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Unformatted text preview: 3 Lecture 34 African slaves were found more economical than peasant labor. By the 18th century, society was made up of white owners, largely in debt, and a large black slave population. In 1655, when the British took Jamaica from the Spanish, there were 3000 black slaves; in 1800, there were 300,000. Most of the increase was due to imports as the rate of natural increase was low, not even enough to maintain the population until eman- cipation (so much for the paternalism of slavery). The trade between the sugar islands, Africa, Europe or Northeastern America, the infamous tripartite trade, supported the economies. New England slavers imported slaves from Africa and returned with rum and molasses from the islands (hence, the famous Boston baked beans). The British exchanged manufactured goods for sugar and rum. Slavery was introduced to the colonies in North America but was dying out until the cotton gin, invented by Eli Whitney (1794), made cotton the ideal plantation crop in the Deep South and...
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