African Slavery In America

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At the beginning of the colonial period in America, there was a great need for workers that could help make a profit for the foreign companies who invested in colonies in the Americas. While these workers originally came from several backgrounds and countries, it soon became clear that African slavery dominated all forms of forced labor. Nowhere was this clearer than in the Lower Mississippi Valley. Starting off as a French colony the Lower Mississippi Valley’s primary work force was from European workers and Native American enslaved people. However, as the manipulation of African slavery in the French colony of Saint Domingue, today known as Haiti, began to turn a huge profit. The French government incentivized the use of African slavery to…show more content…
Haiti like many of these islands saw its slave population increase drastically in large part due to the climate in the West Indies, which allowed for the cultivation of sugar cane, a very valuable crop to European settlers. The French Monarchy seeing the success of the Haitian colony, wanted to expand sugar cultivation in the Lower Mississippi Valley. What resulted was the importation of 8,500 African enslaved people to the Lower Mississippi valley, turning the colony into a slave society (Franklin 61). Additionally, the French colony attempted to cultivate sugar in the same way already establish in its Haitian colony, however the climate of the Lower Mississippi Valley meant that sugar didn’t crow nearly as well in these conditions, forcing a shift from sugar growth to indigo and tobacco (Clark-Pujara 2/6/18). Ultimately, in almost all aspects, the development of the Lower Mississippi Valley was designed to mimic the society and crop seen…show more content…
Survivors of these raids would be mostly women and child, and as many would perish from disease the French settlers desired to increase slave labor in other ways. In time, French settlers seeing both the economic success of Haiti and the abundance of slave importations from Africa turned to African slavery to increase the number of enslaved workers in the French colony (Clark-Pujara 2/6/18). As the colony increased in size and the number of enslaved Africans, both grew and became the primary work force the Lower Mississippi Valley turned into a slave society. Finally, the introduction of the Code Noir, a decree passed by French King Louis XIV to the French colonial empire, established African raced based slavery as the norm throughout all French colonies. Fundamentally, the introduction and use of African slavery in the Lower Mississippi Valley resulted from the desire for a large enslaved work force and the already established African slave societies and laws found in other French
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