The Conditions of Slaves
Slavery was considered as an institution as it had been widely used all over the world
before it was practiced throughout American Colonies in the 17th and 18th centuries. As
businesses in the Southern colonies spiked, so did the demand for field and house servants.
Oftentimes, these slaves were not given any rights. In addition, slaves were not protected by law.
Likewise, marriages were not protected by law either. Their masters could separate them
whenever they wanted. On the other hand, other masters encourage marriage, so they could have
more children. Some enslaved people lived in nuclear families with a mother, father, and
children. In these cases each family member is a property of the same owner. Slave families
were properties to their masters. After an auctioneer buys the slaves, they would be auctioned
and placed on a stand where they would be inspected like animals for sale. Aside from the
sadistic treatments of slaves, they were also sexually exploited. Slaves who could not stand
these treatment usually ran away. To keep themselves sane from the cruelty of their masters, a
lot of slaves found religion as their refuge. Meanwhile, a religious servant named Nat Turner
had a vision of what he believed as a message from God to destroy slavery by killing every white
person they encountered. Nat Turner’s rebellion led many abolitionist to further action. His
revolt opened the eyes of many and made lawmakers to consider that abolition was the only way
to prevent future attacks of a similar nature.
The demand for field servants soared when the cotton gin was introduced in 1793. Slaves
worked all sorts of jobs, but the majority were field hands and served on large plantations. Men,
women, and children worked as field hands commonly picking cotton, sugar, rice, and tobacco.
They were made to work long exhausting hours while being watched by overseers to make sure
they do not slow down in...