Southern Cause can't be separated from the importance of "King Cotton!"

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Feb 28, 2019
They even wrote songs about it: "Oh I wish I was in the land of cotton...."
Even today, there is the honorary "Cotton Bowl" football game.

Important facts about cotton:

Today, The United States is the 3rd largest exporter of cotton, and supplies 33% of the world's demand.

By 1950, 75% of the cotton planted was still "picked by hand" because modern machinery at that time was
inefficent at the task.

1940 to 1950 The United States" supplied 50% of the world's cotton.

By 1900 85% of black farmers were sharecroppers.
Sharecropping is different then tenent farming in that the sharecropper does not own his own equipment.

Sharecropping came into use during the Reconstruction Era, and focused on the cash crop of cotton.

Alexander Stephens gives his cornerstone speech March 21, 1861 declaring the Southern Cause for secession is slavery.

Before the Civil war, 3/4 of free families in the South were small farmers.
Many of these families grow cotton, and did not own slaves.

Before the civil war, the South supplied 75% of the world's cotton, and cotton made up over 50% of US exports.

The largest percentage of slave population was in the cotton belt along the Mississippi River.

It was cheaper and easier for England to get raw cotton from America than from India or Africa.
American cotton was a better fiber then Indian or African cotton.

In the decade of 1850-1860, cotton prices rose 50% to 11.5 cent per pound ($.12 in 1860 = $3.49 in 2019),
and production in that decade doubled from approx. 2 million bales to approx. 4.5 million bales
(a bale weighs approx 500 pounds in 1860).

By 1860 Southern plantation owners had 2/3 of his wealth invested in slaves.
At $.07 per pound of cotton in 1838 the average price for a field slave was $700.
At $.11 per pound of cotton in 1860 the average price was $1,600.

As the cotton empire expanded westward in the United States;
William Walker (1824-1860) desired to create a slave holding empire in tropical Latin America.
Cotton grows in tropical and subtropical regions.

Between 1820-1830, with the removal of American Indian Nations from the east to reservations in the west,
million of acres of cheap land became available to plant cotton.

In 1820 Gosspium babadense-or Gulf cotton was discovered in Mississippi.
Gulf cotton slid through the cotton gines easier, produced more useable cotton,
grew faster, and was cheaper to plant.

In 1790 there were approx. 654,000 slaves in the south and in 1810 there was 1.1 million.

In 1794 the cotton gin was invented.
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