Jun. 21st, 2017

To continue with Wednesday, August 17, after lunch we had the book launch for The Annotated Works of Henry George, Volume One. A few years ago, I had my doubts, as a Schalkenbach trustee, about spending tens of thousands of dollars on this, but Ted Gwartney made the argument that having scholarly, annotated printings would help get Georgism taken seriously by more academics (some academics already do take it seriously). Anyway, the event began with a video clip of Dr. Alexandra Wagner Lough speaking about American economic history.

Brendan Hennigan spoke (giving an introduction, I presume), followed by Dr. Fred Foldvary, Professor Frank Peddle, and Professor Bill Peirce.

Dr. Foldvary spoke about "Our Land and Land Policy," the first (short) book by Henry George, then thirty-one years old. He already understood about land and rent, and gave a brief history of massive land giveaways by the U.S. government to railroads, veterans, colleges, etc.

Land "monopoly" doesn't mean that there's a single seller, but that the supply cannot be increased.

Only one seventh of the land was transferred to homesteaders.

The Southern States had blocked Western expansion. During the Civil War, the Homestead Act was passed, with no Southern Congressmen to oppose it.

Speculators used "dummy entrymen" to obtain lands supposedly set aside for homesteaders.

There was an 1868 article by Henry George, "What the Railroad Will Bring Us." He was concerned that when the raw new city of San Francisco was connected to the Eastern U.S. by railroad, and became as great and rich as New York City, there would be hungry, ragged children in the streets of San Francisco, just as there were in New York.

To be continued.

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