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THE COTTON GIN

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THE COTTON GIN. Cotton was a profitable crop but was not grown on a large scale ... Invention of cotton gin by Eli Whitney in 1793 changed this situation ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: THE COTTON GIN


1
THE COTTON GIN
  • Cotton was a profitable crop but was not grown on
    a large scale because of the slow and difficult
    process of removing seeds from cotton bolls in
    order to produce a usable fiber
  • Invention of cotton gin by Eli Whitney in 1793
    changed this situation
  • Gin could easily and quickly remove seeds
  • Caused a fantastic explosion in southern cotton
    production

2
KING COTTON
  • 3000 bales in 1790
  • 178,000 bales in 1810
  • 732,000 bales in 1830
  • 4.5 million bales in 1860
  • South became the worlds leading producer of
    cotton by 1842
  • Produced 2/3s world output and 65 of all
    American exports
  • Cotton mills in north depended on southern cotton
  • Prosperity in South caused by cotton made it a
    major market for northern manufactured products
  • Cotton was an important part of American
    prosperity and economic well-being

3
POPULATION SHIFT
Land in upper south was worn out after years of
tobacco growing and would not support cotton
cultivation
Cotton cultivation therefore moved westward and
southward into the Lower South
Caused mass migration into Lower South Population
in region increased from 500,000 in 1800 to 5
million by 1860
4
COTTON AND SLAVERY
  • Slavery spread with spread of cotton cultivation
  • Type of crop that kept slaves busy all year long
  • Historians once thought slave cotton economy was
    basically backward, inefficient, and stagnant
    system
  • Made large planters rich but did little to
    improve economic well-being of the majority of
    white southerners
  • Slavery was evil but it wasnt necessarily
    inefficient that perpetuated poverty among most
    white southerners
  • Personal income in South was 15 higher than
    personal income in the Midwest at the time
  • If the South had been an independent country in
    1860, it would have ranked as the 4th richest
    country in the world

5
THE OTHER SIDE
  • Slave economy of the South expanded rapidly but
    it did not grow in a way that stimulated other
    sectors of the economy
  • In England and the Midwest, improvements in
    agricultural productivity triggered urbanization
    and industrialization which laid the foundation
    for sustained economic growth
  • This did not happen in the South
  • Cotton culture did not stimulate urban growth
  • Remained overwhelmingly rural region
  • Cotton culture did not stimulate industry
  • Only 15 of American factories located in the
    South in 1860
  • And they tended to be less productive and smaller
    than northern ones
  • Cotton production did not help spark the growth
    of cities or modern industry
  • Even though it was expanding and generating a
    great deal of revenue that trickled down to all
    levels of white southern society
  • Doomed region to poverty and underdevelopment
    after the Civil War

6
SLAVERY
  • No improvement in status of slaves
  • Nor in the way they were treated or in their
    working conditions
  • Mixture of Anglo and American cultural elements
    by slaves continued
  • Producing unique African-American culture
  • Example was birth of Negro spiritual

7
SLAVE REVOLTS
  • Slave revolts continued to occasionally erupt
  • Most serious was Nat Turner Revolt of 1831
  • Southampton County, Virginia
  • Nat Turner was a self-educated slave preacher
  • Led 40-50 others in an uprising which killed 57
    whites before state militia put it down

8
RUNNING AWAY
  • Underground Railroad
  • Powerful myth of system set up by white
    abolitionists to help slaves escape to Canada
  • But there never was an organized coordinated
    network to held slaves escape bondage
  • Slaves who ran away headed generally for southern
    cities
  • Most of the help came from black people
  • Not for the North or Canada
  • Incidence of running away from 1800-1860 but
    never took place on a large or organized enough
    scale to seriously damage the institution
  • No way slavery would wither away or be subverted
    from within
  • It would take a bloody civil war to get rid of it

Harriet Tubman
9
PLANTER ELITE
  • White social structure in South was simpler, more
    rigid, and more hierarchical than that in the
    North
  • At the top were the large planters
  • Approximately 16,000 families (1 of population)
  • All had at least 1000 acres, at least 40 slaves,
    and a net worth of 100,000

Robert Carter, member of southern planter elite
10
SLAVE OWNERSHIP
  • Other social categories separated from each other
    on the basis of how many slaves they owned
  • But 75 of white families owned no slaves
  • Even though most were farmers
  • Slave ownership concentrated only in the upper
    echelons of white society

11
LAND OWNERSHIP
  • Land ownership not equally distributed
  • Most of best land owned by large planter elite
  • Slaveless 75 generally had less desirable tracts
    of land in the backcountry
  • In 1860, less 10 of whites in Lower South owned
    66 of the farmland
  • Slave system not only denied equality to blacks,
    it also prompted inequality among free whites

12
BIG QUESTION
  • If most southern farmers did not own slaves and
    had to settle for small, marginal plots of land,
    why did they not hold a great deal of animosity
    towards the planter elite?
  • Planters, in fact, dominated southern society
  • Occupied every important elected office
  • A tiny, privileged minority, but they absolutely
    controlled southern society
  • Why?

William Byrd, member of the planter elite
13
REASONS I
  • Racial Fear
  • Most southerners did not own slaves, but that did
    not mean they were against slavery
  • They did not own slaves because they could not
    afford tonot because they did not want to
  • Could see no alternative to slavery
  • Found prospect of freeing slaves terrifying

14
REASONS II
  • Undeveloped and undemocratic character of
    southern educational system
  • Perpetuated ignorance and apathy
  • Public education movement passed the South by
  • Planter elite received good educations in private
    schools
  • Children of poor white farmers did not go to
    school
  • Majority of southern whites were uneducated and
    50 were illiterate
  • Planters therefore had monopoly on knowledge and
    means of communication

15
REASONS III
  • Lack of ethnic diversity
  • There were Anglo-Saxon whites and blacks
  • Few European immigrants went to the South
  • Most stayed in the North where there better job
    opportunities
  • Those who wanted to farm went to the Midwest
  • The complex ethnic mosaic that was taking shape
    in the North did not develop in the South
  • Became more and more inbred and hostile to
    anything new or different

16
REASONS IV
  • Lack of religious diversity
  • 95 of South was Protestant and 90 of them were
    either Methodists or Baptists
  • Many Baptist and Methodist preachers were
    uneducated and self-appointed
  • Preached simple, emotional creed which
    concentrated on individual conversions
  • Stayed clear of politics and reform movements
  • Did not criticize slavery
  • Southern religion did not challenge the status
    quo
  • Did not lead way for reform and improvement of
    society
  • Defended the status quo

Southern Baptist preacher
17
SUMMARY
  • Increasingly dominated by cotton, the southern
    economy was expanding, its population was
    growing, and per capita wealth was on the rise
  • But there were also several serious weaknesses
  • Failure to urbanize and industrialize
  • An unequal social structure in which large
    planters dominated all aspects of the regions
    society and polity
  • Lack of ethnic and religious diversity
  • Caused region to become increasingly inbred,
    narrow-minded, and intolerant
  • And the entire system rested on black slavery
  • An institution that was at odds with any
    definition of civilization but which all white
    southerners were ready to defend to last dying
    breath
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