Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door. This has been the clarion call of marketplaces around the world since the beginning.
During the late Neolithic and early Bronze Ages, a culture sprang up through most of Europe called the Bell-Beaker culture. Extensive trade based on people’s desires, wants and needs crossed inter-tribal and cultural lines. Known for their distinctive bell-shaped pottery it was probably the world’s first example of an idea or product going viral. Used for everything from drinking vessels for beer or mead (a sort of wine made from fermented honey and water) to smelting vessels for bronze, copper and gold, and funerary urns.
The obvious point being, before I get too far afield with this, is that there was a marketplace for these goods and services that crossed cultural and ethnic lines. Trade for goods and services was established wherever the need arose apart from, or perhaps in spite of, tribal warfare and conflict.
Examples are many, flint nodules found hundreds of miles from any source, finished products such as arrowheads, hand-axes, flensing tools and baskets. There are many examples of that here on the west coast of America. There was extensive trade among the Native American culture here on the west coast of the United States. read more »