Sharecropping In America

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Freedom has been the central belief of America since the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. Since this day, America has worked hard to keep the idea that America is the “land of the free.” However, throughout the construction of this nation, freedom was defined differently by each person. Freedom to African Americans meant liberty from enslavement and land ownership. Freedom to Europeans meant freedom of religion and government. Freedom was not equally given to everyone in this nation. Although America is known to be the land of opportunity, people such as African Americans and Native Americans did not experience those opportunities and the definition of freedom equally with white Americans. (EMPHASIZE THESIS) During the late…show more content…
Because of the absence of a credit system, the idea of sharecropping derived. Sharecropping was nothing but a new system of economic exploitation towards the Freedmen. The system consisted of a compromise between the laborer and the landowner. In exchange for land, a place to live, and harvesting supplies, the sharecroppers agreed to raise a cash crop and give at least half of it to the landowner (PBS). Sometimes, more than half of the share was asked for, leaving the sharecropper with almost nothing to feed their families with. Sharecropping caused an increase in interest rates, and merchants often kept the sharecropping families extremely indebted, requiring the debt to be carried over to the next year. The system ensured poverty in African Americans in the South, prohibiting them from leaving until they had paid off their debt to the landlord. Although some people could argue that sharecropping allowed African Americans a degree of freedom, greater than that experienced by slavery, sharecropping was still slavery, only defined by another name…show more content…
However, the American government’s idea of freedom also relied on the access to land to prosper the economy. Therefore they sought to take this land for their use. The Native Americans disagreed with this, and fought to keep their land. However, the Native Americans never succeeded in claiming their land back. The settlers actually tried to compensate some of that land back to the Indians by a document called the Dawes Act, which supposedly protected Native American property rights, mainly through the land rushes in the 1890s. This was a method used to grant them land allotments and encourage them to become farmers. The Americans thought that this would eventually lead the Native Americans to adopt American lifestyles by farming in the “American way,” which is with tools, and animals, as well as other tools necessary to dig into the dry, hard land. This was not freedom to the Native Americans. Althpugh the Americans believe that granting them land allotments would be considered freedom to the Native Americans, ut was not. These people were no used tp cu;tivating and ;iving in the conditoons the Americans obligated them to live in. The NAtive Amerficans did not have any rights. They were seen as savages and inferior to the American people. Another way that the NAtive Americans were stripped from their freedom was by the construction of assimiltation schools, mainly intended for the youth. Their
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