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Tapping The Pines: The Naval Stores Industry…

Tapping The Pines: The Naval Stores Industry In The American South

by III Robert B. Outland

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 080712981X, Hardcover)

The extraction of raw turpentine and tar from the southern longleaf pine – along with the manufacture of derivative products such as spirits of turpentine and rosin – constitutes what was once the largest industry in North Carolina and one of the most important in the South: naval stores production. In a pathbreaking study that seamlessly weaves together business, environmental, labor, and social history, Robert B. Outland III offers the first complete account of this sizable though little-understood sector of the southern economy.

An important part of the timber products trade, naval stores were originally used primarily in shipbuilding and maintenance but came to be employed in myriad ways during the nineteenth century. Outland traces the South’s naval stores industry from its colonial origins to the mid-twentieth century. He vividly describes the primitive harvest and production methods that eventually destroyed the very trees the trade relied upon, forcing operators to relocated every few years. He introduces the many different people involved in the industry and explores the reliance on forced labor – slavery before the Civil War and afterwards debt peonage and convict leasing. He demonstrates how the isolated forest environment created harsh working and living conditions, making the life of a turpentine hand and his family exceedingly difficult.

A fresh interpretation of the socioeconomic development of the piney woods South, Tapping the Pines is an essential volume for anyone interested in the region.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:37 -0400)

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