New e-resource trial (until 11th February): Global Commodities: Trade, Exploration and Cultural Exchange

The History Faculty Library has arranged a trial of Global Commodities: Trade, Exploration and Cultural Exchange.

Global Commodities is an online resource useful for economic and trade history of covering the early modern period to 20th century . It is relevant for world history, economic and trade history, social history, discovery and exploration, history of consumption and life style, etc.

It includes wide-ranging sources:

  • Records of individual traders, showing patterns of consumption for a range of commodities over time.
  • Business Accounts and Records of both small and large companies from an early fur trapper to a major chocolate manufacturer.
  • Dock Accounts describing the development of a major port from 1755 to 1960.
  • Bills of Entry for major ports which show changing patterns of trade between 1820 and 1939.
  • 17th and 18th century Trade Returns and Prices Current for key markets.
  • Material on the discovery and exploitation of commodities in Asia, Africa and the Americas from 1492 to 2000.
  • Government records concerning taxation, economic development and colonial business schemes.
  • Exhibition Catalogues.
  • Statistical sources documenting world trade; and a vast range of visual material including advertising and packaging, photographs, paintings and prints.

For each commodity there is a vast array of historical material documenting their origins, transportation, consumption and impact on society. Also, each commodity is documented through a wide range of manuscript materials, maps, posters, paintings, photographs, ephemera, objects and rare books so that the student can explore the origins of the commodity, their first uses, the trade that developed and the ways in which these items were marketed.

The trial runs until 11 February. Please leave any comments on  History databases desiderata & trials or email Isabel Holowaty, History Librarian.

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