Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 17 January 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter presents a history of the organization of American enterprise, from the first corporations to the emergence of large, vertically integrated conglomerates. It begins with a discussion of the monopolistic privileges of early corporations, and efforts to reform the process by which corporations were created. It then presents a discussion of the alternative organizational forms that became available to entrepreneurs. Finally, it analyzes the rise of “big business” in the late nineteenth century, and the legal and institutional context within which those enterprises began to emerge. The discussion of each is focused on the changing nature of the problems faced by entrepreneurs, and the changing legal and institutional environment in which they operated. Among the topics discussed are the evolution of corporation law, the choice of organizational form, recurring problems in corporate governance, the role of financiers in corporate governance, and the emergence of pyramidal holding company structures.

Keywords: corporation, law, corporate governance, vertical integration, corporation law, finance, pyramid

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.