Slaves versus Industrial Workers 1820s-1860s

Slavesversus Industrial Workers: 1820s-1860s

Institutionof Affiliation

Slavesversus Industrial Workers: 1820s-1860s

TheSouthern society`s basement of between the 1820s and the 1860s hasseveral black slaves whose numbers had significantly increasedfollowing the booming cotton economy as shown in Amerique de Sud’image (Document H). The legal transfer of slaves from Africa toAmerica ended 1808 following the action by the Congress to outlaw theimportation of slaves. However, the black slave trade created asignificant impact by enabling thousands of blacks to get smuggledinto the South before the Civil War and Ralph, in Document G,describes how the slave owners used various means to obtain femaleslaves. According to the Ralph, the rapid increase of slavepopulation in the South between the 1820s and the 1860s resulted fromnatural reproduction as opposed to slave importation, a fact thatforms the distinguishing factor between the American slavery fromother New World societies. The southern slave owners treated theslaves as investments, and they had invested about two billion U.Sdollars of their capital into slaves by 1860 as evident in Document I(Habinger, 1836). According to Document I, the slave ownersoverworked the slaves to exhaustion and to the extent that the slaveslost their sense of hearing due to the excess sounds and noise in thefactories.

Accordingto Document G, the southern slave owners used various ways tomanipulate information as a means of justifying the of the slavesystem. Document G explains how the slave owners had a tactic ofensuring that slaves working in the field were always available andall the data relating to such slaves could get manipulated to ensuretheir retention. In such a way, the slave owners got maximum labor inthe cotton plantations and subsequent optimal production of rawmaterials. The slave owners could prefer work-related injuries toaffect the wage-earning workers as opposed to the farm workers whoseworth had significantly increased by 1860.

Thesouthern slave owners also avoided disclosing the accurate number ofslaves in their possessions. That was a trick to receive more slavesfor higher profits, and the slaves got mistreated as evident inDocument E (Ten Hour Circular, 1835). As a result, as described inDocument A, the slavery became very profitable for the slave owners,although it boosted the economic development of the entire region.Consequently, the slave owners used their high profits from theplantations to attract more slaves from the upper South.Additionally, From Document E, it is evident that the Southern slaveowners created a system of ensuring that all the slaves who werewomen gave birth to at ten children and such women got treated asgood breeders. Such women got entitled to freedom after producing tenchildren. In such a way, the slave owners ensured that they hadenough labor for their cotton plantations at any given time therebymaximizing the profit and justifying that the slave system wasbeneficial.

Accordingto Document G, the southern slave owners had various means ofauctioning slaves through the provision of inaccurate information tothe relevant authorities. As a result, their cotton plantationsreceived much attention following the increased number of soldslaves. Such illegal auctioning of slaves through the manipulation ofslave records made the cotton kingdom to develop into a bigagricultural factory, a situation which poured large volumes of rawmaterials and made the slave owners make quick profits. It is alsoevident from Document G that the slave owners also used theireconomic status to influence the purchase of more land and slaves byimproper procedures so as to grow more cotton during the economicspiral.

Thelife of the industrial wage earner in the Northern factories, on theother hand, appeared to be similar to that of the slaves as describedin Document A. According to Document A, the industrial wage earnersworked in the cotton factories without rest and with little pay. Thematerial conditions of industrial wage earner`s life, to a greaterextent, got predominated by the slave status. According to DocumentE, the indentured servants and slaves enjoyed more freedoms duringthe early colonial period than the industrial workers would betweenthe 1820s and the 1860s. Document A shows that the industrial wageearners belonged to the poorest and lowest ranks of the society, andthe law condemned them to impoverishment between the 1820s and the1860s. Additionally, according to Document A, the North factories`industrial wage earners had no rights to own properties. In fact, theindustrial workers received low wages that made them depend on theirmasters for most necessities including shelter, clothing, and food.As described in Document E, the industrial workers got subjected toan unjust, cruel, odious, and tyrannical system which denied themtime to sleep and even eat.

Asdescribed by Catherine Becher in Document J, the factory owners hadthe mission of inspiring the industrial workers with perfectconfidence and ensured that the workers looked up to their mastersfor support. Additionally, Document J describes the industrialworkers in the Northern factories as having received poor treatmentsfor the exchange of ensuring the comfort of the plant owners.According to Document J, the factory workers lived in congested roomsfilled with cotton particles thrown from thousands of looms, cards,and spindles. In overall, the slave system between the 1820s and the1860s had great benefits to the slave owners as they enjoyed all thegains while the slaves, both in the plantations and the factories,faced absolute mistreatment and poor living conditions.


Luther,S.(1835).Ten Hour Circular.

GeorgeH. (1829). The Whiteman’s declaration of independence.

TheHarbinger. (1836). The Female Workers of Lowell.