Slavery DBQ

At the birth of the United States, around 1775 to 1830, Americans took up a new identity. This identity on its face was considered to be liberating and largely democratic, to the point where the American constitution even states that everyman deserves ” life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. Although this is how the fathers of America wanted their country to be portrayed. The reality was, not everyone was allowed his or her constitutional rights.Albeit many groups were deprived of these rights, the cultural/racial group at the riverfront was the African slaves and their freed peers, who still struggled to obtain these rights once becoming “free’.

Despite these struggles many slaves obtained freedom through petitions and letters to their owners (Docs B) and some earned their freedom by fighting in wars (Doc A). Due to economic reasons however, many slaves were trapped by slavery (Doc C).These slaves and freedmen that fall under this category responded in both positive ways, such as peaceful petitions (Doc J), and negative ways, such as rebellions (Doc G & J). As previously stated the freed African Americans, and slaves of the late 8th century and early 1 9th century seemed to be omitted from the constitutional rights of America, even being referred to as “other persons” in the constitution. Despite this fact many slave still wanted to become free, which forced the number of freed African Americans to increase.This was best indicated in (Doc. A), which infers that many slaves, about 40,000 to be exact, responded to the British in search of freedom, in turn increasing the number of freed African Americans.

This trend is also portrayed in (Doc. B) shows one of the peaceful ways freed African Americans found to raise wariness of the discrimination brought upon them, through written petitions. On the other hand (Doc. H) shows how the non-freed slaves used written petitions to work towards the emancipation of slavery. (Doc.F) also supports this idea because it shows how African Americans responded to their desire to become free with the use of letters to their slaveholders to allow them to buy their freedom, if they could save up the money to do so. Even though the numbers of freed slaves increased the number of enslaved Africans also increased, this was best portrayed in the maps of (Doc.

C). With his document, and some additional knowledge you are able to infer not only that cotton production increased, but also that the number of freed slave increased in the North between 1790 and 1830.There was an increase in the production of cotton because America increases in size and population because of the Louisiana Purchase, which cause a greater demand. This increase in demand spurred great ideas, such as the cotton gin, by great men such as, Eli Whitney. The invention of the cotton gin is significant, because this invention would have sped up the process Of removing seeds from cotton. This invention would have required an increase in raw material, and to produce these slaveholders would need more slaves.Even with these trends of increasing freedom, both the slaves and their freed peers faced challenges and responded in deferent ways depending on their situations.

Doc. (G & J) best portrays the negative responses of the African slaves when faced with discrimination. (Doc. G) shows the constant longing for freedom expressed by the slaves. This longing overwhelmed many of the slaves, which caused many slaves to respond by following the lead of Liverwurst Outstation’s slave revolt n Haiti and biblical inspirations, to begin revolts of there own in the states.Challenges that were faced by the freed African Americans were as equally harsh. These so-called ‘freed” African Americans were discriminated against, taxed without representation and were deprived of property rights.

(Doc. J) on the other hand shows both a positive and potentially negative response by African Americans. This document shows that freed slaves are willing to be cordial, but also states that some African Americans were willing to respond with violence, because of the account by David Walker, to gain the rights they let that they deserve.Despite the Myriad of challenges that blacks had to endure, there were many people in America, both black and white that stepped up and helped both the enslaved Africans and the freed African Americans. This is shown in (Doc. E), which portrays the response and admiration of some African Americans and how they were able to look past the color of the white, and see someone who could help him or her politically. Which was successful in the sense that laws were past by white politicians such as the Missouri Compromise, which worked towards getting rid of slavery.

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