The Panic of 1819 was America's first experience of the boom-bust cycle and the subsequent depression was one of the most dramatic economic crises experienced by the US during the nineteenth century. Focusing on the Commonwealth of Virginia, Haulman analyzes the economic conditions which contributed to the boom, the pressures which caused the Panic, the characteristics of the ensuing depression and its impacts on Virginia and the nation. Following the end of the Napoleonic Wars, the American economy, and especially Virginia's, was boosted by booming agricultural exports and transatlantic trade, which in turn lead to intense land speculation westwards. Boosted by easy credit from state banks and the newly created Second Bank of the United States, the boom came to an end as foreign markets dried up, prices fell and credit was withdrawn. America had a rude awakening to the rigours of the globalized market economy.