Bees in America: How the Honey Bee Shaped a Nation

By Tammy Horn | Go to book overview

Chapter 4
AFTER BEE SPACE
1860–1900

To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee.

—Emily Dickinson

Compared to honey, sugar always has been a more political commodity, but especially in nineteenth-century America. Until that time, Americans had relied on the sugarcane industry (which had been profitable because of slaves) to serve its collective sweet tooth and had neglected to address the conflict between democratic principles and chattel slavery. The American slave trade had been inextricably linked to sugarcane and rum since the colonial period, when the Dutch were establishing trade routes in the West Indies. During the eighteenth century, John Adams had the temerity to suggest that the American Revolution was really about one item—molasses, which was the main ingredient used in rum and was defined by the British as sugar.1 As pioneers moved west, the contradiction of allowing slavocracies in a democracy became much more clear when territories organized into states. Although I don’t want to simplify the causes of the Civil War, I want to suggest that the sugarcane industry was a catalyst because

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Bees in America: How the Honey Bee Shaped a Nation
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Part One- Hiving off from Europe 1
  • Introduction 3
  • Chapter 1- Bees and New World Colonialism 19
  • Part Two- Establishing a New Colony 39
  • Chapter 2- Bees and the Revolution 41
  • Part Three- Swarming West during the Nineteenth Century 63
  • Chapter 3- Before Bee Space 1801–1860 65
  • Chapter 4- After Bee Space 1860–1900 101
  • Part Four- Requeening a Global Hive 143
  • Chapter 5- Early Twentieth Century Industrialization, 1901–1949 145
  • Chapter 6- Late Twentieth Century - Globalization, 1950–2000 199
  • Epilogue 251
  • Notes 263
  • Glossary 293
  • Dramatis Personae 297
  • Bibliography 301
  • Permissions 317
  • Index 319
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