History of Slavery in America: Forgive and Forget

Updated May 16, 2021

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History of Slavery in America: Forgive and Forget essay

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The history of slavery in the United States is a part that I am sure we would be more than happy with cutting out. It was a time where black people were picked based on physical attributes to work for nothing and to be beaten on top of that. Our history isn’t something that you can change but it is definitely something you can put behind you. We need to forgive people for the things that have happened to us and be able to move on with our lives. I find that many times it is the older generations that hold on to what happened and the younger generation that is able to make fun of our history because we see that it was a mistake and we were able to forgive.

Slavery in America took place in 1619, when a Dutch ship arrived carrying twenty slaves to the shore of a British colony by the name of Jamestown, Virginia. Through most of the seventeenth century, the people moving to North America saw African Americans as a cheaper and more accessible use of labor then the poor servants they had at the time. “Some historians have estimated that six to seven million black slaves were imported to the New World in the eighteenth century alone.” (this came from source one.)

Because of them wanting the strongest men and women to go and work it took away from Africa’s amount of healthy fit people. In the beginning of slavery, the black slaves worked mostly on tobacco, rice, and indigo plantations in the South. The way slaves were sold to the people buying is they would have a time where you could go and examine the physical attributes of the slaves and once everyone had a good look at them they would begin the bidding.

Most of the time the slave buyers would want slaves between fifteen and twenty-five because this is when they were considered to be in their prime. But because they did.t know exactly how old the slaves where they would have to guess. When they were sold the families would often times be split up. This caused a lot of confusion with who was related to who, this is why black history isn’t exactly one hundred percent. When a slave was bought most of the time the slaves would be given the last names of the master that bought them, this also causes a lot of confusion.

The way that the slaves were treated leaves me nauseous because they were kept at a level way below the poverty line. When they were brought here on ships they would be tied up and kept in the bottom of the boat beyond cramped with little water or food. There would be human feces all around them because there was no bathroom and because of this many diseases were spread and most of the slaves wouldn’t make it back or would be in terrible conditions when they arrived. The slaves once they arrived would be abused beyond compare they would often times even be branded with the initials of their owners and beaten when they would not do what was asked of them.

Many of the slave owners would sexually assault the female slaves. They would take advantage of them and give them “favors” when they would listen to orders. Slaves often times tried to revolt against their slave owners, one of the most unforgettable ones was led by a man by the name of Nat Turner though it was unsuccessful. It took place in South Hampton county, Virginia August in 1831. (source number one) He gathered over seventy-five slaves and murdered sixty whites in two days before state military forces arrived and killed them all. (source number two)

Sadly some people that supported slavery said that Nat Turners rebellion proved that blacks were inherently inferior barbarians and they needed slavery to discipline them. Because of this many states upgraded their slave codes so that blacks couldn’t meet in groups and limited their education and ability to travel. Slave codes were written laws limiting the blacks to what they were able to do. Such as marry however they were encouraged to have children because the slave owners would turn around sell their children. Then along came Abraham Lincoln who became president in the election of eighteen sixty.

In his inaugural address, he said that he would enforce federal regulations, assist in returning fugitive slaves to all states, and maintain the Union. Only three months after he took office seven southern states seceded and then four more followed after the civil war started. Even though President Lincolns views against slavery were know the goal of the war was to keep the United states as a whole. Abolition became an afterthought because of the growing movement against slavery in the north, and many slaves fleeing the south in order to become free in the north.

On September 22, 1862, President Lincoln issued a preliminary proclamation, and on January 1, 1863, he made it official that “Slaves within any State, or designated part of a State…and in rebellion, shall be then and henceforward, forever free.” (source number three) By freeing over three million slaves in the southern states, the southern states didn’t know what to do because all the people that did their labor were free so they suffered a lot from that. Even though the Emancipation didn’t end all slavery in the United States it would come with the thirteenth amendment.

About 186,000 black soldiers joined the union in the fight and 38,000 lost their lives. Former slaves were under “equal protection because of the fourteenth amendment, and the right to vote from the fifteenth amendment. However Black codes showed up stopping the blacks from being able to vote with poll taxes and literacy tests. The Reconstruction was a very confusing and frustrating time because though they were considered free movements kept popping up trying to stop them.

One famous one was the Ku Klux Klan they would lynch and kill blacks. They were made up of white men that fought for the south and felt they were still superior to the blacks. Today there are a lot of movement rising up such as the Black Lives Matter movement this is a movement that has a purpose I feel they still see people out there killing blacks that are innocent out of hate for them.

There have been so many unfair things happening in this country and most of the time it’s out of hate towards one another. If people would just take the time to sit back and realize that we are all the same it would make everyone’s life a lot easier, and maybe even save some. There are still people living in a mental slavery today because they feel like they are still in slavery. What they have to realize is that it’s not their history it’s their ancestor’s history and if they want to change that then they have to stop living in the past.

A lot of blacks even show hate or treat certain black people different I have felt that in my life multiple times. They’ll call you a white black person or tell you your different just because you don’t sound the same as them or live in the same area as them. So, in a way they are acting the exact same way that they hate their ancestors were treated. We are all living in a world of sin and slavery in need of a savior who is Jesus Christ. So if we really want to change and move on it starts with spreading Gods love to those who haven’t experienced it because then if God chooses to he will soften their hearts and they will realize what they did was wrong.

In conclusion, our country has had a dark patch in its history with slavery and other things. Though we cannot change our history we can attempt to put it behind us and forgive the people that we feel we hate after all the golden rule is treat others the way you want to be treated. We don’t need to forgive and forget but we need to forgive and move on. After all who’s not to say God allowed slavery to happen for a reason because he wanted us all to be able to live together, or he wanted to get some of us out of Africa because something bad was going to happen and he wanted to protect us.

History of Slavery in America: Forgive and Forget essay

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History of Slavery in America: Forgive and Forget. (2021, May 16). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/history-of-slavery-in-america-forgive-and-forget/


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