The Growth of Slavery The growth of slavery was due mostly to the growing importance of cotton as a cash crop.
The Slave Economy Slaves were made to work as miners, carpenters, factory workers, and house servants. Some worked on large plantations to raise cash crops, such as rice, cotton, tobacco, and sugarcane.
The Slave Economy Slavery was important to the South because Southerners depended on the work of enslaved people in their mines, factories, and plantations.
Slavery and the Law In 1832, members of the Virginia legislature debated emancipation, or the freeing of slaves. The debate started because many Virginians were frightened by a slave rebellion the year before.
Slavery and the Law The rebellion took place in Southampton County, Virginia. – The rebellion was led by Nat Turner, a slave. – It killed more than 50 people, including his owner.
Slavery and the Law Slaves would resist, or act against, slavery. They broke tools, pretended to be sick, or acted as if they didn’t understand what they had been told.
Slavery and the Law To prevent future uprisings, Virginia set forth slave codes, or sets of laws. Under the slave codes, slaves were not allowed to: leave their owners’ land, meet in groups, or buy or sell goods.
Slavery and the Law Most slaves were not allowed to learn to read or write, and speaking against slavery became a crime. The federal government also passed laws about slavery.
Slavery and the Law One of these laws was called the Fugitive Slave Act. – A fugitive is a person who is running away from something. Under this law, anyone caught helping a slave escape would be punished.
The Underground Railroad By 1860, there were more than 500,000 free African Americans living in the US. Some had been born to parents who were free, some bought their freedom or had been freed by their owners, others escaped.
The Underground Railroad Many people helped slaves to freedom, such as: – Other slaves – Native American groups – Conductors of the Underground Railroad Most were free African Americans and white Northerners.
The Underground Railroad The word underground is often used to describe something done in secret. The Underground Railroad was a system of secret escape routes leading to free lands.Underground Railroad
The Underground Railroad The best-known conductor of the Underground Railroad was Harriet Tubman, an African American who escaped slavery herself. She guided about 300 people to freedom in over 20 trips back to the South.
Women Work for Change White women, many of whom spoke out against slavery and in favor of women’s rights, were generally not accepted as men’s equals. They could not vote, hold public office, or sit on juries.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, a defender of the rights of both women and slaves, led the cause for women’s rights. – Stanton participated at the first women’s rights convention. She demanded that women “have immediate admission to all the rights and privileges which belong to them as citizens of the US.”
In 1852, Harriet Beecher Stowe worked for change by publishing a novel that turned many people against slavery. The book, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, told the heartbreaking story of slaves being mistreated by a cruel owner.
People who opposed slavery worked to abolish, or end, it. Those who wanted to abolish slavery were called abolitionists. Some of the first people to work against slavery were called the Society of Friends, also known as the Quakers. Abolitionists
In 1872, two free African Americans started a newspaper that called for equality, or equal rights, for all Americans. The newspaper, Freedom’s Journal, was the first to be owned and written by African Americans. Abolitionists
Later, a white Northern abolitionist, William Lloyd Garrison, founded a newspaper called The Liberator. One of the best known abolitionist speakers was Frederick Douglass, a runaway slave.Frederick Douglass – “I appear this evening as a thief and a robber. I stole this head, these limbs, this body from my master, and ran off with them.” - Douglass Abolitionists
Another former slave named Isabella Van Wagener traveled the country speaking against slavery. She changed her name to reflect the path she believed God called her to be on. She chose Sojourner, which means “traveler,” for her first name and Truth as her last name. Abolitionists
Sojourner Truth believed slavery could be ended peacefully. John Brown, an abolitionist, and a group of followers seized a government storehouse at Harpers Ferry. The storehouse was filled with guns. Abolitionists
Brown planned to give the guns to slaves so they could fight for their freedom. He was caught, put on trial, and hanged. Abolitionists