Banking Panics of the Gilded Age

Banking Panics of the Gilded Age

This is the first major study of post-Civil War banking panics in almost a century. The author has constructed for the first time estimates of bank closures and their incidence in each of the five separate banking disturbances. The author also reevaluates the role of the New York Clearing House in forestalling several panics and explains why it failed to do so in 1893 and 1907, concluding that structural defects of the National Banking Act were not the primary cause of the panics.


"Elmus Wicker's fascinating new book on banking panics is an imaginative investigation." EH.NET (March2001)

"Banking Panics of the Gilded Age...enhances our understanding of the crucial developments leading to the creation of our central bank and financial future...this book does make an important contribution to our understanding of U.S. banking history. Wicker's narrative and empirical support combine to paint a picture of the national banking era that is more comprehensive than previous work. Further, his concentration on Clearing House behavior forces his readers to critically re-evaluate their understanding of banking during the Gilded Age." Eastern Economic Review