Economy of the Southern colonies between 1607-1775 Essay
Economy of the Southern colonies between 1607-1775
The growth of slavery became intertwined in the life of the southern colonies in the 17th century and early and mid 18th century. Slavery slowly evolved from numerous factors. Such factors that lead to the mixing of slavery and the southern colonies’ life were social classes, geographical location and economic problems. The paramount example is Jamestown, Virginia, the first successful English colony.
During the development of Jamestown, there was the unintentional creation of social classes. The higher classes were people who had land and money. These were the people who brought indentured servants to the New World to work on the wealthy plantations. The indentured servants would serve out their terms and be free. The majority that became free did not have as much as their previous masters. This brought about the lower class of people, the people who did not have land or money. The next lower class would be the Indians and African slaves. They were separated mainly because of their skin color. They were made as slaves and were forced to work on the plantations.
The Bacon’s Rebellion in 1676, the indentured servants’ uprising, lead to the idea of the use of indentured servants dramatically dropped because the indentured servants held a threat to the peace and tranquility of the colony. The idea of slaves emerged as the primary labor force. Slaves were easily identifiable and were able to control through physical intimidation. It was because of Bacon’s Rebellion would massive number of slaves from Africa being to be imported. The majority of laborers on the plantations were African slaves. The plantation owners relied on the African slaves to work their plantations. Their plantations’ labor was needed because of the geographical location.
The geographical location of the south made the use of slaves ideal. The land was flat with rich soil and long growing season as well as slow flowing rivers. This meant that farming was ideal in this region. To work the large plantations that would fill the large land, there would be a need of many laborers. The initial concept of indentured servants was dropped after Bacon’s Rebellion and the concept of slaves emerged. The plantation owners began to rely on the African slaves and depended on their labor over the vast land. If there were no African slaves, then there would be no labor and therefore the land that would produce the cash crops would be gone and the economy of the south would fail.
The economic section of the south depended on cash crops which were the paramount cultivation. The reason for having cash crops was because of the geographical location. The cash crops made Jamestown survive though selling the cash crops back to the Old World forming the economic basis, cash crops. There was a need for workers to work the plantations that produced cash crops. The use of slaves became needed and grew on the south so that the south needed the African slaves to survive.
Through the outlook of Jamestown, Virginia, it is shown that slaves became intertwined in the economy of the Southern colonies. The social class of slaves being on the bottom made them the labor force on the plantations that formed because of the geographical location, which was large rich land and large growing seasons, was perfect for growing cash crops, the south’s economy. The social class, geographical location and economic factors of the South encouraged slavery because slavery was part of the South’s economy.