Wednesday, October 2, 2019
Underground Railroad :: Slavery
The Underground Railroad is famous for the things it has done, but most people don't understand or fully know what it was really about. First of all, it has nothing to do with an underground train or railroad as it may seem. The term "Underground Railroad" actually has different stories for its inception. One of these stories was of Tice Davis, a runaway slave in 1831. While running away from his owner he dove into a creek and was out of the owner's sight. His owner said "he must have gone off on an underground railroad." (http://www.whispersofangels.com/opposing.html) Although highly unbelievable, it can be found quite amusing. The logical explanation, though, is that the word "underground" is a term for secretive, while "railroad" represents the working together of people like train cars to "ship" the slaves. The main reason for the Underground Railroad was the effort to abolish slavery. None of the other efforts were contributing as much, and it was definitely our country's first major anti-slavery movement. America had hit its peak in the sense of slavery. We were thriving off of black laborers and our population continued to grow with contributions from the triangular trade. The triangular trade route was a trade route between the British West Indies, Europe, Africa and America. (http://members.tripod.com/lylesj/trade/tritrade.html) The profit slaves had brought in was tremendous contrasted to the profit of hired work. It became a major bonus to land and plantation owners. The black slaves were also great workers because of their ethnic backgrounds. They had great work ethics, dark skin to work in heat, and were much stronger than the hired men. Slaves longed to be free for more than one reason. Some just would love to be able to go where they want and say what they want without persecution. Who wouldn't want to be able to have this? Other slaves ran from owners out of fear. They wanted to keep their families together and not be sold away from them. There were also slaves that were treated very poorly. In fact, they were treated so poorly that if the didn't run they might not live much longer. Slaves have wanted to escape their slavery as far back as the first colonies had begun. The only truly free people were the whites, and blacks wanted to end that situation for good. The northern states/colonies had a more industrial area and immigrants easily took the jobs that were available.