QINDAI CHUKI, KISHU TONAN BU SHIMIZU KO RYUIKI NI OKERU MOKUZAI RYUTO KOZO: 'CAIYUN HUANGMU ANDU' NO KISHU O CHUSHIN NI (The Distribution Mechanism Of Timber In The Southeastern Guizhou Qingshui River Valley During The Mid-qing Period: An Analysis Of 'caiyun Huangmu Andu)
Shakai Keizaishigaku,, Volume 72, Issue 5 (2007-02). pp. 25-44.
In the 18th century, the Miao (Hmong) in southeastern Guizhou began to produce 'shanmu' timber in great abundance. The timber used for the construction of the palace in Beijing was procured from this region. Every year, an official from Hunan Province traveled to southeastern Guizhou to procure the timber. The article examines the distribution mechanism of timber in this area, using 'Caiyun Huangmu Andu' [Archives on felling and transporting imperial timber], written by a low-level bureaucrat who was in charge of the procurement in the years 1777 and 1781. Two things made it difficult for officials to procure the timber: large-size timber was rare and valuable, and the actual cost of the timber far exceeded the legal statutory budget. Under these circumstances, the official had to carry out a smooth procurement while saving on costs and also managing to secure a profit for himself. The relationship between officials and middlemen was marked by both conflict and cooperation. Officials also cooperated with merchants from the lower Yangtze Valley. Forest managers, meanwhile, earned capital for reforestration by selling timber when the price was high.