Business History Review

Research Article

The Little Businessman: A Study of Business Proprietors in Poughkeepsie, New York

Mabel Newcomera1

a1 Professor Emeritus of Economics at Vassar College


This cross-sectional study of small business tests conventional assumptions regarding backgrounds, motivation, characteristics, function, risks, and longevity, proving many of those assumptions to be imprecise or false. Quantification in historical depth reveals definite patterns both of fixity and change.