (e) In Britain, ignored because public thought they were freest people in world. (f )

Picked up in colonies 

accepted en face.


Events in Great Britain
ment of Parli. (a) Appointed Earl of Bute rst minister. (b) Ignore Whigs that ran country since 1715  sought aid of politicians Parli hated. (c) Lord North rst minister from 1770-82. (d) Whig families claimed George III trying to impose tyranny.

1. George III believed he should have his own ministers and royal manage-


The Challenge of John Wilkes 1763
( 14

(e) George III try to restore royal inuence, but not really tyrant. )

(a) Wilkes criticize Lord North's peace negotiations with France. (b) Arrested under general warrant; released by privilege of Parli plea. (c) Courts rule general warrant illegal. (d) House of Commons rule libel. (e) Wilkes ed and outlawed, but enjoyed popular support. (f )  Returned, re-elected to Parliament. Commons refused to


seat (under inuence of George's friends). Elected three more times; Parli ignored after 4th. (g) Popular and aristocratic support. (h) Finally seated in



Movement for Parliamentary Reform
tocratic body; popular support.

(i) Colonists see as King being arbitrary tyrant.

(a) British home subjects not directly represented anymore than colonists. (b) Wilkes and Colonists protest same things  large, self-elected aris-

(c) Revolution orderly; outside regular framework.


Yorkshire Association Movement

(d) Parliamentary reform towards end of Revolution.

(a) End of 1770s: British resent mismanagement of war. Christopher Wyvil  property owners (freeholders)  mod-


erate changes to corrupt system. (c) Popular attempt to establish extra-legal institution to reform government. (d) Failed during 1780s because members not willing to appeal to public. (e) Provided experience. Many younger members promoted reform after 1815.



(f ) Parliament passed some resolutions, but not much substantial.  Lord North ally with Charles James Fox, critic of monarch.

(a) 1783  King appoint William Pitt the Younger to manage House of Commons (b) 1784  Pitt construct King-phallic monarchy. (c) Tried a reform in 1785; failed and he gave up reforming. (d)  Reassert monarchy control. Temporary; mental illness re-


quired regency which weakened royal power. (e) Great cost. Popular sovereignty; colonies lost. (f ) Economically ne. Trade after independence




Broader Impact of the American Revolution
on popular consent and sovereignty.

1. Establish title less non-hereditary government based on documents based

2. 1760-70: Colonists see selves as preserve English liberty against tyranny. 3. 1770s: reject monarchy; form republic. 4. White males equal before law. 5. Genuinely radical movement. Other people began to question traditional European government.


In Perspective

During sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, mercantile empires were established to gain wealth for the home country. African slaves were drawn into plantations, infusing culture with African culture. Colonial wars became entangled with continental wars, resulting in world-wide mid-century wars. Britain, France, and Spain fought for dominance in New World; France and Britain also fought for India but Britain beat France. Spain held their territory. Britain used conPrussia tinental wars to divert French attention, thus winning colonial wars.

emerged powerful in 1763, Austria weaker, and France in huge debt. The wars depleted everybody, so the British tried to tax their colonies to raise funds, leading to revolution. The French aided the colonists, but were already in deep debt; the monarch and nobility soon clashed, bringing the French revolution. Spain began administering its empires more eciently with the Bourbon monarchs, tivist government known as Enlightened Absolutism.

Mid-18th-century wars brought most major political developments in the next half century.
A Visitors Describe the Portobello Fair
Portobello is ordinarily sparsely populated (tiempo muerto ) but each year during the fair, it becomes one of the most populous places. steals or loses the bullion. distribute goods elsewhere. A tent is erected from the ship's sales. Mules drag gold and silver to unload; the authors say nobody The harbor then lls with many other vessels to The Spanish ships also facilitate trade from the The merchants of Peru, deputies and

increasing revolutionary discontent. Prussia, Austria, and Russia pursued ac-

fellow American port of Carthagena. commodore of ship announce price.

Cacao, quinquina, Jesuit's bark, Vicuña wool, bezoar stones are sold. The

system is inecient because such a large amount of goods are sold centrally and trade between American ports can only take place through Spanish ships, once a year.
Chatas and bongos, vessels that carry the goods away from the port

to colonial settlement, can easily be used for smuggling since the Spanish ships soon leave, leaving no guard.



Buccaneers Prowl the High Seas

A ne line existed between self-serving buccaneers and privateers operating for European governments. There is a careful code of conduct among pirates themselves but they treated others harshly. Poor farmers and shermen were robbed and virtually enslaved. Sometimes pirates plunder Spanish corrales places where about thousand hogs were kept. Demand hobs from farmer; threaten to hang. When a ship is captured, captain decides to keep it if it is better. The old ship is burned. Stu robbed from ships must be split equally. Each pirate must swear oath on Bible; if they breach, they are banished. Prisoners are to be set on shore ASAP, except a few for slaves for 2-3 years. Often land on islands and set marauding expeditions. Catch poor shermen for slaves for their families for 4-5 years.


A Slave Trader Describes the Atlantic Passage

Left with 480 men, 220 women; had to promise to return next year with English goods. Great disease; 320 died, so they lost a lot of money. Blacks survived smallpox but did not survived white ux. Sick people got as much water as they wanted and some oil to annoint wounds. They claim to have taken great care to feed and house the slaves, yet consider their conditions when they walk through a parcel of creatures nastier than swine, and after all our expectations to be defeated by their mortality . . .  when they die, life really sucks for you. Average 78 Carrying slaves is lthy, dicult task;


16. Shackles prevented suicide. 609 slaves could be carried

on ship designed for 450.


Major Cathwright Calls for the Reform of Parliament

1777  more citizens be allowed to vote. Parliament fundamentally corrupt; must go to bottom. Annual elections and common representation, not via royal favor. 5,723 elect 254 out of 513 representatives, derived from royal favor. Flagrant injustice, strip citizen's right to vote.


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