In September of , the U. Coast Survey published a large map , approximately two feet by three feet, titled a "Map showing the distribution of the slave population of the southern states of the United States. At a glance, the viewer could see the large-scale patterns of the economic system that kept nearly 4 million people in bondage: slavery was concentrated along the Chesapeake Bay and in eastern Virginia; along the South Carolina and Georgia coasts; in a crescent of lands in Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi; and most of all, in the Mississippi River Valley. With each county labeled with the exact percentage of people enslaved, the map demanded some closer examination.
EXPLORE THE DISPERSAL OF ENSLAVED AFRICANS ACROSS THE ATLANTIC WORLD
Slavery in the United States - Wikipedia
Slave sales as an important feature of the Virginia economy have their origins in changes that occurred late in the eighteenth century. In , the General Assembly abolished entail , a practice that required large estates to be kept intact through generations. In , the assembly abolished primogeniture , which required that those estates be passed on to the eldest son. A dozen years after that, the assembly prohibited entails on large groups of inherited slaves. While encouraging equality among whites, these acts also had the effect of breaking up African American communities and families by putting many people up for sale.
Slavery in the United States was the legal institution of human chattel slavery , comprising the enslavement primarily of Africans and African Americans , that existed in the United States of America from its founding in until the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment in Slavery was established throughout European colonization in the Americas. From early colonial days , it was practiced in Britain's colonies , including the Thirteen Colonies which formed the United States. Under the law, an enslaved person was treated as property and could be bought, sold, or given away.
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