In this book the author examines the problems encountered in negotiations among claimants and the political and economic considerations that influence property rights arrangements. The histories of mineral rights, rights to range and timber land, and fishery and crude oil production rights in the United States are examined and reveal a surprising variety of contractual negotiations and economic outcomes. The author concludes that in addition to an analysis of distributional outcomes, an examination of the details of the political bargaining underlying property rights contracts is essential to an understanding of why rights emerge as they do. The book is an important contribution to both property rights theory and to American economic history.
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