Indentured Servitude vs. Slavery

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Indentured Servitude vs. Slavery James McIntosh HIS-110CA October 13, 2014 David Tarr Indentured Servitude vs. Slavery Indentured servitude and slavery where a staple in American history, there could not have been one if it was not for the other. Indentured servitude paved the way for slavery and eventually both were abolished in America. Indentured servitude was better than slavery because with indentured servitude the servant eventually got what they wanted. Whereas slaves were never able to get what they wanted eventually they did receive what they wanted, their freedom. The following essay will focus on indentured servitude and slavery in seventeenth century British Colonial America. In 1619, Sir Edwyn Sandys, controller of the Virginia Company, created a system known as the head right system. This system let every settler, who went to the New World; receive 50 acres of land in the new colony. Every settler also got 50 more acres for every servant they imported from England and this led to the institution of indentured servitude. (Gallay, 2011) Indentured servants were men, women, and sometimes children from England who signed a contract with a master to serve them for four to seven years. They exchanged their service for passage from England to the New World, for food, clothing, and shelter. (Stratford Hall, 2012) After their contract was over, the servant was given food, clothing, tools, and land of their own. Indentured servants were mostly white English people, but in 1619 a group of twenty Africans arrived in Virginia. Those twenty Africans were sold to the settlers of Jamestown from a captain of a Dutch man-of-war. By the end of the 17th century, almost 1,300,000 Africans were in the New World. They were brought over in increasing numbers to fill the desire for labor in a country where land was plentiful and labor scarce. (Drewry, 2014) Most
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