African-American and White Living Standards in the 19th Century American South: A Biological Comparison

38 Pages Posted: 24 Apr 2006

See all articles by Scott A. Carson

Scott A. Carson

University of Texas of the Permian Basin; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Date Written: March 2006

Abstract

By using a new source of 19th century Texas state prison records, the present study contrasts the biological living conditions of comparable blacks and whites in the American South between the Civil War and Reconstruction. White stature exceeded black stature. Between 1850 and 1870, black sub-adult stature declined by over one centimeter. Postbellum sub-adult white stature declined by over one and a half centimeters and never recovered over the same period. The secular trend for adult blacks improved by two and one half centimeters between the 1850s but declined after the Civil War.

JEL Classification: N31, J15, J70, I12, I31

Suggested Citation

Carson, Scott A., African-American and White Living Standards in the 19th Century American South: A Biological Comparison (March 2006). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 1696, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=897904

Scott A. Carson (Contact Author)

University of Texas of the Permian Basin ( email )

4901 East University
Odessa, TX 79762
United States

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

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