HI330 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Royal African Company, Local Natives, Indentured Servant

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Published on 16 Apr 2013
School
WLU
Department
History
Course
HI330
Professor
HI330 Lecture: Slavery in the Colonial Era and the Chesapeake Colonies
January 22, 2013
Slavery in the Colonial Era
-How did ideas about slavery and freedom change over time?
-Were slaves’ lives worse/better in the earliest years?
-Worse:
-Living conditions were worse for slaves in the earliest years
-Caribean colonies slaves had to endure the seasoning process
-1780 ½ the population of slaves that came to BNA colonies had survived
-Death Rates
-50% death rate
-Mental/physical health
-Harsh conditions of labour
-Reproduction
-Due to heath reasons, etc
-Gender ratios more
-Sexual abstinence didn’t want their children to endure slavery
-Abortive practices
Four Colonial Regions
-New England
-Middle Colonies
-Chesapeake Virginia and Maryland
-Deep South
Chesapeake Society
-Jamestown exemplifies that character of the Chesapeake
-Hierarchical, exploitative
-First British colony to depend of slavery as an official institution
-Violent high death rate
-Materialistic
-Wanted the easy way to obtain riches and wealth
-Aristocratic elite structures that were prevalent in England
-Social conflict
-Legal equality for all was unknown in England and its colonies, legal
equality would have been widespread men over women, property verses
those without, religious groups, etc believed to be natural in these
societies and was present in almost all social groups
-Individualistic without much social cohesion
-Government wanted them to grow food and not just tobacco
-By 1620: morality rate 75%
-worked to death, diseases, fights, etc
-The labour problem
-Tobacco needed a large labour force
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-Arrived at a number of servants for the labour problem
-Indentured servants
-Roots in England
-Tenants
-Rent and work the land
-Slaves
Indentured Servants
-Who were they?
-White Europeans who didn't have much for them back home
-Contracts to sell their labour not themselves and lasted about 4-7 years
-Compensation?
-Freedom dues?
-Wasn’t cash – given a new suit of clothing, new outfit and 5 barrels of
corn
-After their contract was up they could do what they chose
-Usually voluntary and temporary and would eventually be given some kind
of compensation in freedom dues
-Weren’t considered a full citizen of the country white under contract
-Parallels with slavery
-Slavery permanent and never-paid system of racialized labour
-Citizenship? court, marriage, property
-Couldn’t plead in court or marry without their masters permission
-Weren’t protected from physical harm
-Physical punishment
-Contracts: extended: “sold”
-Could be sold from one master to another
-Could be transferred during their indenture
Slavery in English North America?
1619: Dutch warship, Jamestown
-Arrival of the first Africans
-Originally from Angola and were sold to Jamestown leaders
-Following the Spanish custom (in England) they were called Negroes
-Status of people in bondage was confusing even for those at the time
-Those in Virginia at the time saw blacks as less than free but didn’t see them as
slaves
-Were these people slaves?
-England: no slave code
-1620 no law of slavery
-Christians?
-Some of them were converted in the massage to BNA to the Christian
religion
-At this time, if you were a Christian you couldn’t be a slave
-White labour produced most tobacco here
-Since 1619 there had been people of African descent in this region of BNA
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Document Summary

Living conditions were worse for slaves in the earliest years. Caribean colonies slaves had to endure the seasoning process. 1780 the population of slaves that came to bna colonies had survived. Hi330 lecture: slavery in the colonial era and the chesapeake colonies. Sexual abstinence didn"t want their children to endure slavery. Wanted the easy way to obtain riches and wealth. Aristocratic elite structures that were prevalent in england. First british colony to depend of slavery as an official institution. Government wanted them to grow food and not just tobacco. Arrived at a number of servants for the labour problem. White europeans who didn"t have much for them back home. Contracts to sell their labour not themselves and lasted about 4-7 years. Wasn"t cash given a new suit of clothing, new outfit and 5 barrels of corn. After their contract was up they could do what they chose.

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