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Black Ranching FrontiersAfrican Cattle Herders of the Atlantic World, 1500-1900$
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Andrew Sluyter

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780300179927

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300179927.001.0001

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The Tasajo Trail

The Tasajo Trail

(p.169) Chapter Six The Tasajo Trail
Black Ranching Frontiers

Andrew Sluyter

Yale University Press

This chapter looks at the relationship beteen the frontier and the Caribbean, principally Cuba, through the trade in salt-cured beef in the nineteenth century. At the Cuban end of the tasajo trail, the salt-cured beef from Argentina played too mundane a role in social relations to have elicited scholarly attention. As the tasajo trade reached tens of thousands of metric tons per year after midcentury and saladero owners accumulated capital, they invested in innovations that increased labor efficiency, consumed nearly every part of the slaughtered cattle, and generated many detailed observations. The logbooks also reveal some aspects of life aboard sea vessels, bringing the Atlantic component of the tasajo trail to life. Slaves produced many livestock commodities, most of them exported as industrial inputs to Europe and North America but in the case of tasajo explicitly dedicated to feeding the enslaved plantation workers of Cuba and Brazil.

Keywords:   Cuba, salt-cured beef, tasajo trail, tasajo trade, livestock commodities, slaves, plantation workers

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