HIST 201 Essay

HIST 201 Essay - The fight against slavery is the most...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
The fight against slavery is the most apparent thread of continuity throughout American history from the sixteenth century all the way to 1877. From this time period it has been estimated that slave traders carried approximately eleven million blacks to the Americas (Divine 73). The understanding of slavery during this time period is so important because it demonstrates the struggle of a race of people in their fight for their own freedom. There is much crucial evidence that demonstrates how slavery relates to this concept of continuity moving through this time period. The concept will be further elaborated upon through a wide variety of examples to defend slavery’s significance in the development of America. Ever since the start of the American Colonies, colonists never hesitated to use slavery of Africans or Native Americans. The reason for no hesitation is the economic benefits of having slavery compared to indentured servants. Having slaves was much cheaper than having indentured servants. Also, indentured servants had to be treated with respect and could not be worked intensively, where as slaves were typically not shown any respect in the sense that they were treated like animals and could not own any land. To add to this, planters believed that blacks were directly associated with evil and because of this, “planters maintained that if black slaves converted to Christianity, shedding their supposedly savage ways, they would benefit from their loss of freedom” (Divine 73). There was a period of time when blacks could earn their freedom from slavery. From the year 1619 to about 1670 it was unclear on what the status of the colony’s black people would be. Even though some people believed that they would be slaves for life, others allowed them to purchase their freedom after several years of work (Divine 73). Slavery would later transform from a less racially defined society into an inescapable way of life for the blacks. Adding to the thread of continuity, the legal status of blacks in the colonies was finally determined at the end of the seventh century. “They were slaves for life, and so were there
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
children after them” (Divine 76). There was no way around it until the end of the Civil War. In Virginia alone, more than eleven thousand slaves were sold from 1695 to 1709 (Divine 76). This was the spark that allowed British ships to transport slaves to all of the colonies, where Maryland and the Carolinas would soon follow. Now that the number of slaves was rising rapidly, colonists began to fear the rise of these growing numbers. Because of this, America would develop their first form of systematic and strict slave codes. If a person was black they would be automatically defined by the community as a slave, this eliminated the belief that converting to Christianity would change your position as a slave which lead to the great mount of discrimination of blacks. As the years would progress, the blacks would begin to construct African American
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 09/23/2008 for the course HIST 201 taught by Professor Berg during the Spring '08 term at UNL.

Page1 / 7

HIST 201 Essay - The fight against slavery is the most...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online