By: Karen Alvarez
When it began
Slavery in America began when the first African slaves were brought to the North American colony of Jamestown, Virginia, in 1619, to aid in the production of such lucrative crops as tobacco. Slavery was practiced throughout the American
How were slaves treaded?
They had a poor diet and no care for their health, often walking for miles in the hot sun and living in rough huts and sleeping on a dirt floor. Masters would control their slaves by whipping them. Once a slave started work on a plantation they usually only lived for about seven years because they were worked so hard.
Slave states and free states
This is an original 1857 Map of the United States Showing the Free and Slave States. The Dark green states are the free states. The light green are the free "Territories", which were not yet states. The Red States were Slave Importing States, and the Pink States Were Slave States that Exported Slaves. Part of the dispute which helped trigger the Civil War was how to dispose of the territories . . . would they join the union as Slave or Free? The answer to this would tip the balance of power in the Congress, which is what made it such a difficult issue.
The 3/5 Compromise
The issue of how to count slaves split the delegates into two groups. The northerners regarded slaves as property who should receive no representation. Southerners demanded that Blacks be counted with whites.
Free blacks and other antislavery northerners had begun helping fugitive slaves escape from southern plantations to the North via a loose network of safe houses as early as the 1780s. This practice, known as the Underground Railroad, gained real momentum in the 1830s and although estimates vary widely, it may have helped anywhere from 40,000 to 100,000 slaves reach freedom.
The success of the Underground Railroad helped spread abolitionist feelings in the North; it also undoubtedly increased sectional tensions, convincing pro-slavery southerners of their northern countrymen’s determination to defeat the institution that sustained them.
American Civil War
For many years before the Civil war, leaders from the North and South could not agree on how to run the United States. One of the biggest arguments was about slavery.Slavery was a terrible system in which one group of people "owned" another.
Many plantations owners bought slaves to work in the fields. slaves could not leave the plantation.
The soil and climate of the south are perfect for farming. Many southern families lived on and ran large farms called plantations . Plantations needed many workers to plant,tend, and harvest the crops.
Southern leaders felt so strongly about slavery that many southern states broke away from the United States.They formed their own country called the Confederacy. The Northern states were called the Union.
On what did slaves worked on
Black slaves worked mainly on the tobacco, rice and indigo plantations of the southern coast.