2 Colonial America in the 18th Century The most important fact about 18th century British America is its phenomenal population growth.In 1700 colonists = 25,000In 1770 colonists = 2 millionPopulation growth derived from 2 sourcesImmigration = ¼Natural increase = 3/4
3 Cont… 2nd major feature of 18th century colonial America Booming economy!
4 New EnglandLandDuring the 17th century New England towns parceled land to individual families and in most cases they practiced partible inheritance where the land was divided equally among sonsDuring the 18th century colonial governments, such as those in Connecticut and Massachusetts needing revenue, sold land to individuals, including speculators.
5 Economy The number 1 agricultural product exported was livestock. Shipbuilding was also very important.Fish accounted for more than 1/3 of New England’s 18th century exports, livestock and timber made up another 1/3.The West Indies received 2/3 of all New England’s exports.
6 Cont…By 1770, New Englanders had only ¼ of the wealth per capita compared to the Southern colonistsBy 1770 the richest 5% of Bostonians owned about ½ the city’s wealth and the poorest owned less than 1/10.
7 Middle ColoniesBy 1770 the population of the Middle Colonies grew 10 fold- mainly from an influx of Germans, Irish and Scots and it nearly equaled the population of New England.Immigrants made the Middle Colonies a uniquely diverse society. By 1800, largely 1/3 of Pennsylvanians and less than half of the total population traced their ancestry to England.
8 GermansGermans made up the largest contingent of migrants from the European continent. By 1770 about 85,000 Germans had arrived in the Middle Colonies.Their fellow colonists called them the “Pennsylvania Dutch” an English corruption of the word Deutsch the word the immigrants used to describe themselves.Devastating French invasions of Germany during Queen Anne’s War ( ) made bad conditions worse and triggered the first large scale migration.
9 Scots-IrishThe Scots-Irish actually hailed from northern Ireland, Scotland and northern England and were Presbyterians.Deteriorating economic conditions pushed many Scots-Irish to America.
10 RedemptionersMany German emigrants were redemptioners, a variant of the indentured servant. A captain would agree to provide transportation to Philadelphia where redemptioners would obtain the money for their passage by borrowing it from a friend or relative already in the colonies or, as most did, by selling themselves as servants. Negotiating their own terms most redemptioners worked four years.
11 Racism in the ColoniesRacism made African Americans scapegoats in many ways. In 1741 when arson and several unexplained thefts occurred in New York City, officials' suspicion of a slave conspiracy led to the execution of 31 slaves. On the basis of little evidence and the perceived insolence of the slaves city officials burned 13 others and hanged 18 more.
12 Southern ColoniesBetween 1700 and 1770 the population of the southern colonies of Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia grew nine fold.By 1770, about 2x as many people lived in the South as either New England or the Middle Colonies.Natural increase and immigration accounted for the rapid population growth.
13 SlaverySlaves made the most striking contribution to the booming southern colonies, transforming the racial composition of the population.The institution of slavery became the defining characteristic of the southern colonies during the 18th century, shaping the region’s economy, society and politics.
14 The South Atlantic System The SAS produced sugar, tobacco, rice and other subtropical products for an international market.At the center of this system were European planter-merchants who owned plantations in the colonies of the New World which were worked by hundreds of enslaved Africans.Following mercantilist principals, merchants, investors and planters provided the plantations with the tools and equipment needed to grow the product.
15 The Atlantic Slave Trade The labor was provided by the Atlantic Slave trade.Between 1520 and 1650, Portuguese traders carried about 820,000 Africans across the Atlantic.Over the next half century, the Dutch dominated the AST.Then between 1700 and 1800 the British transported about 2.5 million of the total 6.1 million Africans carried to the Americas.
16 British Slave TradeIn the 1620’s, England colonized the West Indian islands of St. Christopher, Nevis, Montamount and especially Barbados.Sugar production transformed the islands into slave-based plantation societies.Most British West Indian plantations belonged to absentee owners who lived in England.The Navigation Acts kept the British sugar trade in the hands of the British merchants, who exported it to foreign markets.
17 Cont…By 1750, reshipments of American sugar and tobacco to Europe accounted for half of British Exports.Enormous profits also flowed from the slave trade.The Royal African Company and other English traders were able to sell slaves in the West Indies for 3 to 5 times what they paid for them in Africa
18 African Slave in Africa Between 1550 and 1870, the Atlantic slave trade took a tremendous toll on West and Central Africa, uprooting 11 million people and changing the social structure of Sub-Saharan Africa forever.By directing commerce away from the savannas and the Islamic world on the other side of the Sahara, the Atlantic slave trade changed the economic, and religious dynamics of the African interior.It also fostered militaristic, centralized states in coastal areas.
19 Cont… The trade of humans produced untold misery. In Africa itself, class divisions hardened as people of noble birth enslaved and sold those of lesser status.Gender relations shifted as well. Two-thirds of the slaves sent across the Atlantic were men, because Europeans preferred men and teenaged boys for workers.Women were sold more to the local and Arabic slave traders as household servants and concubines.This imbalance of men to women prompted African men to take several wives and changed the marriage customs of West African cultures.
20 Slavery in the Chesapeake Slavery became a core institution in this region, no longer just a form of free labor.Slavery also became defined in racial terms as Virginia leaders prohibited sexual intercourse between English and Africans and defined virtually all African residents as slaves.Unlike sugar and rice cultivation which were called the “killer crops” tobacco was more steady and less physically demanding and grown in less dangerous climates.
21 The Killer CropsSlaves in South Carolina labored under much more oppressive conditions.The colony grew slowly until 1700 when they began to export rice to southern Europe.By 1705, Africans formed the majority of the total population, rising to 80% in the rice growing areas.Most rice cultivation was done in inland swamp areas with stagnant pools of water which bred disease carrying mosquitoes.
22 Growth of Southern Slave Pops The number of southerners of African ancestry rocket from just over 20,000 in 1700 to well over 400,000 in 1770.The African American population increased nearly three times faster than the South’s briskly growing white population.Consequently, the proportion of southerners of African ancestry grew from 20% in 1700 to 40% in 1770.In 1720, women made up more than 1/3 of the Africans in Maryland and so much of increased population was natural.
23 Upper SouthThe colonists clustered into 2 distinct geographic and agricultural zones:The colonists in the Upper South, surrounding the Chesapeake Bay, specialized in growing tobacco.Throughout the 18th century 9 out of 10 southern whites and 8 out of 10 southern blacks lived in the Chesapeake region.The Upper South retained a white majority during the 18th century.
24 Lower SouthA much smaller cluster of southerners lived in the Lower South along the coast and specialized in the production of rice and indigo.Lower South colonists made up about 5% of the total southern population in 1700 but inched up to 15% by 1770.In South Carolina slaves outnumbered whites almost 2 to 1 and in some districts that ratio increased to 10 to 1.
25 Growth of the Slave Population The enormous growth of the South’s slave population grew as a result of natural increase and the flourishing Atlantic Slave Trade.Slave ships brought almost 300,000 slaves to British North America between 1619 and 1780.Of these Africans 95% arrived in the South and 96% arrived during the 18th century.Almost all of the slave ships that came to the colonies belonged to British merchants.
26 The Middle PassageMost of the slaves were young adults, generally men outnumbered women.Mortality varies from ship to ship but on average 15% of the slaves died, usually from dehydration and disease.“Seasoning” a slave meant the period of time it took them to acclimate to their new environment.As many as 15 to 20% of newly arrived Africans died during their first year in the southern colonies.
27 Stono RebellionStono, South Carolina, in 1739 a group of about 20 slaves attacked a country store, killing the two storekeepers and took guns, ammunition and powder.Enticing other slaves to join them the group killed more than 20 white men, women and children and plundered and burned more than 20 plantations.A white vigilante force suppressed the rebellion killing most of the rebels and placing their heads on mileposts along the road.
28 Cont…The Stono Rebellion illustrated that 18th century slaves had no chance of over-turning slavery and very little chance of defending themselves in any attempt at freedom.After the rebellion South Carolina legislators enacted repressive laws designed to guarantee the whites would always have the upper hand.
29 Other forms of resistance African slaves expressed many features of their culture by giving their children traditional dolls, and names.They grew food crops that they cultivate in the Old World such as yams and okra.They constructed homes with mud walls and thatched roofs.They created musical instruments similar to the ones back home, such as the banjo and drums.
30 An African-American culture Slaves came from many peoples in West Africa and the Central African regions of Kongo and Angola.White planters strove for ethnic diversity as a means to deter slave revolts.By accident or design, most plantations drew laborers of many languages , including Kwa, Mande and Kikongo.
31 Cont…Among Africans imported after 1730 into the upper James River region of Virginia, 41% came from ethnic groups in present day Nigeria and 25% from West Central Africa.The rest hailed from the Windward and Gold Coast and Gambia.Initially Africans did not think of themselves as Africans or “black” but as members of a specific family group, clan or people- such as-Wolof, Hausa, Ibo, Yoruba, Teke, Ngola- and they looked to find people who spoke the same language and had the same customs.
32 GullahSouth Carolinian slaves developed a language dialect in the lowlands regions of the colony that combined words from English, a variety of African languages.The development of such a dialect was one key emergence of the African-American community.Another strong retained tradition within African American communities was “Jumping the Broomstick” which was an African marriage tradition.
33 Southern colonial society The slaveholding gentry dominated the politics and economy of the southern colonies. In Virginia only adult white men who owned at least 100 acres of unimproved land or 25 acres of improved land could vote.Politically the gentry built a self-perpetuating oligarchy with the votes of their many more humble neighbors.The gentry also set cultural standards: lavish entertainment, regular gambling opportunities, Anglican church services, more for the social opportunities than for piety.
34 Power of PurchaseAtlantic commerce took colonial goods to Europe also brought European goods to the colonies. By mid-century export-oriented industries in Britain were growing ten times faster than those of the home market.British exports to North America multiplied 8x between 1700 and 1770, outpacing the rate of population growth.
35 DeismMany educated colonists became deists and looked for God’s plan in nature as opposed to the Bible.Deists shared the values of 18th century European Enlightenment thinkers, who tended to agree that science and reason could disclose God’s laws in the natural order.Enlightenment ideas encouraged people to study the world around them, to think for themselves, and to ask whether the disorderly appearance of things masked the principals of a deeper, more profound natural order.
36 PhillyPhiladelphia was the center of these conversations, especially after the formation of the American Philosophical society in 1769.Leading thinkers such as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson were members among many others and sought both to understand nature and improve society.
37 Lack of FaithMost 18th century colonists went to church seldom or not at all, although they still considered themselves Christians.In leading colonial cities, church members were a small majority of eligible adults, no more than 10 to 15%.The dominant faith was religious indifference.
38 Great AwakeningTo combat the lackluster commitment to faith some ministers set out to convert nonbelievers and to reestablish the piety of the faithful with a new brand of preaching that appealed to the emotions of the populace.Ministers such as Jonathan Edwards and George Whitfield were two such ministers.