Merchants of Independence: International Trade on the Santa Fe Trail, 1827-1860

Merchants of Independence: International Trade on the Santa Fe Trail, 1827-1860

by William Patrick O'Brien
     
 
In the frontier town of Independence, Missouri, a commercial route for goods to and from Europe developed into a sophisticated international network of overland trade with Mexico. To trade goods, western Missouri entrepreneurs relied on the cooperative support and interactions of Anglos, Hispanos, Native Americans, Jews, Irish, free blacks, slaves, and women in order

Overview

In the frontier town of Independence, Missouri, a commercial route for goods to and from Europe developed into a sophisticated international network of overland trade with Mexico. To trade goods, western Missouri entrepreneurs relied on the cooperative support and interactions of Anglos, Hispanos, Native Americans, Jews, Irish, free blacks, slaves, and women in order to succeed. Here William Patrick O'Brien examines the complexity of U.S. and Mexican trade alliances from 1827 to 1860 and how traders built consensus between individuals and various governmental and economic systems. The groups used in this study have been selected to underscore the town's diverse and polyglot nature and to dispel the notion of any homogeneous base. Cultural convergence, cooperation, conflict, and their consequences all played a part to make this strategic locale on the Missouri River a challenging and premier American center for trade on the Santa Fe Trail.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781612480909
Publisher:
Truman State University Press
Publication date:
02/01/2014
Pages:
275
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

What People are saying about this

Jon Taylor
Merchants of Independence pulls back the veil of the commercial interworkings of the frontier town of Independence, Missouri, and explains how the community was an active participant in Santa Fe Trail trade from 1827 to 1860. No other study has assessed the role Independence played, and here William O'Brien makes a compelling case that the Santa Fe Trail trade was not just regional in nature, but part of an international trade network. This is significant. --Jon Taylor

Meet the Author

William P. O'Brien is cultural resource specialist for the National Park Service Intermountain Region's Desert Southwest CESU. He received his PhD from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

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