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The South and the Slavery Controversy Chapter 16 APUSH
Early Emancipation in the North
Missouri Compromise, 1820
King Cotton • Cotton Kingdom develops to huge agricultural factory • Northern shippers reaped a large part of the profits from the cotton trade • to a large degree, the prosperity of the both the North and the South rested on the bent backs of slaves • South produced more than half the world’s cotton supply. A fact that held foreign nations in economic bondage to the South. -Britain was the world economic superpower and 1/5 of its population drew its wealth from cotton cloth - 75% of that cotton came from the South - South knew it
Changes in Cotton Production 1820 1860
Value of Cotton Exports As % of All US Exports
Southern Society as an Oligarchy rather than a Democracy • Planter aristocrats had the majority of the wealth –Educated their children in private schools –These young became experts at statecraft: John C. Calhoun; Jefferson Davis - felt a keen sense to serve the public –But widened gap b/w rich and poor –No reason to favor tax-supported public education
The “Wasteful” Plantation System 1. Economic system becomes monopolistic • 2. Small farmers must sell their landholdings and move north or west Financial instability of the system – – 3. Led to over speculation in land slaves (supporting evidence) slaves fed for. 10 cents a day but could cost $1, 200 each; they could be injured; they could run away; they could be wiped out by disease Agribusiness - King Cotton meant one crop economy. No diversification or industry Southern planters resent watching North grow fat at their expense 4. – 5. (supporting cultural division) Southerners resent being wrapped in Northern cloth, coffins with Yankee nails Cotton Kingdom repelled large scale European immigration – – No diversity of people Irish immigration competes with slave labor
Characteristics of the Antebellum South 1. Primarily agrarian. 2. Economic power shifted from the “upper South” to the “lower South. ” 3. “Cotton Is King!” * 1860 5 mil. bales a yr. (57% of total US exports). 4. Very slow development of industrialization. 5. Rudimentary financial system. 6. Inadequate transportation system.
• 1/4 of white southerners owned slaves –Smaller slave owners did not own a majority of the slaves but they made up the majority of the masters –Typically modest farmhouses, working with and eating with the slaves • Beneath them: 3/4 white southerners owned no slaves – Redneck farmers living on thinner soils of backcountry and mountains. –Subsistence farmers - corn and hogs. Isolated lives • Below them - “poor white trash” • All these whites without slaves had no direct stake in preservation of slavery yet they were among the stoutest defenders. Why?
Southern Society (1850) 6, 000 “Slavocracy” [plantation owners] The “Plain Folk” [white yeoman farmers] Black Freemen 250, 000 Black Slaves 3, 200, 000 Total US Population 23, 000 [9, 250, 000 in the South = 40%]
Slave-Owning Families (1850)
Slave-Owning Population (1850)
• All these whites without slaves had no direct stake in preservation of slavery yet they were among the stoutest defenders. Why? –Hope of American dream - one day they might own slaves –Fierce in need to proclaim racial superiority (Jerry Springer theory…? ) –Always want to outrank someone else
NC Mountain Boys (Appalachian) • Little in common with whites of flatlands • Isolated- Elizabethan English • “rich man’s war but poor man’s fight” • when war came this group formed a vital Union peninsula jutting down into secessionist territory
Free blacks • purchased freedom • often illegal to marry within the state of residence • Owned property • Owned other slaves • Couldn’t testify in court • Vulnerable to being kidnapped and sold into slavery • Freed blacks unpopular in North –Compete with immigrant labor –Frederick Douglas
Southern Slavery--> An Aberration? st J 1780 s: 1 antislavery society created in Phila. J By 1804 slavery eliminated from last northern : state. J 1807: the legal termination of the slave trade, enforced by the Royal Navy. J 1820 s: newly indep. Republics of Central & So. America declared their slaves free. J 1833: slavery abolished throughout the British Empire. J 1844: slavery abolished in the Fr. colonies. J 1861 the serfs of Russia were emancipated. :
African American Culture • Deep South - relatively stable culture so more distinctive culture • Dance, religion (Israelites in Egypt - “let my people go”), “sister” and “brother”
The Culture of Slavery 1. Black Christianity [Baptists or Methodists]: * more emotional worship services. * negro spirituals. 2. Nuclear family with extended kin links, where possible. 3. Importance of music in their lives. [esp. spirituals].
Slave Resistance • Refusal to work hard. • Isolated acts of sabotage. • Escape via the Underground Railroad.
Slave Rebellions in the Antebellum South Gabriel Prosser 1800 Henrico, VA On August 30, 2007, Virginia Governor Tim Kaine informally pardoned Gabriel and his co-conspirators 1822 Charleston, S. C.
Slave Rebellions in the Antebellum South: Nat Turner, 1831
Abolitionist Movement 1816 American Colonization Society created (gradual, voluntary emancipation. British Colonization Society symbol
Abolitionist Movement e Create a free slave state in Liberia, West Africa. e No real anti-slavery sentiment in the North in the 1820 s & 1830 s. Gradualists Immediatists
Reformers of the Era • Theodore Dwight Weld - spiritually inspired. Rebels at Lane Theological Seminary in Cincinnati, Ohio = “Lane Rebels”
William Lloyd Garrison (1801 -1879) e Slavery & Masonry undermined republican values. e Immediate emancipation with NO compensation. e Slavery was a moral, not an economic issue. R 2 -4
The Liberator Premiere issue January 1, 1831 R 2 -5
Other White Abolitionists Lewis Tappan James Birney e Liberty Party. e Ran for President in 1840 & 1844. Arthur Tappan
Black Abolitionists David Walker (1785 -1830) 1829 Appeal to the Colored Citizens of the World Fight for freedom rather than wait to be set free by whites.
Frederick Douglass (1817 -1895) 1845 The Narrative of the Life Of Frederick Douglass 1847 “The North Star” R 2 -12
1852 Speech of Frederick Douglass in honor of signing of Declaration of Independence, “This Fourth of July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn…. Above your national, tumultuous joy, I hear the mournful wail of millions”
Sojourner Truth (1787 -1883) 1850 The Narrative of Sojourner Truth R 2 -10
Harriet Tubman (1820 -1913) e Helped over 300 slaves to freedom. e $40, 000 bounty on her head. e Served as a Union spy during the Civil War. “Moses”
Slave Rebellions in the Antebellum South: Nat Turner, 1831
1831 -1832 Turning Point: Virginia Legislature Debate • emancipation proposals • defeated • result: tightened slave codes • result: no emancipation whatsoever voluntary or compensated! It is illegal!
Va Legislature Debate 1831 -1832 Thomas Wright If you wish to speak of economic advantages, I have some facts for you to consider regarding the efficiency of free labor and slave labor. The best estimates are that it takes six slaves to do the work of three free laborers. The slave receives the same support and food whether he works much or little. The slave has every inducement to spare himself as much work as possible without drawing punishment. Free laborers work hard for short periods. This gives them free time to be idle. When idle, the free laborer does not have to be paid. Therefore, free labor is cheaper than slave labor. In 1800, field hands were selling for $400 and cotton was 36 cents per pound. Today slaves sell for $800 to $1000 and cotton is 11½ cents per pound. One half of the slave owners have fewer than twenty slaves. The economic loss of slaves as property will be more than offset by decreased labor cost and greater productivity. Emancipation can result in a greater supply of cheap labor that will mean profitable industrial operation. Of course, safeguards must be taken to see that laborers are not exploited or abused.
Va Legislature Debate 1831 -1832 Amos Lovejoy Slaves should be freed but not all at once. As a step toward complete freedom, several practices should change. The power of punishing slaves could be taken from the master and given to a magistrate. The sale of all women could be stopped at once. All slaves could be provided wages rather than using punishment as an incentive. A second step could involve the complete release of slaves born on certain days periodically. Over a period of years, all slaves could be set free. Such a system has already worked in Mexico, Chile, and Argentina. In no case has there been insurrection and bloodshed as is feared here. Taking steps toward freeing slaves will lessen the possibility of violence and insurrection.
Va Legislature Debate 1831 -1832 James Hammond In the state of Virginia, there are 470, 000 slaves. The aggregate value of the slave population in Virginia in 1830 was $94, 000. All of the land homes were valued at $206, 000. Slaves represent one-third of the property. Therefore, slaves should not be freed without just compensation to their owners. I propose that those slaves normally sold outside this state be sold to the State and colonized elsewhere at the expense of the State. This proposal will mean that 6, 000 slaves would be given their freedom annually and colonized at the expense of the State. This would cost $2, 400, 000 annually. This is a modest investment to preserve the economy of the state. If the State cannot afford it, perhaps the federal government could be called upon to compensate owners for their slaves.
Va Legislature Debate 1831 -1832 Samuel Holt The idea of emancipation and relocation as proposed by some sounds good. However, further examination exposes some flaws in this plan. To ask State or Congress to purchase two million slaves at $400, 000 is out of the question. This will place far too great a burden upon those taxpayers who have never owned to plan to own slaves. When the government begins to buy slaves, it will cause the price of slaves to go up considerably. This will cause slave owners to encourage their slaves to marry and produce more children, thus compounding the problem. I ask those who say colonize the slaves: Where? Liberia now has a population of 2, 500. At the most, Liberia could handle 500 new residents a year. If only 500 slaves were freed and located annually, in a 25 -year period 41, 000 more slaves would be born than relocated.
Va Legislature Debate 1831 -1832 Thornton Ruffin I am opposed to emancipation of the slaves until some way can be found to sustain the trade and commerce generated by the cultivation of cotton and tobacco. Two-thirds of the cotton produced in this country is exported. This greatly helps our balance of trade with Europe. Only one-forty-sixth of the remaining agricultural production is exported. At the present time, onesixth of the blacks in the country are free. They shun the cottonfields. I will favor emancipation of slaves only when we can assure that blacks will remain in the cotton and tobacco labor market. If this cannot be assured, to give the slaves their freedom would ruin the economy of the South and seriously injure the economy of the North and England.
Southern Fears • • • Nat Turner William Lloyd Garrison’s The Liberator Nullification Crisis 1832
Southern Pro-Slavery Propaganda
Southern Defense of Slavery • Supported by authority of the Bible • “happy lot of servants” vs. factory life of immigrant workers • Post war - Freedom was bigger burden for African Americans? - no health care, no literacy, no knowledge of law, no knowledge of contract law (sharecropping)
Congress • 1836 Gag Resolution (all anti-slavery appeals from citizens would be tabled without debate) • 1835 Postal system can not deliver abolitionist literature
Abolition in the North 1. Extreme abolitionists (Garrison) unpopular in the North • • 2. 3. popularity of men like Daniel Webster stressing the Union Constitution is sacred and the clauses on slavery are lasting clauses North had heavy economic stake in the South Mobocracy due to abolitionism – – Lewis Tappan’s New York house Garrison and the Broadcloth mob Elijah P Lovejoy Even Lincoln avoided extreme abolitionism Growing number Northerners didn’t want to abolish slavery in the South but increasingly wanted to stop its spread to Western territories