Join the Abolitionists
Stop Slavery in Virginia
Song and Letter to Editor: Eitan Jentis
Pictures and Salt Mine Slavery: Leora Mouli
Editorial Cartoon and Feature Biography: Nicole Sydor
Nat turner Rebellion
By Geoffrey Zhao
There was recently a huge slave rebellion in the town of Jerusalem, Virginia, which we named the Nat Turner Rebellion, after the slave who started it, Nat Turner. It was an atrocious event for slave owners, but a spark of hope for slaves in Virginia. One day, Nat ran away from his overseer, but after 30 days, he had a vision that something was telling him to go back, so he obliged. After this vision, many more followed. One of his later visions was that he would have to slay his former owners. Then, he saw an solar eclipse. He thought this was a sign that his previous vision was true. This made him reveal the idea to the four people he could trust, Henry, Hark, Nelson, and Sam. Finally, on August 21, he led his friends to kill his owner, Joseph Travis, and his family. He killed them in their sleep even though they were kind to him. After this, he went to Jerusalem, Virginia freeing slaves and assassinating their owners.
Soon, all of the slave owners in Virginia heard about this. They got out their weapons and tried to defend themselves from the rebelling slaves, including their own. Many local soldiers and militia also tried to control these rebellions, but they only succeeded in disorganizing the riot. More and more slaves joined Nat in his fight for freedom.. Nat organized a group of over 40 men, but unfortunately, the state and federal troops arrived to destroy the mob. Nat and his fellow slaves hid in farms and other places, so soldiers and slave owners couldn’t find them. But on October 30, Nat got apprehended while hiding. He was sent to jail for a few days until he got executed.
On November 11, he was hanged. But this was a very influential event in Virginia. It probably was the most successful slave rebellion up to this point. This event also sparked an idea in the Virginia government and us citizens. They will soon vote try to abolish slavery, just because of a single slave rebellion by an ordinary slave.
Letter to the Editor
To the editor:
In our colony of Virginia, there is a huge problem that needs to be addressed. The issue is slavery, millions of slaves come through our ports, and we do nothing about it. Slavery is inhumane, and should be made illegal. Slaves go from free and happy, to enslaved and depressed all because of our selfish needs for more money. Also, the whole journey here from Africa, is horrendous. People need to know about this, so they can join our cause, and help bring about the end of slavery.
Imagine that one of our own Virginian children went out to play, but never returned. You assume them dead, but what really happened is a far worse fate. This is what happens to the Africans, our slaves. We’ll take them when their outside, and then they experience an event worse than death. They’re taken aboard the hold (bottom) of a ship along with hundreds of other slaves, and are about to endure, the harrowing middle passage. The conditions are horrible, it is overcrowded, they may be shackled, there is little food and ventilation, and on top of all that this journey can take up to months to complete! Only, 67% of slaves taken survived (23% died).
The slaves that manage to survive the middle passage get fed a fantastic meal, but this isn’t for the slaves benefit. Slave-dealers fatten them up, to get more money when they sell them. Once sold, they are taken to one of our plantations, where they work sunrise to sunset in the fields! They have to make there own food, most of which isn’t fit for animals,and sleep on floors. One little mistake for a slave, even if it is a child, will earn them an awful punishment. They can get shackled, starved beaten, and even hanged. Now if one of our little Virginian children had to endure this, we would be absolutely terrified. Millions of African children have this, imagine how African mothers feel. This is why slavery must be stopped, and everyone must understand that.
(above) Here slaves are being forced on an overcrowded ship, and are soon going to be taken away from their home land of Africa. The people who move to slowly for the overseers liking will be punished with lashings.
Slaves work to carry barrels of salt out of the mines. The work is hard and dangerous, one slip could lead to severe injury or death. (Below)
Salt Mine Slavery
Throughout our nation, people are crying out their opinion on slavery. Slavery is vile and needs to be stopped. Slavery is necessary for the growth of our country. How to know which is true, and which is false? Long and careful research reveals that slavery is harming the salt mines in Virginia. The use of slavery in the salt mining industry is harmful to the health of slaves and hampers the growth of Virginia’s economy.
Slavery in the salt mines harms the slaves. Mine owners usually rent or lease slaves instead of buying them so they save money if they’re injured or killed. If the workers are freed, they’ll be able to negotiate better working conditions and payment if they’re hurt. But since they’re enslaved, that negotiating is left to their uncaring owners. Some of the owners use the poor conditions to punish unruly slaves. Such bad conditions go against the basic principle of human rights, so how can anyone say slaves benefit?
Salt mine slavery financially harms our economy. Because slaves are the driving force in salt mines, most of the money made only benefits mine owners. The owners then buy items from overseas. If there were more free workers in the mines, the money would go to local businesses and stores instead. This would keep more money flowing through Virginia. With so many slaves in the mines, this circulation is non-existent, harming both the economy and the people who work to support it.
All this research supports the abolitionist cause. Slavery needs to be stopped before the damage it does to people and the economy become irreparable. The mining slaves don’t have very long. A poor economy could be our own demise. The obvious solution is to stop slavery and live in a free world. Let’s band together to save the abolitionist cause, our state, and our country.
A pleasant person-Robert Pleasants
Robert Pleasants endeavors to end slavery. As the founder of the Virginia Abolition Society he strives to terminate all slavery and anything that benefits it. Even within his own family Robert attempted to end the use of slaves. For the past 2 years he has been making the most effort to give slaves and former slaves the rights that all human beings deserve. Some of his biggest pursuits to abolish slavery was through providing children of blacks with an education and trying to end the slave trade.
The Gravelly Hill School provides a place were all African and colored slaves can be educated. Many struggles came with his venture to give African slave children a chance to learn. Yet, he was triumphant in his efforts and many young slaves in Virginia are now learning to read and write. With this he also managed to liberalize roughly 10,000 slaves due to his impact on the Manumission Act, the freedom of slaves due to their master’s will or death. Pleasants’ next move as an abolitionist is to prevent the slave trade. Recently he sent a petition to Congress in order to keep any more slaves from being traded for goods in the colonies. Not only did he want to free slaves from others but he tried to free slaves owned within his own family.
Robert Pleasants thinks enslaving people is a cruel and unjust act. He believes that all men are equal and are to be treated fairly. With his actions to abolish slavery Virginia could be a slave free colony. Mr. Pleasants’ actions have already made a big impact in the abolition movement. As Pleasants continues we can end slavery once and for all.
Join the Virginia Abolitionist Society!
Thousands of people are being horribly treated every day, and they can do nothing. They are alive, they are people. Help us free them and give them a voice.
is the president,
is the treasurer.
Join us, so we can help stop slavery together. Slavery is inhumane and cruel. This is why our mission as the Abolitionist Society is to erase slavery.
Meet us on
Methodist Meeting House,
where we will defend the slaves from the vicious, horrendous slave owners. We will fight to win the struggle to free slaves. The more people we have, the more power we have. We will write to Congress to get the law passed. We will also go to court to support anti-slavery.
No more slavery!
Join the Abolitionist Society Now!
Anti Slavery Song: The story of a slave going from slavery to freedom
Tune to Viva la Vida:
I’m a Slave from Africa:By Eitan Jentis
I used to ru-u-u-u-un free
Through the plains of africa
Not a stitch of fear
in my mind as I roamed free
But then the Slave traders came
and roughly took me into custody
Now I don’t get much sleep at all
I’m a slave from Africa
They took me on a filthy ship
Not enough room to move an i-inch
They gave me little food
and I starved in the crowded ho-old
Then we arrived at this foreign land
My parents spirits across the ocean
Now I don’t get much sleep at all,
I’m a slave from Africa
I was put into back of a cart
And pulled to the auction house
They called my name
auctioned me off to a rich family
They dropped the coins in the bag
And I lost my freedom there-ere
Now I don’t get much slee-ee-eep at all
I’m a slave from Africa-a
They work me-e-e all day
Backbreaking labor in the field
One false step, or mistake
And I’d get whipped, and harmed many way-ays
They took away my identity
My life has crumbled around-ound me
And I don’t get much slee-ee-eep at all
I’m a slave in America
I could’ve been happy
but I’m now a slave that wa-as free-ee
You-oo-oo can help
Join the cause to get me ou-out
And now only abolitionists succeeding
Can give me lasting freedom
Then I’ll get enough sleep at night
As a freed slave from Africa-a
Woah-a-oh When I’m a freed slave from Africa-a
Woah-a-oh When I’m a freed slave in America