Slavery in America stems well back to when the New World was first discovered and was led by the country to start the African Slave Trade- Portugal. The African Slave Trade was first exploited for use on plantations in what is now called the Caribbean, and eventually reached the southern coasts of America. The African natives were of all ages and sexes. Women usually worked in the homes, cooking and cleaning, whereas men were sent out into the plantations to farm. Young girls would usually help in the house also and young boys would help in the farm by bailing hay and loading wagons with crops. Since trying to capture the native Indians, the Arawaks and Caribs, failed (Small Pox had killed them instead), the Europeans said out to capture African slaves.Order now
During what was called, “The Triangular Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade,” the Europeans shipped the slaves from Africa. This was an organized route where Europeans would travel to Africa bringing manufactured goods, capture Africans and take them to the Caribbean, and then take the crops and goods and bring them back to Europe. The African people, in order to communicate invented a language that was a mixture of all the African languages combined, called Creole. This language now varies from island to island. They also kept their culture, which accounts for calypso music and the instruments used in these songs.
Slavery was common all over the world until 1794 when France signed the Act of the National Convention abolishing slavery. It would take America about a hundred years to do the same. George Washington was America’s hero. He was America’s first president. He was a slave owner. He deplored slavery but did not release his slaves. His will stated that they would be released after the death of his wife (The Volume Library, 1988). Washington wasn’t the only president to have slaves. Thomas Jefferson wrote, “All men are created equal” but died leaving his blacks in slavery.
In 1775 black Americans were sent to fight in the revolutionary army. The British proposed that if a black man were to join their army, they would be set free afterwards. America originally planned not to let the blacks fight in the army, but when hearing this, let them enlist. Only Georgia and South Carolina refused to let them enlist, but paid for their racism when each lost 25,000 blacks to the British. The slaves returned on a honorable discharge after securing America’s freedom, but were not able to return to their own freedom (Software Toolworks Encyclopedia; 1992).
Slavery continued and so did the numbers of slaves trying to escape to the free states or into Canada. A runaway slave would be found by bloodhounds, which were trained, at the time, to find black slaves. Then, the slave, upon returning, would be executed or severely whipped.
The “Underground Railroad” was a project that helped black slaves escape into Canada, especially Amherstburg. The system involved 3,000 white helpers and freed an estimated 75,000 people after the civil war. Slavery in the middle of the 1800’s was abolished except for the rebellion states in the south. In 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued which made
slavery illegal in the states that had rebelled and allowed black slaves to serve in the army and get other jobs, or continue to work on the plantations, as employees making money.
The nightmare of slavery was over but a new one was to begin. One that was worse for it was prevalent but was secret and silent. One that still exists today. One that does not shrink but rather grows and prospers in a place that claims to be totally against the mistreatment of minorities. Racism was then and still is upon us in every major part of our day-to-day ideology.
Martin Luther King once said, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” Ku Klux Klan. Neo Nazis. The Aryan Nations. The American Nazi Party. What are these groups? Why are they present in a land of supposed equality of all men? They are there because there