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Col. Richard Somers Chapter, New Jersey Society, Sons of the American Revolution

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We gathered for our April 2011 meeting , despite the major construction going on outside the Point Diner. This was a special meeting in that it included not only an excellent presentation but also began with the presentation of Membership to our Lecture Series Sponsor, Raymond N. Beebe, Esquire.
After dinner we were provided 4th of the Raymond N. Beebe Law Firm Historical Lectures by Dr. Michelle Craig McDonald – Assistant Professor of History, Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. The Topic of this Presentation was "Revolutions in Trade:" Sugar was king of the Atlantic world’s plantation system in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, but by the beginning of the nineteenth century had been surpassed by coffee which to this day remains one of the top five commodities traded worldwide.
This presentation traces coffee from its origins in Africa and the East Indies to the rise of coffee plantations in the Caribbean and Latin America, a commodity in which North American merchants invested heavily. By comparing coffee trading before and after American independence, Dr. McDonald argues for the enduring importance of the West Indies to early American economic development, and question how independent we can really consider the new nation.
Dr. McDonald Has graciously consented to allow us to post a video of  below.
Vitae: Dr. McDonald was the Harvard-Newcomen Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard Business School and her scholarship has been supported by the Fulbright Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Dr. Craig McDonald has written several articles on Atlantic trade, and is currently completing two book projects, one on the history of Caribbean coffee and a second on early American tavern culture; both are due out next year. She teaches courses on early American, Caribbean, and maritime history, and has extensive lecturing experience before a range of public and academic audiences in North America, the Caribbean, and Europe. She received her B.A. in history from UCLA (1990) and M.A. in Museum Studies and American Studies from the George Washington University (1993). For the next five years, she worked in museum education and outreach, before enrolling in the Ph.D. at the University of Michigan in 1998 (completed 2005). She lives with her husband and fellow-historian, Roderick A. McDonald, in Philadelphia.