Economic View Of Slavery Essay

Slavery was caused by economic factors of the english settlers
in the late 17th century. Colonists continually tried to allure
laborers to the colony. The headright system was to give the
indentured servant, a method of becoming independent after a number of
years of service. Slavery was caused by economic reasons. Colonists
chiefly relied on Indentured Servitude, inorder to facilitate their
need for labor. The decreasing population combined with a need for a
labor force, led colonists to believe that African slaves were the
most efficient way to acquire a labor force that would satisfy their

Before the 1680’s, Indentured Servitude was the primary source
of labor in the newly developed colonies. After the 1680’s, the
population of the Indentured Servants decreased, exponentially. Their
were a number of different reasons why the population of Indentured
Servents had decreased. The indentured servents were running away from
their temporary masters, to find a job where he could become more
independent. Indentured servents were also dying of many diseases,
which was caused by harsh conditions. The immigration of servents thus
declined, becuase of the people in England being informed of the harsh
treatment in the colonies. The society was where the land was easy to
find, while the labor was most scarce. Indentured servitude, was a
form of labor which was declining, and the need for labor increased

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In the 1600’s, when tobacco was founded by John Rolfe, tobacco
became the main source of income for most of the colonists. The
economic prosperity of the colonies was primarily dependent on the
amount of tobacco produced. The growing of tobacco, needed a large
amount of land, with a large stable work force. The increased demand
for a large, stable work force combined with the availability of
African slaves, led to the use of slavery in the colonies. During the
late 17th century, the indentured servants were running away from
their masters farms, if a slave had run away from their master’s
farms, then the slave would be easier to discern because of the color
of his skin. To the planter, slavery was the ideal form of labor that
would be most beneficial to productivity of his crop.

Planters had an abundance of land and a shortage of labor.
This relationship, made the amount of tobacco directly proportional
to the number of slaves that the planter owned. Slavery was the
backbone of the prosperity of the colonies. A major factor in the
consideration of slaves on plantation, is the flux of the land.
Tobacco was the major crop of the 17th century, and tobacco is a plant
that exhausts nutrients from the soil, which led to the rotation of
crops, inorder to replenish the crops. The planter needed to educate
his workers on certain agricultural techniques inorder to know how to
make the land most productive. With a permanent work force, such as
slaves, the slaves would only require to be educated once, instead of
the planters having to re-educate indentured servants every X number
of years. The African slaves also had other characteristics that
enticed colonists to use them as a labor force. The African slaves
were immune to malaria, which resisted them from disease. The africans
also were subsistence farmers in africa, thus, they had a tradition of
farming, and essential agricultural skills.

Slavery was a course in history, where it was opportune for
the colonists to use slavery as a labor force. The decline in
population of indentured servants exacerbated the situation, as time
progressed, slavery became more and more imminent. Morality was not
taken into consideration, because of the settlers were only viewing
slavery from a economic view, rather than a humanitarian point of
view. The introduction of slavery into the colonies can be summarize
with a cliche of the settlers being “at the right place at the right


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