total investment cost per slave. 68 Beginning with (A), a standard number was set for Harrison County and later all of Texas at 2.15%, as it is impossible to obtain an exact figure on this for any region. The rate of reproduction of slaves in the Choctaw Nation should conceivably mirror Texas, so (A) at 2.15% can be used. The only factor that would conceivably cause discrepancy is that a large percentage of slaves in Eagle County were ten years of age and under. This could represent either that the slave population had reproduced itself at a high rate in a limited time, or that slaves had been purchased at a young age. 69 For (C), the yearly maintenance cost for each slave was set by Campbell at $17.50. Numerous factors were included in obtaining this aggregate number, none of which would likely 66 Kenneth Stampp, The Peculiar Institution: Slavery in the Antebellum South, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1956), 380-410. 67 Randolph B. Campbell, A Southern Community in Crisis: Harrison County Texas, 1850-1880 , (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1983), 60-68. 68 Richard Lowe and Randolph B Campbell, Planters and Plain Folk , (Dallas: Southern Methodist University Press, 1987), 169. 69 Ibid.
39 vary in Choctaw territory. 70 One factor that confirms this conclusion is the advertisements placed in the Choctaw Intelligencer . The rates charged for slave clothing and blankets appear to be the standard rate for merchandise sent up the Red River. 71 Though these parts of Campbell’s equation fit with information available for Choctaw slavery, the remaining variables require a level estimation that renders the conclusion invalid. In calculating (P), Campbell calculated the price of cotton at eight to nine cents per pound and calculated for both eight and nine cents. Nine cents is typically used for 1860, thus could be used for the Choctaw Nation; however, this rate is significantly lower than Peter Pitchlynn valued the cotton he planned to sell from 1861-1865. In his will, Pitchlynn estimated the value of cotton that he loaned to the Choctaw Nation at 25 cents per pound. 72 It is unclear if this large discrepancy between Harrison County cotton and Pitchlynn’s Choctaw cotton is due to wartime inflation. In the interest of accuracy, profitability would have to be calculated at 9 cents and 25 cents. Moving forward, the amount of cotton produced per slave (Y) cannot be determined with any degree of accuracy. The only available numbers on production from Pitchlynn’s records indicate that he provided the Choctaw people with 62,500 pounds of cotton from 1861 to 1865. It does not indicate if this was Pitchlynn’s entire crop or only a part of his total crop; however, it does indicate that Pitchlynn also distributed 25,000 bushels of corn among the Choctaw people. The value of these distributions was $40,625 according to Pitchlynn’s estimate. Pitchlynn managed to avoid going into debt and maintained over eighty slaves, which indicates that even after distributing 62,500 pounds of cotton among his people, he still managed to – at minimum – break even. Though this suggests Pitchlynn profited handily from slavery, without the number of 70 Ibid.
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