A Statistical Account of the British Empire: Exhibiting its Extent, Physical Capacities, Population, Industry, and Civil and Religious Institutions by J. R. McCulloch
John Ramsay McCulloch (1789-1864) wrote numerous articles, pamphlets and books about the emerging field of political economy. This two-volume work, published in 1837, focuses on 'the British Empire, exclusive of its foreign dependencies', in other words, Great Britain and Ireland. McCulloch drew information from the 1821 and 1831 census returns and commissioned contributions from experts including William Jackson Hooker, who provided the article on botany. His book was the first such overview to be compiled in more than a century and is an indispensable contemporary source on life in Great Britain and Ireland at the close of the Georgian era. Volume 2 examines industry, commerce and foreign trade, beginning with coal production and consumption. Later chapters address social institutions including parliament and local government, the courts, the established church and other religions, and topics such as education, taxation, defence spending, health and life expectancy, and the poor laws.