Iron Act of 1750

views updated


IRON ACT OF 1750 was passed by Parliament to encourage iron production in the colonies. It provided for duty-free importation of colonial pig iron and (by a later extension of the law) bar iron into any English port. English manufacturers supported restrictive clauses in the law, which stipulated that colonists could not erect slitting mills, steel furnaces, and plating mills, although those already in operation could continue. The law was not very successful. Colonists sent increasing amounts of iron to England but not in such quantities as manufacturers had expected. Colonial suppliers also ignored the more restrictive aspects of the law, and they built many forbidden ironworks in the colonies.


Church, R. A., ed. The Coal and Iron Industries. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1994.

McCusker, John J., and Kenneth Morgan, eds. The Early Modern Atlantic Economy. Cambridge, Mass.: Cambridge University Press, 2000.

Arthur C.Bining/s. b.

See alsoColonial Commerce ; Colonial Policy, British ; Iron and Steel Industry ; Mercantilism .