Essay on The Cotton Gin and Slavery

Essay on The Cotton Gin and Slavery

Length: 1160 words (3.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Good Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Cotton Gin was an invention that allowed the mass production of cotton. Cotton was previously a very difficult crop to profit from, because of the long hours required to separate cotton seeds from the actual cotton fibers. This all changed when Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1793, a machine that sped up the process, thereby making cotton farming a profitable industry for the Southern States. With large areas of prime land ready for crops the Southern states bought and transported slaves in record numbers in order to work on their cotton farms. Although there are no definitive statistics approximately 1,000,000 slaves were moved west from the 'old Southern states' to the new ones; i.e. Maryland, Virginia and the Carolinas to Georgia, Tennessee and Alabama. The new ease of cotton ginning coupled with the high demand for cotton in the textile industry gave rise to the need for a workforce to harvest the cotton. The farmers turned to a readily available labor force they didn't have to pay: slaves.
Slaves being transported to the South were usually ripped from their families and the surroundings they were familiar and comfortable with. These slaves then faced their new life at the plantation, a very different environment from what they were used to. They faced harder work, such as clearing trees and planting crops, than they had back in the ‘old Southern states’. The great demand for slaves on the plantations produced two very distinct types of slaves, rural and urban. Rural slaves, as you might have guessed worked on the plantations usually from dawn till dusk, driven by their overseer. Whereas urban slavery resulted from the lack of white laborers in the mining and lumber industries, because so many whites defected to t...


... middle of paper ...


...

Works Cited

Bellis, Mary. "The Cotton Gin and Eli Whitney." About.com:Inventors. About.com. Web. 08
Nov. 2009. .
"Slavery in the United States." Wikipedia. 8 Nov. 2009. Web. 9 Nov. 2009.
.
Phillips, William. "The Cotton Gin". EH.Net Encyclopedia, edited by Robert Whaples. 10 Feb.
2004. Web. 9 Nov.2009. .
Giesen, James C. "Cotton." New Georgia Encyclopedia. 20 Apr. 2009. Web. 9 Nov. 2009.
.
"Slavery." Think Quest. Web. 9 Nov. 2009.
.
Dattle, Eugene R. "Cotton in a Global Economy: Mississippi (1800-1860)." Mississippi History
Now. Oct. 2006. Web. 9 Nov. 2009. .

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on The Cotton Gin and Slavery

- The Cotton Gin was an invention that allowed the mass production of cotton. Cotton was previously a very difficult crop to profit from, because of the long hours required to separate cotton seeds from the actual cotton fibers. This all changed when Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1793, a machine that sped up the process, thereby making cotton farming a profitable industry for the Southern States. With large areas of prime land ready for crops the Southern states bought and transported slaves in record numbers in order to work on their cotton farms....   [tags: Slavery Essays]

Good Essays
1160 words (3.3 pages)

The Cotton Gin’s Impact on American Industry and Slavery Essay

- A graduate from Yale University had thoughts of becoming a lawyer, but he needed a job urgently. After a tutoring job fell through, he accepted a position on a plantation in Georgia. His employer, Catherine Green, saw much talent in him and encouraged him to find a way to make cotton profitable. He promptly began working on a solution to the problem of separating the seeds from the cotton. On March 14, 1794, Eli Whitney was granted a patent for the cotton gin.1 The cotton gin impacted American industry and slavery changing the course of American history....   [tags: American Industry]

Good Essays
745 words (2.1 pages)

Development Of The Cotton Gin Essay

- In the antebellum south, cotton was king. The idea of a diverse agricultural south became a fallacy upon Eli Whitney’s development of the cotton gin. The ability to gin cotton creates a market place for a cash crop and the increase in slave labor. Therefore it is cotton that fuels the financial wealth of thousands of southern families and replaced stable crops. The development of the most beneficial technology in the Old South that we all know as the cotton gin was developed by Yale graduate Eli Whitney in the year 1793....   [tags: Slavery, Slavery in the United States]

Good Essays
1517 words (4.3 pages)

Essay on The 's Invention Of The Cotton Gin

- Everyone in modern day America can agree that Slavery was one of the evilest and inhumane acts to ever take place in US History. Slavery in the US was a legal system that allowed humans to be classified as property. Chattel Slaves were owned, bought, traded, and sold amongst slave owner’s to be used on plantations throughout the colonies. After the Revolutionary War, slavery was almost completely phased out in the North because it proved to be unprofitable and was declining in the South because tobacco was no longer considered a “cash crop”....   [tags: Slavery in the United States, American Civil War]

Good Essays
1163 words (3.3 pages)

The Cotton Gin By Eli Whitney And The Prevalence Of Stable Two Parent Slave

- Many slaves throughout the North and South acquired their freedom between 1775 and 1830, however, during this time period the institution of slavery was also expanded. Factors such as the invention of the cotton gin by Eli Whitney and the prevalence of stable two-parent slave households caused slavery to expand at the same time the number of free-blacks grew. Both slaves and free blacks faced many challenges. Challenges such as widespread racial prejudice, little to no freedoms, and little to no social mobility plagued both slaves and free blacks alike....   [tags: Slavery, Slavery in the United States]

Good Essays
1119 words (3.2 pages)

The Revolutionary Cotton Gin By Eli Whitney Essay

- Overspecialization occurs when an economic actor is so excessively-concentrated to a single function that when change arises, it is unable to adapt. The Southern United States experienced, firsthand, the destruction that results from such change. But how could the entire southern half of the United States find themselves trapped in overspecialization. The rising demand of cotton attracted Southern capitalists. African slaves were the laborers of the cotton fields, thus, the Southern capitalists increased their investment in the trading of slaves....   [tags: Slavery, History of slavery, Atlantic slave trade]

Good Essays
2136 words (6.1 pages)

The Cotton Gin Essay

- The Cotton Gin In the late 1700’s the slave population in the United States had decreased. Before the invention of the cotton gin the South, which could only make money by farming, was loosing money because it didn’t have a major crop to export to England and the North besides tobacco and rice. However, these crops could be grown elsewhere. Cotton was the key because it couldn’t be grown in large amounts in other places, but only one type of cotton that could be cleaned easily. This was long-staple cotton....   [tags: Papers]

Good Essays
740 words (2.1 pages)

Slavery in The Cotton Kingdom Essay

- Slavery in the cotton kingdom During the American Revolution and the civil war, the North and the South experienced development of different socio-political and cultural environmental conditions. The North became an industrial and manufacturing powerhouse as a result of rise of movements like abolitionism and women’s right while the South became a cotton kingdom whose labor was sourced from slavery (Spark notes, 2011). The distinct feature of cotton kingdom is that her activities were empowered by slave labor....   [tags: Cotton Industry, US History]

Good Essays
915 words (2.6 pages)

The Cause Of The Civil War: Eli Whitneys Cotton Gin Essay

- During the period between 1790 and 1850, the United States was rapidly changing. It was now a separate country with its own economy, laws, and government. The country was learning to live on its own, apart from England. There began to appear a rift between North and South. The North believing in the Puritan Merchant role model, and the South in the role model of the English Country Squire. The North traded with everyone, while the South traded primarily with England. The major crop in the South was tobacco, and because of the decline in the price of tobacco the slave trade was dying, just as those in the North hoped it would....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Good Essays
1770 words (5.1 pages)

How Did The American Economy Affect The Economy And The Part It Played During Slavery?

- There are many variables that helped shape the American economy to what it is today. From natural materials, immigrants, trading, capitalism, and much more But, the one thing that really stood out to me was the business of Cotton. In the next few pages I will be discussing Cotton and its affect on the economy and the part it played in slavery. I believe when I say everyone has heard about cotton, even though, many may not realize that we use cotton every single day. Cotton is a fiber that comes from cotton shrubs, and looking at these shrubs when the bulbs bloom, looks like little bunny tails attached to these shrubs....   [tags: Slavery in the United States, Slavery, Cotton]

Good Essays
959 words (2.7 pages)