Michelle: Today, we will be discussing about Southern Society during the 1800s. My name is Michelle, …
[group member introduction]
Zanvious: My name is Zanvious…
Aileen: My name is Aileen…
Sean: And my name is Sean…
Michelle: Slide 2: First and foremost, southern society and culture consisted of four main groups. Although some African Americans were free, they still faced a great deal of discrimination. In this picture, it is illustrated that it was difficult for the African American people to find jobs because the white people would not allow to employ the African American people who trying to find jobs.
Slide 3: In addition, Southern Society was centered around agriculture, in other words, people lived off of selling and consuming products on large plantations. In this picture, the man is harvesting potatoes.
Slide 4: In the south, most white southerners owned many slaves as well as large plantations. The whole image of the Southern societies included hospitality and well-treated slaves on beautiful plantations that almost ran themselves. During the first half of the 1800s, ⅓ of the white southern families had owned slaves, as fewer families owned plantations. The white planters had powerful influence over the South, for many served as political leaders. In this picture, the slaves are raking hay from the plantation. In the bottom left hand corner, we have a picture of a plantation that is called the “Angola Plantation,” which is now known to be owned by the Angola Penitentiary.
Slide 5: These leaders led a southern society made up of different kinds of people, including the yeomen farmers, poor whites, slaves, and free African Americans. Each of these segments of society contributed to the economic success of the South. In the top right hand corner, we have a picture of a poor white family. In the bottom right hand corner, we have a picture of a group of free African Americans. In the bottom center, we have a picture of African American slaves working on a plantation. And in the left hand corner, we have a picture of a yeoman farmer, who is working on his farm.
Slide 6: This is a picture of a Mississippi cotton plantation in 1884.
Slide 7: This is a visual of an African American family that were owned as slaves and lived and worked on a plantation.
Zanvious: Slide 8: In addition to southern society, the planters were the wealthiest members who lived in large mansions. Cleverly, some planters chose to save their money to buy additional land and slaves. The male planters were concerned with raising crops, watching the slave laborers, and often relied on their wives to run the plantation household. The tasks of a planter’s wife were raising the children, supervising the work of the slaves within the household, and taking on the important social duties of her family. Typically, female slaves cooked, cleaned, and cared for the planter’s children. In the picture on the bottom left is an example of a mansion in the 1800s.
Slide 9: Plantations usually consisted of: Slave cabins, a Plantation house, cotton-ginning shed, fields, a barn and stable for animals, smokehouse, a warehouse, and an overseer’s house. Near the left hand corner, we have a picture of an example of a slave cabin, in the top center is a plantation house, on the top right hand corner is a barn/stable, in the bottom center is a field of cotton, and on the bottom left hand corner is a smokehouse..
Aileen: Slide 10: The Yeomen are the next people in this southern hierarchy. A majority of white people were yeomen, or people who owned small farms. The typical amount of farmland owned by a yeoman farmer was about 100 acres. In comparison, Mile Square Park is 640 acres. They usually had a few slaves working on their land but keep in mind only ⅓ of the whites owned slaves at this time.
Slide 11: The women and children in poor white families usually worked long days at different varieties of tasks. Poor white southerners scarcely had anything to eat because they lived on lands that was unable to grow cash crops. So, they would hunt, fish, and grow small gardens to survive. Here are children from a poor family farming. Notice how the children are working the farms. They are unable to buy slaves and are forced to do the work themselves.
Slide 12: Many white southerners had similar religious beliefs. They only see each other at church because their farms were distant from each other. The women in the family would often volunteer in the church and the men would donate money to organizations. Wealthy whites from the south believed God created people to rule others and that reflects their position in society. Unlike southern beliefs, Northerners believe god is against slavery. Most of the large cities were built by the Atlantic Ocean to provide faster transportation and easy trade. Southerners have a decent living necessities like a public water system and well-maintained streets. Also, whites reserved all the hard work for the slaves. Slaves would act as servants, in mills, in shipyards, etc.
Sean: Slide 14: Another group of southern culture was the free african americans. Although most of the african americans were enslaved in the south, there were about 250,000 free African Americans living in the South by 1860. Some of these people were descendants of the Haitian refugees,escaping Toussaint Louverture's rebellion in Haiti, and others were descendants of free african americans.
Slide 15: These free African Americans living in the South inhabited both rural and urban areas. Most of them lived in the countryside as laborers or on plantations or farms. African Americans that lived in the city, work many jobs, and some became skilled artisans. William Johnson, a free black, was a successful barber. Many African Americans living in cities made social and economic ties. For example, church served as a center of many African Americans social life.
Slide 16: In the south, even the free blacks faced discrimination from white southerners. Many governments passed laws that regulated what freedoms African Americans had. Many of these people could not vote for anything, could not travel freely, or even have certain jobs. In some places in the South, blacks had to be represented by a white southerner when conducting business. In other places, laws were enacted so free African Americans couldn’t even run a business
Slide 17: As you can see, here is a picture of a free African American going to vote. (goes on to describe picture)
Slide 18: Many of the white southerners believed that free Africans couldn’t take care of themselves. They used this belief to defend slavery. One mississippian was quoted saying this on slavery, (reads quote on slide). Many white southerners even believed that free africans alone, were a threat to the institution of slavery in the South.
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