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Post's sugar mill, La.



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The subscription databases in the list below are available to researchers at the Library of Congress; they are not available remotely. However, it may be that local university, public, or archival collections have purchased access so please check to see what may be available to you locally.

Sugar & Sugar Cane: Historical Resources for a Sweet Industry

February 2017

Table of Contents

Print Titles
    General Resources
    Louisiana & the South
    Cuba, Puerto Rico, & the Caribbean
    International Data Sources
LC Subject Headings
Databases & Internet Resources


Image (left): Post's sugar mill, La.
[between 1900 and 1905]
Detroit Publishing Co., publisher
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division


19th Century U.S. Newspapers (Gale Cengage)

This subscription database contains newspaper full-text content from nearly 250 urban and rural regions American newspapers published during the 19th century.

American Periodicals Index (ProQuest)

This is a subscription database that contains digitized versions of many periodicals including The Planter and Sugar Manufacturer (1925-1929), The Louisiana Planter and Sugar Manufacturer (1890-1924) and DeBow's Review (various) a general interest business and management publication published off and on in New Orleans between 1846-1880. There are also other periodicals that are of interest including The Southern Planter and Niles Weekly Register.

Applied Science and Business Periodicals Retrospective (EBSCO)

This is a subscription database that indexes but is not full-text. It indexes seven decades (1913-1983) of articles on the most important events, issues and trends in the history of business and industry (including the complete file of Industrial Arts Index (1913-1957) from a wide range of trade and science literature.

America's Historical Newspapers (Readex)

This subscription database contains digitized versions of local newspapers from across the United States. There are newspapers from Louisiana including some from Alexandria, Baton Rouge, St. Francisville, Vidalia, and St. Martinsville; but most titles from the state are from New Orleans. There are also eight papers from Honolulu, Hawaii. This database also has modules for Agricultural Newspapers, Mercantile Newspapers, and Official Gazettes.

Archive Grid External Link

This service gives researchers the ability to find individual archival manuscript collections that are often hard to find: for example: the records of the American Sugar Refinery Company records, 1879-1903 at the California Historical Society's North Baker Research Library; the records for the Kilauea Sugar Company at the Kauaʻi Historical Society; and the records/papers of the Louisiana Sugar Planters' Association in the special collections of Louisiana Historical Society.

Chronicling America

This is a free, open access resource from the Library of Congress. It contains many digitized newspapers from across the United States. This includes a number of papers from Louisiana including: the Abbeville Progress; the Avoyelles Pelican; the Planters Banner; the Bienville Democrat; the Constitutional; the Daily Crescent; the Daily Comet; and others. From Hawaii papers include: The Pacific Commercial Advertiser; Evening Bulletin; Hawaii Gazette; Garden Island; The Honolulu Times. Coverage varies depending on the publication, but dates range between 1836-1922.

Economist Historical Archive 1843-2011 (Gale Cengage)

This subscription database can be primarily used for international and trade related news related to sugar as a commodity. The database also includes a limited number of statistics and information on activities having a geographic focus.

Financial Times Historical Archive 1888-2006 (Gale Cengage)

This subscription database can be primarily used for international and trade related news

Gale NewsVault (Gale Cengage)

This subscription database allows users to search across Gale archive newspaper collections as well as individually. It includes: 17th-18th Century Burney Collection Newspapers, 19th Century British Library Newspapers: Part 1, 19th Century U.S. Newspapers, 19th Century UK Periodicals: Empire, 19th Century UK Periodicals: New Readerships, Economist Historical Archive, Financial Times Historical Archive, Illustrated London News Historical rchive, Liberty Magazine Historical Archive, Sunday Times Digital Archive, Times Digital Archive, and Times Literary Supplement Historical Archive.

Historical Statistics of the United States Millennial Edition

This is a statistical compilation source that is available both in print and as a subscription database. It is a continuation of the print title freely available on the Census web page Bicentennial Edition: Historical Statistics of the United States. The database offers a series of charts with some written explanation that can be downloaded into a spreadsheet as well as a PDF document. Each chart also includes the original source(s) that were used to compile the chart referencing U.S. government publications as well as other publications.

Making of the Modern World, Parts I and II (Gale Cengage)
Part I
Part II

This subscription database contains digital facsimile images of unique primary sources that track the development of the modern, western world through the lens of trade and wealth. Features full-text searching across millions of pages of works covering areas like areas of history, political science, social conditions, technology and industry, economics, area studies and more. Part I covers 1450-1850 and Part II covers 1851-1914.

ProQuest Congressional

Contains citations and full-text documents covering the activities of Congress including: hearings, reports from committees, the Congressional Record, Annals of Congress, the Register of Debates, and the Congressional Globe, bills, resolutions, some executive agency documents, the U.S. Serial Set, etc.

Sabin Americana, 1500-1926 (Gale Cengage)

This subscription database contains digital facsimile images of historical books, pamphlets and other documents about society, politics, culture, religious beliefs, and contemporary opinions for North, Central and South America, the Arctic and Antarctica and the West Indies.


Department of Agriculture – Economic Research Service

While the information is predominantly geared to those doing research using more current information, the ERS does include historical publications, and as their data is continually added, does contain information that is historical in nature. Coverage is not limited to just sugar but also includes corn syrup, honey, and other sweeteners. Data covers international production, prices, supply, use, and consumption. Includes: Historical Sweetener Marketing Data from USDA's Farm Service Agency and contains statistics on U.S. sugar production, deliveries, trade, and stocks; U.S. Sugar Statistical Compendium provides historical data (1970-90) on U.S. sugar production and consumption, imports and exports, and prices; and U.S. Corn Sweetener Statistical Compendium supplies historical data (1970-92) on U.S. corn sweetener supply and use, imports and exports, and prices.

Census Bureau

There are a number of historical publications that have been digitized by Census including archive copies of the U.S. Statistical Abstract and Bicentennial Edition: Historical Statistics of the United States. Much of the data that is related to crops is part of the U.S. Census of Agriculture.

Handbook of Latin American Studies

This is selective annotated bibliography of scholarly books, journal articles, conference proceedings and papers, book chapters, maps and atlases, and electronic resources (blogs, websites, online videos, etc.) dealing with Latin America. They use their own HLAS Subject Term Glossary which includes helpful terms as those below but records also include LC Subject Headings. It would be good for researching a variety of topics but, in this case, specifically for items related to colonial Louisiana and Spanish holdings in Florida and Louisiana. The multidisciplinary Handbook is edited and compiled by the Hispanic Division of the Library of Congress that contains items from the 1970ís to the present though a multi-year project to pull in material from its inception in 1936 is ongoing. Suggested subject terms:
Sugar Industry and Trade
Sugar Industry and Trade--Cuba
Agroindustry--French Caribbean

Historic New Orleans Collection (Williams Research Center) External Link

This research library in New Orleans contains print, archival collections, and other material related to the history of New Orleans, its citizens, and the state of Louisiana.

Library of Congress – Prints & Photographs

This part of the Library collection includes many images of sugar cane fields, refineries, plantations, etc. For example, there is a series of photographs of the American Sugar Refining Co.

Louisiana State University – Special Collections External Link

Their collection includes many collections of papers from various people and places in Louisiana. This includes the Louisiana Sugar Planters' Association papers, the papers of W.H. Nathaniel Magruder covering his management of Central Hershey sugar refinery in Cuba, and the business correspondence of sugar planter Christopher Clinton with New Orleans sugar factors and commission merchants, etc. The library has also created a web page External Link with important dates and links to articles found in Chronicling America specific to sugar and the sugar industry in Louisiana newspapers.

National Archives – Records of the U.S. Sugar Equalization Board, Inc. External Link

The U.S. Sugar Equalization Board was established as a corporation by the U.S. Government under the laws of the State of Delaware, to function as an agency of the U.S. Food Administration on July 11, 1918, and was abolished in 1926 (most records date between 1917-1923). It bought and distributed the 1918-19 crop of Cuban sugar, and stimulated U.S. sugar production by equalizing prices of domestic and imported crops.

Sugar and the Visual Imagination in the Atlantic World, circa 1600-1860 (Brown University) External Link

This was an exhibit from 2013 but its online component includes visual imagery of sugar in the Americas, examining how sugar was depicted in books, single sheet prints, and maps that are in the collection of the John Carter Brown Library.

Sugar Association External Link

The Sugar Association was founded in 1943 as the Sugar Research Foundation and changed to its current name in 1947. It represents industry in a variety of ways with an emphasis on education and scientific research. When it was established there were two divisions. The Sugar Information, Inc. focused on public education and communication while the Sugar Research Foundation developed and supported basic and applied scientific research. (In 1968 it became the World Sugar Research Organisation, Ltd.). There is free content in the research section. Much of the site seems education-related, but there is not a deep historical archive of content.

Sugar Journal External Link

Sugar Journal is a monthly technical publication that was founded in 1938 (see the print title record). Articles cover global trends in the production, processing and refining of cane, beet, and corn into food and energy sources and are written by respected authorities.

SugarOnline External Link

This is a subscription only database covering news, prices and information to the global sugar and ethanol industries. The publisher has been around only over 50 years so historical data may be limited. Current News Headlines, Settlement Prices, Newsletter, and the Friday Editorial are free but other content depends on subscription level and includes USDA price data, Sucden Report from Sucden Financial, and the weekly Williams Report data that covers the movement of sugar in the key Brazilian ports of Maceio, Paranagua, Santos & Recife. Much of the content is not free, however.

University of Hawaii at Manoa Library External Link

Included in the Hawaiian Collection Special Collections at UHM, the Library covers the years 1850 to 1991 and contains the archives of the Hawaiian Sugar Planters' Association (HSPA), now known as the Hawaii Agriculture Research Center. HSPA Plantation Archives is organized by plantation and covers: Hamakua Sugar Co., Hilo Coast Processing Co., Honokaa Sugar Co., Kau Sugar Co., Kekaha Sugar Co., Lihue Plantation Co., Mauna Kea Sugar Co., McBryde Sugar Co., Oahu Sugar Co., Pioneer Mill Co., and Puna Sugar Co.. See the Plantations and Finding aid for more details but it organizes company records by corporate records, correspondence, cultivation contracts, financial records, personnel/payroll records, production records, miscellaneous, and other company records.

World Sugar Research Organisation External Link

This is a research group that was spun out of the Sugar Association. It is primarily focused on scientific research not the business, industry, or historical aspects of the trade.

Last updated: 09/22/2017

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