Slavery..How did it get it's start in North America?

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JAGwinn

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THE SOUL OF
JOHN BROWN

BY
STEPHEN GRAHAM
New York
THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
1920
All Rights Reserved
[iv]
Copyright, 1920,
By THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
——
Set up and electrotyped. Published October, 1920.​


Not that anyone willed slavery in America or designed to have it. It was an economic accident. It was in America before most of the Americans. The first Negro slaves were brought up the James River in Virginia before the Mayflower arrived, and as Negro orators say to-day, “If being a long while in this country makes a good American, we are the best Americans that there are.” Slavery had grown to vast proportions by the time of the war against Britain. New America in 1783, standing on the threshold of the modern era, inherited a most terrible burden in her millions of slaves. It was a burden that was growing into the live flesh of America, and no one dared face at that time the problem of getting free of it.
[5]
The actual American people as a whole were little responsible for the institution of slavery. The pioneers hated and feared it. The planters always condemned it in theory, and after the Emancipation of 1863 no one of any sense in the South has ever wished it back. Even in those States where slavery took deepest root and showed its worst characteristics, there was throughout the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries a persistent resistance on the part of the colonists against having black servile labor introduced.
To cite one colony as in a way characteristic of the whole attitude of the colonists toward slavery, Georgia might be taken. Georgia was originally an asylum for the bad boys of too respectable British families and for discharged convicts and hopeless drunkards. Royal charter guaranteed freedom of religion (except to Papists); an embargo was placed on West Indian trade, so as to stop the inflow of rum; and Negro slavery was forbidden. All for the good of reprobates making a fresh start!
Invalids and merchants settled on the coast and made the society of Savannah. The bad boys proved to be too poor stuff with which to found a colony, and a special body of a hundred and thirty frugal and industrious Scots and a hundred and seventy carefully chosen Germans were brought in. Real work in Georgia commenced at Ebenezer, on the Savannah River,[6] and at New Inverness. The merchants strove to get slavery introduced; the Scots and the Germans strove to keep it out. At Savannah every night polite society toasted “The One Thing Needful”—Slavery. The common talk of the townsfolk was of the extra prosperity that would come to Georgia if slaves were brought in, the extra quantities of cotton, of rice, of timber, and all that middlemen could re-sell. The ministers of religion actually preached in churches in favor of an institution sanctioned by the Bible, and it was thought that a service was done for Christ by bringing the black men out of Africa, where they were somewhat inaccessible, and throwing them into the bosom of the Christian family in America. But the Scots and the Germans remonstrated against the permission of an evil shocking to human nature and likely to prove in time not a blessing but a scourge.

the book is here: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/48230
 
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