plantation agriculture examples
Plantation owners rotated the cotton crop among several fields to allow some to lie fallow and replenish their soil nutrients. Because the economy of the South depended on the cultivation of crops, the need for agricultural labor led to the establishment of slavery.It also created a society sharply divided along class lines. If the national government outlawed slavery, many plantation owners feared that they would no longer be able to maintain their profitable way of life. But doing so could have a negative effect on the commodity's price, as a good harvest ultimately could lead to more cotton entering the market, thus driving down the price. Most plantations were divided into small farms operated by individual owners or tenant farmers; others … In addition, vast amounts of new land opened up to thousands of settlers seeking to grow cotton in Alabama when Native Americans were forced from their ancestral territories after a series of conflicts and treaties with the United States. Cattle producers could be found in all regions of the state, but some found the southern piney woods especially conducive to raising cattle, given the mild winters there. By the eighteenth century, however, owners of large plantations found it more profitable to purchase African slaves, who they would own and use for labor for their lifetime. The plantation system developed in the American South as the British colonists arrived in Virginia and divided the land into large areas suitable for farming. During the colonial period, plantation agriculture existed in several regions of the United States—for example, the Hudson River valley of New York—but this type of agriculture eventually became synonymous with the South. In addition to exercising supreme authority on the plantation itself, plantation owners frequently wielded great power within their communities. At the outbreak of the. With the cotton market driven by the Industrial Revolution and boosted by the invention of the cotton gin, which made processing the cotton much easier and faster, short-staple cotton became synonymous with Alabama plantations. At first, colonists used indentured servants, who were people of either European or African descent who worked on average from four to seven years without pay in exchange for their passage to the English colonies. A plantation is a large-scale estate, generally centered on a plantation house, meant for farming that specializes in cash crops. Therefore, after Abraham Lincoln—who made it clear that he did not want slavery expanded any further into the United States—won the 1860 presidential race, many plantation owners supported seceding from the United States and forming the Confederate States of America. Plantation crops were determined by soil and climate, with tobacco, cotton, rice, indigo, and sugarcane, for example, each predominating in a certain zone of the southeastern colonies of North America. Many of these enslaved Alabamians worked in cotton production, but numerous plantations had fewer than 20 slaves working the land. Often these men (women at this time were prohibited from voting and holding public office) controlled government not only on the local level but also the state and national level. The earliest plantations in Alabama were nearly always established along, Alabama's Black Belt region, which stretches across the center of the state from the Mississippi border to the Georgia border, became synonymous with plantations, cotton, and slavery. For example, the 1850 Census lists John Barrow of, Because plantation agriculture was so closely intertwined with slavery, it is nearly impossible to discuss one without the other. The short-staple variety of cotton, however, did fare well in large portions of the state. Thus, the first two centuries of. And with their source of wealth eliminated, they would lose power. The crops that are grown include cotton, coffee, tea, cocoa, sugar cane, opium, sisal, oil seeds, oil palms, fruits, rubber trees and forest trees. Failure to work at a steady pace could lead to punishment. Because large-scale cotton production required a tremendous amount of labor, the number of slaves in the state grew from 47,449 in 1820 to 435,080 by 1860. According to the 1850 Census, the state produced 564,429 bales that year and 989,955 bales by 1860. In an era when less than 25 percent of the southern white population owned any slaves, plantation owners who cultivated 1,000 or more acres with numerous slaves exercised a disproportionate degree of power in antebellum southern life. Because land, slaves, and cotton defined who the elite were in Alabama, the region's plantation owners became very concerned when abolitionists began discussing the abolishment of slavery. Slaves on plantations often maintained a sense of community with one another and fostered lasting relationships through family, friends, and. Cotton production reigned supreme in the state before the Civil War. Protectionist policies and natural comparative advantage have sometimes contributed to determining where plantations are located. Most slaves on cotton plantations in Alabama worked under the gang system, which meant they worked at planting, weeding, or picking cotton all day long under the direction of a "driver," who worked under an overseer. Slaves generally worked from sunrise to sunset and received only short breaks from their work. When European American settlers began pouring into the area now known as Alabama in the early nineteenth century, many brought slaves and sought land that could support large-scale production of a marketable crop. Because wealth was measured in land, slaves, and livestock, it was not unusual for planters to reinvest cotton earnings in more land and more slaves. This type of farming had its origins in the, Tobacco plantations also needed a large labor force to tend the fields and harvest and prepare the crop for market. In fact, farms that produced one or two major crops for export continued to flourish in Alabama and the South after the. As Europeans began settling in the Carolinas and Georgia in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, they began experimenting with raising rice, indigo (used in making dye), and—to a limited degree—long-staple cotton for the market, all of which also required extensive acreage and labor. The long-staple cotton produced in coastal Georgia and the Carolinas did not grow well in Alabama, and neither did rice, indigo, sugar cane, or tobacco. Some plantations in the state focused on raising cattle, rather than cotton, for the commercial market, although cotton plantations were easily most numerous. The labour-intensive plantation declined abruptly in the United States with the abolition of slavery. For this reason, some historians assert that plantation agriculture ended when the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution outlawed slavery.


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