Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Sean P. Adams  

Pen Name: Sean Patrick Adams

Genre: Non-Fiction

Born: 1969 in Carbondale, Illinois

-- Sean P. Adams on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Adams was born in Carbondale, Illinois.

Biographical and Professional Information

Sean Adams is a professor of history at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Old Dominion, Industrial Commonwealth: Coal, Politics, and Economy in Antebellum America (Studies in Early American Economy and Society from the Library Company of Philadelphia)
ISBN: 080187968X

Johns Hopkins University Press. 2004

In 1796, famed engineer and architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe toured the coal fields outside Richmond, Virginia, declaring enthusiastically, "Such a mine of Wealth exists, I believe, nowhere else!" With its abundant and accessible deposits, growing industries, and network of rivers and ports, Virginia stood poised to serve as the center of the young nation's coal trade. By the middle of the nineteenth century, however, Virginia's leadership in the American coal industry had completely unraveled while Pennsylvania, at first slow to exploit its vast reserves of anthracite and bituminous coal, had become the country's leading producer.

Sean Patrick Adams compares the political economies of coal in Virginia and Pennsylvania from the late eighteenth century through the Civil War, examining the divergent paths these two states took in developing their ample coal reserves during a critical period of American industrialization. In both cases, Adams finds, state economic policies played a major role. Virginia's failure to exploit the rich coal fields in the western part of the state can be traced to the legislature's overriding concern to protect and promote the interests of the agrarian, slaveholding elite of eastern Virginia. Pennsylvania's more factious legislature enthusiastically embraced a policy of economic growth that resulted in the construction of an extensive transportation network, a statewide geological survey, and support for private investment in its coal fields.

Using coal as a barometer of economic change, Old Dominion, Industrial Commonwealth addresses longstanding questions about North-South economic divergence and the role of state government in American industrial development, providing new insights for both political and economic historians of nineteenth-century America.

The Early American Republic: A Documentary Reader
ISBN: 1405160985

Wiley-Blackwell. 2008

With voices ranging from those of presidents to slaves, from both men and women, and from Native Americans and white settlers, this book tells the story of the first half-century of the United States.

  • Provides students with over 50 essential documents from the Early Republic: the first five decades of the USA
  • Includes lesser-known documents, for example Thomas Jefferson’s rules for ‘republican etiquette’
  • Incorporates eyewitness testimony from major historical figures, alongside that of ordinary people from the period
  • Includes an introduction, document headnotes and questions at the end of each chapter designed to encourage students to engage with the material critically



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