Founding Finance


Founding Finance: How Debt, Speculation, Foreclosures, Protests, and Crackdowns Made Us a Nation 

By William Hogeland  2012


About the Author

William Hogeland is also the author of the Wild Early Republic trilogy: “The Whiskey Rebellion” (2006), “Declaration” (2010), and “Autumn of the Black Snake” (2017). Hogeland has also written  for “The Atlantic,” “AlterNet,” “Salon,” “The New York Times,” “Boston Review,” “The Huffington Post,” and others. 

About the Book

From the author’s website, “William Hogeland offers a new perspective on America’s economic infancy: foreclosure crises that make our current one look mild; investment bubbles in land and securities that drove rich men to high-risk borrowing and mad displays of ostentation before dropping them into debtors’ prisons; depressions longer and deeper than the great one of the twentieth century; crony mercantilism, war profiteering, and government corruption that undermine any nostalgia for a virtuous early republic; and predatory lending of scarce cash at exorbitant, unregulated rates, which forced people into bankruptcy, landlessness, and working in the factories and on the commercial farms of their creditors. This story exposes and corrects a perpetual historical denial — by movements across the political spectrum — of America’s all-important founding economic clashes, a denial that weakens and cheapens public discourse on American finance just when we need it most.”

The book’s Contents include 9 chapters:

1 The Founders, Finance, and Us

2 Riot, Regulate, Occupy (1765–1771)

3 Two Revolutions? (1771–1776)

4 Conceived in War Debt (1776–1783)

5 History on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1913–2012)

6 An Existential Interpretation of the Constitution of the United States (1783–1789)

7 It’s Hamilton’s America . . . We Just Live in It (1789–1791)

8 Crackdown and Lockup: Cincinnatus, the Whiskey Rebels, and the End of Thomas Paine (1791–)

9 Gather Your Armies (2012)

Bibliographic Essay


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