Question 1: Utilizing specific examples from both books, explain how the actions of African Americans damaged the institution of slavery and ultimately led to its demise.
African Americans damages the institute of slavery by escaping and participating in rebellions. On average, 1,000 slaves escaped per year. They wanted freedom so bad that they took the chance of being caught and whipped by their masters. Harriet Tubman was a slave who ran away and returned to plantations several times to rescue the rest of her family, as well as other slaves. It is said that she returned nineteen times and rescued more than 300 slaves. (Kelley and Lewis 2005, 194) The Underground Railroad also contributed to the damaging of the institution of slavery. This network provided shelter, food, clothing and disguises for slaves. It moved them station to station and eventually to freedom. Fredrick Douglas is another example of a successful escape by a slave. He escaped slavery in 1833 and went on to become an abolitionist, newspaper editor, and lecturer. (Kelley and Lewis 2005, 191) The escapes meant slaveholders were out of workers. Successful escapes gave other slaves the idea of escaping as well. Rebellions were another way African Americans damaged the institute of slavery. In 1811, Charles Deslandes led 400 slaves in an uprising in Louisiana that made whites flee their plantations to get to safety. In 1817 and 1818, blacks and Seminoles teamed up to fight for their Florida homelands. They raided Georgia plantations and killed many whites, while rescuing slaves. Another great example is Nat Turner. He led a rebellion that consisted of approximately 70 slaves against whites in Southampton, Virginia. This was one of the most clear-cut cases of slave rebellion that occurred in America. Nat Turner went from one plantation to the next killing whites. It didn’t matter if they were male or female; adults or children; he had no remorse and killed them all. These rebellion made
Bibliography: Nash, Gary B. Race and Revolution. Lanham, Maryland: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, 2001. Kelley, Robin D. G. and Earl Lewis, eds. To Make Our World Anew: A History of African Americans to 1880. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.