Ap American History: Slavery

Topics: Slavery, Caribbean, Atlantic slave trade Pages: 3 (953 words) Published: September 5, 2012
Analyze the origins and development of slavery in Britain’s North American colonies in the period 1619 to 1776. Support your answers with evidence from the assigned readings.

The Root of Slavery in Colonial America 1619-1776

The colonists did not choose Africans for slavery simply because they were unease by their alien skin tone or because they belittle the people’s lack of civilized background. In fact, the first Africans to arrive from abroad in 1619 were treated the same as the white indentured servants, who could earn their freedom, even a few acres of land, within agreed years of labor. Since cash crops are the fastest and most stable way to wealth, the demand for cheap, dependable labor increased at the peak of mid 17th century, especially in the Chesapeake colonies. Africans seemed to be the perfect and most reasonable people to be the labor force behind the agriculture based economy of the colonies. Wealthy landowners import enormous amounts of African slaves from the West Indies trades. Social prejudice developed as the dark skinned prisoners were enslaved; Africans were more seen as property, indicators of their master’s wealth rather than human beings. Eventually, the amount of slaves greatly outnumbers their white capturers. Their labor was greatly needed for the development of the New World. Though inhumanly forced, African slaves became the backbone of the colonial agriculture economy.

Africans were simply the most available and seemingly fitted to be the labor force in the tobacco plantations, the crop that ensured colonist wealth. Unlike Native Americans, African slaves did not share their susceptibility to European diseases. They were generally immune to the many diseases: malaria, smallpox and yellow fever that were gradually killing innumerable Native American slaves. Immigration of indentured servants seeking land slows and continued to decrease as civil war conflicts in got...
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