HomeDiagramsDatabaseMapsForumSkyscraper Posters
     

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Discussion Forums > City Discussions

Reply

 
Thread Tools Display Modes
     
     
  #41  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 4:59 PM
Crawford Crawford is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Brooklyn, NYC/Polanco, DF
Posts: 13,443
New Orleans was one of the richest cities in the U.S. in the 1800's. The invention of the cotton gin sent cotton production soaring and New Orleans was the center. New Orleans was the second or third largest city in the U.S. in 1840. Really only NYC was considerably bigger.

In early 1800's, most cotton to Europe was shipped via New York. At some point, the New Orleans wharves were upgraded and could directly ship to UK and the Continent. Cotton was THE export and New Orleans dominated. It was almost like Silicon Valley today.

And, yeah, the Mississippi, the most important waterway on the continent, was critically important.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #42  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 5:13 PM
eschaton eschaton is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 1,444
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centropolis View Post
to dig down a bit further, this has already been covered, but both new orleans and st. louis had large, productive hinterlands to draw wealth from (as did every other major north american city to rise before world war 2) and function as transportation centers . savannah and charleston had swampy, low productivity, low connectivity, highly stratified, entrenched economies. new orleans became fueled by st. louis and vice versa, so the entire center of the continent fueled those 2 cities which worked in tandem (although st. louis traded with the mid atlantic heavily as well) until chicago started hammering away (another discussion).

as far as i know, charleston and savannah were more (economically) isolated, excepting the higher classes which i'm sure interacted with the northeast. much more stagnant economies, and were geographically old backwater to the westward surge of american activity. not anymore, of course.
Right. An important corollary of this is the reason NYC boomed was because of the construction of the Erie Canal, which meant that all trade via the Great Lakes traveled down the Hudson until the Saint Lawrence Seaway was completed. So NYC was not only a great east coast port with a productive hinterland, but also served the same function that New Orleans did for the entire Mississippi basin. Without the Erie Canal it probably would have been in the same size range as Boston or Philadelphia.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #43  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 7:14 PM
Centropolis's Avatar
Centropolis Centropolis is online now
crisis actor
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: oceanus ultra
Posts: 6,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
New Orleans was one of the richest cities in the U.S. in the 1800's. The invention of the cotton gin sent cotton production soaring and New Orleans was the center. New Orleans was the second or third largest city in the U.S. in 1840. Really only NYC was considerably bigger.

In early 1800's, most cotton to Europe was shipped via New York. At some point, the New Orleans wharves were upgraded and could directly ship to UK and the Continent. Cotton was THE export and New Orleans dominated. It was almost like Silicon Valley today.

And, yeah, the Mississippi, the most important waterway on the continent, was critically important.
i am suprised to see that new orleans was larger than philadelphia (proper) in 1840. philly hadnt annexed northern liberties yet, though. still an impressive stat for both a southern AND "western" city at the time.
__________________
"think of the multitude of lies by which the people here in new spain were led into error. not for only four hundred years, not only for eight hundred years, it has been for much time in the past. alas my heart suffereth much…when I think upon how great is the hatred of the tzitzimitl (demon of the air) and of satan."
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #44  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 7:37 PM
Crawford Crawford is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Brooklyn, NYC/Polanco, DF
Posts: 13,443
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centropolis View Post
i am suprised to see that new orleans was larger than philadelphia (proper) in 1840. philly hadnt annexed northern liberties yet, though. still an impressive stat for both a southern AND "western" city at the time.
Yeah, Philly, by current standards, was likely bigger than New Orleans, but by city limits New Orleans was #2 or #3. Pretty impressive for what was still a raw frontier city, far from established centers.

And especially impressive in that New Orleans has oppressive humidity half the year, and constant flooding. It's a pretty terrible location for a city, yet in 1840 many people probably thought it could eventually be the dominant city in North America, or at least one of the dominant cities.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #45  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 7:49 PM
Steely Dan's Avatar
Steely Dan Steely Dan is offline
Professional Midwesterner
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Edgewater, Chicago
Posts: 17,469
given N.O.'s founding and early growth as a french, and then spanish, colonial city on the gulf coast, i see at as a different animal from anything in the british colonial atlantic seaboard.

then again, it was a pretty tiny place prior to the lousiana purchase and getting wrapped up in the whole US manifest destiny game, so it was never a MAJOR center under french or spanish control.

nonetheless, it's an interesting outlier for a whole host of reasons. i simply must visit it someday (hopefully) soon. it's the only major historic US city that i have yet to visit.
__________________
He has to go.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #46  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 7:58 PM
Centropolis's Avatar
Centropolis Centropolis is online now
crisis actor
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: oceanus ultra
Posts: 6,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
given N.O.'s founding and early growth as a french, and then spanish, colonial city on the gulf coast, i see at as a different animal from anything in the british colonial atlantic seaboard.

then again, it was a pretty tiny place prior to the lousiana purchase and getting wrapped up in the whole US manifest destiny game, so it was never a MAJOR center under french or spanish control.

nonetheless, it's an interesting outlier for a whole host of reasons. i simply must visit it someday (hopefully) soon. it's the only major historic US city that i have yet to visit.
how have you never been?! in any case, the best time to go is in the winter, in my opinion (but not near mardi gras). i'm used to st. louis heat/humidity, and new orleans is somehow a notch worse. the only good thing is that they have afternoon tropical rainshowers that cool things down...until the sun comes back out and the steambath machine starts up.

chicago to new orleans is kind of a jaunt, but i like driving there, observing the transition of the land, until you feel as though you have sort of actually left the american south, and entered into some kind of quasi-american sub-tropic territory.
__________________
"think of the multitude of lies by which the people here in new spain were led into error. not for only four hundred years, not only for eight hundred years, it has been for much time in the past. alas my heart suffereth much…when I think upon how great is the hatred of the tzitzimitl (demon of the air) and of satan."
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #47  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 8:08 PM
Steely Dan's Avatar
Steely Dan Steely Dan is offline
Professional Midwesterner
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Edgewater, Chicago
Posts: 17,469
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centropolis View Post

chicago to new orleans is kind of a jaunt, but i like driving there, observing the transition of the land, until you feel as though you have sort of actually left the american south, and entered into some kind of quasi-american sub-tropic territory.
my (not so) secret dream is to ride the "city of new orleans" down there and back someday. i'm a romantic at heart.
__________________
He has to go.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #48  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2017, 8:19 PM
nomarandlee's Avatar
nomarandlee nomarandlee is offline
My Mind Has Left My Body
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 2,787
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
my secret dream is to ride the "city of new orleans" down there and back someday. i'm a romantic like that.
Same here with that idea. Never been either. City of New Orleans, a beautiful song that I never tire of. Americana to the core, in the best way.

I was VERY close 3 years ago about to do my first marathon in NO on my birthday (Feb. 2nd) but I wasn't ready and later did my first in DC in late March.
I've looked periodically to fly down there but flights there are most always uber expensive from Chicago compared to other major cities. Maybe this years Jazz's Fest......
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #49  
Old Posted Feb 11, 2017, 6:29 PM
brickell's Avatar
brickell brickell is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: County of Dade
Posts: 9,366
Quote:
Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
Florida doesn't really have a single counterpart, although Pensacola and Jacksonville come close.
Apalachicola was once one a major gulf port. I don't think many people could point it out on the map now. Smaller scale than some of these others but the definitely in the same family.
__________________
That's what did it in the end. Not the money, not the music, not even the guns. That is my heroic flaw: my excess of civic pride.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #50  
Old Posted Feb 11, 2017, 7:12 PM
Centropolis's Avatar
Centropolis Centropolis is online now
crisis actor
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: oceanus ultra
Posts: 6,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by brickell View Post
Apalachicola was once one a major gulf port. I don't think many people could point it out on the map now. Smaller scale than some of these others but the definitely in the same family.
i've been there, used to vacation in that area. i see a lot of apalachicola oysters here, one of the only major commercial fishing fleets left in florida from what i can tell.
__________________
"think of the multitude of lies by which the people here in new spain were led into error. not for only four hundred years, not only for eight hundred years, it has been for much time in the past. alas my heart suffereth much…when I think upon how great is the hatred of the tzitzimitl (demon of the air) and of satan."
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #51  
Old Posted Feb 11, 2017, 8:52 PM
lio45 lio45 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Lévis, QC
Posts: 14,477
Quote:
Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
I would say transportation played a role as well. It's very difficult to build railroads along the coast in the south, because of lowlying swamps and broad rivers/estuaries.

Both Savannah and Charleston had railroads feeding into them, but they were on spurs while the main line was often 50-75 miles further inland. When the interstate system was built, this pattern was repeated. Charleston is a full hour's drive off I-95, assuming no traffic. Even Savannah is a 15-20 minute drive from I-95.
That's the main explanation IMO as well.

And we're lucky it was the case - Charleston and Savannah wouldn't be the gems they are, otherwise.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #52  
Old Posted Feb 12, 2017, 4:53 AM
xzmattzx's Avatar
xzmattzx xzmattzx is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Wilmington, DE
Posts: 4,616
Some of it has been mentioned before, but almost all of it has to do with the Industrial Revolution.

Charleston and Savannah are not on the Fall Line. Philadelphia and Boston are, or are close enough, and so in the mid-1800s, these cities took off as finished goods from the mills were sent to the big city and then shipped off around the world. Charleston and Savannah didn't have many mills close enough to provide for more than the surrounding region.

There is one Southern city near the coast that is on the Fall Line and was comparatively big back then. Richmond is on the Fall Line and had many factories, similar to how Philadelphia and Boston did back then. Richmond was important enough to become the capital of the Confederacy.

In addition to that, there was a network of canals and railroads that provided links to Boston and Philadelphia, particularly Philadelphia. And of course, New York City outgrew Philadelphia because of the Erie Canal, which linked it up with a very large area providing raw materials to the factories in the NYC area.

What happened in the 20th century, with highways and all, is irrelevant because the groundwork had already been laid in the past several decades. Similarly, the highways didn't create Houston or Los Angeles, which grew in the 20th century; the highways were built to accommodate demand, because other factors were driving the local economy at the time.

The bottom line is that Philadelphia, Boston, Charleston, and Savannah all had what cities needed in the 1700s, but Boston and Philadelphia had what cities needed in the 1800s. From there, Boston and Philadelphia stayed ahead.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #53  
Old Posted Feb 12, 2017, 6:40 AM
electricron's Avatar
electricron electricron is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Granbury, Texas
Posts: 2,790
Charleston and Savanah are surrounded by swamps.
Land not easy to build on and land not easy to grow crops on.
Much of the wealth in the South prior to the Civil War was invested into plantations, both land and labor. After the Civil War, the wealth was eliminated resulting from liberating the slaves and the burning of the plantations by Sherman's march to the sea. It's difficult to pay taxes without money from crops and slaves. While the historic agriculture plantation system may or may not have created huge profits and wealth, the new agriculture systems based upon sharecropping after reconstruction didn't allow acculmuntaing as much wealth, as the money earned from the crops was distributed to more people working the smaller and smaller farms. An agriculture based economy is basically non compatible with large urban cities.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #54  
Old Posted Feb 12, 2017, 8:02 PM
coyotetrickster's Avatar
coyotetrickster coyotetrickster is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 434
Quote:
Originally Posted by electricron View Post
Charleston and Savanah are surrounded by swamps.
Land not easy to build on and land not easy to grow crops on.
Much of the wealth in the South prior to the Civil War was invested into plantations, both land and labor. After the Civil War, the wealth was eliminated resulting from liberating the slaves and the burning of the plantations by Sherman's march to the sea. It's difficult to pay taxes without money from crops and slaves. While the historic agriculture plantation system may or may not have created huge profits and wealth, the new agriculture systems based upon sharecropping after reconstruction didn't allow acculmuntaing as much wealth, as the money earned from the crops was distributed to more people working the smaller and smaller farms. An agriculture based economy is basically non compatible with large urban cities.
Both low country cities were surrounded by large rice and indigo plantations, as well as naval stores materials (e.g. turpentine) provided by slash pine forests. Also, the Savannah, Ashley and Cooper were navigable rivers, so the use of railroads was not as critical. The swamp and marshes did not in anyway impact the growth of either city, or the wealth of the region. It was, however, a very concentrated wealth, and there was no significant middle class in the South at the outbreak of the Civil War, but by that time, the shipping needs and trade patterns had already shifted. The opening of the midwest, first from the Erie Canal and later continental railroads, definitely elevated the better deep water ports of the Northeast over the Southern Ports. Additionally, the changes in trading patterns enhanced the Northeaster cities. Manufactured goods became a larger part of the trade patterns as the US implemented tariffs to bolster fledging US industries. As a result, the southern ports became secondary destinations, where cotton was loaded for shipping to the English and French mills.

The 'elite' in both cities were comfortable with the arrangements and the wealth generated by the triangle trade. And, as others have pointed out, you cannot discuss either city's evolution without considering the disruption of the Civil War, and the subsequent occupation/reconstruction of the south. Northern interests ensured that the South/s manufacturing would be restricted. Additionally, the efforts required to create a new civic and economic structure detracted greatly from civic efforts. There was a massive destruction of assets and you can't build without $$$.

The industrial expansion of the South started with the migration of the mills to the fall line cities, not the old ports, with the exception of NO. At the end, Savannah or Charleston had neither the infrastructure or civic goal to grow like Philadelphia or Boston.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #55  
Old Posted Feb 14, 2017, 7:01 AM
HurricaneHugo's Avatar
HurricaneHugo HurricaneHugo is offline
Category Five
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: San Diego
Posts: 2,712
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye Native 001 View Post
Weather, possibly? I loved Charleston when I visited in 2012 but there's some residual PTSD among long-time residents from when Hurricane Hugo hit in 1989.
My bad.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #56  
Old Posted Feb 15, 2017, 10:10 PM
Private Dick's Avatar
Private Dick Private Dick is offline
Mal Vivant
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: D.C.
Posts: 3,087
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
New Orleans was the second or third largest city in the U.S. in 1840. Really only NYC was considerably bigger.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centropolis View Post
i am suprised to see that new orleans was larger than philadelphia (proper) in 1840. philly hadnt annexed northern liberties yet, though. still an impressive stat for both a southern AND "western" city at the time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
Yeah, Philly, by current standards, was likely bigger than New Orleans, but by city limits New Orleans was #2 or #3. Pretty impressive for what was still a raw frontier city, far from established centers.
New York and Philadelphia were far and away the largest cities in the US back then. Philadelphia was much larger than New Orleans at that time -- likely double the size of New Orleans. Northern Liberties/Kensington/Spring Garden, and Southwark/Moymensing were all urban industrial neighborhoods immediately contiguous with "Philadelphia proper" back then. They were basically part of the city, even though they were technically their own townships "separated" from Philadelphia only by former estate boundaries. For all practical purposes, they were Philadelphia neighborhoods... and they also happened to be among the largest "cities" in the US at the time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xzmattzx View Post
Some of it has been mentioned before, but almost all of it has to do with the Industrial Revolution.

Charleston and Savannah are not on the Fall Line. Philadelphia and Boston are, or are close enough, and so in the mid-1800s, these cities took off as finished goods from the mills were sent to the big city and then shipped off around the world. Charleston and Savannah didn't have many mills close enough to provide for more than the surrounding region.

There is one Southern city near the coast that is on the Fall Line and was comparatively big back then. Richmond is on the Fall Line and had many factories, similar to how Philadelphia and Boston did back then. Richmond was important enough to become the capital of the Confederacy.

In addition to that, there was a network of canals and railroads that provided links to Boston and Philadelphia, particularly Philadelphia. And of course, New York City outgrew Philadelphia because of the Erie Canal, which linked it up with a very large area providing raw materials to the factories in the NYC area.

What happened in the 20th century, with highways and all, is irrelevant because the groundwork had already been laid in the past several decades. Similarly, the highways didn't create Houston or Los Angeles, which grew in the 20th century; the highways were built to accommodate demand, because other factors were driving the local economy at the time.

The bottom line is that Philadelphia, Boston, Charleston, and Savannah all had what cities needed in the 1700s, but Boston and Philadelphia had what cities needed in the 1800s. From there, Boston and Philadelphia stayed ahead.
Yes, this was basically along the lines of my response.

And in even broader terms... in the mid-19th century, the North was industrial with many cities, the South was agricultural with few cities. Factories developed around nodes of materials and transportation networks. This brought the demand for workers... immigration. 5 million Irish alone came to the US in the mid 1800s before the Civil War... and most of them settled in Northern industrial cities. And the accelerator was only pushed down from there.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #57  
Old Posted Apr 20, 2017, 1:52 AM
LSyd's Avatar
LSyd LSyd is offline
Red October standing by
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Columbia/Sumter, SC
Posts: 16,766
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirrus View Post
The issue isn't whether or not the south was behind the north prior to the Civil War. It's why Charleston and Savannah lost their place relative to the rest of the south.

Certainly their slide began before the war, but the postwar realignment certainly exacerbated the trend significantly.
this, and also how cities rebuilt after the war (and earthquake). there is a lot in Charleston and Savannah from the late 1800s.

for another inland example, Birmingham was founded in 1871 for steel/metal production, and went from a population of a few dozen (farms) to almost 40,000 by 1900.

and another example...

Quote:
Originally Posted by xzmattzx View Post
Some of it has been mentioned before, but almost all of it has to do with the Industrial Revolution.

Charleston and Savannah are not on the Fall Line. Philadelphia and Boston are, or are close enough, and so in the mid-1800s, these cities took off as finished goods from the mills were sent to the big city and then shipped off around the world. Charleston and Savannah didn't have many mills close enough to provide for more than the surrounding region.

There is one Southern city near the coast that is on the Fall Line and was comparatively big back then. Richmond is on the Fall Line and had many factories, similar to how Philadelphia and Boston did back then. Richmond was important enough to become the capital of the Confederacy.

In addition to that, there was a network of canals and railroads that provided links to Boston and Philadelphia, particularly Philadelphia. And of course, New York City outgrew Philadelphia because of the Erie Canal, which linked it up with a very large area providing raw materials to the factories in the NYC area.

What happened in the 20th century, with highways and all, is irrelevant because the groundwork had already been laid in the past several decades. Similarly, the highways didn't create Houston or Los Angeles, which grew in the 20th century; the highways were built to accommodate demand, because other factors were driving the local economy at the time.

The bottom line is that Philadelphia, Boston, Charleston, and Savannah all had what cities needed in the 1700s, but Boston and Philadelphia had what cities needed in the 1800s. From there, Boston and Philadelphia stayed ahead.
big cotton and textile mills sprung up all around the south in the late 1800s. Columbia, Greenville, Augusta, Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Anderson...but there was also now rail for distribution, instead of just ports.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Centropolis View Post
how have you never been?! in any case, the best time to go is in the winter, in my opinion (but not near mardi gras). i'm used to st. louis heat/humidity, and new orleans is somehow a notch worse. the only good thing is that they have afternoon tropical rainshowers that cool things down...until the sun comes back out and the steambath machine starts up.

chicago to new orleans is kind of a jaunt, but i like driving there, observing the transition of the land, until you feel as though you have sort of actually left the american south, and entered into some kind of quasi-american sub-tropic territory.
i definitely agree with the best time being winter although it can get wet and nasty; November-mid January. you can do pre-Mardi Gras or early Mardi Gras season in January for the experience without the pain of Mardi Gras.

-
__________________
"The vapors! The fainting couch! Those heartless elitists are burning down the plantation with their logic and arithmetic!"

-fflint
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #58  
Old Posted Apr 20, 2017, 8:03 AM
lzppjb's Avatar
lzppjb lzppjb is offline
7th Gen Central Texan
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Austin TX
Posts: 2,309
Galveston is another port that was on its way to being a big time city before the hurricane destroyed it. Now it lives in Houston's shadow.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #59  
Old Posted Apr 22, 2017, 10:32 AM
HurricaneHugo's Avatar
HurricaneHugo HurricaneHugo is offline
Category Five
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: San Diego
Posts: 2,712
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye Native 001 View Post
Weather, possibly? I loved Charleston when I visited in 2012 but there's some residual PTSD among long-time residents from when Hurricane Hugo hit in 1989.
Oops.

My bad.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #60  
Old Posted May 11, 2017, 11:17 PM
Lakelander's Avatar
Lakelander Lakelander is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Posts: 3,824
Quote:
Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
I would say transportation played a role as well. It's very difficult to build railroads along the coast in the south, because of lowlying swamps and broad rivers/estuaries.

Both Savannah and Charleston had railroads feeding into them, but they were on spurs while the main line was often 50-75 miles further inland. When the interstate system was built, this pattern was repeated. Charleston is a full hour's drive off I-95, assuming no traffic. Even Savannah is a 15-20 minute drive from I-95.

Also to the list of historic Southern coastal cities, don't forget to add Mobile. Historically it was somewhat smaller than Charleston or Savannah and much smaller than New Orleans, but it is the Alabama counterpart to each of those cities. Florida doesn't really have a single counterpart, although Pensacola and Jacksonville come close.
Mobile was Florida's counterpart. Spanish Florida once stretched west to the Mississippi River. The Alabama section of Spanish Florida was taken by the US in 1819. The US got the rest of Florida in 1821. East Florida (roughly everything east and south of the Suwannee River) was too dangerous for US expansion until the end of the Seminole Wars in 1858.
__________________
Metro Jacksonville
Reply With Quote
     
     
This discussion thread continues

Use the page links to the lower-right to go to the next page for additional posts
 
 
Reply

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Discussion Forums > City Discussions
Forum Jump


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 12:44 PM.

     

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.