Neither colonial North America nor the United States developed apart from the rest of the world. Since their founding, both the colonies and the United States have participated in the politics, economics, and cultures of the Atlantic World.
And every so often, the politics, economics, and cultures of lands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans intersected with and influenced those of the Atlantic World. That’s why today, we’re going to explore the origins of the English trade with India and how that trade connected and intersected with the English North American colonies.
Our guide for this investigation is Jonathan Eacott, an Associate Professor of History at the University of California, Riverside and author of Selling Empire: India in the Making of Britain and America, 1700-1830.
About the Show
Ben Franklin’s World is a podcast about early American history.
It is a show for people who love history and for those who want to know more about the historical people and events that have impacted and shaped our present-day world.
Each episode features a conversation with a historian who helps us shed light on important people and events in early American history.
In this episode we explore the origins of the English trade with India and how that trade connected and intersected with the English North American colonies with Jonathan Eacott, an Associate Professor of History at the University of California, Riverside and author of Selling Empire: India in the Making of Britain and America, 1700-1830.
During our investigation, Jonathan reveals how trade between England and India developed; The English East India Company and its creation; And, the role England’s trade with India played in the development of the English North American colonies.
What You’ll Discover
- English conceptions and perceptions of India in the late 16th century
- How trade developed between England and India
- 17th-century English arguments for and against establishing a trade with India
- The English East India Company
- Why European countries created trade monopolies like the English East India Company
- English North American involvement in the East India Trade
- English-American perceptions of India in the 17th century
- How colonial English Americans traded with India
- The goods English American colonists wanted from India
- How the English and English Americans paid and traded for goods from India
- Competition between English East India Company and its foreign counterparts
- Role enslaved peoples played in the development of the English trade with India
- The role the English trade with India played in the development of slavery in North America
- Calico and the Calico Acts
- Parliament’s enforcement of the Calico Acts
- How the British-American-Indian trade has informed our present-day
- India’s role in the American Revolution
Links to People, Places, and Publications
- Jonathan Eacott
- Jonathan’s UC-Riverside webpage
- Selling Empire: India in the Making of Britain and America, 1600-1830
- Episode 012: Dane Morrison, True Yankees
- Episode 015: Joyce Chaplin, Voyage Round the Earth
- Episode 049: Malcolm Gaskill, Between Two Worlds
- Episode 079: James Horn, What is a Historical Source? (Jamestown)
- Episode 095: Rose Doherty, A Tale of Two Bostons
Time Warp Question
In your opinion, what would have happened if India hadn’t existed? What would the lack of an India have meant for English colonization of North America?
Questions, Comments, Suggestions
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Very interesting and informative interview. …thank you. ..