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Humanities Libertexts

11: The Cotton Revolution

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    Eyre Crowe, Slaves Waiting for Sale, Richmond, Virginia, 1861. University of Virginia, The Atlantic Slave Trade and Slave Life in the Americas.

    • 11.1: Introduction
    • 11.2: The Importance of Cotton
    • 11.3: Cotton and Slavery
      The rise of cotton and the resulting upsurge in the United States’ global position wed the South to slavery. Without slavery there could be no Cotton Kingdom, no massive production of raw materials stretching across thousands of acres worth millions of dollars. Indeed, cotton grew alongside slavery. The two moved hand-in-hand. The existence of slavery and its importance to the southern economy became the defining factor in what would be known as the Slave South.
    • 11.4: The South and the City
    • 11.5: Southern Cultures
      To understand the global and economic functions of the South, we also must understand the people who made the whole thing work. The South, more than perhaps any other region in the United States, had a great diversity of cultures and situations. The South still relied on the existence of slavery; and as a result, it was home to nearly 4 million enslaved people by 1860, amounting to more than 45 percent of the entire Southern population.
    • 11.6: Religion and Honor in the Slave South
    • 11.7: Conclusion
    • 11.8: Primary Sources
    • 11.9: Reference Material

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