in several instances economic elements were obviously of considerable importance. The critical question is whether, by reorganizing the data, it is possible to reduce them to an economic interpretive system or set of systems that will render intelligible the contests over ratification. The economic interests of the "permanent" small slaveowners were not directly affected by the Constitution; in a very general way they could expect to benefit from the overall economic improvements anticipated under the new government. The service industries included a wide range of crafts that were carried on incidentally to other lines of economic endeavor, such as those of blacksmiths, printers, coopers, carpenters, and the like. At the pinnacle of the economic order were the mercantile classes. All men in commerce shared certain interests in that they performed similar operations, but it is a mistake to consider them as a single economic class.