Slavery Endings Post 1860 Was Slavery Dying Out copied from H.K. Edgerton Video challenge thread


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jgoodguy

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#2
I agree.

1880's would be my estimation as well.

I figure no later than 1890 at the most.
1880s sounds good because that is when it naturally died out. But the CSA winning could toss that and encourage the slave owners to resist. The Southern resistance that led to Jim Crow suggests a a later date also assuming a CSA victory.

Slavery never just dies out and fades away. It dies by war or loss of political dominance and outlawed by victorious party or collition.
 

major bill

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#3
So much depends on an alternant time line. No Civil War and things are changed. I do not see slavery ending all at once but dying out over time. I see slavery possibly surviving up until the 1950s to 1960s. I see slavery being rather limited after 1910 but still found in some areas where profit could be made by using slave labor. Even if all states outlawed slavery in the 1950s, I would think some provision would allow slave owners 10 or 20 years to adjust to loosing their slaves, so by 1970 a small number of older slaves still in bondage.

Predicting how slavery might end in an independent Confederacy is really impossible to predict with any certainty. I would think machines replaced slaves at some point, but not as fast in an economy based on agriculture. Again the 1950s, 1960s or 1970s is possible. Many job were still done by hand in to that time frame.

I could see slavery ending in the 1920 or 1930s, but the release of tens of millions of slaves would cause fears of the impact on the jobs of free labors. I do see this fear of social change causing slavery to survive until the 1950s or 1960s.
 

jgoodguy

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#4
So much depends on an alternant time line. No Civil War and things are changed. I do not see slavery ending all at once but dying out over time. I see slavery possibly surviving up until the 1950s to 1960s. I see slavery being rather limited after 1910 but still found in some areas where profit could be made by using slave labor. Even if all states outlawed slavery in the 1950s, I would think some provision would allow slave owners 10 or 20 years to adjust to loosing their slaves, so by 1970 a small number of older slaves still in bondage.

Predicting how slavery might end in an independent Confederacy is really impossible to predict with any certainty. I would think machines replaced slaves at some point, but not as fast in an economy based on agriculture. Again the 1950s, 1960s or 1970s is possible. Many job were still done by hand in to that time frame.

I could see slavery ending in the 1920 or 1930s, but the release of tens of millions of slaves would cause fears of the impact on the jobs of free labors. I do see this fear of social change causing slavery to survive until the 1950s or 1960s.
Some good points.
 

major bill

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#5
My problem is that not having a Civil War changes every thing. I can not seeing a nation ending slavery during a great depression, but would no Civil War changed the timing of the depression? Could we end slavery in the middle of World War Two? If there was no Civil War which side would we have fought on?

I think the parts of the United States would have been looking to find a way to end slavery, but many were searching for a method to end slavery for decades before 1860 but were not successful, why should I believe the next 80 years would have been different?
 
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#6
Slave prices going up. Peaked just before secession. If slavery was dying out then the price should also be declining.

View attachment 135976
A while ago I ran some numbers on the increase in slave population by state from 1850 to 1860. Virginia's enslaved population increased only a tiny amount, much less than most other slaveholding states, that supports the claim that Virginians were sending a lot of their "natural increase" to other states where demand was stronger.
I do have to wonder if the demand would have continued. In almost any economic industry there is bound to be a collapse or at least downturn. The old supply and demand thing...There had to be a ceiling with already 4 million slaves in the Southern states and limited room to expand major plantation type of crop production.
 

major bill

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#7
You are assuming that slave owners could not find additional ways to earn a profit with slave labor. You might be right, then again perhaps slave owners had more imagination than you give them credit for. Why could not slave labor still turn a profit until the late 1900s? None of us can predict when slavery could no longer turn a profit so none of us can predict when slavery would have ended.
 
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#8
You are assuming that slave owners could not find additional ways to earn a profit with slave labor. You might be right, then again perhaps slave owners had more imagination than you give them credit for. Why could not slave labor still turn a profit until the late 1900s? None of us can predict when slavery could no longer turn a profit so none of us can predict when slavery would have ended.
I don't think so. Slavery generally stifles technology which means the South likely would still lag behind manufacturing centers. And yes, some could find other tasks for them to do but not in large scale that was being utilized for plantation style agriculture. Slavery only remains profitable as long as those crops remain as profitable. But at some point the cost of purchasing slaves plus maintenance would reach a break point. I don't know when that would have occurred but generally a market correct would take place.
 

1NCCAV

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#9
Opinion, nothing more.
True, but it seems to me to be a reasonable opinion given the times that other agriculture societies ended slavery. Cuba in 1886, Brazil in 1888, etc. The US may well have held on a bit longer if there had been no ACW. But are we really to believe that if there had there been no ACW that slavery would still exist today? Of course not. Then when would it have ended? 1890? 1900? When?
 
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1NCCAV

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#10
Something for speculation: If there had been no ACW, whether Union preserved or peaceful secession granted, would international pressure eventually have had more to do with ending slavery than it becoming unprofitable due to mechanization and industrialization?

You don't need slaves for cotton if no one will buy your cotton.
 
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#11
Slavery did not generate enough population growth to be sustainable.
1. Slavery died from North to South. It was already fading on a % basis in Missouri, Maryland and Delaware. It was not attracting white immigrants, and many white people were leaving the South for economic reasons. Slavery did not make the jump to California and did not have enough demographic power to sustain itself in Kansas. Sam Houston knew slavery had reached its geographical limit.
2. The slaves were surviving and multiplying and were fully Americanized. By denying them education and administering unlimited violence the system could be maintained. But that was not sustainable.
3. The U.S. was growing very fast. Reapportionment based on 1860 census was going to deliver more power to: Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Michigan. The next state was likely to be Nebraska, though actually Nevada was next. The Transcontinental Railroad was coming, so something resembling Colorado, Utah and Nevada was going to happen.
By 1870 the political pressure on the South to restrict slavery and open free primary schools would have been enormous.
4. Free labor is enormously profitable. Cotton and sugar could economically sustain slavery.
5. The psychological system necessary to sustain the belief that race made the blacks inherently inferior made it look very sustainable. If you think that was an accurate perception of the difference in the races, it looks sustainable. If you think that difference was mainly a cultural construct based on poverty and lack of education, then it looks like the political pressure to change would have become overwhelming.
6. The white immigration from Germany, directly from Ireland, and from Ireland through Britain and Canada carried with it the basic abhorrence of slavery, Roman oppression and Sparta. Race based slavery seemed to create an exception to this tendency, but in a country in which some states allowed blacks to vote, that exception was going to fade.
7. Slavery was headed toward a dated freedom boundary. Eventually the U.S. was going to fix a date. People born after that date were going to be free. The British experience on how to end slavery was there and eventually the U.S. was going to use those techniques.
By failing to attract white immigration, slavery was dying. The desperate step, which even Ambassador Lyons in Washington knew was a species of madness, to me, looks like an admission that within 12 years the voting power of the North was going to make slavery disappear in the U.S.
 
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#12
There is a huge South that has nothing to do with the Confederacy.
I know it exists though I may not be able to describe it.
Scottish-Irish inspired folk music. Good regional food (BBQ). Fine literature. Beautiful women. The Kentucky Derby, then auto racing. African-Americans.
A Southerner could do better.
 
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#13
I mean, one of the key arguments of Northern Whigs and then Republicans against slavery extension into the territories was that slavery was "on the course of extinction," that this was the intent of the founding fathers, and that slavery should be allowed to continue to die. Lincoln himself made this argument in his debates with Stephen Douglas:

When Judge Douglas undertakes to say that as a matter of choice the fathers of the government made this nation part slave and part free, he assumes what is historically a falsehood. More than that; when the fathers of the government cut off the source of slavery by the abolition of the slave trade, and adopted a system of restricting it from the new Territories where it had not existed, I maintain that they placed it where they understood, and all sensible men understood, it was in the course of ultimate extinction; and when Judge Douglas asks me why it cannot continue as our fathers made it, I ask him why he and his friends could not let it remain as our fathers made it? (Sixth debate, October 13, 1858, Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, vol. 3, p. 276)
Such quotes by Northern Whigs and Republicans could be multiplied many times over. This was a stock and standard part of the Northern Whig/Republican argument against slavery extending into the territories.

At the other end of the spectrum, one of the main arguments of the pro-extension Southerners was that slavery would die if it were not allowed to expand. They accused the North of trying to kill slavery by keeping it out of the territories. Etc., etc., etc.

But, after the war, the Republicans suffered a mass case of amnesia on this matter. The new narrative was that the war had been necessary, even unavoidable, because slavery never would have died on its own (and the implication was that the South never would have abolished slavery voluntarily either).

This is a prime example of how PC history can wipe out decades of documented history--and why we need to go beyond PC history.
 

jgoodguy

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#14
I mean, one of the key arguments of Northern Whigs and then Republicans against slavery extension into the territories was that slavery was "on the course of extinction," that this was the intent of the founding fathers, and that slavery should be allowed to continue to die. Lincoln himself made this argument in his debates with Stephen Douglas:

When Judge Douglas undertakes to say that as a matter of choice the fathers of the government made this nation part slave and part free, he assumes what is historically a falsehood. More than that; when the fathers of the government cut off the source of slavery by the abolition of the slave trade, and adopted a system of restricting it from the new Territories where it had not existed, I maintain that they placed it where they understood, and all sensible men understood, it was in the course of ultimate extinction; and when Judge Douglas asks me why it cannot continue as our fathers made it, I ask him why he and his friends could not let it remain as our fathers made it? (Sixth debate, October 13, 1858, Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, vol. 3, p. 276)
Such quotes by Northern Whigs and Republicans could be multiplied many times over. This was a stock and standard part of the Northern Whig/Republican argument against slavery extending into the territories.

At the other end of the spectrum, one of the main arguments of the pro-extension Southerners was that slavery would die if it were not allowed to expand. They accused the North of trying to kill slavery by keeping it out of the territories. Etc., etc., etc.

But, after the war, the Republicans suffered a mass case of amnesia on this matter. The new narrative was that the war had been necessary, even unavoidable, because slavery never would have died on its own (and the implication was that the South never would have abolished slavery voluntarily either).

This is a prime example of how PC history can wipe out decades of documented history--and why we need to go beyond PC history.
So other than than the evil Republicans did this or that and historians do not recognize your position what evidence of slavery dying out are you offering?
 
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#15
One has to join those maps to the 19th century railroad maps. Outside of South Carolina and the Atlantic seaboard, the South was not generating population and prosperity to encourage railroads and create traffic.
That is consistent with your thesis, that a few people were getting rich, and they controlled public discourse.
 
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#16
If the slave owners had been willing to make adjustments and compromises and had they been willing to participate in making the transition to a multi-racial society, then I would conclude they saw it as viable and a step towards continuous wealth.
They had many chances to do that and refused.
Maybe that was denial.
 
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#17
The demographics of slavery were very bad.
Secession, and continuing the weakness of the federal government were both viable in 1860 and with adjustments and re-styling, exist today.
 

unionblue

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#18
True, but it seems to me to be a reasonable opinion given the times that other agriculture societies ended slavery. Cuba in 1886, Brazil in 1888, etc. The US may well have held on a bit longer if there had been no ACW. But are we really to believe that if there had there been no ACW that slavery would still exist today? Of course not. Then when would it have ended? 1890? 1900? When?
1NCCAV,

Reasonable is in the eye of the beholder.

I myself wonder if slavery would have ended in Cuba and Brazil in the 19th century if the Confederacy had won the Civil War. And, in my opinion :smile: the version of race-based slavery in the US was a bit unique, compared to Brazil.

I am always puzzled by those who say machines would have ended slavery. Why? Can't slaves be trained to operate tractors, assembly lines, trucks, cranes, etc. ? Why couldn't slavery continued until the 20th century and beyond? Especially if it is a foundation of wealth AND, more importantly, a much desired form of social control. After all, did not South Africa keep it's system in place until well into the 20th century? Are there still not forms of slavery in existence at this very moment in our advanced, 21st century? Even with a majority of the planet trading with such countries who still maintain slavery?

No, once a habit, a tradition is established as a everyday norm, I think it has a tremendous social and historical momentum that would be hard to give up.

After all, look at the Confederacy and it's last-minute, desperate efforts to enlist slaves as soldiers. Even on the brink of absolute failure, people could not fully let go of the institution. Imagine how they would have reacted if they had won.

In out time we saw the reluctance to give up social control with Jim Crow, segregation, lynchings, murder, bombings, and cross burnings, even AFTER losing a civil war.

You think that attitude is going to change anytime soon with a Confederate victory?

Not in my opinion.

Sincerely,
Unionblue
 
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#19
I think further evidence is how conservative Lincoln could be about emancipation. Slavery was so unstable by 1860 that the war and the Union Army was going to allow the slaves to free themselves.
As soon as secession was terminated, slavery was going to fall apart. It required James Buchanan and the Fugitive Slave Act to sustain it.
 
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#20
If 5 million white people could have conquered 20 million white people, and thereby ended or stifled white immigration into the U.S. slavery lives on there is an Orwellian future.
But in about 28 months, not long given communications at that time and the head start granted to the Confederates, that dream was ended.
Good post by UB.
 



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