Per 2 KC 2.1 Slavery

What were the Origins of
What Impact did it have on the
development of the North American
Key Concept 2.1.ii
The British–American system of
slavery developed out of the
economic, demographic, and
geographic characteristics of the
British-controlled regions of the
New World.
Slavery In Africa / Pre-Colonial
• NOT generational (children could not be
enslaved to their mother’s owner)
• NOT defined as property
• COULD rise to positions of influence
• NOT racially prescribed
Chattel Slavery, Pre-colonial Period
• “chattel” = personal property
• 15th c. Portugal established slave trade in W. Africa
– 1482 Elmina, “the mine,” first exchange point for slaves
on W. African mainland
• Portugal and Spain export chattel slavery to New
– native peoples  African slaves
– “Middle passage,” transatlantic slave trade
• ~10 – 12 million Africans exported from 1492 – 1808
– 17th – 18th centuries
– Vast majority to Caribbean, S. America
– ~400,000 to N. America (and the majority after 1700)
Chattel Slavery / Colonial Period
– first cargo of African slaves arrive in VA in 1619
– still, importing African slaves was expensive
– Chesapeake depended primarily upon indentured
servants until introduction of “slave codes”
through the Slave Act of 1705.
Indentured Servitude / Colonial Period
• “white slaves”
Voluntary debt bondage to pay for passage
Granted land after 5-7 yrs.(if survived).
“headright” system benefitted masters
“freedom dues”: seeds, clothes, land
Chesapeake imported 100,000 by 1700
hardened lot: discipline, scarce land/freedom dues;
low wage hire-backs
– But they were not slaves
• The Planter owned the labor, not the body
Virginia Slave Codes
Activity: Document Shuffle
Identify the Laws enacted by the Virginian
Colonial Government.
Why were they enacted?
What do you think was the impact of these
Identify the economic, demographic,
geographic, characteristics of the development
of slavery from the documents and readings.
Growth of the Black Population in
1625 – 23
1648 – 300
1671 – 2,000
1680 – 3,000
1700 – 16,390
1720 – 26,559
1730 – 30,000
1740 – 60,000
1775 – 210,000
• Economic developments
– Shortage of indentured servants
– Growing European demand for colonial goods
• Demographic developments
Lack of effective means to enslave native populations
English colonies attracted males and females
Little intermingling/marriage = rigid racial hierarchy
Strong belief in British racial, cultural superiority
• Geographic developments
– Abundance and consolidation of land
– Thriving tobacco, wheat plantations in South
Slave Rebellions
• Africans developed both overt and covert
methods to resist the dehumanizing aspects
of slavery
• 1712 New York City slave revolt
• 1739 Stono Rebellion, largest before the Civil
• 1831 Nat Turner rebellion
Discussion Questions
Was the development of
African slavery in the
North American colonies
(Consider the fact that it was never developed in other colonial areas such as
New France )
What role did the Spanish
encomienda system and
British sugar colonies play
in introducing slavery to
the Southern colonies?

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