Role Of Indentured Servants

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The New World grew dramatically after the arrival of European. Their expansion into the New World resulted in the exploitation of the natural wealth in America. The colonists make use of the abundance resources of land to build plantations; hence, the agriculture industry was created. Seeing the potential benefits from the planting of commercial crops, most English laborers came to the New World as indentured servants. However, the labor sources of the indentured servant were later shifted to the slave, especially the African slave. These African slaves were victims of the particularly brutal slavery institution that was established during the English colonial era. As they played an important role in developing the English colonies,…show more content…
Due to the economic success of commercial crops, such as sugar, rice, and tobacco in the English colonies, the Virginia Company offered land to attract more laborers (“American Yawp”). Therefore, most immigrants came to Virginia as indentured servants in exchange for the free passage, board, foods, lands and freedom dues (“American Yawp”). Indentured servants were not considered as slaves because they worked under contract for an agreed-upon period of time, usually seven years. Once the indentured servants survived from their work and released from their contract, they would receive land and food supplies (“American Yawp”). Realizing the expense of owning indentured servants, most owners felt worried about losing their properties and threatened by the fastest-growing groups of freed servants in competing for economic benefits. It was especially true as the Bacon’s Rebellion (a class-based rebellion) against the colonial elite happened in Virginia in 1676 (“American Yawp”). This incident increased the desire for African slaves. Landowners turned to African slaves, as it was a more profitable source. It is because most Africans were more likely to get immunized from diseases, which make the colonists believed that they were suited to work in the plantations; whereas, the native…show more content…
The Atlantic slave trade, also known as the trading cycle, which “involved the human trafficking of black people to the colonies” became vital to the colonial economy (“American Yawp”). Those slaves were mainly captured from “the western coast of Africa, the Gulf of Guinea, and the west-central coast” (“American Yawp”). Millions of African slaves were forced to the New World across the Atlantic in a horrifying voyage, named as “the Middle Passage” (“American Yawp”). On the first part of the trip, traders brought goods to Africa in exchange for slaves; it was an “overland journey” of delivering slaves to the coast. On the “middle” part, slaves were transported to America on an ocean trip. According to the accounts of Olaudah Equiano, a survivor from the journey, he wrote that the journey was terrifying and led to the death of millions of Africans. It was due to the barbaric conditions inside the ships, the dissemination of diseases and the brutal treatments, which caused some slaves to escape from such situations by committing suicide (“American Yawp”). According to Alexander Falconbridge, African slaves were treated disastrously; they were crowded together in a limited space, and lying in “a pool of excrement.” “Dysentery” was the biggest killer in this journey. Cruel means, such as whippings were used by the ship crews to
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