Chapter 12: The old south and slavery 1830-1860
A. Nat Turner Rebellion
1. Nat Turner and six other slaves broke into Joseph Travis’ home, where
they killed Travis, his wife, and two other whites, and later on the
infant. They traveled around killing whites. The membership was about 60/70 and they killed over
60 whites. The white militia took control and slaughtered blacks even if they weren’t involved.
Turner went to trial and then was hung.
B. Before the Turner Rebellion Virginians had worried little of slave rebellions.
C. Non-slaveholding whites in the western par of the state, urged that Virginia follow the lead of
northern states and emancipate slaves.
D. The south had been split.
1. Upper South: Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas
a. major economy based on raising wheat, tobacco, hemp,
vegetables, and livestock,
b. Relied less on slavery and cotton then the lower south.
2: Lower, or Deep South: South Caroline, Georgia, Florida, Alabama,
Mississippi, Louisianan, and Texas.
II. King Cotton:
A. The Lure of Cotton:
1. Cotton was one the leading crops of this time. With its warm climate,
wet springs, and summers, and relatively dry autumns, the Lower South
was especially suited to the cultivation of cotton. Cotton was an
inexpensive crop to grow with very little necessities.
a. The demand for cotton in Britain and New England kept the
price of it high.
b. with the production of cotton and other leading crops, it made
the south the wealthiest part of the US at the time.
c. in 1860, 35-50% of cotton farmers owned no slaves.
2. In the south slave population was high.
a.1810-1860 population doubled and cotton employed ¾ of slaves
b. Slave holding allowed planters to increase their cotton acreage
and hence their profits.
3.Advantage of cotton lay in the compatibility with the production of
corn. Could be planted anytime throughout the year.
a. Corn allowed planters to use employ slaves when cotton was
not being harvested.
B. Between the Lower and Upper South:
1. Sugar and Cotton dominated agriculture in the lower south.
2. Tobacco, vegetables, hemp, and wheat dominated the upper south.
a. depended much less on cash crops for stability.
3. Upper south identified with the lower south rather than with the
agricultural regions of the free states.
a. many settlers in the lower south had migrated form the upper
south. Along with economic ties which linked them.
b. all white southerners benefited for the 3/5
c. all southerners were stung by abolitionist criticism of
slavery(drew no distinction between upper and lower south)
d. encouragement of trading slaves due to the crops.
C. The North and South Diverge:
1. While much of the North started to urbanize, the South stayed relatively
a. due to lack of industries.