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Slavery In 18th Century Essay

944 words - 4 pages

slavery in 18th century

Despite the horror of the word slavery we have to admit that slaves have played a big role in rising big empires. For example the Egyptians used slaves to build their majestic pyramids, the Chinese and Indian used slaves for large-scale construction and agricultural and the Hebrews also used slaves. Slaves were brought from Africa to the British American colonies to work in agriculture and farming, which among other factors made the British colonies in America become so strong and prosperous.

The slaves of the British American colonies were mainly from African west coast. It is important to note that slavery was present in African communities long before white traders sent African slaves to Europe and America. Slaves in Africa were those tribal people captured in confrontations between tribes and sold to Arab traders.

The first traders to introduce slaves to the American colonies were the Portuguese who were later followed by the Spanish. Brought from Africa by way of different routes but in particular, the "Middle Passage" or directly from Africa to the Indies, slaves would travel in ships packed like sardines and under the most horrible conditions.

Perhaps the most logical reason to try to explain the boom of slavery in America and anywhere is it was a very profitable business. In the case of America, the first slave trades were done for mere profit but then it became a necessity because of the increasing demand for working hands in the colonies. The slavery population in the British American colonies rose rapidly during the 1700's due to the increasing demand for plantation workers, which became the main source of income for these colonies. By 1750, about 200,000 slaves lived in the colonies and most of them in the south, where the warm climate and good soil permitted the great development of plantations such as rice, tobacco, sugar cane and cotton among others. Slaves therefore played a big role in these plantations working directly in the fields, though some others worked as servants craft workers, etc. In the northern colonies, slaves worked in factories, homes, and shipyards.

Two important industries inspired the existence of black slaves in the British American colonies. These were the cotton and sugar cane plantations. Cotton case has its roots in the "cotton gin", a machine that removed seeds at an incredible rate of fifty people doing it by hand. Arose the need of more workers in the Southern to seed and collect cotton to meet the demand for this prosperous new industry in America. African slaves filled this necessity of cotton plantation labor.

In the case of sugar cane, the Louisiana's agricultural labor needs were just as important as the cotton producing colonies and slave numbers climbed to about 4 million in the south in order to fulfill the labor requirements of...

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