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The Economic Effects Of The Slave Trade On Africa, Britain, And America

1487 words - 6 pages

In today’s day and age money makes the world go round but, that is not the question. The question is what made the world go round in the early 1600’s? Just like the world today money made the world go around back then also. In today’s world machines do all of our dirty work, back then it was all up to the slaves. The colonists had a hard time trying to find the perfect slaves. The indentured servants and Indians came first, however because they could easily escape to freedom, they were not the ideal slaves. The colonists’ third attempt was a home run. These unfortunate people were the Africans. In order to obtain the precious Africans, sailors had to sail across the ocean, but it made no sense to cross the Atlantic in an empty ship. This led to the triangle trade. In the triangle trade, crops like cotton, tobacco, and sugar from America were transported to England. From England textiles, rum and manufactured goods were transported to Africa. Then from Africa, slaves were transported to the Americas. Although these slaves were real human beings they were referred to as “cargo” and transported as such. There would be about 200 slaves in a single ship’s hold. In these holds, life was living hell they had little room to move, poor food, disease and death. Like everything else in early 1600s the triangle trade was all for money. The triangle trade benefited the non-slave participators quite handsomely if they survived. The real question is how much did the triangle trade actually affect the countries involved? We will now explore the background of the triangle trade in America, Britain, and Africa, along with the economic affects that were brought to not only America and Britain but also the economic benefits brought to Africa as a result of slavery and the slave trade.
The slave trade was the largest contributor to the British economy during the 18th century. Tomas Butler stated “The profits from the slave trade were part of the bedrock of our country's industrial development. Many people and institutions in every part of the country were complicit in the trans-Atlantic slave trade.” In the early Americas Britain supplied a vast majority of the slaves to the new world to work on plantations. During the slave trade British ships made over ten thousand voyages and enslaving approximately 3.4 billion Africans. Some of these ships would make a profit of 20-50%. Back in England the king and the ship owners were not the only people benefiting from the slave trade. Everyone from the factory owners to the factory workers were benefited as an effect of the slave trade slave. The upper-class citizens were definitely making the big dollars. These people included the ship owners of the slave ships who benefited by owning the ships, the factory owners who were able to sell their products that the Africans and Americans needed and wanted, bankers who made money for the interest they earned from people who borrowed money for the long voyage, and even the...

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