Other masters held up their agreement excellently and treated their servants well. During the 17th and 18th centuries throughout the English colonies, indentured servants and slaves made up the main workforce for land-owning colonists. For a long period of time, both indentured servants and slaves seemed to stand on the same status and were treated about the same. However, as time proceeded, changes in the colonies also brought changes between these two different groups. The path to the Revolution carried new principles regarding freedom and liberty, causing colonists to question their own ideas of freedom and liberty, as well as the idea of what freedom and liberty should mean to slaves and indentured servants.
The plantations masters thought it was “cheaper to buy than to breed” meaning it was cheaper to buy a new slave and work him to death than it was to allow a slave to live long enough and bear children to increase numbers. The life span for a slave was seven years from purchase to death. The last stage, decadent, was reached when the land had become depleted. There were no longer nutrients in the soil so they turned to less labor intensive produces such as, grains, fruits and vegetables. In turn the need for slave labor was
These Africans were to provide manual labor for a set number of years with the promise of freedom and a piece of American land as compensation once they had served out their contract. At first the agreement between Virginia colonist and Africans was kept. Many Africans entered into indentured servitude, and after several years of service they were released and given 50 acres of land to do with as they pleased. However, this agreement started to become a problem for the colonist as they had new competition in the former servants. (13
Slaves can gain freedom if they worked out their term of being an indentured servant. But because African servants have dark skin the colony soon see black only as slaves, so it became a custom for the white colonials to have slaves. They were first brought to the colonies for planter’s plantation manual labor. As the staple crops in the colonies commercial markets increased so did
The people of Virginia couldn’t grow enough of it, but didn’t resort to slavery right away. Slaves were few in the area, only a few that were bought there from the Caribbean, where they were often used for sugar cane. With the increasing demand for tobacco, the southern colonies needed a bigger labor force. Farmers and indentured servants couldn’t keep up with the demand for tobacco. Slaves were very successful for growing sugar cane, so eventually the southern colonies called for them to be bought over.
How did recently freed English indentured servants affect the development of slavery? The Englishmen, who came to Virginia as indentured servants, once freed, spread up Virginia’s rivers and coasts, creating their own households and plantations, similar to the ones they had once worked on. In only a few years, they too would have slaves working on tobacco farms, earning them 10 to 12 pounds a year. Without these servants being freed, slavery would not have spread past Virginia and into the rest of the colonies; thus, prolonging the existence of an economy reliant on
America is known as the land of the free. This hasn’t always been the case though. As many of us know equality has been a trait that has been earned and fought for. It wasn’t always the social norm; it was gained over years of struggling. The first Africans ever to set foot on American soil were brought over by a Dutch slave trader who traded his 20 or so African workers for some food in Jamestown, Virginia.
Living, Eating, and Working as Slaves In the early 1865, slavery had come to the United States of America. Millions of slaves were told that they were free, and therefore many of them had been interviewed to share both of their happy and awful conditions they had during their slavery. The various conditions related to food, living, and work influenced whether or not slaves challenged their owners in the late 1800s. Some slaves were pretty satisfied with their owners but the others had lived the lives that people nowadays could ever imagine. The desire of being free resembled the awful conditions that some of them had.
Slavery and the Making of America is a four-part series documenting the history of American slavery from its beginnings in the British colonies to its end in the Southern states and the years of post-Civil War Reconstruction. Drawing on a wealth of recent scholarship, it looks at slavery as an integral part of a developing nation, challenging the long held notion that slavery was exclusively a Southern enterprise. At the same time, by focusing on the remarkable stories of individual slaves, it offers new perspectives on the slave experience and testifies to the active role that Africans and African Americans took in surviving their bondage and shaping their own lives. Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property to be bought
It is estimated that 12 million slaves were forced to migrate. 2. The mortality rate was 10 to 20 percent. 3. In the Caribbean and South America the slaves died often and did not reproduce, but in North America the slaves survived longer and were growing in numbers.