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Print shows billowing smoke from steam engine train and steel mill smokestacks at Homestead Steel Works, Homestead, Pennsylvania.

Industry-Specific Periodicals

The periodicals described in this section are concerned primarily with the internationally traded cotton, corn, sugar, coal, iron, and steel. Throughout most of the 19th century, America exported agricultural commodities. In 1860, approximately 15% of America's exports were manufactured and semi-manufactured goods, but by 1910 they were about 50% of its exports.


Agricultural Commodities

Business Collections in the Library of Congress

Early Business Periodicals

A Guide to Major Titles available in the Collections of the Library of Congress

Table of Contents

About This Guide
General Commercial and Financial Periodicals
Industry-Specific Periodicals
      Agricultural Commodities
      Coal, Iron & Steel
Business History Research
Online Databases for Business History Research

Caption: left:
In the works, Homestead [1909]
Creator(s): Pennell, Joseph, 1857-1926
Library of Congress
Prints and Photographs Division
Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-ds-07144

Cotton Movement and Fluctuation
New York
LC Call Number: HD9072.L2

This trade journal published extensive data about cotton, including supply, U.S cotton consumption, receipts and export numbers from main U.S. ports, delivery numbers to spinners in Europe, as well as an analytical year-in-review by the editors.

LC Catalog Record: 00006420
1869/1875, 1869/1878-1869/1879
1875/1882-1876/1883, 1880/1885-1899/1904, 1901/1906-1903/1908, 1905/1910


Manchester, England
LC Call Number: HD9070.1.C6

Cotton was the official journal of the Manchester Cotton Association.  It provides information on the international cotton market, such as statistical data on consumption by the mills of Japan, conditions in the Egyptian cotton market, and data on the stock of cotton held in England’s main port of Liverpool.


LC Catalog Record: ca12000095
Printed Journal: v.1:no.1-v. 63:no. 3076 (1895:Apr.20-1957:Dec.21)
Duplicated Newssheet: no.1-no. 195


King Cotton: A Historical and Statistical Review, 1790-1908
LC Call Number: HD9075.W24

Published by James Lawrence Watkins in 1908, this monograph is a narrative and statistical history of the cotton industry in America from 1790 into the 20th century, with individual chapters devoted to each of the cotton growing states. Data tables show cotton production, supply, exports, and domestic consumption; average monthly rainfall and earliest frost dates in cotton states; fertilizer consumption; cotton ginning, transport of cotton; the number of cotton mills and spindles. King Cotton concludes with an extensive bibliography of cotton literature as of 1908. A copy is available online from the HaithiTrust Digital Library.

LC Catalog Record: 09005100

Cotton bales on the way to market, late 19th century
W.H. Jackson

Cotton bales on the way to market, late 19th century


George Broomhall's Corn Trade News
LC Call Number: HD9030.1.G5

This registered newspaper covered the market for cereal grains, such as maize (corn), wheat and oats; beans; and oilseeds. It also reported on related products such as oil and oilcake, petroleum and grease; liquid corn syrup, flour, hay, tallow, and turpentine. Data tables include official crop reports, weather reports, and monthly net wheat and flour exports of Britain's chief competitors. Each volume includes an index by subject or country. The Corn Trade Year Book provides a detailed record of the world's chief cereal crops, prices, imports and exports, and stocks. Some issues of this and related titles are available online from the Haithi Trust Digital Library.
The sweetest spot on earth — sugar levee — New Orleans, LA c1902

The sweetest spot on earth — sugar levee — New Orleans, LA c1902

Holdings with Related Titles

LC Catalog Record: ca12000549
v. 5:no. 1-v. 5:no 51 (1891:Jan.1-1891:June 30)
1898:Apr.-1900:Dec., 1902:Jan.-1905:Dec.
v. 45:no. 1-v. 99:no. 27 (1911:Jan.2-1926:Aug.1)

George Broomhalls' Corn Trade News. Supplement
LC Catalog Record: ca15000075
LC Call Number: HD9030.1 .G52

George Broomhall's Corn Trade News: An Organ of the European Grain and Flour Trades. Special American Edition
LC Catalog Record: ca20000396
LC Call Number: HD9030.1 .G53
v.28-v.29 (1918-1919), v.43-v.52 (1933-1942)
v.53:no.1-v.78:no.7 (1943:Jan.6-1968:Feb.28)

Broomhall's Corn Trade Year Book
LC Catalog Record: sv87031872
LC Call Number: HD9030.2 .B8
ed.3-ed.4 (1895-1896), 1902/1903, 1914
1925-1940, 1947-1967


Weekly Statistical Sugar Trade Journal
New York
LC Call Number: HD9100.1.W3

This journal is a collection of statistical tables and reports about the sugar trade. It regularly reports stocks and receipts of the Atlantic ports of New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, as well as New Orleans; on sugar crops and crop conditions; prices and supplies in principal sugar countries; sugar consumption; and conditions of the raw and refined sugar markets. Some issues are available online at HathiTrust Digital Library.


LC Catalog Record: ca08001216
1890:Oct. 2-1890:Dec.26,
1895:Jan. 3-1898:Nov. 10
v.22:no.46-v. 92:no.51 (1898:Nov.17-1968:Dec.19)
v.93:no.1-v.103:no.26 (1969:Jan.2-1979:June 28)
(Scattered missing issues)

Coal, Iron, and Steel


Colliery Guardian
LC Call Number: TN1.C77

Begun in 1858, this weekly publication covers the coal and iron trade in Great Britain and around the world. It includes coal and iron production and trade data; price lists for different types of iron; freight market reports; mine and blast furnace data; stock price and dividend information for coal, iron and engineering companies; editorial articles, and classified and equipment advertisements. This publication contains an impressive amount of data useful to any scholar researching the trade during that time. Some issues are available through the HathiTrust Digital Library.
English furnace woman in iron works

English furnace woman in iron works


Colliery Guardian, and Journal of the Coal and Iron Trades

LC Catalog Record: 2015210949
v.39:no.992-v.164:no.4252 (1880:Jan.2-1942:June 26)
Colliery Guardian
LC Catalog Record: 96648069
v.165:no.4253-v.166:no.4304 (1942:July 3-1943:June 25), v.167:no.4318-v.169:no.4383 (1943:Oct.1-1944:Dec. 29), v.176:no. 4538-v.208:no. 5375 (1948:Jan. 2-1964:Apr. 24), v.209:5385-v.209:no.5397 (1964:July 3-1964:Sept.25) (Incomplete)
v.209:no.5398-v.216:no.5581 (1964:Oct.2-1968:June)
v.217:no.1-v.226:no.2 (1969:Jan.-1978:Feb.)
v.226:no.5-v.226:no.12 (1978:May-1978:Dec.)
v.227:no.4-v.242:no.4 (1979:Apr.-1994:July)
Coal International
LC Catalog Record: 95640953
v. 242:no.5-v.260:no.6 (1994:Sept.-2012:Nov./Dec.)
(Scattered missing issues)


The Coal Trade
LC Call Number: HD9542.C75

This annual publication contains narrative reports and extensive data on coal output, prices, freight rates, exports, and trade conditions. Much of the content is related to the United States, but there is also a wealth of information on world coal production, especially in Mexico, Russia, Japan, and Great Britain. Statistical tables include previous years to allow for comparison. There is limited online access through the HathiTrust Digital Library.


LC Catalog Record: 99001478
1875-1903, 1905-1917, 1919-1920


Annual Statistical Report of the American Iron & Steel Institute
LC Call Number: HD9514.A5

The American Iron and Steel Association formed in 1855 to collect and disseminate statistics and other information about the iron and steel industries. It also became a forum for discussing problems and advancing the industries' interests. Its statistical reports contain detailed data on American production and shipments of different iron and steel types, imports and exports, prices, and foreign iron production and trade. There are regular reports on coal and coke; plants and furnaces built and rebuilt; iron and steel shipbuilding; railroad tracks, cars, and locomotives; and immigration by country of origin. Later issues also include Canadian statistics. Some issues are available online at HathiTrust Digital Library.

Holdings with Title Changes

Proceedings of the American Iron and Steel Association at Philadelphia
LC Catalog Record: sn92037168
Statistics of the American and Foreign Iron Trades ...
LC Catalog Record: 00005641
1874, 1874a, 1876-1912
Annual Statistical Report of the American Iron & Steel Institute
LC Catalog Record: 14003046
1913-1917, 1919, 1922-1948, 1950-1961, 1963, 1971-1973, 1981-1983, 1985-1993, 1995-1998, 2000-2003, 2005-2010


Steel and Metal Digest
New York
LC Call Number: HD9506.U6A7

This publication provides extensive information on contemporary iron and steel production and trade, including industrial practices and training; production and car loadings; corporate earnings and commercial failures; tin plate imports and exports, data on the production and prices of zinc, copper and other relevant metals and commodities. It also covers the impact of World War I on the metals industry.
Cambria Iron and Steel Works, Johnstown, PA 1876.


LC Catalog Record: gs13000741
v. 1:no.1-v. 13:no.12 (1911:Apr.-1923:Dec.)

[Bird's-eye views of factories and mills]: Cambria Iron and Steel Works, Johnstown, PA  1876.


Journal. Iron and Steel Institute
LC Call Number: TS300.I7

The Iron and Steel Institute's Journal was a monthly publication providing detailed coverage of iron and steel production and trade, as well as their chemical and physical properties; foundries, furnaces, forging, and milling; technological developments; and developments in related industries such as coal, natural gas, and petroleum. It includes comparative tables of the world's production of coal, iron and steel; railway trade information; and analysis of the trade, especially in Great Britain. Clear tables of contents in each issue and separate index volumes facilitate research. Many volumes are available online at HathiTrust Digital Library.


LC Catalog Record: 08022826
1871-1892, v. 43- v. 211 (1893-1973)

General Index: v.1/19 (1869/1881), v.20/v.35 (1882/1889), v. 36/58 (1890-1900), v. 59/82 (1901/1910), v.83/104 (1911/1921), v. 105/124 (1922/1931)

Name Index: v. 1/50 (1869/1896)
Special Volume of "Proceedings" 1890
Supplement to v. 65


The Coal Trade Bulletin
LC Call Number: TN1.C73

Published bimonthly, the Bulletin contains information on the American coal industry, including supply and demand; company and industry news; coal transport; mining equipment; related law and regulation; labor conditions and pay; strikes; mining equipment; imports and exports; and market conditions in places such as Mexico, Germany, and Great Britain. Some issues are available online at HathiTrust Digital Library.


LC Catalog Record: ca05002476
v.6:no.1-v.54:no.10 (1901:Dec. 2-1926:Apr. 16)


The Iron & Coal Trades Review
LC Call Number: TN1.I7

Each weekly issue of this English periodical is divided into a technology section reporting the latest technological advances in the field, and an industrial and economic section. It includes international trade notes; general coal trade news; share prices; articles about production equipment and methods; and reports about major iron and coal consumer industries. Some issues are available online at HathiTrust Digital Library.
Sandusky, Ohio. Loading coal into a lake freighter at one of the Pennsylvania Railroad coal docks. 1943 May.

Sandusky, Ohio. Loading coal into a lake freighter at one of the Pennsylvania Railroad coal docks.

Holdings with Title Changes

The Iron and Coal Trades Review
LC Catalog Record: 92645749
(1884:July 4-1889:Apr. 12)
1889:Nov. 8, 1890:Oct.31
v. 42:no.1192-v.160:no.4294
(1891:Jan. 2-1950:June 30),
(1950:July 7-1950:Dec.29),
Iron and Coal
LC Catalog Record: 92645750
v.182:no. 4825-v.183:no.4876
(1961:Jan.6-1961:Dec. 29)
Steel and Coal
LC Catalog Record: 92645745
Steel Times
LC Catalog Record: 92645744
v. 188:no. 4981-v. 229:no.9
(1964:Jan. 3-2001:Sept.)


Iron Trade Circular (Rylands') and Hardware Weekly Messenger
Birmingham, London
LC call number: TS300.I744

The Circular contains market reports, articles on patents and inventions, American rail output, and inquiries on the port of London, among other topics. Its detailed coverage makes it useful for researchers studying the growth of the iron trade. It was absorbed by the Iron and Steel Trades Journal in 1915.


LC Catalog Record: ca06002174
no.140-no.184 (1867:Feb. 23-1867:Dec. 28)
no.2245-no. 2661 (1907:July 6-1915:June 26)


Iron and Steel Trades Journal
LC call number: TS300.I74

The Iron and Steel Trades Journal was a weekly paper covering the main news about iron and steel markets. It includes lists of manufacturing brands, prices of different types of iron and steel, notes about national markets such as Belgium, France and Sweden, and much more. It absorbed Iron Trade Circular in July1915.


LC Catalog Record: ca08002941
v.58-v.63 (1896:Jan.-1898:Dec.)
v.66-v.70 (1900:Jan.-1902:Dec.)
v.72-v.107 (1903:Jan-1920:Dec.)

Last updated: 06/03/2016

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