Slavery in Colonial North America: The Struggle of Whites
Slavery is defined as the state of a person who is a chattel of another1. When must people hear this term they think about African Americans struggle in early American history. They conjure up visions of the American Civil War and the iconic image of the great emancipator himself, President Abraham Lincoln. The truth to be told though, slavery in United States history predates those events and figures. It actually started before the United States was even founded. Slavery in the United States actually was rooted in Colonial North America. As different nations raced to settle North America they used the cheapest labor to progress their cause economically. But, the biggest shock of all to most people is that not all slaves where African American. The African American slave trade was actually the last trade of slaves to be introduced to the Americas. Most people do not know that white Europeans where slaves in the Colonial Colonies and the hardships that they endured. The sources of racial thought in Colonial America pertaining to slave trade worked both directions with white merchandise as well as black.2
There was tobacco boom that appeared in the 1630s and was credited with saving the colony of Virginia. With this economic boom new plantations appeared and demand for labor intensiﬁed.3 The ruling Governors of the colonies needed to find ways to maintain this economic boom that was transpiring. And one way to do so was to find cheap labors for the plantation owners. It was no coincident that it was at this time white slavery started to come to the American Colonies from Scotland. A law was passed the allowed the British Government to people that they deemed vagrant to the American Colonies. It may be lawful for two or more justices of the peace within any county, city or town, corporate belonging to the commonwealth to from time to time by warrant cause to be apprehended, seized...
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