Race Begins to Form in the Colonies

  • Indentured Servitude’s history in Europe
    • Parents indentured children to Master’s
    • Brutality was common
    • The benefits of being an indentured servant in the “New World”
  • African’s arrival
    • Contracts and status was similar, not identical, to white indentured servants
    • Brutality of master’s seeking to squeeze out all work from their indentured servants
    • The Case of Anthony Johnson
      • Arrived in colony in 1621
      • Appears as a servant in the census of 1625
      • By 1651, Johnson owns 250 acres and has servants (black and white)
        • What does this mean?
      • Prior to 1670 English did not draw strict racial lines
        • Over time, blacks were denigrated to the level of “chattel”
      • Race and the Origins of Slavery
        • Between the years of 1640 – 1700 Social and Demographic shift in Tobacco areas
          • Slave population is less than 5% in 1671
          • White indentured servants outnumbered blacks 3 to 1
          • By 1700, blacks are 20% of the population
        • What led to this transformation?
          • Precedent for British expansion of slavery was set in the Caribbean (Sugar)
          • Poor whites had better opportunities in Northern Colonies, driving up their price for Tobacco Owners
          • English racial/ethnic bias — Racial superiority (Irish, Natives, Blacks)
            • Chesapeake owners made distinctions based on Race
              • African women worked in the fields
              • African’s couldn’t own guns
              • African’s couldn’t become Christians
              • Illegal for a Christian to have sex with an African
              • 1660, Bill of Sale states that African children born in the colony would serve for life.
              • Child’s status follows that of the mother
                • Sexual Exploitation
              • 1669, House of Burgesses exempts owners who kill slaves while doling out punishment
            • Bacon’s Rebellion (1676)
              • Bacon’s Army
              • Class Conflict among whites
              • Turns focus on African subservience
            • The Peculiar Case of John Punch (1640)
              • Dutch & Scot

 

 

  • 1619 — 32 Africans (15 men & 17 women) living in Jamestown (20 more arrive)
  • 1621 — Anthony Johnson arrives at Jamestown
  • 1624 — First birth of black child in Jamestown
  • 1640 — John Punch sentenced to a lifetime of servitude
  • 1651 — Anthony Johnson receives 250 acres
  • 1661 — House of Burgesses (Va. Colonial Legislature) blacks will serve for life
  • 1662 — House of Burgesses — Child’s status follows the mother.

Committed to investigating, examining, and representing the African-American male, men, and manhood by offering commentary regarding the status of Black Men and Black Manhood as it relates to African-American Manhood, Race, Class, Politics, and Culture from an educated and authentic African-American perspective aimed at improving the plight of African-American men and African-American Manhood in regards to Politics, Culture, Education, and Social Matters.

%d bloggers like this: