Southern Plantations Lesson 2
The Plantation Economy • Plantation owners = planters • Early plantations were built in low-lying land along the coast. • Crop buyers could get to plantations easily because of the waterways. • Big plantation owners sold cash crops through a broker. • A broker buys and sells for someone else.
Plantation Workers • Big plantations needed more workers for the hard labor. • Early plantation workers were indentured servants. • At first some Africans were indentured servants doing work in the fields. • After the mid-1600s traders started bringing Africans as SLAVES.
Slaves were sold like property at an auction. • Slaves were never given freedom after a certain amount of time. • Indentured servants could be free. • A law was passed that said children of enslaved people were also slaves.
A Slave’s Life • Two kinds of slaves: 1. Field Slaves OR 2. House Slaves • Field slaves worked raising crops. • Some slave owners hired overseers to punish slaves if they did not work.
House slaves were usually treated better than field slaves. • Female house slaves cooked, cleaned, and sewed. • Male house slaves drove carriages and took care of horses.
Slave owners were free to treat slaves however they wanted – good or bad. • Laws said slaves could not learn to read or write. • The Christian religion became a source of strength for slaves. • They sang spiritual songs to get through the day.
A Planter’s Life • Plantations were far from towns. • There were few schools in the South. • Southern planters were very educated. • They hired teachers from Europe. • Girls only went to school until age 12 or 13. • The boys had to learn business skills to run the farm.
Many planters were expected to serve the community (judge, representative). • So, many planters became leaders in the 13 colonies.