American Slavery

“There is a most absurd and audacious Method of reasoning avowed by some Bigots and Enthusiasts, and through Fear assented to by some wiser and better men; it is this. They argue against a fair Discussion of popular Prejudices, because, say they, tho’ they would be found without any reasonable Support, yet the Discovery might be productive of the most dangerous Consequences. Absurd and blasphemous Notion! As if all Happiness was not connected with the Practice of Virtue, which necessarily depends upon the Knowledge of Truth.”

Edmund Burke, "A Vindication of Natural Society"

No other subject could be filled with more propaganda, lies, distortions, political fanfare, publicity, and outright ineptitude than the issue of American, and indeed, World slavery. Let's go back to the sources, and start talking about it. In identifying underlying causes for any historical event, we find that there are proximate causes, or things which happen near an instance, and there are actual causes, things which would have caused the proximate factors to occur regardless if the "immediate" threat had stopped. An example of proximate causes versus actual causes would be to imagine your car is out of oil. Engine overheating is the proximate cause of your problem, but the actual cause is the lack of oil. Even if you only drove around a little at a time, and were careful not to burn up your engine, it'd eventually fail.

Thus, David Blight is right about one thing, (though he gets the rest wrong by ignoring too many other factors), in "Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory", when he lays out the charge that Americans after the War made an agreed upon fiction about what the war was about. He is right, but what the war was about was forgotten over time very quickly. As such, if I were to redefine the name given to the American Civil War, I would have called it, "The War of Anomalies". That is to say that every historian who lays out a thesis on the underlying problems of the Civil War invariably comes to large bodies of evidence which contradict other large bodies of evidence which he/she has meticulously laid out.

A lot of this is just cultural bias, for example, "Islam's Black Slaves: The Other Black Diaspora", by Ronald Segal, tells us of the extensive network of slavery that the Muslims set up, including black slaves. It's heavily 'white-washed', (sort of like when a Muslim explains the story when Mohammad killed a Jewish girl's entire family then forced her to be his concubine, amazing how much different that story sounds when a Muslim tells it), but nonetheless, he addresses a point that whites were slaves all across the globe. You can read the same thing in Abbott Emerson Smith's whitewash book called, "Colonists in Bondage", where he downplays the nature and extent of white bondage.

The notion of slavery as it was in America was a rather new invention, invented mostly in Africa and Arabia. Though the Greeks and Romans had slavery, they worked side by side with freemen, worked as doctors and policemen, and were even in the top bureaucratic roles. They were considered the property of their owners, to be sure, but they were not thought to be any more or less important than them. The Greeks considered the Ethiopians blameless, and apparently had an infatuation with them so much that most of their hero-born saviours were black. Early Muslims believed that the color black was the color of a pious prophet of Allah, being so close to his glory naturally changed the skin color. (Later on though, Muslims came to the conclusion that blacks were a stupid and dumb race.)

Though St. Augustine had declared that all humankind was equal, or that "no matter what unusual appearance he presents in my color, movement, sound... no Christian can doubt that he springs from that one protoplast", this started to change in the fifteenth century. Really, it had happened before that. In the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries of Europe, explorers had completely disgraced Africans with paintings and oral accounts, and they were the representation of "the enemy". Not surprisingly then, by the 15th century, Christians had come to the conclusion using Genesis chapter 9 that the blacks were the cursed slaves under the white race.

Slavery though wasn't so much a matter of racism as it was practicality, but a practicality has to be justified. This is where many religious "commandments" come into play. Slaves were especially easy to find in the new American countries, where Brazil and North America brimmed with enslaved natives. Montaigne said that they shouldn't be enslaved, as did Bartolome' de Las Casas. However, moral arguments fade out in the face of practicality, so the native slaves soon died out from exposure to European germs, somewhat from European cruelty. The slaves were literally worked to death in no time. As an example, one cultural "bowderlization" is that Ponce de Leon went to Florida to find the Fountain of Youth. That's a myth, Leon mainly went to Florida to capture Native Americans as slaves for Hispaniola. (From Professor James Loewen, "Lies My Teacher Told Me", a great book which addresses a vast problem, mainly, how much "educational" texts are just plain wrong and deceitful. What's the point in sending kids to school to learn lies? Might as well have sent them to Russian training camps to be indoctrinated.)

The death of native slaves meant that African slaves had to be imported, at an exhuberant price, but the sugar from South America kept the trade up and even profitable. It wasn't too long before Europe was brimming with money earned from this lucrative trade. Moralists such as Goethe, Herder, and Kant argued against slavery, but no one really paid them any attention in this detail. Slavery was just too convienant. African slaves were treated quite a bit better than native American slaves, for the reason aforementioned, they cost a fortune to buy. Naturally, it simply wasn't prudent to kill something which produced a fortune of money, cost a bundle to buy, and even more to replace.

When Africans first arrived here, (America), they weren't slaves, but indentured servents. Indentured servents were really just temporary slaves, but they had more rights than slaves, at least in theory. When I say this, realize that I am only speaking of the initial time period. White indentured slaves in the periods after that were worked, literally to death, in months. These blacks worked out their periods of serventhood, then they were allowed to own property. Some of them earned so much property that they started buying white indentured servents of their own. (Bennet, Before the Mayflower, p. 35ff). This arrangement seemed to have worked pretty well, as whites and blacks intermarried, worked together, and equally were protected by laws. It wasn't until the 1660's when the practicality of racism and slavery started to appear.

Notably, slavery was necesary during the early years of America, particularly for the South. However, don't be misguided into thinking it was just a "Southern thing". Barely a peep was heard from the North about slavery, (indeed, many Northerners thought it was okay), until the South started to talk about breaking away. Why was that? Because the North depended heavily upon the taxes gained from two southern cash crops, (namely tabacco and cotton), both worthless without slaves. These two cash crops were outrageously taxed by the North if the South chose to ship them to foreign countries for manufacturing. If the South was no longer under control of the North, it meant that all of the cash crops of the South would be useless to the Northerners. Further, the Northeners had all control of the industrial industries, which were able to manufacture cotton into something usuable. Southerners resented it because even with the money made from cotton, they had to buy their clothes back from the North at a higher price than what they sold the cotton for!

Richard Ketchum, ed. of "American History Picture History of the Civil War", p. 9, describes the slavery issue as:

"In the beginning, slavery was no great problem. It had existed all across colonial America, it died out in the North simply because it did not pay, and at the turn of the century, most Americans, North and South alike, considered that eventually it would go out of existence everywhere."

Of course, there could be another reason for this complacency. According to "White Slavery: Northern Capital and Southern Child Labor", New York American and Journal; Literary Digest 28 (Oct. 18, 1902)

“Early investigations of conditions in southern cotton mills made it appear to be a regional problem until it was discovered that many of them were owned by northern capitalists.”

The Great White Hoax

"The right to search for truth implies also a duty; one must not conceal any part of what one has recognized to be true."

Thomas Edison

"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."

John Adams

In academic circles, there's something known as "A Conspiracy of Silence". The most prominent place to see it is in the medical community, where doctors who are incompetant are protected because they are doctors, and because doctors are sued at extraordinairre rates. Thus, as a protection against the "bandwagon effect", the doctors protect each other, even if their totally incompetant. Because of this, doctors with neurological disorders, mental and nervous breakdowns, etc., end up killing patients, but no one wants to talk about it because of what the implications are. The best example of a "Conspiracy of Silence" that I can think of is the book, "The Bell-Curve". The controversy of the book is that it shows repeated studies that African-American's have lower intelligence levels than any other ethnicity. This might be construed as racism, but the definition of racism is loving one race more than others, not believing there is a racial difference. Which is all the book talks about, that there are racial differences. Another interesting point is that Asians have 20 I.Q. points higher than whites, so it doesn't flatter white people either. In fact, they actually label that Jews, based upon intelligence per average, have the highest intelligence, with whites coming in third place.

However, the validity of the book is not up for debate right now, though if you prefer to study this independantly, Jared Diamond wrote a rebuttal to it in "Guns, Germs, and Steel", unfortunately, though he explained the historical development of societies, he didn't explain any cases for intelligence differences. Regardless, the point is that the ideas in "The Bell-Curve" have been discussed in hushed whispers amongst academics, lay-men, and regular people for decades, but no one will dare say a word about it. I don't believe in genetic transference of characteristics, for reasons outlined in John McCrone's book dealing with bi-fold consciousness, I tend not to believe so much in "born stupid" as I do in "raised stupid".

As an African-American Harvard professor pointed out, African-Americans have severely faced problems within the family, leading no one to raise children. Despite the fact that "inherited genius" has been disproven many times, (though having a famous intelligent person in the family makes it more likely for the person to work harder to achieve the same standards set forth by this person), many people still believe that you can inherit intelligence, sort of like mystically having enlightenment bestowed on you by the wandering Buddha. "The Bell-Curve" was the first book which broke the conspiracy of silence, it openly and publically dealt with and talked about a subject that only academics whispering to each other out of ear-shot of other people would even think of discussing.

If you want a psychological refutation instead of a historical refutation, try "Measured Lies: The Bell Curve Examined" Ed. by Joe L. Kincheloe, and "The Bell Curve Wars: Race, Intelligence, and the Future of America" ed. by Steve Fraser. I will here say though that both books fall short of the mark because it is obvious that:

I will here list the problems with these two books:

  1. They start off, almost always, saying that the authors of the Bell-Curve had a bias. First, this is irrelevant; second, it's unsubstantiated; and third, almost all authors have some bias, at best, we merely attempt to be passive instead of aggressive about it.

  2. They all talk about how statistics can be used selectively to present a false picture about society. This is definitely true, but they make little to no mention of any specific references within the Bell-Curve that are misconstrued.

  3. They talk about how racism has been disguised as science before. Now, note here that the authors of the Bell-Curve make no mention of legitimizing racism with their reports. In fact, they go at length to explain what they are doing and why it's not racist. It's no more racist to say that whites, on average, are less smart than Jews on average, than it is to say that blacks are more likely than Asians on average to suffer heart diseases.

  4. They state that correlation does not prove causation. This is the best piece of advice in the two books, and I was looking for proof of this. Unfortunately, both were short of it.

  5. They state intelligence is composed of more than one part. This is another one of the more valid points, there is also what we call "E.Q.", or a better definition, emotional intelligence, our ability to gauge what people do and do not want to hear, which some studies suggest is more important than I.Q. for wealth making. Among others, there is also "street intelligence", which is the ability to utilize social interactions and behave accordingly. Someone who has high I.Q. might take a while to learn how to adapt to a different social setting, while someone with a lower I.Q. but better "street intelligence" can quickly adapt to his new environment.

  6. They fail on this point though, because after stating that there is quite a bit of variety on intelligence, they say that intelligence can never be successfully measured. To some degree, this is true, but we know definitively that people with higher I.Q.'s and E.Q.'s can do better than those at certain tasks than those with lower scores. For example, one book uses the fact that when military testing was done for WWII, Southern whites scored lower on the tests than Northern Blacks, which shows stronger correlation for nurture versus nature.

Some even go so far as to say that no such thing as race exists. You can pick Michael Levin (Why Race Matters) or Gould (Mismeasurement of Man) to pick which one you feel has the greater preponderance of evidence. Levin is currently ahead, as though he may be politically incorrect, I must confess that Gould's meandering style is at times annoying. I prefer Jared Diamond as my favorite pick against Levin.

In history, a similiar thing happens to us every now and again. Certain events are untalkable, no one wants to discuss them, or think about them at all. One such issue is the Civil War, but in particular, white slavery. Fact: Did you know that whites were slaves for hundreds of years in America? Fact: Did you know whites were slaves for over 700 years to blacks and Semitic people? Fact: White slavery was often worse than black slavery?

Let me tell you the difference between history and myth. Myth allows us to understand our collective unconscious, or what our society believes, unknown to them. History allows us to figure out what makes certain things happen, and it gives us the choice to avoid them in the future. That's the reason why we study history, beautifully illustrated by Stanton Coblentz in "Ten Crises in Civilization". However, lots of people continue to promulgate myths, infiltrating our collective psyche, instead of history, to tell us how to avoid those mistakes. History and myth are becoming so closely interchangeable in our post-modern structionalism era that author Mary Lefkowitz has written "There is a current tendency, at least among academics, to regard history as a form of fiction that can and should be written differently by each nation or ethnic group". Likewise, the distinguished William McNeill devotes a chapter of his book to the subject, called "Mythistory and Other Essays". Anyone who dares cross the sacred line in the sand to trash these myth-mongering maniacal monsters of academics will surely be accused of every slur name in the book. Why so fervant? Because it's an ego-defensive mechanism, people don't believe fake history because they think it's true, but because they want it to be true, and no matter how thin the sand they build their house upon, they'd rather believe a lie than the truth. As Arthur Schlesinger says in "The Disuniting of America":

"The purpose of history is to promote not group self-esteem, but understanding of the world and the past, dispassionate analysis, judgement and perspective, respect for divergent cultures and traditions, and unflinching protection for those unifying ideas of tolerance, democracy, and human rights that make free historical inquiry possible."

Want to examine the Bible critically and question the basis of Jewish history? Well, you're an anti-Semitic Eurocentric piece of trash who wants nothing more than to validate Hitler's war. Want to critically examine the claim that Aristotle stole his knowledge from Egypt because you know that the Egyptian library wasn't built until much later than Aristotle, and the fact that we know he never went there? Nothing but complete bigotry on your part, you mysognistic racist pig. That's not nonsense either, the first assault upon any inquiry into histories hidden secrets will be that you are somehow racist for it. Hiding behind a flag of obscurantism often satisfies more people than earnest inquiry does. What we will attempt to do is burn that flag of obscurantism and see what lurks behind it.

"The three great strategies for obscuring an issue are to introduce irrelevancies, to arouse prejudice, and to excite ridicule...."

Bergen Evans, The Natural History of Nonsense

In the beginning:

So, why was slavery so important in the first place? You would have to understand the economics of any newly developing country, particularly one that had limited supplies and resources. Without outside aid, something must be found internally that allows for the engineering of revenue, else, the system collapses. While the great gold myth has been promulgated several times, the truth is that most of the early settlers knew there wasn't gold in America. The first successful settlers had been the Spanish, and the cash crop they had found was tobacco, which swept through Europe like wild-fire, and subsequently caused the King of England to disregard it as a disgusting habit. He didn't change his mind on that until it became possible for the English to profit off of it, which he then proceeded to tax. (Sound similar to the American government?) According to Chapter 3 of Cridlin's "A History of Colonial Virginia", tobacco became worth more than Spanish gold or jewels.

Commenting on this, Francis Springer writes in "War for What" that, "people everywhere then and since, have been willing at whatever sacrifice, to part their money for tobacco and in Virginia for 150 years, tobacco WAS money. Even clergymen were paid in tobacco, and one clergymen brought suit when his vestry insisted on paying him in coin of the realm" (quoting Werten Baker, "Planters of Colonial Virginia"). This is where the slave trade first popped up, farming tobacco was risky business. It perished easily, developed mold easily, and was altogether a complete pain to farm. After the Native American slaves had died off, white indentured slavery became popular. Springer estimates that during this early time period, four out of five indentured servents died.

If tobacco was such a horrendous pain to farm, why didn't the early Americans switch crops? The reason is two-fold. First, this was the crop that the English were paying them for. The only way that Americans themselves could have diversified was if the crop brought in enough money to do so, but originally, it wasn't as profitable a business as most would have liked. Spanish tobacco continued to dominate the market, but any other crop tried produced little yield and less money, so even with the shortcomings of tobacco necessitating the constant influx of new slaves, it was still the most profitable crop out there. This all changed when John Rolfe, the famous husband of Pocahontas, developed a better curing process and either bought or stole seeds of the West Indian variety. Virginia tobacco had previously never caught on inside of Europe due to the harsh nature of it. John Rolfe made Virginia prosperous, and caused the business of both slavery and prosperity into one lump.

Historian John Van Der Zee writes: “Between one half and two thirds of all Whites who came to the New World between 1609 and the early 19th century were slaves.”These White slaves came in the millions from the shores of the British Isles, in the form of deported convicts, political prisoners, and kidnapped children. “Transportation” to the New World or Australia was a common punishment up until the late 1800's, and orphans have been sent to Australia as late as the 1950's. In 1618, the Council of London passed a bill legalizing the capture of vagrant children, aged eight or older. These homeless children were to be sent to Virginia, where they would be indentured as slaves for fourteen to sixteen years. In tradition with English rules, in 1664, legislation was passed granting judges 50 percent of the proceeds from children sent to the New World in chains. Another percentage went to the King.London pamphlet produced in 1680 estimated that 10,000 Whites were sold into slavery per year.

In terms of per capita white slaves versus black slaves, some numbers will help. Historian Philip Curtin estimates that the total slave trade from Africa to the Western Hemisphere amounted to 9,566,000 people, the largest forced migration in all history. The 4,700,000 taken to South America accounted for half of the entire trade. The 4,040,000 who went to the West Indies represented more than 40 percent. By comparison, the British colonies/United States received roughly 399,000. South America imported nearly 12 slaves and the West Indies imported more than 10 slaves for every slave who went to North America. Francis Springer has some marvelous charts to look at as well.

According to FrontPage magazine, article by James Lubinskas, Oct 3 2002 issue, we find this:

'Orlando Patterson studied 55 slave societies for his 1982 book Slavery and Social Death: A Comparative Study (1982). He writes:

“It has often been remarked that slavery in the Americas is unique in the primary role of race as a factor in determining the condition and treatment of slaves. This statement betrays an appalling ignorance of the comparative data on slave societies. . . . Throughout the Islamic world, for instance, race was a vital issue. The light-skinned Tuareg and related groups had decidedly racist attitudes towards the Negroes they conquered. Throughout the Islamic empires, European and Turkish slaves were treated quite differently from slaves south of the Sahara Desert. . . . Slavery [in Africa] was more than simply “subordination”; it was considered a degraded condition, reinforced by racist attitudes among the Arab slave owners.”

Writing on African slavery before 1600, the historian Paul Lovejoy notes: “For those who were enslaved, the dangers involved forced marches, inadequate food, sexual abuse, and death on the road.”

In his book on the reparations battle, Uncivil Wars (2002) (David) Horowitz adds:

“In fact Africa’s internal slave trade, which did not involve the United States or any European power, not only extended over the entire 500 years mentioned by Robinson, but also preceded it by nearly 1,000 years. In the period between 650 and 1600, before any Western involvement, somewhere between 3 million and 10 million Africans were bought by Muslim slavers for use in Saharan societies and in the trade in the Indian Ocean and Red Sea. By contrast, the enslavement of blacks in the United States lasted 89 years, from 1776 until 1865. The combined slave trade to the British colonies in North America and later to the United States accounted for less than 3 percent of the global trade in African slaves. The total number of slaves imported to North America was 800,000, less than the slave trade to the island of Cuba alone. If the internal African slave trade-which began in the seventh century and persists to this day in the Sudan, Mauritania and other sub-Saharan states-is taken into account, the responsibility of American traders shrinks to a fraction of 1 percent of the slavery problem.”

African tribes were some of the fiercest defenders of slavery when whites tried to outlaw the practice in the 19th century. Blacks in present-day Ghana rioted against the British as they destroyed the slave ports along Africa’s western coast. In 1808, the King of Bonny (now Nigeria) told the British: “You’re country, however great, can never stop a trade ordained by God himself.”

One of America’s most famous black novelists, Zora Neale Hurston had a very different perspective on slavery than today’s reparations activists: “The white people held my people in slavery here in America. They bought us, it is true, and exploited us. But the inescapable fact that stuck in my craw was [that] my people had sold me. … My own people had exterminated whole nations and tore families apart for profit before the strangers got their chance at a cut. It was a sobering thought. It impressed upon me the universal nature of greed and glory."'

Irish, White, and Scotish Slaves

"The study of history is a powerful antidote to contemporary arrogance. It is humbling to discover how many of our glib assumptions, which seem to us novel and plausible, have been tested before, not once but many times and in innumerable guises; and discovered to be, at great human cost, wholly false." 

Paul Johnson, "The Quotable Paul Johnson: A Topical Compilation of His Wit, Wisdom and Satire", edited by George J. Marlin, et al (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1994), p. 138. 

Writer Elaine Kendall asks "Who wants to be reminded that half - perhaps as many as two-thirds - of the original American colonists came here, not of their own free will, but kidnapped, shanghaied, impressed, duped, beguiled, and yes, in chains - ?...we tend to gloss over it... we'd prefer to forget the whole sorry chapter."

White slavery is first mentioned by President Lincoln in an address in Chicago on December 10, 1856. He talks about slavery, "Irregardless of color". Prior to his address, no less than 17 novels used the theme of a white slave escaping, in fact, the very first anti-slave novel was about a white slave, entitled, "The Slave" by Richard Hildreth. On September 13, 1663, the first major slave uprising occured, where white "indentured servants" and African slaves were plotting for their freedom. If you're not into the cut-and-dry academic approach to history, try reading Kate McCafferty's "Testimony of an Irish Slave Girl". McCafferty points out that many of the Irish "servants" were regularly flogged, ended up dead, or were never released, and estimates that in 1627, 50,000 to 80,000 Irish men, women, and children were imported to the island. The "redshank" population that is in Barbados today is a mixture of the African and Irish who are direct slave descendants.

Irish slave trade was rampant in 1649 - 1657 under Cromwell. In the infamous Salem-Witch trial, the girl, Anne Glover, was one such slave. She could recite the Lord's prayer in Latin and Irish, but not in English. Cotton Mather, being a good Christian man, did what any good Christian man would do. He hanged her after torturing her. This pious Christian had some other great ideas as well. In a letter written to John Higginson, he tells us that he wants the Quaker's sent to Barbados to be sold into slavery, an indication of how easy it was for whites to be sold into slavery. (Taken from A. Manhattan, "Catholic Imperialism and World Freedom", p. 145).

"September ye 15, 1682,

To ye Aged and Beloved Mr. JOHN HIGGINSON,

There is now at sea a ship called the Welcome, which has on board an hundred or more of the heretics and malignants called "Quakers," with W.Penn, who is the chief scamp, at the head of them.

The general court has accordingly given secret orders to Master Malachi Huscott, of the brig Porpoise, to waylay the said Penn and his ungodly crew, so that the Lord may be glorified, and not mocked on the soil of this new country with the heathen worship of these people.

Much spoil can be made by selling the whole lot to Barbados, where slaves fetch good prices in rum and sugar.


American Clergyman."

Signs started popping up everywhere that said, "Irish need not apply", as they were regarded as an inferior breed. When Philemon Herbert killed an Irishman who refused to serve him after hours, he was regarded as a hero for shooting that "inferior race".

Where did white slaves come from? Most of them were children, usually as young as six. Our word "Kidnap" derives from this time period, literally meaning "To steal children". The stealing of children was so common that Van der Zee, "Bound Over", p. 210, describes it as thus:

"Press gangs in the hire of local merchants roamed the streets, seizing 'by force such boys as seemed proper subjects for the slave trade.' Children were driven in flocks through the town and confined for shipment in barns...So flagrant was the practice that people in the countryside about Aberdeen avoided bringing children into the city for fear they might be stolen; and so widespread was the collusion of merchants, shippers, suppliers and even magistrates that the man who exposed it was forced to recant and run out of town."

The picture above is a drawing of white slavery in 19th century England, (roughly 1843), the slaves are obviously young children, the two on the left being one a boy, the other a girl, both almost completely naked. Why were they almost completely naked?

D.E.Stannard, "American Holocaust. Columbus and the conquest of the New World", p. 59:

"The Spain that Christopher Columbus and his crews left behind just before dawn on August 3, 1492, ... was for most of its people a land of violence, squalor, treachery, and intolerance. In this respect, Spain was no different from the rest of Europe.

Epidemic outbreaks of plague and smallpox, along with routine attacks of measles, influenza, diphteria, typhus, typhoid fever, and more, frequently swept European cities and towns clean of 10 to 20 percent of their populations at a single stroke... one historian who has specialized in the subject, [states, referring to London] 'every twenty-five or thirty years - sometimes more frequently - the city was convulsed by a great epidemic...'

Famine, too, was quite common... The slightest fluctuation in food prices could cause the sudden deaths of additional tens of thousands who lived on the margins of perpetual hunger. So precarious was the existence of these multitudes in France that as late as the seventeenth century each "average" increase in the price of wheat or millet directly killed a proportion of the French population equal to or nearly twice the percentage of Americans who died in the Civil War...

Roadside ditches, filled with stagnant water, served as public latrines in the cities of the fifteenth century, and they would continue to do so for centuries to follow. So too would other noxious habits and public health hazards of the time persist on into the future - from the practice of leaving the decomposing offal of butchered animals to fester in the streets, to London's "special problem," as historian Lawrence Stone puts it, of "poor's holes." These were "large, deep, open pits in which were laid the bodies of the poor, side by side, row upon row..." As one contemporary, quoted by Stone, delicately observed: "How noisome the stench is that arises from these holes so stowed with dead bodies, especially in sultry seasons and after rain."

Along with the stench and repulsive appearance of the openly displayed dead, human and animal alike, a modern visitor to a European city in this era would be repelled by the appearance and the vile aromas given off by the living as well. Most people never bathed, not once in an entire lifetime. Almost everyone had his or her brush with smallpox and other deforming diseases that left the survivors partially blinded, pock-marked, or crippled, while it was the norm for men and women to "have bad breath from the rotting teeth and constant stomach disorders which can be documented from many sources, while suppurating ulcers, eczema, scabs, running sores and other nauseating diseases were extremely common, and often lasted for years."

Street crime in most cities lurked around every corner... because of the dismal social conditions and prevailing social values, it was a place filled with malice and hatred, its only unifying bond being the occasional episode of mass hysteria, which temporarily bound together the majority in order to harry and persecute the local witch." Indeed, as in England, there were towns on the Continent where as many as a third of the population were accused of witchcraft and where ten out of every hundred people were executed for it in a single year...

East European children, particularly Romanians, seem to have been favorites of the fourteenth- and fifteenth-century slave trade... Child slaves, however, were as expensive as adults, for reasons best left to the imagination..."

Those naked children were useful for labor for other reasons than just the ease at which they could be kidnapped and sold.... Are you feeling warm and fuzzy about your European heritage just yet? Now are you starting to see why this kind of evidence was cut out of later "historical" documents? Yet it was very real, and history has left its imprint upon future generations. R.Wright, "Stolen Continents. The Indian Story", p. 11, tells us even better stuff about history when America was first founded.

"Europe in 1492 was a small affair. The British Isles had only 5 million people, Spain about eight. Political boundaries were essentially those which had resulted from barbarian migrations after the fall of Rome. The Franks had settled in France, the Germani in Germany, the Angles and Saxons in England, the Vandals and Visigoths in Spain. These patterns have altered remarkably little from the seventh century to the twentieth, though frequent attempts to alter them have made the soil of Europe among the most bloodstained on earth.

European secular Government was a tangle of decayed feudal loyalties and personal ambition. The last proper roads had been built by the Romans more than a thousand years before. The rapidly growing cities were unplanned, ramshackle, seething with poverty and disease. If famine struck a region, the state was quite unable to provide relief. Life expectancy oscillated between the high teens and low thirties, lower than in the most deprived nations of today."

Since most would question the use of a less-than-sympathetic novel for this information, a more "appropriate" source will be provided. Some people have asked me if this only was considering the population of the average peasant, what about the noble population? It's very dismal. Of the sons of English dukes born in 1330-1479, 46 percent of them died by violent deaths. If you cut out the violent death population and figured out the average life expectancy age, you would get 31 years old. If you kept the violent death population in with the rest, the average age of death was 24 years old. (T.H. Hollingsworth, "A Demographic Study of the British Ducal Families" Population Studies, XI {1957-58}.)

The kidnapping was so high, and the route so torturous that Sharon V. Salinger reports that more white slave died than black slaves. The death rate of blacks being shipped over to America was about 10% of the people onboard. In white slave ships, the whites died at about 25% of the time. Foster R. Dulles, "Labor in America", goes even higher. He states that on certain white voyage ships, the death rate for white slaves was up to 50% due to conditions. These white slaves were known as the "surplus poor" in popular documents of the time.

Independent investigator A.B. Ellis in the Argosy writes concerning the transport of White slaves,

"The human cargo, many of whom were still tormented by unhealed wounds, could not all lie down at once without lying on each other. They were never suffered to go on deck. The hatchway was constantly watched by sentinels armed with hangers and blunder busses. In the dungeons below all was darkness, stench, lamentation, disease and death."

Marcus Jernegan describes the greed of the shipmasters which led to horrendous loss of life for White slaves transported to America:

"The voyage over often repeated the horrors of the famous 'middle passage' of slavery fame. An average cargo was three hundred, but the shipmaster, for greater profit, would sometimes crowd as many as six hundred into a small vessel...The mortality under such circumstances was tremendous, sometimes more than half...Mittelberger (an eyewitness) says he saw thirty-two children thrown into the ocean during one voyage."

"The mercantile firms, as importers of (White) servants, were not too careful about their treatment, as the more important purpose of the transaction was to get ships over to South Carolina which could carry local produce back to Europe. Consequently the Irish--as well as others--suffered greatly...

"It was almost as if the British merchants had redirected their vessels from the African coast to the Irish coast, with the white servants coming over in much the same fashion as the African slaves." (Warren B. Smith, "White Servitude in Colonial South Carolina").

Even some non-specialists are recognizing the issues of white slavery, such as John Ralston Saul, "The Unconscious Civilization", p. 116:

"Slavery had always existed, and in almost every civilization around the world. But it had been a piecemeal business, usually the result of individuals, Europeans or others, being captured in war or convicted in the law courts."

The few authors who dare to mention white slavery will harp on ad nauseam that it was "temporary", but we've already seen at least one source that destroys that myth. The other authors will say that the slaves deserved it, many were convicts. These "crimes" ranged from not having a job, begging for money, stealing less than a dollar in current terms of worth, and poaching animals belonging to nobility to feed their family. For example, in 1699 the Shoplifting Act extended capital offenses to include any theft from a shop to the value of five shillings, anyone convicted could be, (and often was), sent to slavery.

They were social status crimes, not crimes against humanity. Another page of history that has been rewritten through time... These convicts were transported to America under the 1723 Waltham Act, estimated about 100,000 white slaves were imported. Hundreds of thousands of White slaves who were worked to death in this country from the early l7th century onward.

The Englishman William Eddis, after observing White slaves in America in the 1770's wrote: "Generally speaking, they groan beneath a worse than Egyptian bondage." Governor Sharpe of the Maryland colony compared the property interest of the planters in their White slaves, with the estate of an English farmer consisting of a "Multitude of Cattle."

A. B. Ellis, writing in the British Newspaper Argosy for May 6, 1893, said: "Few, but readers of old colonial state papers and records, are aware that between the years 1649 to 1690 a lively trade was carried on between England and the plantations, as the colonies were then called, [a trade] in political prisoners... they were sold at auction... for various terms of years, sometimes for life, as slaves."

The original colonists who were in America, ranging from one-half to two-thirds, were white slaves, and this slavery was hereditary. White children born to White slaves were enslaved too. The treatment of the white servant/slave was harsh and often brutal. In fact, the Virginia Colony prescribed "bodily punishment for not heeding the commands of the master." (James Ballagh."White Servitude in the Colony of Virginia" p. 45) Half the servants died in the first two years. As a result of this type of treatment, runaways were frequent. The courts realized this was a problem and started to demand that everyone have identification and travel papers. (A.E. Smith, "Colonists in Bondage: White Servitude and Convict Labor in America", p. 264-270). Hence the reason these white slaves collaborated on many occasions with the black slaves for social uprisings.

Whites were auctioned on the block with children sold and separated from their parents and wives sold and separated from their husbands. In Brian Inglis' "Poverty and the Industrial Revolution" we read: "Here then was a ready source of labor - and a very welcome one. The children were formally indentured as apprentices... What happened to them was nobody's concern. A parish in London, having got rid of a batch of unwanted pauper children, was unlikely to interest itself in their subsequent fate... The term 'apprenticeship' was in any case a misnomer...."

In Marjorie Cruikshank's "Children and Industry": "many employers imported child apprentices, parish orphans from workhouses far and near. Clearly, overseers of the poor were only too keen to get rid of the orphans... children were brought (to the factories) like 'cartloads of live lumber' and abandoned to their fate... poor children, taken from workhouses or kidnapped in the streets of the metropolis, used to be brought down by... coach to Manchester and slid into a cellar in Mosley Street as if they had been stones or any other inanimate substance."

On the lifestyle of the poor white slaves in England, a contemporary report reads:

“The life of the bulk of the people of England is worse than death,” observes an author, whose graphic description of the White Slavery system was the cause of so much controversy between partisan writers a few years ago. To prove the correctness of this writer’s assertion, we shall place before our readers a synoptical sketch of the incipient stages of White Slavery. In the slave States of America, a strong, healthy boy or girl is worth about $400. In London on the gates of poor-houses one reads: “Strong, healthy boys and girls, with the usual fee; apply within.” With, not for the usual fee: you do not pay the fee to obtain a boy or girl, but the parish officers pay you for taking one. The usual fee in on on is $50; so that in America you pay eight times as much as you receive in England. To be sure, the boys and girls in London are neither strong nor healthy; the notice on the workhouse gates says that they are both, to invite customers, just as the keepers of the splendid gin-palaces of the same great metropolis placard their windows with “mountain dew” and “cream of the valley.”

Whites were worked to death in the sugar mills of Barbados, Jamaica, and the plantations of America. David W. Galson, "White Servatude in Colonial America: An Economic Analysis", p. 5, makes it clear this was slavery and not apprenticeship. A Virginian named John Pory in 1619, put it, "Our principal wealth ... consisteth in servants... white slaves are our principle wealth", letting us know how much labor and what type was performed. The importance of indenture can be seen in Virginia, where in 1618 the colony offered a headright, a grant of 50 acres per servant, as an incentive to planters to import more servants from England. The headright became the property of the owner, not the servant.

An 1856 Republican party handbill which clearly states in capital letters, "SLAVERY IS RIGHT, NATURAL, AND NECESSARY, AND DOES NOT DEPEND UPON DIFFERENCE OF COMPLEXION. THE LAWS OF THE SLAVE STATES JUSTIFY THE HOLDING OF WHITE MEN IN BONDAGE." ("The Forgotten Causes of the Civil War" by Dr. Lawrence Tenzer).

One thing which needs to be clear was that the status of children born into slavery started becoming a pressing issue as time progressed. The English Common Law stated that a child's status depended upon the father, however, for Southern slave trade, that caused a problem. Many white men regularly slept with their slaves, so much in fact that some particular black women were noted on tickets of auction as being "breeders", the implication of which is obvious. If paternal succession was at stake, then what would happen was that many profitable slaves would be lost because their father was a free-man. In order to change this, the Southern colony of Virgina passed legislature which was rather complex, but it was an attempt to regulate interracial procreation and marriage, and to legislate the status of mixed-blood children who were from slave mothers. They ruled that the new doctrine should be "partus sequitur ventrem", or that the succession of children should be maternal.

Negro blood didn't make anyone a slave, it was the maternal descent of an unbroken legal manumission of slavery which made someone a slave. White slaves were actually owned by Blacks and Indians in the South to such an extent that the Virginia Assembly passed the following law in 1670: "It is enacted that no negro or Indian though baptized and enjoying their own freedom shall be capable of any such purchase of Christians." The records of the time reveal that free Blacks often owned Black slaves themselves. In 1717, it was proposed that a qualification for election to the South Carolina Assembly was to be "the ownership of one White man."

A full-blooded negro could own another full-blooded negro if he wasn't born from a slave mother. The general Southern rule came about that someone was white if they had one-eighth or less African blood in their lineage, but this could be changed by reputation, likeability by the white community, amount of property owned, etc. A mulatto slave, if manumitted and one-eight or less of African descent, would change status from a freed Negro to a freed white man.

However, this caused a very significant problem for later development. Because irregardless of whether or not someone was white, (based on one-eighth African bloodline or "pure" white), or colored they could be a slave, if they had a slave mother in their descent, they were still a slave. That means that people who were termed "white", and by looking at them they certainly looked white, were slaves simply because they came from an unbroken line of mothers who had been slaves.

While Northerners had the interesting moral idea that foreigners who were "indentured" slaves could be kept at slave factories for hours and eventually beaten to death, (before you get fiesty, start thinking of the apathetic attitude most American have to Mexican, Cuban, and Chinese sweat-shops within the United States), they held it to be strange that whites could literally be slaves based upon succession through the mother. This became a popular theme in literature and plays, such as The Octoroon, scheduled to play the day after Lincoln was shot in the same theater. Even the notorious novel "Uncle Tom's Cabin" used white slaves as characters in it. Foreign visitors who came to America and went south were naturally expecting to see black slaves, but were shocked when they saw large groups of white slaves, which they frequently mentioned. Virginia and Maryland had tried to counter this by outlawing intermarriage, but naturally, it failed.

George Fitzhugh wrote Sociology for the South, or the Failure of Free Society, a pro-slavery piece of literature that was often quoted, and one quote which helps demonstrate this is "the jurisdiction of slavery to that race would be to weaken its scriptural authority for we read of no negro slavery in ancient times. SLAVERY BLACK OR WHITE IS NECESSARY." Interestingly, while I've come across several books which quote George Fitzhugh, very few ever mention this very revealing quote. As laid out by Daniel Goleman and Jonathan Freedman in "What Psychology Knows that Everyone Should", we tend to think of scientists and historians as being highly objective, digging through all the dirt to find out the truth. They really aren't, Goleman and Freedman found out that historians and scientists will deliberately ignore large amounts of evidence which goes against their theory. Again, this is a conscious rejection of the implications of white slavery, which will be discussed towards the end.

Northerners who read into the Southern perception on slavery, such as The Richmond Enquirer, made their ideas about the South's position clear to their readers:

"While is far more obvious that negroes should be slaves than whites...yet the principle of slavery is itself right and does not depend on difference of complexion."

What more has to be said? The Northerners knew that the Southern institution of slavery was not dependant upon race, only upon maternal succession, and they were just as racist as anyone in the South. If you decide to research first-hand documents from the era, blacks were always considered an inferior race to the Northerners, and very few cared about them. This is the reason that though blacks gained their slavery after the Civil War, it took a hundred years for them to gain the rights that went with that freedom. Through the efforts of some communities, most notably Welsh and sympathetic Northerners, blacks in the North had a better life than their Southern partners, but not that much better of one. Going off that, we must wonder why then did the Civil War occur?

Historian Russel B. Nye, quoted in "Forgotten Causes of the Civil War":

"If slavery was a positive good, and the superior political, economic and social system that the South claimed it to be, it seemed reasonable to expect that the next step would be an attempt to impose it upon the nation at large for the nation's own good...It was easy, said the abolitionists, to take one more step, to show that if slavery were the best system for inferior races, it was also the best for inferior classes, regardless of race."

In 1858, Congressman Philemon Bliss of Ohio predicted the enslavement of free "white" labor if the South could not be checked:

"The more honest advocates of slavery have already repudiated the idea that it should be the sole condition of any race, and many of them would impose it upon all hand laborers. Free labor would have to compete with slave labor and could not survive."

The emphasis is mine because though some people were obviously still going to use the race angle to justify slavery, some would use the idea that mulatto's were a dangerous mix breed that combined the worse genes of both races, no matter how far removed from the source of integration, the more vocal ones defended the paternal class right, and because of this, the Northerners knew that they could never have competition with the slave states. The same example could be given with Nike and China. Nike loses quite a bit of money shipping overseas, but because slave labor is so cheap, they more than make it up when they sell it here. The North knew that if such slave powers were granted over the entire Union, they would lose their free market.

In 1862, The Iron Platform, a New York paper, we read that the Northeners attitude had changed very dramatically to what they perceived as a threat:

"There is one truth which should be clearly understood by every workingman in the Union. The slavery of the black man leads to the slavery of the white man...If the doctrine of treason is true, that Capital should own labor, then their logical conclusion is correct, and all laborers, whether white or black, are and ought to be slaves."

The Establishment has created the misnomer of "indentured servitude" to explain away and minimize the fact of White slavery. But bound Whites in early America called themselves slaves. Nine-tenths of the White slavery in America was conducted without indentures of any kind but according to the so-called "custom of the country," as it was known, which was lifetime slavery administered by the White slave merchants themselves.

In George Sandys laws for Virginia, Whites were enslaved "forever." The service of Whites bound to Berkeley's Hundred was deemed "perpetual."

Oscar Handlin, Professor of History at Harvard University, has some of the most interesting comments on white slavery.

"Through the first three-quarters of the 17th century, the Negroes, even in the South, were not numerous...They came into a society in which a large part of the (white) population was to some degree unfree...The Negroes lack of freedom was not unusual. These (black) newcomers, like so many others, were accepted, bought and held, as kinds of servants...It was in this sense that Negro servants were sometimes called slaves...For that matter, it also applied to White New England and New York too there had early been an intense desire for cheap unfree hands, for 'bond slavery, villeinage of Captivity,' whether it be White, Negro or Indian..." (Handlin, pp. 202-204, 218)

A survey of the various ad hoc codes and regulations devised in the 17th century for the governing of those in bondage reveals no special category for Black slaves. (Hening, Vol. 1, pp. 226, 258, 540)

"During Ligon's time in Barbados (1647-1650), White indentured female servants worked in the field gangs alongside the small but rapidly growing number of enslaved black women. In this formative stage of the Sugar Revolution, planters did not attempt to formulate a division of labor along racial lines. White indentured servants...were not perceived by their masters as worthy of special treatment in the labor regime." ("Natural Rebels", Beckles, p. 29)

The contemporary academic consensus on slavery in America represents history by retroactive fiat, decreeing that conclusions about the entire epoch fit the characterizations of its final stage, the 19th century Southern plantation system. Prof. Handlin informs us that legislators in Virginia sought to cover-up the record of White bondage and its equivalence to negro servitude:

"The compiler of the Virginia laws (codifying Black slavery for the first time) then takes the liberty of altering texts to bring earlier legislation into line with his own new notions." (Handlin, p. 216) Among his examples of alteration, he finds that the word "slave" as a reference to blacks in Virginia had been inserted when it was not used that way originally. (See Hening, Vol. 2, pp. iii, 170, 283, 490.)

Richard Ligon's eyewitness report of a white slave revolt in Barbados, 1649, shows that later historians such as Poyer, Oldmixon, and Schomburgh mistook it for a black slave revolt. I may be too hasty here in calling this a problem of historians trying to cover something up, in many cases, it seems historians couldn't conceptualize that whites were treated badly by whites, and hence, believed it was only true if it was blacks who were the slaves. Ligon had written that the rebels in question had not been able to "endure such slavery" any longer and the later historians automatically assumed that this had to have been a reference to negroes

"Contemporaries were aware that the popular stereotyping of (white) female indentured servants as whores, sluts and debauched wenches, discouraged their use in elite planter households. Many pioneer planters preferred to employ Amerindian women in their households...With the...establishment of an elitist social culture, there was a tendency to reject (white) indentured servants as women... represented a more attractive option and, as a result, were widely employed as domestics in the second half of the 17th century. In 1675 for example John Blake, who had recently arrived on the island (of Barbados), informed his brother in Ireland that his white Indentured Servant was a 'slut' and he would like to be rid of her...(in favor of a 'neger wench')."

("Natural Rebels", Beckles, pp. 56-57)

In the 17th century White slaves were cheaper to acquire than Negroes and therefore were often mistreated to a greater extent. Having paid a bigger price for the Negro, "the planters treated the black better than they did their 'Christian' White Servant. Even the Negroes recognized this and did not hesitate to show their contempt for those White Men who, they could see, were worse off than themselves..." (Bridenbaugh, p. 118)

"The frontier demands for heavy manual labor, such as felling trees, soil clearance, and general infrastructural development, had been satisfied primarily by white indentured servants between 1627 and 1643. ("Natural Rebels", Beckles, p. 8)

In 1855, Frederic Law Olmsted, the landscape architect who designed New York's Central Park, was in Alabama on a pleasure trip and saw bales of cotton being thrown from a considerable height into a cargo ship's hold. The men tossing the bales somewhat recklessly into the hold were Negroes, the men in the hold were Irish.

Olmsted inquired about this to a shipworker. "Oh," said the worker, "the niggers are worth too much to be risked here; if the Paddies are knocked overboard or get their backs broke, nobody loses anything." (See "Slavery and Other Forms of Unfree Labor", Ste. Croix, p. 27)

Here's another interesting piece:

"When I was a boy, 'recalled Waters McIntosh, who had been a slave in Sumter, South Carolina, 'we used to sing, 'Rather be a nigger than a poor White Man,' Even in slavery we used to sing that.' Mr. McIntosh's remarks reveal...that the poor whites of the South ranked below blacks in social standing...slaves felt unbridled contempt for lower-class whites...Frederick Douglas opened his famous Life and Times with an account of Talbot County, Maryland, which he said housed a 'White population of the lowest order... Throughout the South the slaves of many of the larger planters lived in a society of blacks and well-to-do Whites and were encouraged to view even respectable laboring Whites with disdain...Ella Kelly, who had been a slave in South Carolina...You know, boss, dese days dere is three kind of people. Lowest down Is a Layer of White Folks, then in de middle is a layer of colored folks, and on top is de cream, a layer of good White folks... The slaves noticed their masters sense of superiority toward marginal farmers as well as toward poor Whites and, by associating themselves with 'de quality White folks,' strengthened their self-esteem...a...slave expressed no surprise that his master, who was Big Buckra, never associated with White trash. And Rosa Starke, who had been owned by a big planter in South Carolina, reported that poor Whites had to use the kitchen door when they went up to the Big House. Her mistress 'had a grand manner; no patience with Poor White Folks.'... The many (negro) ex-slaves who recalled the lot of the small farmers and Poor Whites as Hard and Even as Bad as Their Own knew what they were talking about...The slaves saw enough abject poverty, disease, and demoralization among the Poor see their own condition under Old Massa's protection as perhaps not the worst of evils."

(Taken from "Rather Be a Nigger Than a Poor White Man", Eugene D. Genovese; Slave Perceptions of Southern Yeoman and Poor Whites, in Toward a New View of America, pp. 79, 81-82, 84, 90-91)

Olmsted has some other interesting tidbits to look over, found in "A Journey on the Seaboard Slave States. With Remarks on Their Economy".

“The Colony still languishing, though things much improved under Sir Thomas Dale, in 1618 the company petitioned the Crown to make them a present of’ vagabonds and condemned men,’ to be sent out as slaves; and the King, thankful, probably, to get rid of the burden of taking care of these men, who had been too lazy heretofore to take care of themselves in any other way than by pilfering and knavery, was graciously pleased to grant their request. The following year a hundred head of this valuable stock was driven out of Bridewell and other London knave-pens, on board ship, and ex- ported to Virginia. The next year, twenty head of black men, direct from Africa, were landed from a Dutch ship, in James River, and were immediately bought by the gentlemen of the Colony. These were the first negro slaves in the country at present included in the United States. The same year the first cheerful labor by the voluntary immigrants to New England, by the Mayflower, was applied to the sterile soil of Massachusetts Bay.”

England may be proud of the living freight which left her shores in the Mayflower, but she has no ground for reproving the Americans on the subject of’ an “institution “ from which she did not free herself till recently and then, to effect a great good indeed, she was also guilty of inflicting much wrong: “It was not criminals alone that were sent into this bondage, but captives of war, of all nations, and State prisoners, victims of the Star Chamber and of the Ecclesiastical Courts; persons suspected of traitorous designs upon the monarchy, and infidels to the Court theology; all were herded together with petty pilferers, convicted murderers, and heathen blackamoors, and driven by over- seers to work in the tobacco fields of their cavalier purchasers. Charles II ordered a shipment of Quakers to Virginia, where they were sold as slaves, for dissenting from his true church. Their non-resistance principles must have added much to their value.”

When Virginia was a colonial province, the term “servant” was applied to men and women bound to labor for a certain time. Laborers for life alone were called slaves. Having accepted our fair share of the reproach which attaches to us for introducing white slavery into America, let us notice, to our own credit, that English law, at least, is not to be blamed for the practice noticed in the following paragraph:

“In 1662, forty-two years after the first importation of negroes, there being already many mulatto children, the paternity of which it would be disagrecable to inquire about, owing to the laws against libertinism, it was enacted, in direct contradiction to the supreme English law, that the children of slaves should follow the condition of the mother, and not ever of the father. This law, which has been maintained to the present time, of course offers a direct encouragement to the most mischievous licentiousness. In the French, Dutch, Danish, German, Spanish, and Portuguese colonies, the white fathers of colored children have always been accustomed to educate and emancipate them, and endow them with property. In Virginia, and the English colonies generally, the white fathers of mulatto children have always been accustomed to use them in a way that most completely destroys the oft-complacently asserted claim, that the Anglo-Saxon race is possessed of deeper natural affection than the more demonstrative sort of mankind.”

Likewise, a journal from a white slave reads this:

"Sold to a master in Merion, near Philadelphia, I was put to work ‘hewing and uprooting trees’ - - land clearing, the most arduous of colonial labour, was spared black slaves because they were to valuable.”

During the American Revolution, Lord Dunmore, the Royal Governor of Virginia appointed by the King, sought to win Virginia back for the British Crown with Black troops recruited in America, to be called the Ethiopian Regiment. Parties of Blacks in the South were armed by the British with guns, clubs and swords with the order to use them against rebellious Whites. (The Disaffected in the Revolutionary South, Ronald Hoffman; Explorations in the History of American Radicalism, pp. 281-282)

Scottish slavery was obvious as well. Slavery of the Scots to America began as early as 1630, and according to the Egerton Manuscript in the British Museum, in the enactment of 1642, we find that anyone who was convicted of "begging" or vagrancy should be seized and shipped to the plantations:

"it may be lawful for two or more  justices of the peace within any county, citty or towne, corporate belonging to the commonwealth to from tyme to tyme by warrant cause to be apprehended, seized on and detained all and every person or persons that shall be found begging and vagrant.. in any towne, parish or place to be conveyed into the Port of London, or unto any other port from where such person or persons may be shipped into a forraign collonie or plantation."

The judges of Edinburgh Scotland during the years 1662-1665 ordered the enslavement and shipment to the colonies a large number of rogues and others who made life unpleasant for the British upper class.  (Register for the Privy Council of Scotland, third series, vol. 1, p 181, vol. 2, p 101).

The eighth to the eleventh centuries proved to be very profitable for Rouen France.  Rouen was the transfer point of Irish and Flemish slaves to the Arabian nations.  The early centuries CE the Scottish were known as Irish. William Phillips, "Slavery from Roman Times to Early Transatlantic Trade", p. 63, states that the major component of slave trade in the eleventh century were the Vikings.  They spirited many ‘Irish’ to Spain, Scandinavia and Russia.  Legends have it; some ‘Irish’ may have been taken as far as Constantinople.

Ruth Mazo Karras wrote in her book, “Slavery and Society in Medieval Scandinavia", p. 49, that Norwegian Vikings made slave raids not only against the Irish and Scots (who were often called Irish in Norse sources) but also against Norse settlers in Ireland or Scottish Isles or even in Norway itself…slave trading was a major commercial activity of the Viking Age.  The children of the White slaves in Iceland were routinely murdered en masse. (ibid, p. 52)

The Quoke Walker case in Massachusetts 1773 ruled that slavery, contrary to the state Constitution, was applied equally to Blacks and Whites in Massachusetts. Statutes at Large of Virginia, vol. 1 pp. 174, 198, 200, 243 & 306 did not discriminate Negroes in bondage from Whites in Bondage.

Marcellus Rivers and Oxenbridge Foyle, England’s Slaves 1659 consists of a statement smuggled out of the New World and published in London referring to whites in bondage who did not think of themselves as indentured servants but as “England’s Slaves” and “England’s merchandise.”

Colonial Office, Public Records Office, London 1667, no. 170 records that “even Blacks referred to the White forced labor." That's hardly surprising, among other white forced labor, chimney sweepers were common. For a good contemporary book, I recommend Michael Crighton's "The Great Train Robbery", he actually goes into a little bit of this. Chimney sweepers were usually kids about four to seven years old, who were especially tiny. They were typically kidnapped and put to work, starved so they could retain their small size. Most died, and what pitiful few didn't were deformed for life.

Congressman David Wilmot didn't want black slaves, because he said they were too expensive. He already had white slaves which were far cheaper. Wilmot called for an amendment of the appropriations bill for the Mexican War, stating, "that, as an express and fundamental condition of the acquisition of any territory from the Republic of Mexico…neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall ever exist in any part of said territory..." to preserve that vast expanse of territory for "the sons of toil, my own race and color."(emphasis added). Likewise, the statement of an Iowa Congressman maintained that it was the planter aristocracy "which exalts and spreads Africans at the expense of the White Race." ('The Race Issue in Indiana Politics During the Civil War', Emma Lou Thornbrough, Indiana Magazine of History, June, 1951)

Less you think only us horrible Europeans were doing this, (which is the reason why this subject is never talked about, just look at how warm and fuzzy you feel right now), the word slave is from "Slov", an Eastern European. The Muslims sold whites from Ukraine, Southern Russia, Circassa, and England as Slaves from the 7th century into the 19th century. These Muslims doing the slave trading were primarily black Muslims, from Egypt and other places near port cities.

Some chose to use them as their own slaves, W.E.B. Dubois, "The World and Africa", p. 192, tells us that Mameluke slaves lasted from 1193 to 1805. The Mamelukes were white slaves from the Balkans, Greece, Turkey, and the Near East. White slaves in America lived for less than two years on average, most not longer than that. The slaves often ran away, so that Congress was debating on whether to brand slaves so that they could be recognized. Scots were also sold as slaves, as Alexander Stewart, a Scotsman, was sold in July, 1747. He was sold with 88 other Scots into slavery. Dubois was a notorious anti-white historian, and even HE couldn't deny the white slaves!

In "The Journal of Negro History", #52, p. 23-25, states that "The sources of racial thought in Colonial American pertaining to slave trade worked both directions with white merchandice as well as black".

Now, let's examine the North. Kidnapping children had just fallen out of vogue, but like today, there's always one easy place to get cheap labor. Foreign immigrants. Immigrants, and especially their children, provided much of the Northern workforce in the industrial fields. They would be locked for 16 hours a day, beaten with thick iron rods, sometimes to their deaths, would suffer from crushed arms, hands, broken legs, etc. Girls would have their entire scalp removed because of the hazardous machines catching their hair and ripping it from the scalp. Robert L. Heilbroner in "The Economic Problem", p. 87, talks about it as thus:

"Distasteful as was the advent of the factory itself, even more distasteful were the conditions within it. Child labor, for instance, was commonplace and sometimes began at age four; hours of work were generally dawn to dusk; abuses of every kind were all too frequent."

He continues by relating an incident where the Parliament of 1832 did an investigation. In it, they found that they were generally not given any time off for breakfast or dinner, they worked from 3 a.m. to 10 - 10:30 at night, for weeks on end. Most of these workers were "young girls", and the report finds out that when a worker was injured, there was no compensation given. As to how they made a living, Fredrick Engles reports a government commissioners report on it in Glasgow. "the outward appearance is revolting", he starts off, "I was nevertheless quite unprepared for the filth and misery that were to be found inside... we found a whole mass of humanity huddled together, some being clothed and others naked... Thieving and prostitution are the main sources of income of these people." (The Condition of the Working Class in England in 1874, p. 46).

A policeman who worked the area used metaphors from the insect world to describe the conditions of the Whites there, referring to them as "vermin haunted heaps of rags." Opening the door to a tiny shack the policeman discovered: "Ten, twenty, thirty, who can count them? Men, women, children, for the most part naked, heaped upon the floor like maggots in a cheese factory...a spectral rising, unshrouded, from a grave of rags." (Daniel DeFoe, Moll Flanders, Penguin classics edition, p. 380)

The English writer Frances Trollope estimated that at least 200,000 English children were "snatched away" to factories, "...taken and lodged amid stench, and stunning, terrifying tumult; driven to and fro until their little limbs bend under them...the repose of a moment to be purchased only by yielding their tender bodies to the fist, the heel or the strap of the overlooker (overseer)." (Chattel Slavery and Wage Slaver, Marcus Cunliffe, p. 73)

"In Bleak House Dickens was to satirize evangelical 'telescopic philanthropy' in the person of Mrs. Jellyby, a do-gooder so absorbed in the welfare of the African natives of Borrioboola-Gha that she fails to notice her own family sinking into ruin. This was precisely Carlyle's point: with Irish...dying in was the worst sort of rose-pink sentimentalism to worry oneself about West Indian negroes..." (Eugene R. August, introduction to Thomas Carlyle's The Nigger Question, Crots Classics edition, p. xvii)

An unknown poet expressed the bitter irony: "That night a chariot passed her, While on the ground she lay; The daughters of her master An evening visit to pay- Their tender hearts were sighing As wrongs to negroes were told; While the white slave was dying Who gained their father's gold." (Anonymous. First printed in the Birmingham Journal, April 4, 1833)

Immigrants were the slaves of the North, living in ghetto's, and being denied application to jobs. Lest you open your mouth agape in horror, this still happens today, only now its sweat-shops in China owned by U.S. Corporations where children are being mass-murdered and abused. What the heck though, I mean, they make great shoes right? Surely that's more than enough to justify a few million cases of child-abuse? Amazingly, the mock indignant anger really goes up though when we discover these sweat-shops operating in America, our very own testament to our cultural roots. If we do it in our borders, the horrors. If we do it in another countries borders, well, heck, that's their problem. Let's not mention our current use of illegal Mexican immigrants for slave labor either. Child labor was so prominent, according to Arnold Toynbee Sr., ("The Industrial Revolution", p. 113) because the average laborer made about eight shillings a week, six shillings short of the money needed to buy the bare necessities. Thus, they sent their wife and children off to work in the industrial field, despite the dangers.

The Southerners knew this, and scorned the hypocritical Northerners who denounced slavery on one hand, meanwhile practicing it on the other! As Robert Jordon writes in "The Civil War" p. 18:

"Whatever his lot, the White Southerner looked on life as his own master and gave a profound allegiance to his state, his section, his home. To him, only slaves -- and the unhappy souls toiling for others in Northern factories -- weren't free."

Let's again look at another source, this one being "The United States Democratic Review", vol. 11, issue 51 (September 1842).

"It is the sure inheritance of the White Slave of the factory and of the coal-mine, who in the midst of the most dazzling improvements and political ameliorations, still continues to trudge on from morning till night for the bare privilege of living -- without even so much as a prospective termination of his revolting bondage."

One big promulgated myth is that Africans were "stolen" and "sold" into slavery by evil hordes of white men. It, quite simply, didn't happen. The main portion of this was from Alex Haley's work "Roots". "Roots", when it initially came out, was a widely acclaimed book of influential success, touted as one of the greatest books for all African-Americans. The problem was, the entire book was a lie, and what wasn't a fabrication, was a plagiarism.

The most recent work is from historian Stephen Ambrose, who has shown multiple incidents of plagiarism by Haley. Haley himself was forced to admit in court that a large portion of his book, namely, the plot, main character, and tons of the passages, were from a white author by the name of Hal Courlander, in the book, "The African". Worse than rank plagiarism though was Haley's private notes, which journalist Philip Nobile bought. They showed that, from Haley's own admission in them, he made up the entire book. However, because of the "cultural significance" of the book, even the Judge preciding over the case let Haley off the hook, because he knew how "culturally" important the book was to African-Americans, though he knew that Haley had perjured himself several times in court. It's time to hang this scum-sucking vermin for what he is. A racist bigot who had a preconceived notion, and falsified, lied in court, and deliberately wrote a piece of literature strictly for money. There's nothing to celebrate or rejoice about it. In fact, in court, Haley admitted he lied about the entire book, there wasn't a germ of truth in it. In another interesting piece, he also plagiarized another author, though this one was dead at the time.

This came particularly clear to me when I was flipping through HBO and caught "The Chris Rock Show". Chris had a guest on who was talking about the fact that Haley plagiarized the book. Chris refused to even let the man speak, (this was a black man), and apparently, lacking any real originality for being such a comic, told him that "that's a white thing to say." He accused his guest of selling out to white people. Such is the pervasiveness of the myth.

Now, you might have noticed that initially, the concept of owning a slave forever was a foreign notion, except in the case of Native Americans, who were looked upon more or less as conquested people. The idea of a slave being owned for life is not European, but instead, African, in the story of a poor indentured slave named John Casor, who was owned by a black man named Anthony Johnson. The contract had expired, but Johnson still thought he owned John Casor. This case was brought before a Virginia Court in 1665, where the Court ruled in favor of Johnson, thus beginning our concept of permenant slavery. This can be found in "Selling Poor Steven", Feb/Mar 1993 ed. of American Heritage Magazine, (Vol. 441).

(*Note: Another history book lists the first case as Johnson vs. Parker, Northampton Court, in 1653. Anthony Johnson himself had been born an indentured servent, brought over in 1619 and freed in 1623. In fact, he was one of the first twenty indentured black servents in America.)

Is that all? Nope, further problems with the "Poor Africans exploited by white men" pop up. This same issue tells us other interesting facts, like the Census of 1830. 3,775 Free Negroes owned 12,760 slaves, including women who owned their husbands, and vice versa. (Concubines.) 25% of the Free Negroes in New Orleans were slave owners, much more impressive than the pithy 10% of white slave owners. More interesting, white people couldn't sell their children to slavery in the South, but that kind of thing was in vogue with Free Negroes, who could sell unwanted children into slavery, and was apparently, was rather common. In fact, a slavery law was enacted which allowed free men to sell themselves into slavery, provided they chose their master.

Let's look at one such person, Thomas Young, a Free Negro from Georgia, who owned a very impressive 302 slaves. Now, knowing better than to sell them straight out, he preferred to lease them to plantations. This is documented by an African-American historian named Carer Woodson, in his book, "Free Negro Owners of Slaves in the United States in 1830".

I know, maybe these black slave-owners were nice and sweet, and the white slave owners were despotic tyrants seeking to enslave and oppress the entire black race? Nope, not a chance, another black historian named Larry Koger wrote a book called "Black Slave Owners: Free Black Slave Masters in South Carolina, 1790-1860". Far from benevolent, they were, speaking of a collective majority, leacherous and vicious.

Koger states that:

"The survey of local documents could not demonstrate dominance of a benevolent or kinship aspect of black slaveowning. Indeed, the census of 1850 demonstrated that 83.1 percent of the Negro masters were mulattoes, while nearly 90 percent of their slaves were of dark skin. Where was the kinship? Since mulattoes primarily married mulattoes, the black folk owned by light-skinned (Negroes) were seldom kin and were overwhelmingly held as laborers. By and large, Negro slave owners were darker copies of  their white counterparts."

In this case, I'd like to make a historical inquiry. A black co-worker recently asked me a question about sociology. Namely, that light-skinned blacks and dark-skinned blacks have a mutual hatred of each other. Hatred, perhaps, being too strong a word, but they don't like each other. The theory she advanced was that blacks were taken from various areas of Africa, whom spoke different languages and dialectual problems, and they grew apart from there. There are quite a few historical problems with it. First, Africans who were slaves were generally taken from the same place. Libya if you want to check your map. It was on an easy trade-route where the could go about business. Second, slaves were not kidnapped from Africa, they were sold. Columbus failed three times to take slaves from America to go back to Spain, they all got off the ship even when he tried beating them to near-death, tying them up, etc. If Columbus entire crew couldn't hold onto a kidnapped slave for more than three days, I have a hard time imagining whites mass-kidnapping Africans unwillingly onto a ship and them staying. The implication of this is that since they were traded, not sold, it was crucial for them to speak the language. Even the Assyrians, the bloodiest empire known, made their slaves "as of one tongue", meaning they spoke the same language. It wasn't too long before African dialects faded out of use, the same way that third-generation descendants of Cajun French in Louisiana generally can't speak Cajun French. Slaves that can't speak your language are useless, the reason why I heard a complaint from a trucker from West Texas. He had a lot of illegal immigrants working with him who couldn't speak the language, so they'd be fired, and then along would come more illegal immigrants who couldn't speak the language. A perpetual problem, if you can't speak a language you can't produce much work, especially not in large-quantities.

Rather, I argue that the "historical" reason for the difference is first shown from above, but many "dark-skinned" Africans owned slaves as well. The reason is sociological rather than historical, and we shall inquire from there. Light-skinned Africans look more like the other four "races", (I put that in quotations because recent genetic work shows that a black from different families can be more genetically akin than two blacks from different families, so race is little more than a social concept to me). Off-track yet again, let me show some studies:

"There's about a 15 percent genetic variation between any two individuals. Less than half of that, about 6 percent, is accounted for by known racial groupings....A randomly selected white person, therefore, can easily be genetically closer to an African than another white... These people don't know evolutionary genetics. They talk about interesting issues in biology. And since, I think, there are no real races, I wonder what these issues are. It makes me angry that I have to take time from my research (on the genetics of aging) to argue about something that shouldn't even need to be discussed."

Deborah Blum "Race: many biologists argue for discarding the whole concept," The Sacramento Bee, October 18, 1995, p. A12

C. Loring Brace, an anthropologist at the University of Michigan, claims that "race is a four-letter word with no basis in biological reality." Of course, this issue is far from decided in the scientific community, with various people battling it out back and forth.

Going back, light-skinned African-Americans tend to look like the other four races, which are Indian, (red skinned), Asian, (yellow skinned), white, (white skinned), and Semitic (light brown skinned). Going purely off hue, with the exception of dark black Africans, most races aren't "very" white/yellow/red/brown, and light-skin blacks fit this hue. So much, in fact, that when I question racist people about whether or not they believe that black girls are ever pretty, I generally get a response similar to, "Not all of them, but them light-skinned ones can be, like that girl from Destiny's Child..." Racism works off the premise there's some imaginery divisible line in mankind that seperates us by categories, and they lump the "light-skinned" in with other categories. It can't escape people that most of the famous black female models are light-skinned black as opposed to dark skinned black. The black versus black racism results in a division between the two based upon perceived differences within society, light-skinned is considered to be more socially acceptable.

Off my sociological inquiry, the task at hand for demonstrating my second evidence for the thesis of Africans not being kidnapped is from Kevin Beary, African roots: slavery was widespread on the African continent long before Europeans appeared - and, indeed, is still practiced there.. Vol. 49, National Review, 03-10-1997, pp 45(3).

"First-hand accounts of the slave-trade are not numerous, but some form part of the Schomberg Collection of the New York Public Library, in Harlem, at Lennox (or Malcolm X) Boulevard and 135th Street. One of the oldest is A new Account of Some Part of Guinea, and the Slave Trade, published in London in 1734, which contains "The manner how the Negroes become Slaves." This is what the author, Captain William Snelgrave, has to say on the subject:

As for the manner how those people become slaves, it may be reduced under these several Heads.

1. It has been the custom among the Negroes, time out of mind, and is so to this day, for them to make slaves of all the captives they take in war. Now, before they had an opportunity of selling them to the white people, they were often obliged to kill great multitudes, when they had taken more than they could well employ in their own plantation.

Secondly. Most crimes amongst them are punished by mulcts and fines; and if the offender has not wherewithal to pay his fine, he is sold for a slave.

Thirdly. Debtors who refuse to pay their debts, or are insolvent, are likewise liable to be made slaves.

Fourthly. I have been told, that it is common for some inland people, to sell their children for slaves. But I never observed, that the people near the sea coast practice this, unless compelled thereto by extreme want and famine, as the people of Whidaw have lately been.

Another first-hand account of the slave-trade is John Newton's The Journal of a Slave Trader, written during the years 1750 to 1754, and published, together with the author's "Thoughts upon the African Slave Trade" in London in 1788. Late in life Newton repented of his slave trading, and became a clergyman and an abolitionist.

In his "Thoughts upon the African Slave Trade," written after he had seen the light, Newton writes:

The [African] law . . . punishes some species of theft with slavery; and in cases of adultery, both the woman, and the man who offends with her are liable to be sold for slaves. . . . I believe many of the slaves purchased in Sherbo, and probably upon the whole Windward coast, are convicts, who have forfeited their liberty, by breaking the laws of their country. . . .

I judge, the principal source of the slave trade, is, the wars which prevail among the natives.

As concerns slave catching a la Roots, Newton writes:

Some people suppose, that the ship trade is rather the stealing, than the buying of slaves. But there is enough to lay to the charge of the ships, without accusing them falsely. The slaves, in general, are bought, and paid for. . . . With regard to the natives, to steal a free man or woman, and to sell them on board a ship, would, I think, be a more difficult and more dangerous attempt in Sherbro, than in London. (emphasis is mine)

It is well to remember that Newton wrote the forgoing account after he had not only renounced the slave trade but also become an abolitionist clergyman. But rather than denounce slave raiding as depicted by Alex Haley, Newton specifically points out that the slave trade was not "rather the stealing, than the buying of slaves," and takes pains to caution his readers that "there is enough to lay to the charge of the [slave] ships, without accusing them falsely [of stealing slaves]."

One of the more detailed accounts of a slaver's life and work is Captain Theophilus Conneau's A Slaver's Log Book, or, 20 Years' Residence in Africa, published in 1854, and chronicling the years 1808 to 1847. In Chapter 19 of this book, entitled "How the Free Black Becomes a Slave," Captain Conneau gives the following account:

In the first category of slaves I shall name the prisoner of war. Other wars also take place, caused by family quarrels which also tend to slavery; I shall place these captives in the second category. . . .

In Africa, where coin is not known, the slave is made a substitute for this commodity. Therefore if a man wants to purchase a wife, he pays the amount in slaves; another wishes to purchase a quantity of cattle, he tenders in payment slaves. Fields of cassava, rice, or yams are paid in slaves. The African court also taxes all forfeitures and pecuniary penalties in slaves.

I shall place the above in the third class. In the fourth quality I will include those inculpated with witchcraft, the Criminal Conviction cases (not few in Africa), orphans of culprits, vagabonds who dare not to return to their tribes, and unruly sons.

By the fifth quality I will designate the gamblers. . . .

As there are in Africa no madhouses no hospitals, or houses of refuge, the brother often times sells his mad sister to avoid broils in his family. The father barters his sickly child to purchase another wife to reproduce a better offspring. The mother also is reluctantly driven to dispose of her imbecile, or deaf and dumb child, to avoid shame and ridicule from her neighbors. . . . The above invalids I will select as the sixth category of slaves.

Conneau writes also of his visit to the City of Timbo, Capital of the Foulha Nation, a Muslim tribe: When they heard my purpose to purchase slaves, they all sang out, 'Allah Okibarsa!' (The Lord be Praised!)

Several parties were immediately sent out to blockade the paths, and that night the African press-gang made several recruits from the slaves about the town, and early the next morning Sulimany-Ali [a Foulha nobleman] sallied forth before daybreak with his troop of horsemen and returned by sundown with 45 captives taken from Findo and Furo [the Foulha Nation's slave towns].

When he is ready to leave the town with his purchases, Conneau is presented with gifts from his Foulha hosts and business partners: "The king himself presented me five slaves."

Olaudah Equiano, in his The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, Written by Himself, confirms what the white slave traders wrote when he describes the system of slavery that existed in his native land. He was born, he writes, in a provincein the kingdom of Benin . . . in the year 1745. . . . The distance of this province from the capital of Benin and the sea coast must be very considerable, for I had never heard of white men of Europeans, nor of the sea.

The indigenous quality of African slavery can be inferred from the references Equiano makes to it throughout the first chapter of his book:

I remember a man was brought before my father, and the other judges, for kidnapping a boy; he was condemned to make recompense by a man or woman slave. Adultery, however, was sometimes punished with slavery or death, a punishment which I believe is inflicted on it throughout most of the nations of Africa . . . Their mode of marriage is thus . . . the dowry is given to the new married pair, which generally consists of portions of land, slaves, and cattle, household goods, and implements of husbandry. . . .

We have also markets . . . these are sometimes visited by stout mahogany- colored men from the southwest of us: we call them Oye-Eboe. . . . They always carry slaves through our land. Sometimes, indeed, we sold slaves to them, but they were only prisoners of war, or such among us as had been convicted of kidnapping, or adultery, and some other crimes, which we esteemed heinous.

Slavery was so commonplace in Africa, that "some of these slaves have even slaves under them as their own property, and for their own use." Equiano is kidnapped from his village -- but by African, not white, slave traders.

At length, after many days' traveling, during which I had often changed masters, I got into the hands of a chieftain. . . . I was again sold . . . I was bought of the merchant . . . till, at the end of six or seven months after I had been kidnapped, I arrived at the sea coast. . . . The first object which saluted my eyes when I arrived on the coast, was the sea, and a slave ship. . . . I was carried on board . . . immediately handled . . . by some of the crew.

Equiano's account of his kidnapping by his fellow Africans, his subsequent sale and resale to others of his continent during months of captivity, stands in contrast to the picture of white slave traders raiding the coasts of Africa that is so dear to some American educators and African-American propagandizers.

Equiano's description of the African slave system conforms to that given by the three white slave traders. The principle slave categories may be enumerated thus: 1) captives taken in war, or kidnapped (black Africans being the perpetrators of both the warfare and the kidnapping); 2) convicted felons (thieves, adulterers, murders, etc.), and the mentally infirm; 3) those born into slavery and held as slaves by African masters.

From the foregoing accounts, it can be seen that European and American slave traders did not introduce slavery either into Africa or into the New World. A thriving slave system existed in both continents long before the start of the much more publicized Atlantic trade. One can only imagine the delight of the African slave masters, and slave dealers, when the human commerce they engaged in caught the eye of foreign traders arriving on the coasts of West Africa.

The original draft of the Declaration of Independence, as written by Thomas Jefferson, sought to express the disgust of the American people at the barbaric African slave tradition in these words:

He [George III] has waged civil war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights of life and liberty, in the persons of a distant people, who never offended him, captivating and carrying them into slavery into another hemisphere, or to incur miserable death in their transportation thither. This piratical warfare, the opprobrium of infidel powers, is the warfare of the Christian king of Great Britain. Determined to keep open a market where men should be bought and sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce.

That Jefferson should have blamed King George for the slave trade is perhaps not unremarkable, given that one intent of the Declaration is to vilify that monarch. However, George III was not only not responsible for starting the trade, he abolished it in 1807. Jefferson's reference to "the opprobrium of infidel powers" shows that the framer was well aware that the Muslim potentates of Africa were heavily responsible for "this execrable commerce."

I put the part in bold because it shows again, that kidnapping white slaves was rather easy in London as opposed to Africa. Some black historians, such as Lerone Bennett Jr., will mention white slavery, but they gloss over it, while simultaneously accusing whites of doing the same thing to black history.

"Nothing is more common than to hear people-Black and White-say that the crucial difference between Black and White history is that "we didn't come here in the same way." By this they mean that Black people came to English America in slavery and White people came in freedom. But the first Black immigrants, the 20 Africans who landed at Jamestown, Virginia, in August 1619, a year before the arrival of the Mayflower, were not slaves. Nor, for the most part, as I indicated in The Shaping of Black America, were the first Whites free. This is a point of capital importance in the history of Black America. They came, these first Blacks, the same way that many, perhaps most, of the first Whites came-under duress and pressure. They found a system-- indentured servitude- which made it possible for poor Whites to pay for their passage by selling their services to planters for a stipulated number of years. Under this system, which TV and textbooks generally overlook, tens of thousands of Whites were shipped to the colonies and sold to the highest bidder. In Virginia and other colonies, the first Black settlers fell into a well-established socioeconomic groove that carried with it no implications of racial inferiority. After working for a number of years as indentured servants, some were freed according to law and custom. Before the introduction of slavery, they accumulated land, voted, testified in courts and mingled with the masses of Whites on a basis of relative equality. And it should be borne in mind, in considering the myth of original slavery (read: sin), that freedom preceded slavery, and integration preceded racism."

L. Edward Purcell talks about this as well, in CHAPTER : 1 : The First Europeans, Native Americans, and the Forced Immigration of Black Africans. Vol. 1, Immigration: Social Issues in American History, 01-16-1995:

"A few wealthy landowners came to control the tobacco-based economy of Virginia and the Chesapeake. Because tobacco farming required large numbers of workers and English attempts to enslave the Indians failed, tens of thousands of ordinary lower-class men and women (the first females arrived in 1620) also immigrated. Most came to the English southern colonies as indentured servants. In exchange for passage to Virginia or Maryland and the promise of land at the end of their service, they contracted to give up temporarily most of their economic and legal rights and work for the landowners under terms of a contract (called an indenture) for between four and seven years. These people were eager to escape from England, where economic changes had driven many workers into poverty and where decades of political unrest and revolution had created social chaos. Most of those who immigrated as indentured servants were young and rootless men between the ages of 15 and 24, former farmers or common laborers. A significant number, however, had been craftsmen or small tradesmen in Britain.

They often led harsh and difficult lives during their time as servants. Their tasks on the tobacco farms were hard, and they worked 10 to 12 hours a day, six days a week. They had little recourse against their cruel masters, who could sell or trade them like commodities. Disease killed many and the early death rate may have been as high as 40 percent among white indentured servants....."

"The first 20 black slaves landed at Jamestown from a Dutch ship in 1619. After that the English were relatively slow to import black slaves into Virginia and the Chesapeake colonies, though many thousands were purchased for labor on sugar plantations in the British West Indies. Only when the supply of white indentured servants began to wane in the last decades of the 1600s, did the English colonists of North America turn to Africa for agricultural workers."

Edward Lloyd of Maryland, an early pro-slavery advocate, denied that traders were "man-stealers". To quote him, "very few of the negroes brought into this country are kidnapped and stolen away." Three-fourths of them were captives of African wars, "sent abroad on account of the vindictive spirit of those people." Holland went further, claiming the trade only transferred the slave "from one master to another," adding that the condition of the slaves "in the Southern States is much superior to that of those in Africa. Who, then, will say that the trade is immoral?" Connecticut Federalist Theodore Dwight responded: "Who empowered us to judge for them [African slaves] as to which is the worse and which the better state? Have these miserable beings ever been consulted on the question of their removal?" Not to be outdone, Peter Early explained that "in the Southern section of the Union, " the slave trade was not "an offense which nature revolts at." Southerners might "deprecate slavery as an evil; as a political evil, but not as a crime." Thus the government could expect no southerner to "send a slave trader to his death." (Important for later on discussion).

Francis Springer in "War for What" puts even more light on this issue. Negroes who were slaves from Africa were not enemies captured in wars, rather, there were certain African tribes which specialized in slave trade. They would raid a village, take prisoners captive, and make them do a torturous march to be sold. On p. 24 Springer writes: "African kings, justifying their exportations of fellow Africans, claimed that they were only disposing of prisoners of war; but few purchasers had any illusions that the so-called wars were anything but raids for the procurements of prisoners."

Concerning white people kidnapping slaves, Springer writes on pp. 22-23: 'White men did not go into the interior of Africa and kidnap free Africans. Africa was then still the "Dark Continent" and the interior was "the white man's grave." The enervating climate, the malarial swamps, thick jungles, fierce animals, poisonous snakes, hungry crocodiles, the Tsetse fly, dysentry and the fearful fevers peculiar to the tropics discouraged whites from wandering around. Few penetrated beyond the coast line, and fewer returned. Native kings and chiefs resented any kidnapping of their people by whites. It robbed them of their fees, and they would wreak murderous vengeance on offenders when this practice was tried. Native slavers also did not hesistate to capture and enslave wandering whites, and apparently, there was a "white" market among the blacks.'

'Everybody has asked the question. . ."What shall we do with the Negro?" I have had but one answer from the beginning. Do nothing with us! Your doing with us has already played the mischief with us. Do nothing with us! If the apples will not remain on the tree of their own strength, if they are wormeaten at the core, if they are early ripe and disposed to fall, let them fall! I am not for tying or fastening them on the tree in any way, except by nature's plan, and if they will not stay there, let them fall. And if the Negro cannot stand on his own legs, let him fall also. All I ask is, give him a chance to stand on his own legs! Let him alone!'

Frederick Douglass, "What the Black Man Wants," Negro Social and Political Thought 1850-1920: Representative Texts, edited by Howard Brotz (New York: Basic Books, Inc. 1962), p. 283. 

North Versus South

What one must also not forget, is that the industry of the middlemen, i.e. the shipping, storage and also financing of the South’s products were all in the hands of the North. In 1828, Northern businessmen helped get the "Tariff Act" passed. It raised the prices of manufactured products from Europe which were sold mainly in the South. The purpose of the law was to encourage the South to buy the North's products. It angered the Southern people to have to pay more for the goods they wanted from Europe or pay more to get goods from the North. Either way the Southern people were forced to pay more because of the efforts of Northern businessmen. Though most of the tariff laws had been changed by the time of the Civil War, the Southern people still remembered how they were treated by the Northern people.

Previously, we noted that whites in the North did not have any special feelings for the black people. In fact, blacks were forbidden to fight in the Civil War, an anomaly if you think that black freedom was the issue, and even when they were finally allowed to fight, they didn't receive hardly any pay for it.

However, the issue for slavery really opened up when a slave named Dred Scott sued his master, who had lived in Illinois and Wisconsin, where slavery wasn't allowed, and still used Mr. Scott as a slave. Roger Tancy delivered his opinion, (not just his, but of the Supreme Court), that any negro of descent from a family of slaves was an inferior person, who thus couldn't sue. The problem was this just didn't apply to negro's, anyone who was of slave descent was an "inferior person".

Northerners were concerned about this, and it caused a great deal of worry. After the Dred Scott ruling was passed, and then after another law was passed, (Fugitive Slave Act), stating that Southerners could "reclaim" their slaves without due process by going North and finding them, Northerners panicked. In effect, a Southerner could go North and claim any white man was his slave, and the person could not be granted due process, meaning no one could verify his status as a free man! In addition, the Dred Scott case meant that once he became a "slave", he couldn't even petition the court to have his status checked! Naturally, this worried Northerners quite a bit, as attested to in popular literature.

Tensions were further elevated by anti-slavery murderers who would incite slaves to rebellion. John Brown was one such person. On page 20 of the "Coming Fury", we find that "John Brown was a brutal murderer if there was one... If what he had done made adoption of a slave code seem essential in the South, it also made acceptance of such a code unthinkable in the North." We'll note in a bit how Douglas proposes to let the Western territories decide slavery based upon popular concensus, which brings floods of anti and pro slavery factions into the areas, which immediately went to war with each other, each causing a rising tension and a decreasing threshold of tolerance for differing opinions.

Tensions got even worse in the Panic of 1857, where Northerners started to lose business, while the Southern states kept making money from the cotton business. The Northern response to this was to start putting heavier taxes on the Southern exports, which of course, the South wanted nothing to do with it. The reason was, despite popular ideas, the South was really poor. Strange to think? Not really. The North was getting new immigrants and making strides in technology, while the South was lagging behind. It was stuck with a few cash crops, but they depleted the soil rather quickly, and because they lacked machinery, they faced a problem. The only way to manufacture goods was to send them North, where they had to buy them back for high prices. Worse than that, the old familiar usurery system of Mesopotamia, England, and India was back, where the lower classes of civilization were perminently kept in debt. In effect, the War was about rich Northerners afraid that slavery would undermine their industrial business, while in the South, the War was about rich Southerners who were afraid industry would undercut their slave earnings.

Fredrick Law Olmsted, reporting for the New York times, wrote that most Southerners were generally poor:

"The proportion of the free white men who live as well in any respect as our working classes at the North, on an average, is small, and the citizens of the cotton states, as a whole, are poor."

Most Southerners didn't own slaves. Of six million Southern whites, only 347,525 owned slave in 1850. More important than that, of that 347,525 slave owners, only 37,662 had more than 20 slaves grand total. The price of a field hand at this time was a whopping $1,800 per, meaning that it took a considerable amount of money to even own a slave. In fact, it was more profitable to trade slaves than use them, the general rule was that if cotton sold for 12 cents a pound, a slave was worth 1,200 dollars, which meant if you waited for cotton to go up to 15 cents, you could make an extra 300 dollars per slave.

Washington and Jefferson thought of slavery as a necessary evil, though Jefferson thought the blacks would stand little chance of ever being seen equal to the whites, he admitted that slavery scared him "like a fireball in the night." (Bennett, op. cit. p. 141). A French visitor to America said that: "they are constantly talking of abolishing slavery, and of contriving some other means of cultivating their estates." (Notably though, both Washington and Jefferson seemed to regard the Native Americans as better slaves than the Blacks, probably because it was economically cheaper to get native slaves than have them imported.)

Now, going back a bit further, before cotton and slavery were an issue, Congress was undecided upon an issue, namely, that issue was who had more power, the states or the federal government? All of our earliest forefathers had argued both ways, no real consensus was in sight. In general, (though not always), the North sided with a strong centralized federal government, while the Southern States sided with anyone who believed in a weak federal government supported by strong state governments.

Cotton was never an important part of the Southern economy until Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1793. Previously, the cash crops of the South were tobacco, rice, and indigo.From this point onward, what was formerly going to be abolished through time became a booming industry.

To get the proper hatred against the South, books such as "Uncle Tom's Cabin", a notorious proganda novel, a picture from the "American Anti-Slavery Almanac", filled with Southerners having regular lynchings, brawls, cockfights, gambling, slave beating, painted a picture of Southerners as a backwater society, which was a sign of the increasing superiority complex the North was developing over the South. In particular, the North having immense immigration and new technology, which lead to the view of the South as being a somewhat more barbarious place.

A New York news-correspondant felt that he should investigate slavery himself, to see how the slaves were treated. He first went to a Negro Church, where he admired the looks of the church congregation, and in particular, he especially was fond of the singing and dancing. He reported that:

"The darkies, so far as I have seen, both house servants and field hands, seem greatly attached to their masters and are apparently contented and happy. Whether that is anything in favor of the system or not is a question."

Quoted in Bruce Catton, "The Coming Fury", p. 5

The South itself had thought of ending slavery, anti-slavery was higher in the South than in the North in 1827. In 1832, Virginia legislature had proposed a gradual weening out of slavery, which would have taken effect in 1861. However, as Northern abolitionists became more virulent and antagonistic, the South responded by equally becoming as virulent and antagonistic, which in effect, closed off any and all thoughts of ending slavery in the South. After that, slavery became a wholly adopted Southern institution.

This wasn't helped by men like Hinton Rowan Helper, a proselytizing Southerner who was against slavery, but for no good reason. His idea was to have every former slave owner run around in sackcloth, like Biblical days, then hang themselves. It wasn't because he was a friend of the slaves either, for the extermination of the blacks was a good thing, like destroying "hyenas, jackals, wolves, skunks, rats, snakes, scorpions, spiders, and other noxious creatures". He was against slavery because he hated blacks.

Helper's overall charge was that because of slavery, the South was not progressing, and hence it contributed nothing to fine culture, arts, or literature. The fumes were getting hot, and Congressman Clark addressed it when he said:

"Do gentlemen expect that they can distribute incendiary books, give incendiary advice, advise rebellion, advise non-intercourse in all relations of life, spread such works broadcast over the country, and not be taken to task for it?"

As the territories spread out, abolitionists and pro-slavery supporters alike started to fight in public. This happened because Douglas, trying to beat Lincoln on the question of slavery, said that the Western expanded territories would decide slavery based upon the public consensus of the territory. Lincoln himself though played no small part, as he refused the treaty right before the war which would have ended it, which essentially stated the same thing. Regardless, Douglas' decision made thousands of pro-slavery and anti-slavery settlers push West, and the two living next to each other naturally incited violence against each other.

Much ado about nothing has been said over the Gettysberg Address given by Lincoln. It was a sham. Lincoln purposefully freed slaves in areas he now had no more control over, and more importantly, did not free slaves in areas he did have control over. In other words, the whole idea was just a political ploy designed to get sympathy for the North. Even after Lincoln's' Emancipation Proclamation, Missouri was trading in Slaves, and it was a Union territory. Here's what Lincoln himself said in regards to slavery and the Civil War:

"My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause."

The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume V, "Letter to Horace Greeley" (August 22, 1862), p. 388. 

What did Lincoln do when he made the Emancipation Proclamation? In effect, he freed slaves that were owned by the Confederacy, yet did nothing to stop slave trade in several Union territories for fear of revolt. He believed that at best, the Emancipation Proclamation would cause a slave revolt, at worst, it would weaken the South by causing them to lose a labor source. However, the Proclamation never caused a revolt anywhere. The greater effect was the propaganda effect, England and France, friends with the South, were opposed to African slavery. If they believed that the Civil War was about slavery, rather than States rights, they would not help the South. Union General, and later President of the U.S., Grant said that: "I'll draw my sword on any man who says I fight the abolitionist's cause." Both the Union and the South knew why they were fighting the war. Lincoln's real plan with the slaves was twice preposed, to send them to Liberia, founded by treaties with princes and ex-slaves.

At the Constitutional Convention there were arguments over slavery. Representatives of the Northern states claimed that if the Southern slaves were mere property, then they should not be counted toward voting representation in Congress. Southerners, placed in the difficult position of trying to argue, at least in this case, that the slaves were human beings, eventually came to accept the three-fifths compromise, by which five slaves counted as three free men toward that representation. Southerners were now in an interesting position, they had "property" which counted as population. Observe that our government works by population counts, the greater a population within a state, the greater that area of power. By the 3/5 law, the South gained a large amount of political power for non-voting citizens. Today, you might notice that happening in areas with prisons around them. You see, prison populations are counted as being total population, though they cannot vote. That increases federal aid to the area, and most prisons are in highly rural places, meaning that funding which should be going to urbanized areas where the criminals come from is instead being sent to backwater towns. Again, this is an important lesson for people who like to harp about the evil's of the past, we're still doing the same things, only we've now found ways to rest easier at night through our mental justifications. By the end of the convention the institution of slavery itself, though never specifically mentioned, was well protected within the body of the Constitution.

It seemed to Thomas Jefferson and many others that slavery was on its way out, doomed to die a natural death. It was becoming increasingly expensive to keep slaves in the agrarian society of the south. Northern and Southern members of Congress voted together to abolish the importation of slaves from overseas in 1808, but the domestic slave trade continued to flourish. We do know that illegal slaves were still being brought in even after this time period, however, but this made the adoption of the "slave through maternal descent" necessary, because a large majority of where slaves had previously come from had just been cut-off.

Congress had taken notice of the slave trade before its abolition in 1808. A 1794 law, passed without debate in the wake of the revolution on St. Domingue, made it illegal for Americans to prepare slaving vessels in American ports. An 1800 law prohibited citizens' participation in the trade aboard slave ships, allowing the United States Navy to participate for the first time in regulating this commerce and adding imprisonment to the monetary fines already in place. South Carolina' s behavior after 1803 scandalized many constituents throughout the nation, and pressure mounted on Congress, often in the form of instructions from state legislatures to their congressional delegations to act more boldly as 1808 drew near in cutting down slave trade.

At the end of the long debate, on December 31, the House voted 63- 53 to strike out the clause that inflicted "the punishment of death on owners and master of vessels employed in the slave trade." The vote was sectional, but not sharply so. The South delivered fifteen of the fifty-three votes in favor of the death penalty, while the North stood almost even with the South in voting to strike it out. The sectional balance was very similar in a vote on the same subject two weeks later. The act ultimately decreed a fine up to $10,000 and two to four years imprisonment. The hesitance of northern representatives thus helped the South gain another moral victory, and it was not until 1820 that the death penalty was affixed to smuggling foreign slaves into the United States.

Historian Donald Robinson has argued that "in terms of intersectional politics," these discussions in 1806- 1807 "marked a turning point." They demonstrated "growing southern unity, and they showed a marked sectional cleavage."

Industry in the North expanded, and in particular, it saw its greatest profits as coming from the Southern agrarian neighbors. However, the South found that quality goods were manufactured for cheaper abroad, so that's where they sent their money. Angry, Northern industries lead by President Jackson slapped tariffs on imported goods which the North manufactured, but could be gotten for cheaper in the foreign market. Congress had raised duties in 1816 and again in 1824. The tariff of 1824 included high duties on imported agricultural goods such as hemp, wheat, and liquor to protect western farmers; imported textiles to protect New England interests; and iron to protect mining and forging industries of Pennsylvania. South Carolina was hit so hard by it that prices increased as much as 50 percent.

When Congress raised the duties even higher in 1828 with the so-called "Tariff of Abominations," South Carolina protested it twice, and passed the Ordinance of Nullification in November, 1832, which in effect, refused to collect tariffs and stated that if the North persisted on the tariffs, they would secede from the Union. Jackson ordered federal troops to move to Charlston, but the situation was avoided when Congress revised the Tariff of Abominations in February of 1833.

Following this, there was a Panic of 1837, and a depression in the North, in which time period the South was wholly unaffected. The Southerners naturally exalted their financial state while the Northerners were rather bitter towards it. This situation repeated itself with the Panic of 1857, same consequences, though even more devastating for the North than the first panic.

In the midst of all this consuming chaos, we find that both the South and the North were growing expansively, each reaching for the West as the final stronghold, per Douglas' agreement. There's an old saying that "all that is necessary for democracy to fail is for 51% to figure out how to screw the other 49%", and this is exactly what happened. Senate called for parity over and over again, but both North and South believed the other was gaining too much power. Slavery was an issue, but probably not so much so as many historical books make it seem, because slavery was protected under the constitution, and it was impossible to make amendments to abolish it. Quoting the Constitution:

"No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give to Congress the power to abolish or interfere, within any State, with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said State."

Jefferson Davis, at the time a Senator from Mississippi, summed up the sectionalist argument himself. Speaking, in effect, to the people of the North concerning slavery:

“It is not humanity that influences you… it is that you may have a majority in the Congress of the United States and convert the Government into an engine of Northern aggrandizement… you want by an unjust system of legislation to promote the industry of the United States at the expense of the people of the South.”

Even in the North only four states permitted free blacks to vote, and in no state could they serve on a jury. Many people wondered what could possibly be done with the huge number of blacks if they were, in fact, freed.

"The Yankee ... is marked by a peculiar perversity of nature which makes them our (the South's) natural protagonist."

Thomas Jefferson

What Southerners accused the North of doing was basically making a "red herring", or a false argument designed to distract from the real issue. The lack of true focus on slavery as a major means for the war is brought to light by the fact that the "Emancipation" was superficial, (and documents prove everyone knew this), and Lincoln's original proposal was to ship Africans back to Africa, which he put before Congress. Further, the Emancipation did not occur before the war, nor doing the beginning, but only after it was greatly underway.

John H. Reagan argued before the U.S. House in January 1861 that the South could not be expected to surrender three billion dollars worth of slave property, which would "ruin our commercial and political prospects for the future." Of course, not just the Southern elite, a very small minority, could be hit hard, so reason had to be given to those less well-endowed with wealth why they should opposite it. James D. B. De Bow listed ten reasons why "the interest of the poorest non-slaveholder among us, is to make common cause with, and die in the last trenches of defence of, the slave property of his more favored neighbor." Other Southerners suspected that attempts to divide slaveowners from non-slaveowners were an abolitionist ploy. As a South Carolina minister wrote in 1861: "We are not struggling for fleeting and temporary interests. We are struggling for our very being."

" ... It will be a glorious day for our country when all the children within its borders shall learn that the four years of fratricidal war between the North and South was waged by neither with criminal or unworthy intent, but by both to protect what they conceived to be threatened rights and imperiled liberty: that the issues which divided the sections were born when the Republic was born, and were forever buried in an ocean of fraternal blood."

Lieutenant General John B. Gordon, CSA

Taken from "Reminiscences Of The Civil War" John Gordon says:

"As for the South, it is enough to say that perhaps eighty percent of her armies were neither slave-holders, nor had the remotest interest in the institution. No other proof, however, is needed than the undeniable fact that at any period of the war from its beginning to near its close the South could have saved slavery by simply laying down its arms and returning to the Union...."

"The South maintained with the depth of religious conviction that the Union formed under the Constitution was a Union of consent and not of force; that the original States were not the creatures but the creators of the Union; that these States had gained their independence, their freedom, and their sovereignty from the mother country, and had not surrendered these on entering the Union; that by the express terms of the Constitution all rights and powers not delegated were reserved to the States; and the South challenged the North to find one trace of authority in that Constitution for invading and coercing a sovereign State."

Even the regular conventions which people held were directed towards taxation and economic enslavement.

"The Southern States now stand in the same relation toward the Northern States, in the vital matter of taxation, that our ancestors stood toward the people of Great Britain. They are in a minority in Congress. Their representation in Congress is useless to protect them against unjust taxation, and they are taxed by the people of the North for their benefit exactly as the people of Great Britain taxed our ancestors in the British Parliament for their benefit. For the last forty years the taxes laid by the Congress of the United States have been laid with a view of subserving the interests of the North. The people of the South have been taxed by duties on imports not for revenue, but for an object inconsistent with revenue -- to promote, by prohibitions, Northern interests in the productions of their mines and manufactures".

"The Address of the people of South Carolina, assembled in Convention, to the people of the Slaveholding States of the United States"

James Kettner summarized what the South thought of the issue: "In essence, the South insisted that the Union had been the analogue of the old British empire-that is, a political community formed of separate sovereign peoples that in itself lacked ultimate coercive power over its members." This example can be seen through Benjamin Franklin Bache, who warned Americans to beware Great Britain's moves towards abolition of the slave trade.

"We wish we could say that the measure there was taken up with the same benevolent sincerity that it is pursued here," as was being led by Jefferson. This wasn't possible because the "hypocritical" British control was using the issue to keep Englishmen "blinded to the equally galling slavery which that enemy to all liberty was forging for themselves and other white slaves of the oligarchy of Great Britain." Labor in the West Indies, he claimed, was now to be supplied by Asian imports under the euphemism of "free labourers," which would produce a mortality rate "ten times more dreadful" on those islands because of the change from "the hardy, robust and unsusceptible African" to the frail "Asiatic." In short, "the tragic farce of [British] abolition is of the blackest hypocrisy."

I've included this quote for two reasons, one because it might give a better perspective on why it was that blacks were chosen for slaves, and two, it reinforces that the English were going against slavery, which lets us know why Lincoln was so witty in what he said.

Economic historians such as Charles Beard, Louis Hacker, and Barrington Moore emphasize that a great deal of the emphasis was on the economic difference between the North and the South. Some people point out that before 1840, no exact economic data existed, but it's obvious from Northern accounts like the ones cited above, and by looking at drawings, art, things to that effect, that the South and the North were painted differently from an economic perspective. (Get the "American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War" for some good evidence of this.) Most certainly, no historian could deny the gap whenever the "Panics" occured as not having an effect on the economic interpretation between the two factions.

Other Factors of the War

By now I have hopefully convinced my reader that the Civil War was not just brought about by a singular and sudden cause, but rather, by a conglomeration of confusing factors. Let's now discuss some other ones.

The War could have been avoided, after all, both Lincoln and Davis were eager not to have to resort to war, both bitterly wanted to avoid it. What caused the fatal first shot that drove the nation into war? First, we must understand that both the North and the South thought that if push came to shove, the Civil War, (being this far into the study, I should point out that "Civil War" is an erroneous term, as that is when two factions go for dominance of one government, that wasn't what happened), would only last a matter of three months at the most. Quite frankly, neither side was prepared for the War.

In some senses, this was because the last war that America was really fought was in 1812, which was forty-nine years ago. The last major war was the American Revolution, and very few of the people remembered the horrors of war. Most people saw it as an adventure (Catton, "The Civil War", p. 150). "War, with its offerings of travel to far places, of intimate association with large numbers of other men, of the glory and excitement of battle" seemed to be the perfect break from everyday life (Bell Wiley, "The Life of Johnny Reb: The Common Soldier of the Confederacy", p. 17). Frank Vandiver, "Their Tattered Flags", p. 111, shows that people were bringing large quantities of irrelevant materials to war, such as coffee and their slaves. People would cheer from mountain tops when the war was underway and watch the battles fought with great enthusiasm. It's arguable that if the general population knew the real effects of war, factions which did everything they could to cause war would have averted their efforts.

According to "Why the South Lost the Civil War", (Richard E. Beringer, et al.) "the people of the South had no widely accepted mystical sense of distinct nationality." I find this statement highly false, the South possessed an extraordinairrely high mythical sense of the people, so much so that before, during, and even today after the Civil War, being a "Southerner" is almost like having a distinct racial attachment to it.

David M. Potter, (The South and the Sectional Conflict) noted historians' tendency to overemphasize the cultural element of nationalism. He warned that it is too easy for nationalists to fabricate a shared culture, and too easy for historians to find some scrap of data "which can be construed to 'prove' the existence of the pretended culture" and consequently justify nationalism. Therefore, Potter recommends replacing a definition of nationalism as common culture or language with an understanding of nationalism as a "community of interest."

Historians have also provided evidence for a common Southern interest. Potter verifies Confederates' belief that the interests of Southerners were threatened by Northern tariff policy and insistence on free labor in territorial expansion. In effect, the hatred of slavery caused Southerners to not want anyone to be exposed to Northern schools, churches, newspapers, crowds, or even legislature. Thus, they believed that the differences were too irreconcilable to ever have a Union with the North. Meanwhile, the majority of non-slaveholders believed that they were sufficiently dependant upon the Southern economy, and scared of slave uprisings, to support a concensus on slavery.

The South thus became scared that there was a definite political and economic threat of enslavement by the North upon them. "The war owed more," Edward Pessen concludes, "to the inevitably opposed but similarly selfish interests- or perceived interests-of North and South than to differences in their cultures and institutions."

Gabor S. Boritt, "Civil War," World Book Online Americas Edition

"Most historians agree that the war had a number of causes. They note especially the sectional division between North and South—that is, the differences in economies, ideals, and ways of life. They also point to the disputes between the federal government and the states over what rights and powers the states possessed. Historians further mention the blunderings of politicians and the disorder in the American political party system during the 1850's...."

"From a fourth to a third of all Southern whites were members of slaveholding families. About half the families owned fewer than 5 slaves, though less than 1 percent of the families owned 100 or more."

"Early in the war, Northern blacks who wanted to fight to end slavery tried to enlist in the Union Army. But the Army rejected them. Most whites felt the war was a "white man's war."

Robert Bonner, Roundheaded cavaliers? The context and limits of a confederate racial project., Civil War History, 03-01-2002, pp 34.

"This strange episode in the history of the Confederate South has periodically attracted scholarly attention, especially from those interested in detailing the culmination of antebellum Southern nationalism. Most recently, James McPherson has revisited the topic in Is Blood Thicker than Water? Crises of Nationalism in the Modern World. Prepared for a Canadian audience, McPherson's slim book compares the Confederate South's unlikely foray into "ethnic nationalism" with Quebec separatism, which also bases its "quiet revolution" on more readily accepted notions of shared French "blood." McPherson admits that, compared to the francophone basis of Quebecois solidarity, the notion of a distinct "Southern" race seems "little short of ludicrous" and had "scarcely any foundation in fact." He shrewdly reminds us, however, that national myths do not have to be true to be powerful. As Ernest Renan famously explained, in a phrase McPherson invokes, part of nationhood involves getting your history wrong. Extending this insight, McPherson marshals the strongest case ever made that the theme of ethnic difference from the North, however preposterous it might have been, lay at the core of Confederate self-understanding.

James McPherson, like William Taylor and others who preceded him, has argued that Southern identification with Cavaliers developed from slaveholders' growing fondness for romantic novels. Mark Twain was one of the first to offer such an explanation, wryly suggesting that the South's self-delusive war for secession could be attributed to the stupefying effect of overindulging in Sir Walter Scott. From the 1820s through the 1850s, Twain suggested, Southern masters imbibed medieval fantasies with as much fervor as Don Quixote had immersed himself in an imaginative world of chivalry. In his study of Southern nationalism, historian Rollin Osterweis pushed Twain's speculation further, suggesting that "Southrons" who adapted Scott's mythic world to the slave states registered a fundamental change in sectional self- conception. The descent into fantasy seemed to come at the cost of a twisted sense of reality for Southerners, no less than for Quixote. The Confederate South fared far worse, however, if only because Federal artillery proved far more deadly than the windmills of Renaissance Spain in a work of fiction.

In contrast to the tortured constitutional recriminations or the endless polemics about slavery, defining the war as a deeply rooted antagonism could be immediately understood and applied to the field of battle. The theory allowed participants to understand the conflict as simply "a war of alien races, distinct nationalities, and opposite, hostile and eternally antagonistic Governments, " as Quitman Moore put it in 1861.

This fluid language of race made temperament and appearance as important as historical differences of opinion. One attack upon New Englanders noted an ingrained set of characteristics that included "hypocrisy, studied eccentricities, long lank hair, rueful countenances, snivelling cant, affectations of supernatural selfgloriousness, and revolting habits of impertinent officiousness." For others, Saxon descent suggested a species of subhuman existence. George Fitzhugh took satisfaction in tracing New Englanders back to the "cold and marshy regions" of Britain, where, he pointed out, "man is little more than a natural, cold-blooded, amphibious biped." A writer in 1863 was similarly disparaging of the first New England settlers, which he termed a mass of "Saxonized mawworms," that had been "vomited from the piety-gorged stomach of Britain" and would eventually meet their end through collective suicide, just as "the Java reptile" expired through "the excess of its own poison." President Jefferson Davis himself echoed such language late in 1862, speaking before the Mississippi legislature about the basic incompatibility of the two sections. "There is indeed a difference between the two peoples," he explained, going back to the 1640s to explain that "our enemies" were "a traditionless and homeless race" that had been "gathered together by Cromwell from the bogs and fens of the north of Ireland and of England." From that time to the present, he warned, Northerners had been "disturbers of the peace of the world."

Christopher Phillips, "The crime against Missouri": Slavery, Kansas, and the cant of southerness in the border West. , Civil War History, 03-01-2002, pp 60.

"The defense of individual white minority rights in the republic-with slavery at the notion's heart-soon drew Missourians into a general acceptance of the concept of Southern rights, which entailed defiance against the majoritarian authority. More ominously, its sympathetic and widespread use in country parlance suggested a retreat from the Middle Western identity that had so shaped its past and a move toward a distinctive identity based upon separation-party and otherwise from its once-Western moorings....

Claiborne F. Jackson wrote to Atchison that "I say let the Indians have it [Nebraska] forever. They are better neighbors than the abolitionists, by a damned sight. If this is to become `free-nigger' territory, Missouri must become so too, for we can hardly Keep our negroes here now." In turn, Atchison wrote Jefferson Davis later in 1854 that "the men who are hired by the Boston Abolitionists to settle and abolitionize Kansas will not hesitate, to steal our slaves." This prompted Atchison to counsel one group of prospective emigrants from western Missouri " to give a horse thief, robber, or homicide a fair trial, but to hang a negro thief or Abolitionist, without judge or jury."

After the war, the effects were far from good. As Michael Hahn, a disgruntled Southerner, remarked:

"Instead of extending the Republican fold, old citizens of Union and Republican proclivities were ostracized and only new comers were placed in positions of honor and emolument. They were not satisfied with filling the positions of Governor and other state officers and U.S. Senators with 'Carpet-baggers', but went further: In the present campaign every white man on the electoral ticket and every one of the five nominations for Congress is a 'Carpet-bagger'. This greediness naturally excites and inflames the old rebel population, and disgusts the tried old Union citizens."

The New Orleans Bee reports the Negroes idea on it:

"It seems that the negroes have had enough of the 'carpet-baggers'. They say the latter have been profuse in promises to them but sparing in performance -- that the 'carpet-baggers' told them their turn would come 'to-morrow' but 'to-morrow' never came.The negroes therefore say they are going in for 'to-day' and are determined to secure their share of the spoils."

The carpet-baggers were hated because ones like Henry Clay Warmoth said that former slave owners should be hanged, the South should become a territory, and that they should have "no rights, no privileges, no anything but what the government in its magnanimity sees proper to give them." (He later changed his tune and started to rally for the ex-confederates.)

Interestingly, less than a month after Congress adopted the Fourteenth Amendment, (and the equal protection clause), in 1866, Congress enacted eight laws granting preference in land, education, banking, hospitals, and other areas to free slaves. President Andrew Johnson argued that it was prejudiced against whites.


The Civil War was caused by the Northern and Southern perceptions on slavery, which elevated a previous crisis on states rights. Both Northerners and Southerners made a series of decisions which inflamed the war and caused unrepairable damage to the Union. Most of this was caused by the fact that neither saw the other's side of the issue clearly, and instead, both wanted to get as much as possible with as little compromising. This situation was exploited greatly in future years by carpet-baggers, who would promise many things to the blacks, then would pay for them to be shuttled around to different districts to cast multiple votes. After they were in office, they did nothing to help the negroes. Instead, they generally turned to rich people, who had the power and money, though not the majority vote, to get them what they wanted. They then arranged for "puppet trials" where blacks would be judges and jurors, though with no experience, who would get any Southerner to act in the manner they wanted, less they face legal action. Enraged whites and blacks clashed, causing more cultural rifts and destroying future relationships, meanwhile, the rich who started the whole problem still profited from it. In the end, we've all been blinded by the race-relationship problem. Blacks exploited blacks as quickly as whites exploited whites; whites exploited blacks and vice versa. The real issue here is about money and power, who exploited everyone irregardless of the race. To this day, we are fighting a mock battle with which the real antagonists have yet been called out.