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What Impact Did Slavery Have On 19th Century America?

1702 words - 7 pages

Slave; one who is property of and wholly subject to, another.The Macquarie Dictionary - Revised Third EditionIf you think slaves were owned by wealthy, smart, spoilt, selfish and arrogant people, think again! Did you know that even Thomas Jefferson, the author of the Declaration of Independence owned slaves throughout his whole life? Slavery in America was all about survival, money and power. There were many causes and dramas that led to this path which changed the lives of millions of people. Do these scars still exist or has time washed history away. In this essay, I will examine the impacts that slavery had in 19th Century America.Slavery is the situation or condition in which a person is owned by another person. He or she was considered as property by law, and was deprived of all most all rights held by a free person. In the 1800's, one in five Americans were Afro-American.Before the Europeans arrived, West Africa was a part of a major trading network distributing goods such as gold and ivory and taken by Arab traders back to Europe. In 1430's, improved shipbuilding and navigational skills gave the Europeans an opportunity to sail to West Africa and give them the chance to explore the coast for themselves. The Portuguese docked their ships first, followed by many other European nations, including France, England and the Netherlands. However, on the other side of the globe, European explorers in America, was in great need for more men to work in the new colonies. Therefore, they began to ship Africans across the Atlantic Ocean as slaves to help them work in the colonies.After, in North America, the Spanish took Florida in the year 1565, while Frenchmen settled in parts of Canada and claimed a vast amount of western Canadian land in 1682 and the first English colony on America's main soil was in Virginia in 1607. By 1732, thirteen English colonies had established along the east coast of America. There, they worked the land. But some poor Europeans who received free passage into America had to work as field labourers and servants for years of unpaid work. The first Africans were brought to America in 1619, and the amount of black labourers increased surpassingly in the coming years.A triangular trade evolved over the years which included the Europeans, the American and the Africans. This trade often starts with the Outward Passage. This is when the Europeans ship goods such as guns, alcohol and iron bars to the coast of West Africa. Slaves are then shipped from West Africa to North America. There, slaves worked hard labour for years, and ship the sugar, rum, tobacco and cotton they have grown to Europe. The Middle Passage was the worst of them all - the slaves traded for European goods. The slaves suffered on board a ship traveling across the Atlantic Ocean to America. The final trade was called the Inward Passage in which ships sailed back to Europe with cargoes of sugar, rum, tobacco, cotton and other produce bought with the proceeds of slave...

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