APUSH Chapter 16 - Chapter 16 The South and the Slavery...

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Chapter 16 The South and the Slavery Controversy I. “Cotton’s Is King!” I. Before the 1793 invention of Eli Whitney’s cotton gin,slavery was a dying business, since the South was burdened withdepressed prices, unmarketable goods, and over-cropped lands. After the gin was invented, growing cotton became wildly profitable and easier, and more slaves were needed. II. The North also transported the cotton to England and the rest ofEurope, so they were in part responsible for the slave trade as well. III. The South produced more than half the world’s supply ofcotton, and held an advantage over countries like England, anindustrial giant, which needed cotton to make cloth, etc… IV. The South believed that since England was so dependent on themthat, if civil war was to ever break out, England would support theSouth that it so heavily depended on. II. The Planter “Aristocracy” I. In 1850, only 1733 families owned more than 100 slaves each, andthey were the wealthy aristocracy of the South, with big houses andhuge plantations. II. The Southern aristocrats widened the gap between the rich and thepoor and hampered public-funded education by sending their children toprivate schools. Also, a favorite author among them was Sir Walter Scott, author ofIvanhoe, who helped them idealize a feudal society with them as thekings and queens and the slaves as their subjects. III. The plantation system shaped the lives of southern women. Mistresses of the house commanded a sizable household of mostlyfemale slaves who cooked, sewed, cared for the children, and washedthings. Mistresses could be kind or cruel, but all of them did at one pointor another abuse their slaves to some degree; there was no“perfect mistress.” III. Slaves of the Slave System I. Cotton production spoiled the earth, and even though profits werequick and high, the land was ruined, and cotton producers were alwaysin need of new land. II. The economic structure of the South became increasinglymonopolistic because as land ran out, smaller farmers sold their landto the large estate owners. III. Also, the temptation to over-speculate in land and in slaves caused many planters to plunge deep into debt.
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Slaves were valuable, but they were also a gamble, since they might run away or be killed by disease. IV. The dominance of King Cotton likewise led to a one-crop economy whose price level was at the mercy of world conditions. V. Southerners resented the Northerners who got rich at their expensewhile they were dependent on the North for clothing, food, andmanufactured goods. VI. The South repelled immigrants from Europe, who went to the North, making it richer. IV. The White Majority I. Beneath the aristocracy were the whites that owned one or two, or asmall family of slaves; they worked hard on the land with their slavesand the only difference between them and their northern neighbors wasthat there were slaves living with them.
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