Mahogany Production vs Sugar Production

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When sugar became the major crop produced my plantation owners in the 18th century, many slaves were needed to produce the commodity. It was a labourious and strenuous job due to the conditions. African slaves were imported to the Caribbean from the western coast of Africa. Some slaves though didn’t all work on the sugar plantation; some were exported to countries such as Honduras. In the paragraphs to follow, the differences between the slave labour and the way of life of slaves on the mahogany plantation as opposed to that of those on the sugar plantation will be explored.

A negative outlook on the production of mahogany to that of sugar was the distance of the forests where the mahogany was located to the dwellings of the slaves. The trees were huge and grew singly throughout the forest, often many miles from a river. The slaves would have to leave their dwellings and family for many months while working on the mahogany plantations. This meant that the slaves wouldn’t see their family for many months at a time. On the other hand slaves on the sugar plantation worked on the same land as their dwellings and families and were able to always be in contact with their family.

In addition to the previous point mentioned, a positive outlook of mahogany production to sugar production was that the relationship between Europeans and slaves was far better on the mahogany plantation. The machete –carrying slaves on the mahogany plantation were allowed to roam the jungle with perhaps the only European present being the captain. There was sometimes a close bond between the owner and his slaves because unlike the planters who lived in England, mahogany trader’s only home was Honduras. The closer bond between the master and slave lead some slaves being freed when they aged or saving up money to buy their freedom. This was definitely not the case on the sugar plantation where planters lived in England and those who lived on the plantation only interacted with the...
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