Slavery in the South 1800's -1860's

712 Words2 Pages

Slavery in the south was decreasing slowly but surely in the late 1700’s to very early 1800’s due to the fall of tobacco, people were beginning to lose profit, and therefore slaves. Around the 1800’s to 1860’s however, a new king came to rule replacing tobacco, cotton was the new king. This, the growing of cotton, along with the expansion of land and the slave trade itself helped make slavery boom back up again during this time period. The changes were so high, that Alabama once having a slave population of 41,000 to an incredibly high 435,000 slaves, slaves were needed, and were on a high demand during the 1800’s through 1860’s with the textile industry in Great Britain and New England booming. Cotton, once a very difficult and complicated crop to grow due to its many seeds stuck to its fibers, became a smooth, factory like performance with the aid of the cotton gin. Cotton was so important it made up two thirds of all 200 million dollars. The cotton gin, thanks to Eli Whitney helped remove the seeds faster, and not as painstakingly as before, this resulted in faster and greater production. A greater product wield means that the larger the workforce needed to grow in conjunction with the labor force, in this case reffered to as “King Cotton”. The greater workforce was slaves, and the invention of the cotton gin led to greatly expanding the amount of slavery in the South. The more slaves brought in to cultivate the cotton the more involucrate the Southern planters had become with agriculture, this strong attachment and dependency for cotton led to the South’s poor establishment of Industry. The total value of textiles from the South for example, made about 4.5 million dollars in the 1860’s, that may sound impressive but it is r... ... middle of paper ... .... The slave trade tried to further expand legally by advocating for their rights to buy slaves in Cuba, or Brazil or even Africa; this was discussed in southern commercial conventions, and was specifically brought up by William L. Yancey of Alabama. The cotton was growing bountiful and the planters needed slaves to harvest it, thus the need for slaves pushed the slave trade and increased the amount of slaves in the South tremendously during the first half of the 1800’s. Just as slavery was starting to lessen, the South discovered a way to lasso it back into it’s grasp thanks to the discovery of the cotton gin, allowing it to quickly recuperate from the death of tobacco. The growth of slavery in the first half of the 1800’s was also aided by the expansion of land, and the cruel yet profitable slave trade, all prolonging the misery of the black Southern population.

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