Although today slave labor is seen as unjust and illegal, it was known as the foundation of American society to many people during the discovery of the New World. Slave labor was common in culture as well as frequently seen which is the reason many individuals considered it to be normal. Having numerous slaves in one household was not only helpful, but it proved that an important and wealthy family resided there. Even though many slaves labored and worked for a large majority of their life, some were set free. Some of the most well known ways included being occasionally set free by their owners or buying themselves when they acquired enough money.
In addition, in 1820 the Missouri compromise took into effect, which made it so states North of the 36°30′ parallel would be free and South would be slave and helped give way to new laws regarding the issue of slavery. Slavery had a big impact on the market, but most of it was centered on the main slave crop, cotton. Primarily, the south regulated the cotton distribution because it was the main source of income in the south and conditions were nearly perfect for growing it. Cheap slave labor made it that much more profitable and it grew quickly as well. Since the development in textile industry in the north and in Britain, cotton became high in demand all over the world.
Democracy developed in Colonial America from 1607, at the founding of Jamestown, up to 1783, with the signing of the Treaty of Paris. Democracy is defined as a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system. Ideas from documents created in England, such as the Bill of Rights, were brought over to the colonies. These ideas were implemented into the society of the colonists. The colonists also created their own democratic documents and ideas.
Plantation owners needed slaves to maintain their lands, without which they would receive no profits. Fears of slave revolts and a growing stigma attached to African Americans only fueled southerners on. The southern colonists wanted an economical solution that benefited their specific geographical needs; Slavery also became a way to raise a southern colonist’s social standing, as well as his income. Slavery fit all of the Southerner’s needs and was brought forth at a time when those needs were at their peak. Slavery rose exponentially up to and way after Thomas Jefferson wrote the words, “All men are created equal”.
No, it has not, it may have given the fruits of a democratic lifestyle to those fortunate enough to be born a male or with white skin, but for the women, and those who were first brought here as slaves, they were not given this gift of Democracy, at least not for quite some time and after a few key revisions to our Constitution. One key element to determining whether a government can be considered a democracy would be the power of the people to express their political views in the form of voting for or against policies and legislation to help align the government with the views of its people. The first group which this was withheld from would be Women. It was not until the Nineteenth Amendment was added to the constitution that white women were allowed to vote in elections. This restriction before this limited the power of the people to the white males of the period, while the women were expected not to involve themselves in politics.
The history of abolition directly relates to the many obstacles Americans faced when trying to change societies laws and ideas about slavery. Slavery was an accepted facet of life because it was part of the old institution; it existed in every colony and played an integral part in shaping social structure and forming successful economies. The Virginian Law of 1780 awarded all veterans of the war on independence with 300 acres of land and a slave. Another example that shows how accepting Americans were of slavery is that every founding father owned slaves during their lifetime. Owning slaves became something people thought they were entitled to, it was a right that they had.
Other issues such as suffrage and representation in Congress became interrelated with the slavery issue (Edel 24-5). Small states wanted equal representation in Congress, so they would agree with other smaller states on representation issues, but then disagree with the northern states about slavery. This caused many disputes among the states and prolonged the process of finishing the Constitution, as well as coming up with a conclusion about the slavery issue. At the completion of the Convention, the delegates had voted to let slavery remain legal until they discussed it again in 1808. Due to the South's dependence on slaves and the popular belief that slavery is an issue that should be dealt with by each state individually, the slaves were not freed in 1787.
In order to lure these African slaves to the Americas, many were stolen from their home land and/or promised various falsehoods. The Europeans, who employed these slaves, rationalized that they were the superior race to Africans and they were providing a better life for them. Slavery was not always an accepted practice. Early American settlers remained divided as to its morality and legality. Though, in its infancy, the North accepted slavery and practiced its use, it was the South that delved deep into its practice.
Slavery was a struggling debate during the 18th century, and the differing views ended with the Revolutionary War that lasted during 1775 to 1783. Slavery was widely accepted in America during the 1700s. It was an efficient method for farmers and landowners to receive the workers they needed to tend their land and animals. Because of the time period and current immigration boom, slaves often found themselves working with indentured servants. This mostly white majority of people came to America seeking a better life, but were bound to their masters who helped fund their way into the colonies ("New England slavery at the turn of the 18th century."
During the 18th and 19th century slavery became a thriving concept in the United States, especially in the south due to the rapid expansion of the cotton industry. Many stories told through the grapevines that have all impacted those who listen to the trials and tribulations these slaves took on during this time in the United States. However there are certain individuals who have the ability to give you a perspective of slavery that some could not achieve. Frederick Douglass, a well knowledgeable freed African American gives the insight to slavery in his own narrative. In the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, Frederick reveals the truths behind slaves’ lives, the culture of slavery, as well as the psychological struggles these American slaves endured during this time period.