Early Slavery.

The Rise of Plantation Economies.

The start of plantation slavery.

The rise in plantation slavery coincided with the exploration of the World. As demand for newly discovered crops increased, more and more plantations were built to maximize profit. Because the plantations were increasing, farmers required more workers. This need started the rise in plantation slavery. There are many negative things that happened that are connected to plantation slavery. The first picture shown is just a small area in Brazil, where there were numerous different sugar plantations. These types of plantations were all over the Americas. Millions of slaves were brought to the Americas from Africa during this time. Just in Brazil alone, there were more than four million slaves brought in to be put to work. The United States wasn’t far behind Brazil in the amount of slaves brought in to work on plantations. Across the Americas, plantations ranged in size, but some were hundreds of acres. The second picture shown is a great example to show how large plantations were. They seemed to go as far as the eye could see.

Horrible Travel.

The rise of plantation slavery happened due to increasing demand for new crops across the newly discovered Americas. African slaves were being sold for cheap prices so plantation owners chose to buy large numbers in order to increase production. As seen in the first picture, ships carried hundreds of slaves per trip. Slaves often had very little room to move around and were often shackled because the crew members were afraid that, with so many slaves compared to the number of crew members, the slaves would revolt and hurt them. Slave mortality ranged from as little as about five percent upwards to fifty-five percent. This was caused by anything from dehydration to disease. Owners didn’t really care about mortality rates because, at the beginning of plantation slavery, African slave prices made it easy for them to just buy more slaves to replace those who died. Although the mortality rate was so high, a large majority of deaths were caused by diseases caught in Africa before the trip was made. When ships landed in the Americas, slaves did not have an immunity to the European diseases that were found.

More than just picking crops.

Plantation owners bought more and more slaves for multiple tasks on the farms. Slaves were used in the Plantations from start to finish. They were used to clear forests in order to create the plantation. This was a very tough task that involved a great amount of work. Because there was so much work involved in clearing the land for plantations, some of the slaves died in the process. Once the land was cleared, slaves were also in charge of planting all the crops and overseeing the growth. Of course they were involved in tending and picking the crops. As seen in the three pictures above, once the plantation was established, slaves were involved in many other tasks. They cleaned and prepped the crops for selling, as well as creating other goods with the crops to sell. In the first picture, a sugar plantation is shown. We can see mills in the background where slaves would process the sugar, or prepare it for shipment. Also on these plantations, female slaves were often used to take care of the owners households. They would do the cooking and cleaning, as well as taking care of any children in the house.

Bad conditions on the plantations.

Just like on the ships, the conditions of the plantations for slaves were not good. In order to ensure that the slaves did what they were told, masters promised benefits for the work and often whipped them if they weren’t working how they were expected to. The pictures above show just how horrible the conditions could be. Plantation owners would be out in the fields with the slaves watching them to make sure they did what they were told. In the third picture, an owner is shown whipping a slave in the background while another is on a horse watching other slaves. Living conditions were bad also. Often times, hundreds of slaves were made to share just a few living quarters. In different parts of the Americas situations were better or worse. At some plantations, slaves did not have the proper amount of food and the food they were given was not proper nutrition. It was often very hot, especially in South America. Female slaves were often raped by their masters. In some areas, some of the female slaves who were raped ended up getting pregnant and gave birth to their masters children. The women then had the burden of taking care of even more children. Sometimes the children were in the same situations as their mothers, being forced to live in the horrible same horrible conditions.

Plantation slavery experienced expansion due to high demand, as well as the low prices of African slaves.

The rise in plantation slavery created many horrible living conditions for slaves brought to the plantations. Plantation owners bought hundreds of slaves and forced them to work in areas that were hundreds of acres in size. Slaves were forced to live in small spaces, did not get enough, or healthy, foods, and had to complete most, if not all, of the tasks involved with running a plantation. Both males and females were involved in plantation work, and females were also involved in taking care of the house of owners. They took care of the children and household chores. Plantation slavery began due to high demand as well as the ability to sell to far away countries. Slaves were bought mostly from the Western coast of Africa due to low prices and high numbers being sold.