This essay describes American slavery.

Essay by jennygracexCollege, UndergraduateA+, November 2002

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American slavery was an acquisition, one of necessity to ensure the profitability of the colonies. Colonization was a huge expenditure for the respective nations participating in the grab for land in the New World. These nations expected to make their money back and to produce a good clean profit. Once it was obvious to the English that they wouldn't stumble across large deposits of precious metals and riches, they had to find another way to utilize their land. George Brown Tindall and David E. Shi, describe the evolution of Virginia as "...limping around until it gradually found a reason for being: tobacco" (58).- Thus, the introduction of the growing of tobacco, and then later on rice and cotton, made the new colonies a worthwhile venture.

The growing of tobacco, rice, and cotton are extremely labor-intensive productions. In the earlier period of America, tobacco was almost exclusively grown and exported back to Britain.

Tobacco's labor-intensiveness must have been evident to the English planters. So the question is how did they think that they were going to be successful in growing tobacco in a place where there were few willing laborers? Well, the keyword is willing. They had to get outside, unwilling, laborers to their disposal. They had several options available; first, there were populations of Native Americans that were already there, but proved to be not a viable solution. This is because they were hard to put into subordination; they were familiar with the land and could easily run away. Then there were the indentured servants, they were present in the colonies nearly from the very beginning, but time of indenture was limited. The first Africans brought to the British North American colonies were at first much like indentured servants. But, unlike indentured servants, as A. Leon Higginbotham states in his...