Slavery In The South Essay, Research Paper
The introduction of slavery in the Southern colonies helped the development of their economy. The plantation owners had no choice but to turn to slaves because of the lack of colonial workers and indentured servants. Slaves increased the productivity and profits generated by the huge plantations in the South because they had advantages over indentured servants. It also caused the South grow and develop different from the North, which would later lead to conflict between the two.
There were many factors that caused the Southern colonies to adopt slavery into their society. Probably the biggest factor was that there weren’t very many colonial workers for the plantation owners to hire to work the fields. It was like this because the land was cheap and abundant therefore causing the colonist to buy their own land and have their own plantations to run instead of working for another colonist. This meant that there were less and less colonial workers to work the fields and those who did would demand high wages because there was so few of them. In 1700, only 13,600 whites lived in the lower South compared to 90,700 in New England and 49,900 in the middle colonies. This shows that the South lacked in the white working force, forcing them to find another source of labor, African slaves. Another source of labor that was quickly dwindling for the plantation owners were indentured servants. In the first couple of waves of settlers that came over to the New World, many came over as indentured servants because it was the only way for them to pay for a trip over to escape the English economy and poverty. But the English economy began to improve and people didn’t need to come over anymore causing even more trouble for the plantation owners to find people to work the fields.
Without slaves, it would have been very hard for the South to become productive. Huge plantations that required hundred’s of workers never would have made it during the 1600 and 1700s. The introduction of slaves greatly increased productivity and profits for the South. Using slaves had advantages over indentured servants. First, children that were born from an enslaved woman were property of the person who owned the slave that had the child. This meant that slave owners wouldn’t have to buy new slaves if old slaves died. Since the slaves were a different color than the colonists, run-a-ways could be found easier and therefore plantations didn’t loose as many slaves as they would have if they were using indentured servants. Slave owners also found out that even though slaves were more expensive than indentured servants, they proved to be more profitable in the long run.
Slaves being introduced into the South cause the South to develop and grow even farther apart from the North. They already had different types of economies; the South was primarily agricultural while the North was more trade. They had their different views and thoughts on ideas and slavery seemed to be the one that caused a lot of trouble between the two. The North strongly opposed slavery but the South needed slaves to survive. With these different points of view, it leads to future conflicts between the two sides.
In conclusion, the South needed slaves to survive. Plantation owners had no choice but to turn to slave because of the lack of a large working pool. Slaves proved to be more profitable than indentured servants because they had other added “bonuses” that came with them. Slaves caused the South to develop more independently from the North. Without slaves, the South never would have been able to survive but consequently it lead to future conflicts with the North.