#12 Market RevolutionJohn Green: Hi, I'm John Green. This is Crash Course U.S. History and today we return to one of my favorite subjects: economics.Me From the Past: Mr. Green, Mr. Green! I don't wanna brag, but economics is actually my best subject. Like, I got the bronzemedal at the state academic decathlon tournament...among C students.John Green: Yeah, I remember, Me from the Past. By the way, thanks for getting that picture into our show. It just goes to show you:aptitude is not destiny.Anyway, economics is about much more than, like, supply and demand curves. Ultimately, it's about the decisions people make andhow those decisions shape their lives and the world.So today we're going to turn to one of the least-studied but most interesting periods in American history: the Market Revolution.There weren't any fancy wars or politically charged debates, but this discussion shaped the way that most Americans actually livetheir lives and think about work on a daily basis. Like, if you or someone you know goes to work, well, then you have the MarketRevolution to thank, or possibly to curse.The Market Revolution, like the Industrial Revolution, was more of a process than an event. It happened in the first half of the 19thcentury, basically, the period before the Civil War. This was the so-called "Era of Good Feelings," because between 1812 and 1836,there was really only one political party, making American politics, you know, much less contentious. Also, more boring.The Market Revolution saw many Americans move away from producing stuff largely for themselves on independent farms--thatJeffersonian ideal--and toward producing goods for sale to others, often others who were very far away, with prices set bycompetition with other producers. This was closer to Hamilton's American dream. In the end, buddy, you didn't get to be president,but you did win.In many ways, this was the beginning of the modern commercial industrial economy, not just in the United States, but in the world.The first thing that enabled this massive economic shift was new technology, specifically in transportation and communication. Like,in the 18th century, it was very difficult to bring goods to markets, and that meant that markets were local and small. Most trade wasover land, and transporting goods thirty miles over land in the United States literally cost as much as shipping them to England.So, to get something from Cincinnati to New York, for instance, the most efficient way was to go down the Mississippi River, throughthe Gulf of Mexico, around Florida, and then up the Atlantic coast, which took three months, but that was still less time and lessmoney than more direct overland routes.But new transportation changed this. First came better roads, which were largely financed by tolls. Even the federal government gotin on the act, building the so-called National Road, which reached all the way from the massive city of Cumberland, Maryland,across our great nation to the equally metropolitan Wheeling, West Virginia.