Every opportunity that arises, I put out writings, such as this:
White slaves were common in Southern Appalachia, there was a preference for
Scots and Irish in the hills of Georgia and Alabama. The climate and topography
there was not conducive to vast cotton plantations and so, Celts were the prime
subjects from earliest colonial days.
New England had no objection to Irish Catholic slaves, of which they had many.
No integration and damn sure no interbreeding.
The Slave ships were virtually all New Englanders, as were their crews. In those
days many Captains also owned their ships, and were 'independent businessmen'.
However, there were Cartels that invested in the enterprise, and became the sources
of so many New England fortunes . . . and New York and Philadelphia, for that matter.
Generally, the ships' captains bought the merchandise from the native traders, on
'speculation' and hoped to derive a profit on arrival in America. One has to do some
research to properly evaluate the circumstances of the Middle Passage horror stories.
Slaves were allotted a space 18" - 24" wide, the exact same allowance the Royal Navy
allowed its 'free' seamen aboard their ships of war. Headroom was restricted but the
slave could sit up on his bench, turn over, and had some wiggle room. Sanitary facilities
were not of the best, but given decent weather, the slaves were allowed on deck during
the day, to exercise and socialize, while the crew cleaned out the quarters.
As independent small businessmen, and 'sharp Yankee traders' the Captains and crews
of those 'horrid' slave ships DEPENDED upon selling at a profit, their stock in trade.
It borders on fantasy that they would deliberately damage their merchandise, or casually
toss their cargo overboard. It happened, on occasion, when a Naval vessel overtook
a ship, to seize the ship, cargo and crew as a 'Prize' to be sold for profit. Rarely did the
Navy bring a slaver into port and release the poor slaves into the wild.
The reasons for that are: profit, they stood to make money from selling their 'Prize'
and the fact that releasing ignorant people in a strange country, meant that those
same innocents would shortly be clapped in irons again and sold once more.
If the menu for slaves seems unsavory, consider the menu for sailors of the Royal Navy
and soldiers of anybody's army at the time. Gruel, beans, stal water were standard fare
for everybody on a long sea voyage . . . except officers who bought their own provisions
and stocked the manger with poultry and animals. Rarely did Jack Tar enjoy a Rabbit
stew, I say rarely to the point of vanishingly small chance.
Slavery was a legally recognized institution, biblically acceptable, routinely practiced by every
nation and a profitable business responsible for innumerable fortunes in London, Boston,
Newport, Providence, and so forth. As with anything else, there were excesses and criminal
It is not widely known that ALL the Southern States of the united States had Laws on the
books prohibiting cruel and unusual treatment of slaves, and PROSECUTED those guilty.
Those same States allowed suits brought by slaves against masters, and encouraged
owners to provide training and education to their servants, sufficient to prevent them
becoming a charge on the County or Parish. It was against the law, to 'turn out' any
aged or disabled slave, without means of support or sustenance.
At that time the South was a seriously Christian society, and believed and practiced their
faith sincerely. Master felt a serious obligation to 'Christianize' his people, and provided
time and facilities for that purpose. The famous General Stonewall Jackson conducted
Sunday School for all and any Blacks who cared to come. He taught Bible and Religion
to those within his range, wherever he might be. He was not a wild eyed bible thumper,
but an honest and sincere believer, as were most of his peers.