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The Port of Empire: Maritime London 1650 - 1914
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© National Maritime Museum, London

Repro ID: H4330
Title: The Port of Empire: Maritime London 1650 - 1914
Description: By the 17th century, 90 per cent of the country's trade passed through the port of London. Major businesses like the East India Company had their headquarters in the city. Important institutions like Lloyd's of London and The Baltic Exchange began their insurance and ship-broking activities in the coffee houses of the 17th and 18th centuries. As well as trade, London was also a major centre for shipbuilding and the making of scientific and navigational instruments. By 1800, the Thames was unable to cope with the sheer volume of trade and the huge numbers of vessels jostling for position along its banks. Imports and exports had increased dramatically as a result of the industrial revolution and the expansion of Britain's overseas interests. The government decided to act. During the 19th century, a massive dock-building programme was undertaken to make the port more efficient.
Creator: National Maritime Museum
Date: 2003
Credit line: National Maritime Museum, London

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