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Maritime business in eighteenth-century Cornwall: Zephaniah Job of Polperro

National Maritime Museum Cornwall
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  • Hd Industries. Land Use. Labor
  • He Transportation And Communications
  • Law
  • Political Science


Zephaniah Job is best remembered as ‘The Smugglers’ Banker,’ who organised and financed smuggling from the port of Polperro in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. However, Job, like many other merchants in the many small ports around the United Kingdom, was not a specialist, and engaged in a wide range of trades. His activities encompassed not only smuggling but legitimate trade and banking, land management, legal services, farming and government contracting. The aim of this paper is to draw attention to the less widely appreciated aspects of Job’s business, and in particular the mercantile activities that underpinned the success of this energetic and adaptable individual.

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