Family Roles During Slavery

By: Aerial Nathan 6th period

What Is This About ?

My topic is mainly about the different roles that slaves had in their owner's household. I want others to know more information about the roles and things that happened during slavery. While researching this topic I learned a lot about the separation and breakup of families.

Information About My Topic

10 to 20 percent of slave marriages were destroyed by sale. The sale of children from parents was even more common. As a result of the sale or death of a father or mother, over a third of all slave children grew up in households from which one or both parents were absent. Slave marriages and family ties were not recognized by American law.


Any owner was free to sell husbands from wives, parents from children, and brothers from sisters. Many large slaveholders had numerous plantations and frequently shifted slaves, splitting families in the process.Many slaves had to share their single room cabins with relatives or other unrelated slaves. Even on model plantations, children between the ages of 7 and 10 were taken from their parents and sent to live in separate cabins.



To keep a sense of family identity, slaves often named their children after parents, grandparents, recently deceased relatives, and other kin. Slaves passed down family names to their children, usually the name of an ancestor's owner rather than their current owner's.