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Cutting sugar cane in Louisiana


Titles in this section primarily cover activities in Louisiana and the South; however, some coverage of activities in these areas can also be found in the more general section of this guide as books and journals are often much broader in their coverage. These are not all the materials devoted specifically to Louisiana and the South, additional materials can be found by searching in the catalog.

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): Cutting sugar cane in Louisiana
[between 1880 and 1897]
Detroit Publishing Co., publisher
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

Bouchereau, Alcée. Bouchereau's Revised Directory ... of the Sugar and Sirup Manufacturers and Cane Growers of Louisiana ... New Orleans, La., A. Bouchereau,
LC Call Number: TP375.5 .B7
LC Catalog Record: 09029019

Holdings: 1908/09, 1909/101912, 1917. The entire directory (other than the advertisements) is arranged alphabetically by the cane grower/manufacturer. Other information included was the Post Office, the name of the plantation, and the Parish. In the 1908/09 there were lists for cane growers and manufacturers in Texas as well as beet sugar factories in the United States and Hawaii and a summary table of the world's sugar production from 1854-1909. The 1917 directory included listings for other growers, manufacturers, and factories as well as a list of Recapitulations, crop information going back to 1822 in the U.S., Cuban crop information from 1851, and calendar (in English and Spanish) information on various holidays going back to 1776.

Champomier, P. A. Statement of the Sugar Crop Made in Louisiana ... New Orleans, Printed by Magne & Weisse, 18
LC Call Number: HD9107.L8 C5
LC Catalog Record: 08003546

There are two bound volumes that have different year coverage though there is overlap - one volume covers 1849/50-1858 the other covers the years 1845/46-1856/57. It includes a list of the planters by parish with some remarks on the industry/situation written in both English and French. The 1845/46 volume also includes some information from 1844 on sugar manufactured in the state.

De Bow's Review; Agricultural, Commercial, Industrial Progress & Resources. New Orleans [etc.] 1846-
LC Call Number: HF1 .D2
LC Catalog Record: 22024369
LC Catalog Record (microform): sf89091895
LC Catalog Record (microform): sf88091057

Debow's Review as it is commonly referred to, was a general interest business and management publication published between 1846-1880 though there were breaks in publication during the Civil War. Articles cover an incredibly wide variety of topics focusing on trade, plantation activities/management, and agriculture. Articles specific to sugar include statistics, trade, and scientific and technical topics. This publication had variiant titles which include: De Bow's Review of the Southern and Western States and De Bow's Commercial Review of the South & West. It is available to search in the American Periodicals database (ProQuest - subscription resource limited to users onsite); digitized version can be found on the Internet at the University of Michigan External Link and via the HathiTrust.External Link An analytical index of the title was created by Willis Duke Weatherford that is sometimes attached to the publication and is part of the American Periodicals database.

Directory of Louisiana Sugar Planters. New Orleans, La., The Modern sugar planter, [n. d.]
LC Call Number: TP375.5 .D5
LC Catalog Record: 11012831

Holdings are good but incomplete – 1911-1945, 1948, 1961, 1963, 1967. This title is later Gilmore's Directory of Louisiana Sugar Planters. Early issues include a list of planters by parish as well as advertisements, plants with New Orleans representatives, and a Buyer list. By the 1930's the directory expanded beyond a list and advertisements that included a brief list of growers to provide more detailed information in the Factory/equipment section where there was a write up about the growers operations as well as information about equipment, power, capacity, people, etc. There was also a Directory section where the sugar manufacturers, syrup manufactures, and growers were grouped by parish.

Follett, Richard J. The Sugar Masters : Planters and Slaves in Louisiana's Cane World, 1820-1860. Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, c2005.
LC Call Number: E445.L8 F65 2005 OVERFLOWJ34
LC Catalog Record: 2004022416

This title looks at the master-slave relationship and “labor management” in a modernizing sugar industry in Louisiana particularly the southern part. How the planters brought technological and business innovations changed the industry in the state.

Heitmann, John Alfred. The Modernization of the Louisiana Sugar Industry, 1830-1910. Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, c1987.
LC Call Number: HD9107.l8 H45
LC Catalog Record: 86027639

This book looks at the history of the sugar industry in Louisiana from technical progress perspective. There is a section for the French connections, but primarily focuses on the early time period of adoption of technical and scientific innovations and moves on the years proceeding and just after the Civil War, including cane sugar's competition with beet sugar and decline of the industry in the state.

Hollander, Gail M. Raising Cane in the 'Glades : the Global Sugar Trade and the Transformation of Florida. Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 2008.
LC Call Number: HD9107.F6 H65
LC Catalog Record: 2007035931

This book provides a general history of growing sugar cane in the Florida Everglades. There are some interesting appendix sections including: A biographical sketches of key figures; B legislation and trade agreements; and C chronicle of wartime controls (1939-1947).

Louisiana. Division of Employment Security. Special Report on Louisiana's Sugar Industry; industry study by Reports and Analysis Unit, Louisiana Division of Employment Security. [Baton Rouge, 1950]
LC Call Number: HD9107.L8 A52 1950
LC Catalog Record: 51062043

The publication is primarily concerned with salary/wages for workers in the state's sugar industry though related data is included. Much of the data is reported by parish. Data is aggregate as well as presented monthly by year for a few years prior to publication (ex 1950 had data from 1942-50). Years include: 1950, 1955, and 1958.

The Modern Sugar Planter. Louisiana Sugar-Bowl--Sugar Planters' Journal ... Devoted to sugar, rice and diversified agriculture in Louisiana. New Orleans, La., . B. Gilmore, 1910-
LC Call Number: TP375 .S852
LC Catalog Record: 13004562

Holdings: v.41-43 (1910/11-1913), weekly. This publication includes brief articles of interest to Louisiana planters but, is not just focused on activities, people, and companies in Louisiana because topics are international in scope. Continues Sugar Planters' Journal and Sugar Planters' Journal; Louisiana Sugar-Bowl.

The Planter and Sugar Manufacturer. New Orleans, The Louisiana planter & sugar manufacturer company, inc.; [etc., etc., 1888-1929.
LC Call Number: TP375 .P58
LC Catalog Record: 45022588

Holdings: v.1 (1988) – v.23 (1926), weekly. Related titles include Louisiana Planter and Sugar Manufacturer; Louisiana Planter and Sugar Manufacturer Planter. This title is available in the American Periodicals database (ProQuest - subscription resource limited to users onsite) under the different titles from 1890-1924 and from 1925-1929. This publication predominantly covers the industry and activities in Louisiana but does look to Cuba and other places. Within the reports from the state, they report by parish. Most of the articles are brief and cover the people, politics, legal, and some scientific/agriculture themes. The weekly market report looks at sugar prices by type. Articles cover cane sugar and molasses.

Roland, Charles Pierce. Louisiana Sugar Plantations During the Civil War; with a new foreword by John David Smith. Louisiana pbk. ed. Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, 1997.
LC Call Number:  E565 .R62 1997 OVERFLOWJ34
LC Catalog Record: 97024368
LC Catalog Record: 57003666

This was originally published in 1957 and reprinted in 1997 and which looks at both slavery and the economics of southern agriculture, focusing on the nature of the Louisiana sugar industry - primarily the transition that occurred during the Civil War.

Sitterson, Joseph Carlyle. Sugar Country; the Cane Sugar Industry in the South, 1753-1950. [Lexington] University of Kentucky Press [1953]
LC Call Number: HD9105.S5
LC Catalog Record: 53005519

This title is broken up into two major sections. Section one covers the slavery regime of 1753-1865, the second section covers 1865-1880. It is mostly focused on activities in Louisiana with some attention to Florida. Related to two articles “Magnolia Plantation, 1852-1862: a decade of a Louisiana sugar estate,” in the Mississippi Valley Historical Review (v.25, no.2; September 1938, pp.197-210) and “Expansion, reversion, and revolution in the Southern sugar industry: 1850-1910” in the Bulletin of the Business Historical Society, 09/1953, (v.27, no.3; September 1953, pp.129-140).

Stein, Robert Louis. The French Sugar Business in the Eighteenth Century. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ. Press, 1988.
LC Call Number: HD9115.F82 S74 1988
LC Catalog Record: 87026957
Handbook of Latin American Studies Record: bi90004642

This is broken up into two distinct section the French West Indies and the sugar business in France and is not overtly chronological in presentation and looks at the West Indies not New Orleans but given the nature of the larger picture would be helpful in understanding the larger picture. In the first section particular attention is paid to the slave trade, plantation, Muscovado and Clayed Sugar, and the French West Indian sugar business while the section devoted to the business in France looks at the national and local perspective as well as the refining industry and selling and consumption. An abstract was written for the Handbook of Latin American Studies: The best synthesis in English on the giant Caribbean sugar industry at the end of the 18th century. Demonstrates sugar's contribution to French economic development which was based primarily on commerce rather than on industry as French ports re-exported much of the sugar to Europe. Solidly documents: 1) slave labor force, their work, and methods for growing and refining sugar on plantations; and 2) sugar export, distribution and consumption. There is a selected bibliography of secondary and published primary sources.

Sugar Planters' Journal; Louisiana Sugar-Bowl.  New Orleans, La., 18--
LC Call Number: TP375 .S85
LC Catalog Record: 52048622
LC Catalog Record: ca08002791

Holdings: v.20/21 (1890/1891), v.30 (1899/1900), v.31 (1900), 1910. This journal includes brief articles of interest to Louisiana planters but is not just focused on activities, people, companies in Louisiana. Topics are international. Continued by Modern Sugar Planter, Louisiana Sugar-Bowl--Sugar Planters' Journal.

Sugar Journal. [New Orleans, Sugar Journal] v. 1- June 1938-
LC Call Number: HD9101 .S92
LC Catalog Record: 45052983

Holdings: 1939-2001 incomplete for more recent years. This is a trade publication for and about the sugar industry in the state of Louisiana, though all articles aren't just focused on the state. It tends to have one very large article (seen on the table of contents) and a few small pieces that are more current awareness that aren't accounted for in the table of contents.

United States. Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce (Dept. of commerce). The Sugar Industry. Sugar Cane and Cane in Louisiana, Beet Sugar, Data, and General Tables. Washington, Govt. print. off., 1913.
LC Call Number: HD9104 .A4 1913
LC Catalog Record: 13035356

This title is in several parts. Parts one and two are focused on sugar cane and part three is been sugar and world production generally. Part one covers agricultural costs and includes a history as well as information on the administration, organization, and development of the industry in the state. Part 2 focuses on production and factory costs. Data in the charts can be quite specific. One chart on the plantation costs includes three years of aspects of harvesting, repairs/maintenance, and supplies and other expenses by establishment (names are not given, it is anonymized by number).

Last updated: 10/18/2017

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