The History of Slavery in the United States

1435 Words3 Pages

Following the success of Christopher Columbus’ voyage to the Americas in the early16th century, the Spaniards, French and Europeans alike made it their number one priority to sail the open seas of the Atlantic with hopes of catching a glimpse of the new territory. Once there, they immediately fell in love the land, the Americas would be the one place in the world where a poor man would be able to come and create a wealthy living for himself despite his upbringing. Its rich grounds were perfect for farming popular crops such as tobacco, sugarcane, and cotton. However, there was only one problem; it would require an abundant amount of manpower to work these vast lands but the funding for these farming projects was very scarce in fact it was just about nonexistent. In order to combat this issue commoners back in Europe developed a system of trade, the Triangle Trade, a trade route that began in Europe and ended in the Americas. Ships leaving Europe first stopped in West Africa where they traded weapons, metal, liquor, and cloth in exchange for captives that were imprisoned as a result of war. The ships then traveled to America, where the slaves themselves were exchanged for goods such as, sugar, rum and salt. The ships returned home loaded with products popular with the European people, and ready to begin their journey again. An estimated 8 to 15 million Africans reached the Americas between the 16th and 19th century. Only the youngest and healthiest slaves were taken for what was called the middle passage of the triangle trade, partly because they would be worth more in the Americas, and they were also the most likely to reach their destination alive. Conditions aboard the ship were very gruesome; slaves were chained to one anoth... ... middle of paper ... ...ld, he would see to it that his slaves had many children. However, this would also be beneficial for the slaves, who intrinsically crave the ability to align themselves in adulthood with another person, and eventually have children. Therefore, the slave owners would allow slaves to move in together, and even in some cases marry, thus furthering both of the parties’ ends. Works Cited Hines, Ellen, and Hines, William, and Stanley, Harrold. The African American Odyssey. Fifth Edition. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2008. Print. Montgomery, William. Under Their Own Vine and Fig Tree: The African-American Church in the South. Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press, 1993. Print. Morris, Christopher. “The Articulation of Two Worlds: The Master-Slave Relationship Reconsidered.” The Journal of American History Vol. 85.3 (1998): 983-986. JStor. Web. 23 Mar. 2011

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