chatel mark myers
October 25, 2012
In “Loose, Idle and Disorderly” Slave Women in the Eighteenth Century Charleston Marketplace, Robert Olwell overall describes slavery and how heavily it is involved with marketing in the 18th century. Orwell really goes into detail about the facts of how important marketing was and how slaves played a key in this. Transactions and encounters took place every day in Charleston.
Africans played an essential role in the Charleston market place in the eighteenth century. “The Negro Act of 1740 permitted slaves to attend the market to buy or sell on behalf of their masters provided they carried tickets what was to be bought or sold.” (Page 99, Par. 6) Some slave marketeers worked out an arrangement with their masters by selling their masters produce. They used their earnings to purchase goods in their own right and then resell them for their own personal profit. After they paid a wage to their masters, these slaves could keep whatever surplus they had earned. Most of the marketeers were slave women.
Slave owners made a steady income off of the slaves and from the market even when they had no work for the slaves or any produce to sell for the short term. “In the long run, however, as slaves came to play an expanding role in the marketplace and increasingly provided the city’s inhabitants, white and black, with basic necessities, whites resented both the independence of the slave marketeers and their control over the city’s food supply.” (Page 100, Par. 1) Attempts to prohibit trade slaving go all the way back to the late seventeenth century. “In 1686 the South Carolina Assembly enacted a law that prohibited any person from buying goods from servants or slaves” (Page 100 Par. 1) Slaves were forced buy articles necessary for the support of the inhabitants and they were even forced to pay an extremely high rate. Slaves were forced to do many things to boost the economic culture for the whites and in that time for...
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