Slavery and Public Education

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Two major developments in colonial America were slavery and public education. Slavery began in North America in roughly 1500's and lasted until around 1865. Before establishment of chattel slavery (outright ownership of a person and descendants) most labor was organized as indentured servitude ( someone who worked for a set amount of time to pay for the trip to the new world) By the 18th century colonial caourts/legislatures racialized slavery creating a system of slavery exclusive to Africans and people of African descent. Slavery was very controversial in the politics of the united statesfrom 1770 through at least 1860, becoming a topic of debate in the drafting of the constitution. Slaves resisted through rebellion (Nat Turner) and non-compliance and escaped to non-slave states facilitated by the underground railroad. Slavery was was a principal issue leading up to the American Civil War. The union prevailed and slavery became illegal with the adoption of the thirteenth amendment in 1865. Public education was another major development in Colonial America. A wide variety of schools exsisted (mostly in the northern colonies) but there wasn’t an established system link or system. The early puritan settlers required schools in local towns and villages and many did establish elementary schools. School was not as important as the authority of parents and churches. Parents were expected to teach their children to read ( to make sure they could read the bible) before attending elementary school. For a great majority of children school remained a minor aspect in their lives. By the 1820's and 1830's children studied grammar, some geography and history. Boston established the first free highschool 1821 and other major cities in the north soon followed. although admission was at first restricted to only boys that trend was soon reversed in most communities. In conclusion both slavery and education were major developments in colonial america that created...
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