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By Roger Price
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Extra resources for An Economic History of Modern France, 1730–1914
Moreover as money remained in short supply it was necessary to use it as little as possible. Almost everything was produced locally. Vines grew in all save three northern generalites at the end of the eighteenth century, flax in 40 departments, and hemp in 57 near the middle of the nineteenth. 43 Cereals grew in the mountains at heights and on slopes which required a massive human effort to produce low yields. Because of the dominant preoccupation with the supply of bread, other crops were neglected.
The economy was characterised by the survival of the compartmentalisation and juxtaposition rather than interpenetration of regional economies. Railways Industrial tramways had long existed - for example at Le Creusot and Montcenis from the end of the eighteenth century. ) opened in 1827, with traction provided by horses and stationary engines. This and subsequent lines, like those from Andrezieux to Roanne (1829) and Epinac to Pont-d'Ouche (1830) were simply tributaries of the river, designed by mining engineers to solve the problem of access from pit-head to waterway, and supply the growing demands of industry.
Offering lower tariffs than the railway companies was of no avail as regularity could not be guaranteed. On the Rhone in 1856 536,000 tonnes were transported, but only three years later it had dropped to 273,000 tonnes. This situation was repeated on most of the waterways of France, and along the coastal shipping routes. g. railway locomotives were until the early 1850s sent from Le Creusot along the Saone - these things delayed their decline, but on most waterways this delay was not prolonged.