Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Edward Kellogg again (and a money-crank treasure trove)

The pieces of the puzzle are coming together, slowly but surely, in the case of the Edward Kellogg bibliography. After some microform-related comedy of errors, I have now had a chance to look at the 4-page Usury, the Evil and the Remedy (1843), which was the last of the major editions I had yet to see. And, yes, it appears that all of Kellogg's writings ought to be considered drafts of the same argument, though they range from 4 pages to over 300 pages in length. With the William B. Greene collation work still in progress—and now ranging into the realm of French translation, as I compare Greene against Proudhon and Leroux—I'm not all that hot to take on another collation project, but there's undoubtedly some interesting work to be done comparing the Kellogg texts.

The "final" version of Kellogg's work was the posthumous A New Monetary System (1875), which is Labor and Other Capital rearranged for clarity and with numerous notes from Kellogg added. It's a tribute to the improvements in the posthumous edition, or perhaps just to the rushed and frequently bleary-eyed nature of my reading time, that I had hardly begun to flip through it when I discovered what I had missed in repeated looks at the original: that part of Kellogg's scheme was a land bank currency. Kellogg and Greene still differed substantially in their understandings of the circulating medium, and in the projects they proposed, but it is interesting to find another American source for the land bank elements in Greene's work, before he knew (or acknowledged that he knew) of the colonial land banks, and roughly concurrent with his exposure to Proudhon's ideas. An online edition of A New Monetary System is available as part of this collection of banking and currency etexts, including a few great Greenback classics. How did I miss a site with Ignatius Donnelly's The American People's Money available online? There's a mix of the good, the bad and the downright anti-semitic here, as one might expect, but money cranks should poke around and see what they can find.

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