The most common objection to slavery was not one based on racial equality or its immorality, but that it was economically deficient and that the hiring of whites to do jobs would result in better products.
It is funny to see how Europe (Britain) acted it was so englightened in re. slavery, and acted as a world police against slavery, but then colonized Africa, with disastrous effects still being seen today.
On a side note I have read that when Congress banned the importation of slaves Irish girls were kidnapped and shipped to Maryland to procreate with blacks to feed the slave market in the US.
I have never heard this before. If true, it is disturbing. I have heard that some southern men would buy several slave women and impregnate them, only to make money on their new slave children.
Apparently, this may have happened (one in a thousand) but it seems so bizarre and horrific that I do not want to believe it.
I do not know if such stories are true.
A scholar of Irish and Highland history sent it to me in an e-mail a few years ago. He also told me that over 1,000 Highlanders were shipped to South Carolina and Barbados in chains to be slaves after the battle of Culloden. If you read what I'm about to post I don't think you will doubt that Irish girls were kidnapped by English and shipped to Maryland to procreate with blacks. And no not "one in a thousand" I tried to search for proof but didn't find much other than the "Testimony of an Irish Slave Girl"http://www.amazon.com/Testimony-Irish-Slave-Girl-McCafferty/dp/014200183X
But I found quite a bit more. If you read this you will realize that a pile of people in the US that think that their ancestry is English is in fact Irish Catholic. They didn't even allow them to keep their identity. The numbers of Irish men, women and children that were kidnapped in the 17th century and taken to the 13 Colonies or the Caribbean Islands as slaves by the English is staggering.
England's Irish Slaves http://www.ewtn.com/library/HUMANITY/SLAVES.TXT
This link opens a Microsoft Word document about the history of white slaves. Even the word slave is derived from white slavery, originating from Slavs. Because some won't have Microsoft Word I'll post a portion of it. You just might have a different opinion of the "genteel" South after reading it. The so called "genteel" South was just a continuation of the barbarous English aristocracy.
They Were White And They Were Slaveshttp://www.jrbooksonline.com/PDF_Books/theywereslaves.rtf
Note: XXXX means the N word in this forum.
Poor Whites and the Southern Confederacy
Even if they attained their freedom, dirt-poor Whites were forced to compete against negro slave labor. Jobs were few and Southern planters sat idly as poor Whites died of malnutrition for want of food and medicine. Negro slaves were expensive. To protect their investments, White aristocrats usually treated their negro slaves well, providing for adequate food, clothing and medication even as poor Whites in the same town sickened and died from disease and malnutrition.
Try to envision the 19th century scene: yeoman southern Whites, sick and destitute, watching their children dying while enduring the spectacle of negroes from the jungles of Africa healthy and well-fed thanks to the ministrations of their fabulously wealthy White owners who cared little or nothing for the local “Whitetrash.”
In the course of an 1855 journey up the Alabama River on the steamboat Fashion, Frederic Law Olmsted, the landscape architect who designed New York’s Central Park, observed bales of cotton being thrown from a considerable height into a cargo ship’s hold. Themen tossing the bales somewhat recklessly into the hold were negroes, the men in the hold were Irish. Olmsted inquired about this to a mate on the ship. ‘Oh, saidthe mate, ‘the niggers are worth too much to be risked here; if the Paddies are knocked overboard or get their backs broke, nobody loses anything.” (Frederic Law Olm-sted, A Journey to the Seaboard Slave States, pp. 100-101; G.E.M. de Ste. Croix, Slavery and Other Forms of Unfree Labor, p. 27).
In the antebellum South, “Gangs of Irish immigrants worked ditching and draining plantations, building levees and sometimes clearing land because of the danger to valuable (negro) slave property ...George Templeton Strong, a Whig patrician diarist... considered Irish workmen at his home to have had ‘prehensile paws’ rather than hands. He denounced the ‘Celtic beast’... lrish youths... were sometimes called ‘Irishslaves’ and more frequently ‘bound boys’...” A common joke in the South in the pre-
3 A few Blacks fought on the side of the Americans during the Revolution, including some Massachusetts negroes known as the “Bucks of America.” The claim has long been made that the first victim of the British in the American Revolution was a Black, Crispus Attucks. In fact, Attucks was an Indian, a descendant of John Attucks, a Natick who had battled American pioneers in King Philip’s War.
Civil War period was that when Blacks were ordered to work hard they complained that their masters were treating them ‘likeIrishmen.’ (Roediger, pp. 133, 146,150).4
“When I was a boy,’ recalled Waters Mcintosh, who had been a slave in Sumter, South Carolina, ‘we used to sing, ‘Rather be a XXXX than a poor white man.’ Even in slavery we used to sing that.’
“Mr. McIntosh’s remarks reveal... hat the poor whites of the South ranked below blacks in social standing... slaves felt unbridled contempt for lower-class whites... Frederick Douglass opened his famous Life and Times with an account of Talbot County, Maryland, which he said housed a ‘white population of the lowest order...
“Throughout the South the slaves of many of the larger planters lived in a society of blacks and well-to-do whites and were encouraged to view even respectable laboring Whites with disdain... Ella Kelly, who had been a slave in South Carolina:
“...You know, boss, dese days dere is three kind of people. Lowest down is a layer of white folks, then in de middle is a layer of colored folks, and on top is de cream, a layer of good white folks...
“The slaves noticed their masters sense of superiority toward marginal farmers as well as toward poor whites and, by associating themselves with ‘de quality white folks,’ strengthened their self-esteem...
“...a slave... expressed no surprise that his master, who was Big Buckra, never associated with white trash. And Rosa Starke, who had been owned by a big planter in South Carolina, reported that poor whites had to use the kitchen door when they went up to the Big House. Her mistress ‘had a grand manner; no patience with poor white folks.’
“...The many (negro) ex-slaves who recalled the lot of the small farmers and poor whites as hard and even as bad as their own knew what they were talking about.
“...The slaves saw enough abject poverty, disease, and demoralization among the poor whites... to see their own condition under Ole Massa’s protection as perhaps not the worst of evils.” (Eugene D. Genovese, “Rather Be a XXXX Than a Poor White Man’: Slave Perceptions of Southern Yeoman and Poor Whites,” inToward a New View of America, pp. 79, 81-82, 84, 90-91).
This situation engendered a rage in the descendants and survivors of White slavery which has seldom been accounted for in the history of White working class support for the Northern abolitionist cause. We can gauge the attitude of yeoman Whites, especially in the border states like Kentucky and Tennessee, but throughout the U.S.A. as well, who were either neutral during the Confederacy’s struggle or sided with Lincoln, from the statement of an Iowa Congressman who maintained that it was the planter aristocracy “which exalts and spreads Africans at the expense of the White race.” (Emma Lou Thornbrough, “The Race Issue in Indiana Politics During the Civil War,”Indiana Magazine of History, June, 1951).
Some of the leaders of the Free Soil Party and many of the Unionist soldiers who made up the ranks of Lincoln’s armies in southern Ohio, western North Carolina, eastern Tennessee, southern Illi-nois, Kentucky and elsewhere were survivors of White slavery or descendants of White slaves. They did not view themselves as advocates of what was then referred to as racial “amalgamation.” (2)
4 Strong’sopinion was hardly unanimous. In the 1850s, Massachusetts legislator Caleb Cushing announced that he admitted “to an equality with me, sir, the White man— my blood a nd race— whether he be a Saxon of England or a Celt of Ireland... but I do not admit as my equals either the red man of America, or the yellow man of Asia, or the black of Africa” Irish-Americans were among the foremost fighters for the rights of White workers and for separation of the races. The term miscegenation (from the Latin, miscere, to mix and genus, for race) was coined by two Irishmen, George Wakeman and D.G. Croly, in their anonymously written, 1863 anti-integration satire,
Miscegenation: The Theory of the Blending of the Races. The Englishman James D. Burn observed that, “...it is in the Irish residents that they (American negroes) have, and will continue to have, their most formidable enemies...” (Three Years Among the Working Classes in the U.S. During the [Civil] War, p. xiv).
Historically they regarded themselves as separatists and viewed the Southern planter’s desire to spread negroes into California, Oregon and other territories as a grave threat to free White labor and the Old Testament principle of racial separation (Nehemiah 13:23-27; Ezra 10:10-14; Hosea 5:7).
Congressman David Wilmot sponsored a law to ban Black slavery in the American West. He dubbed his proposed law, “the White Man’s Proviso.” He was bitterly opposed by the Southern elite. Wilmot told Congress that he intended to preserve America’s western frontier for “the sons of toil, my own race and color.” (ChDuring much arles B. Going,David Wilmot: Free-Soiler, p. 174).
During much of the Civil War the political and military leaders of the Confederacy could not travel in certain parts of the Deep South without armed escorts (Jeffrey Rogers Hummel, “The Civil War,”The United States at War Audio Classics Series, Part Two), for fear of attack from “Upcountry” Southern Whites who hated the planter aristocracy and the war they saw as being for the sole benefit of the expansion of the planter’s “infernal negroes.” Upcountry Southern Whites consisted in large part of the survivors and the children of the survivors of White slavery who resided in the hills, mountains and Piedmont regions of the South under frontier conditions.
In the antebellum 19th century South, “A large number of white Southerners lived in the upcountry, an area of small farmers and herdsmen... engaged largely in mixed and subsistence agriculture... Little currency circulated, barter was common and upcountry families dressed in ‘home-spun cloth, the product of the spinning wheel and the hand-loom.’ This economic order gave rise to a distinctive subculture that celebrated mutuality, egalitarianism (for whites) and... independence.
“...mountain counties rejected secession from the outset. One citizen of Winston County in the northern Alabama hill country believed yeoman had no business fighting for a planter-dominated aristocracy: ‘Alltha want is to git you... to fight for their infernal negroes and after you do their fightin’ you may kiss their hind parts for o tha care.” (Eric Foner, Reconstruction: America’s Unfinished Revolution, 1863-1877, pp. 11 and 13).
Poor Whites had to be drafted into the Confederate army. As in the North, where resistance to conscription was widespread, many Southern Whites saw the conflict as “a rich man’s war and a poor man’s fight.” Indeed, any slaveholder owning 20 or more Black slaves was exempt from military combat.
From 1609 until the early 1800s, between one-half and two thirds of all the White colonists who came to the New World came as slaves. Of the passengers on the Mayflower, twelve were White slaves (John Van der Zee, Bound Over, p. 93). White slaves cleared the forests, drained the swamps, built the roads. They worked and died in greater numbers than anyone else.
Both psychologically and materially Whites in modern times are called upon to bear burdens of guilt and monetary reparation for negro slavery. This position is based entirely on enforced ignorance and the deliberate suppression of the record of White slavery in North America. Hundreds of thousands of Whites had been enslaved during the colonial era in America while millions of others were too poor to afford even a mule, much less a Black slave.
Slave reparations and guilty feelings are due— if one sub scribes to such a thing as retroactive collective guilt— from the descendants of the minority of wealthy Whites who owned negro slaves and who, in the South at least, were themselves generally reduced to penury in the aftermath of the Civil War. Reparations would also have to be paid by the descendants of the Cherokee and other Ameri-can Indian tribes who owned Black slaves and by the heirs of Black tribal leaders in Africa who sold them into slavery. (3)
Reparations must also be paid, if the logic of the situation is to be consistent, to the modern-day White descendants of the White slaves of early America.
The whole discussion of negro slavery, Southern racism and the Civil War as currently framed by the Establishment agenda, necessarily must exclude any examination of the fact of White slavery, especially in the 17th and 18th centuries, and the condition of free White poor in the 19th century forced to compete against negro slave labor in the South.
Whites Were the First Slaves in America
The enslavement of Whites extended throughout the American colonies and White slave labor was a crucial factor in the economic development of the colonies. Gradually it developed into a fixed system every bit as rigid and codified as negro slavery was to become. In fact, negro slavery was efficiently established in colonial America because Black slaves were governed, organized and controlled by the structures and organization that were first used to enslave and control Whites. Black slaves were “late corners fitted into a system already developed.” (Ulrich B. Phillips, Life and Labor in the Old South, pp. 25-26).
White slavery was the historic base upon which negro slavery was constructed. “...the important structures, labor ideologies and social relations necessary for slavery already had been established within indentured servitude... white servitude... in many ways came remarkably close to the ‘ideal type’ of chattel slavery which later became associated with the African experience” (Hilary McD. Beck-les, White Servitude, pp. 6-7 and 71). “The practice developed and tolerated in the kidnapping of Whites laid the foundation for the kidnapping of Negroes.” (Eric Williams, From Columbus to Castro, p. 103).
The official papers of the White slave trade refer to adult White slaves as “freight” and White child slaves were termed “half-freight.” Like any othercommodity on the shipping inventories, White human beings were seen strictly in terms of market economics by merchants.
The American colonies prospered through the use of White slaves which Virginia planter John Pory delcared in 1619 were “our principall wealth.”
“The white servant, a semi-slave, was more important in the 17th century than even the negro slave, in respect to both numbers and economic significance.” (Marcus W. Jernegan, Laboring and Dependent Classes in Colonial America, p. 45).
Where mainstream history books or films touch on White slavery it is referred to with the deceptively mild-sounding title of “indentured servitude,” the implication being that the enslavement of Whites was not as terrible or all-encompassing as negro “slavery” but constituted instead a more benign bondage, that of “servitude.”
Yet the terms servant and slave were often used interchangeably to refer to people whose status was clearly that of permanent, lifetime enslavement. “An Account of the English Sugar Plantacons” (sic) in the British Museum (Stowe manuscript) written circa 1660-1685, refers to Black and White slaves as “servants”: “...the Colonyes were plentifully supllied with Negro and Christian servants which are the nerves and sinews of a plantacon...” (Christian was a euphemism for White).
“In the North American colonies in the 17th and 18th centuries and subsequently in the United States, servant was the usual designation for a slave” (Compact Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, p. 2,739).
The use of the word servant to describe a slave would have been very prevalent among a Bible-literate people like colonial Americans. In all English translations of the Bible available at the time, from Wycliffe’s to the 1 611 King James version, the word slave as it appeared in the original Biblical languages was translated as servant. For example, the King James Version of Genesis 9:25 is rendered: “Cursed be Canaan, a servant of servants shall he be.” The intended meaning here is clearly that of slave and there is little doubt that in the mind of early Americans the word servant was synonymous with slave (cf. Genesis 9:25 in the New International Version Bible).
In original documents of the White merchants who transported negroes from Africa the Blacks were called servants: “...one notes that the Company of Royal Adventurers referred to their cargo as ‘Negers,’ ‘Negro-Servants,’ ‘Servants... from Africa...” (Handlin, p. 205).
The documentary record debunks the propaganda that slavery was strictly a racist operation, part of a conspiracy of White supremacy, because: 1. Whites as well as Blacks were enslaved. 2. In the 17th century slaves of both races were called servants. 3. The colonial merchants of 17th century America had no qualms about enslaving their own White kindred. Oscar Handlin:
“Through the first three-quarters of the 17th century, the Negroes, even in the South, were not numerous... They came into a society in which a large part of the (White) population was to some degree unfree... The Negroes lack of freedom was not unusual. These (Black) newcomers, like so many others, were accepted, bought and held, as kinds of servants...
“It was in this sense that Negro servants were sometimes called slaves... For that matter, it also applied to white Englishmen... ln New England and New York too there had early been an intense desire for cheap unfree hands, for ‘bond slavery, villeinage or Captivity,’ whether it be white, Negro or In-dian...” (Handlin, pp. 202-203, 204, 218).
“The early laws against runaways, against drunkenness, against carrying arms or trading without permission had applied penalties as heavy as death to all servants, Negroes and Whites” (Handlin, p. 214).
A survey of the various ad hoc codes and regulations devised in the 17th century for the governing of those in bondage reveals no special category for Black slaves. (Hening, vol. 1, pp. 226, 258, 540).
“During Ligon’s time in Barbados (1647-1650), white indentured female servants worked in the field gangs alongside the small but rapidly growing number of enslaved black women. In this formative stage of the Sugar Revolution, planters did not attempt to formulate a division of labor along racial lines. White indentured servants... were not perceived by their masters as worthy of special treatment in the labor regime.” (Beckles, Natural Rebels, p. 29).
“...whiteness and independence were not firmly connected. Nor was Blackness yet fully linked with servitude.” (Roediger, p. 27).
The contemporary academic consensus on slavery in America represents history by retroactive fiat, decreeing that conclusions about the entire epoch fit the characterizations of its final stage, the 19th century Southern plantation system. (4)
17th century colonial slavery and 19th century American slavery are not a seamless garment. Historians who pretend otherwise have to maintain several fallacies, the chief among these being the supposition that when White “servants” constitutedthe majority of servile laborers in the colonial period, they worked in privileged or even luxurious conditions which were forbidden to Blacks.
In truth, White slaves were often restricted to doing the dirty, backbreaking field work while Blacks and even Indians were taken into the plantation mansion houses to work as domestics:
“Contemporaries were aware that the popular stereotyping of (White) female indentured servants as whores, sluts and debauched wenches, discouraged their use in elite planter households. Many pioneer planters preferred to employ Amerindian women in their households... With the... establishment of an elitist social culture, there was a tendency to reject (White) indentured servants as domestics... Black women... represented a more attractive option and, as a result, were widely employed as domestics in the second half of the 17th century. In 167 5 for example, John Blake, who had recently arrived on the island (of Barbados), informed his brother in Ireland that his white indentured servant was a ‘slut’and he would like to be rid of her ...(in favor of a ‘neger wench’).” (Beckles, Natural Rebels, pp. 56-57).
In the 17th century White slaves were cheaper to acquire than Negroes and therefore were often mistreated to a greater extent.
Having paid a bigger price for the Negro, “the planters treated the black better than they did their ‘Christian’ white servant. Even the Negroes recognized this and did not hesitate to show their contempt for those white men who, they could see, were worse off than themselves...” (Bridenbaugh, p. 118).
It was White slaves who built America from its very beginnings and made up the overwhelming majority of stave-laborers in the colonies in the 17th century. Negro slaves seldom had to do the kind of virtually lethal work the White slaves of America did in the formative years of settlement. “The frontier demands for heavy manual labor, such as felling trees, soil clearance, and general infrastructural development, had been satisfied primarily by white indentured servants between 1627 and 1643.” (Beck-les, Natural Rebels, p. 8 ).
The merchant class of early America was an equal opportunity enslaver and viewed with enthusiasm the bondage of all poor people within their grasp, including their own White kinsmen. There was a precedent for this in the English legal concept of villeinage, a form of medieval White slavery in Eng-land.
“...as late as 1669 those who thought of large-scale agriculture assumed it would be manned not by Negroes but by servile Whites under a condition of villeinage. John Locke’s constitutions for South Carolina envisaged an hereditary group of servile ‘leetmmen’; and Lord Shaftsbury’s signory on Locke Island in 1674 actually attempted to put the scheme into practice.” (Handlin, p. 207).
The Random House Dictionary of the English Language defines servitude as “slavery or bondage of any kind.” The dictionary defines “bondage” as “being bound by or subjected to external control.” It defines “slavery” as “ownership of aperson or persons by another or others.”
Hundreds of thousands of Whites in colonial America were owned outright by their masters and died in slavery. They had no control over their own lives and were auctioned on the block and examined like livestock exactly like Black slaves, with the exception that these Whites were enslaved by their own race. White slaves “found themselves powerless as individuals, without honor or respect and driven into commodity production not by any inner sense of moral duty but by the outer stimulus of the whip.” (Beckles,White Servitude, p. 5).
Upon arrival in America, White slaves were “put up for sale by the ship captains or merchants... Families were often separated under these circumstances when wives and offspring were auctioned off to the highest bidder.” (Foster R. Dulles, Labor in America: A History, p. 7).
“Eleanor Bradbury, sold with her three sons to a Maryland owner, was separated from her husband, who was bought by a man in Pennsylvania.” (Van der Zee, p. 165).
White people who were passed over for purchase at the point of entry were taken into the back country by “soul drivers” who herded them along “like cattle to a Smithfield market” and then put them up for auction at public fairs. “Prospective buyers felt their muscles, checked their teeth... like cattle...” (Sharon Salinger, To Serve Well and Faithfully, Labor and Indentured Servants in Pennsylvania, 1682-1800, p. 97). “...indentured servants were sold at auction, sometimes after being stripped naked.” (Roediger, p. 30). “We were... exposed to sale in public fairs as so many brute beasts.” (Ekirch, p. 129).
“Contemporary accounts likened them to livestock auctions. ‘(They) are brought in here,’ a person noted, ‘and sold in the samemanner as horses or cows in our market or fair. (William) Green recalled: ‘They search us there as the dealers in horses do those animals in this country, by looking at our teeth, viewing our limbs...” (William Green,Sufferings of William Green, p. 6 and Ekirch, p. 123).
“They are frequently hurried in droves, under the custody of severe brutal drivers into the Back Country to be disposed of as servants.” (Jernegan, p. 225).
Those Whites for whom no buyer could be found even after marketing them inland were returned to the slavetrader to be sold for a pittance. These Whites were officially referred to as “refuse” and “lumps”: “Unloading large numbers wholesale, called ‘lumping,’ was generally a last resort that yielded smaller rewards.” White slaver James “Cheston wrote to his partners, ‘The servants go off slower than I expected... I shall try them a few days longer in the retail way and then lump the remainder.
“Large-scale purchasers generally retailed servants farther inland.... ‘They drive them through the country like a parcel of sheep until they can sell them to advantage,” wrote White slave John Harrower.
The Virginia Company arranged with the City of London to have 100 poor White children “out of the swarms that swarme in the place” sent to Virginia in 1619 for sale to the wealthy planters of the colony to be used as slave labor. The Privy Council of London authorized the Virginia Company to “imprison, punish and dispose of any of those children upon any disorder by them committed, as cause shall require.” (Emphasis supplied).
The trade in White slaves was a natural one for English merchants who imported sugar and tobacco from the colonies. Whites kidnapped in Britain could be exchanged directly for this produce. The trade in White slaves was basically a return haul operation.
The operations of Captain Henry Brayne were typical. In November of 1670, Capt. Brayne was ordered to sail from Carolina with a consignment of timber for sale in the West Indies. From there he was to set sail for London with a load of sugar purchased with the profits from the sale of the timber. In England he was to sell the sugar and fill his ship with from 200 to 300 White slaves to be sold in Carolina.
The notion of a “contract” and ofthe legal status of the White in “servitude” became a fiction as a result of the exigencies of the occasion. In 1623 George Sandys, the treasurer of Virginia, was forced to sell the only remaining eleven White slaves of his Company for lack of provisions to support them. Seven of these White people were sold for 150 pounds of tobacco.
The slave-status of Whites held in colonial bondage can also be seen by studying the disposition of the estates of the wealthy Whites. Whites in bondage were rated as inventories and disposed of by will and by deed along with the rest of the property. They were bought, sold, bartered, gambled away, mortgaged, weighed on scales like farm animals and taxed as property.
Richard Ligon, a contemporary eyewitness to White slavery, in his 1657 A True and Exact History tells of a White slave, a woman, who was being traded by her master for a pig. Both the pig and the White woman were weighed on a scale. “The price was set for a groat apound for the hog’s flesh and six pence for the woman’s flesh...” (p. 59).
In general, Whites were not treated with the relative dignity the term “indentured servants” connotes, but as degraded chattel— part of the personal estate of the master and on a par with his farm animals.
The term “indentured servitude” therefore is nothing more than a propagandistic softening of the historic experience of enslaved White people in order to make a false distinction between their sufferings and those of negro slaves.
This is not to deny the existence of a fortunate class of Whites who could in fact be called “indentured servants” according to the modern conception of the term, who worked under privileged conditions of limited bondage for a specific period of time, primarily as apprentices. These lucky few were given religious instruction and could sue in a court of law. They were employed in return for their transportation to America and room and board during their period of service.
But certain historians pretend that this apprentice system-the privileged form of bound labor—was representative of the entire experience of White bondage in America. In actuality, the indentured apprentice system represented the condition of only a tiny segment of the Whites in bondage in early America.
“Strictly speaking, the term indented servant should apply only to those persons who had bound themselves voluntarily to service but it is generally used for all classes of bond servants.” (Oliver P. Chitwood, A History of Colonial America, p. 341).
Richard B. Morris in Government and Labor in Early America notes that, “In the colonies, however, apprenticeship was merely a highly specialized and favored form of bound labor. The more comprehensive colonial institution included all persons bound to labor for periods of years as determined either by agreement or by law, both minors and adults, and Indians and Negroes as well as whites” (p. 310).
In a reversal of our contemporary ideas about White “indenture” and Black “slavery,” manyBlacks in colonial America were often temporary bondsmen freed after a period of time. Peter Hancock arranged for a negro servant named Asha to serve for twelve months, thenceforth to be a free person. (Bridenbaugh, pp. 120-121). Black indentured servants in the 18th century even had an “education clause” intheir contracts:
“...free negro boys bound out as apprentices were sometimes given the benefit of an educational clause in the indenture. Two such cases occur in the Princess Anne County Records; one in 1719, to
learn the trade of tanner, the master to ‘teach him to read,’ and the other, in 1727, to learn the trade of gunsmith, the master to teach him ‘to read the Bible distinctly.” (Jernegan, p. 162).
Newspaper and court records in South Carolina cite “a free negro fellow named Johnny Holmes... lately an indented servant with Nicholas Trott...” and “a negro man commonly called Jack Cutler— h e is a free negro having faithfully served out his time with me four years according to the contract agreed upon...” (Warren B. Smith,p. 106).
David W. Galenson is the author of an Orwellian suppression of the horrors and conditions of White slavery entitled White Servitude in Colonial America. He states concerning White slaves, “European men and women could exercise choice both in deciding whether to migrate to the colonies and in choosing possible destinations.”
This is positively misleading. At the bare minimum, hundreds of thousands of White slaves were kidnapped off the streets and roads of Great Britain in the course of more than one hundred and fifty years and sold to captains of slaveships in London known as “White Guineamen.”
Ten thousand Whites were kidnapped from England in the year 1670 alone (Edward Channing, History of the United States, vol. 2, p. 369). The very word “kidnapper”was first coined in Britain in the 1600s to describe those who captured and sold White children into slavery (“kid-nabbers”).
Another whitewash is the heralded “classic work” on the subject, Abbot Emerson Smith’sColonists in Bondage which is one long coverup of the extent of the kidnapping, the denial of the existence of White slavery and numerous other apologies for the establishment including a coverup of the deportation and enslavement of the Irish people. But the record proves otherwise. (For more on Abbot Emer-son Smith’serrors cf. Warren B. Smith, White Servitude in Colonial South Carolina, p. ix).
“Cromwell’s conquest of Ireland in the middle of the seventeenth century made slaves as well as subjects of the Irish people. Over a hundred thousand men, women and children were seized by the English troops and shipped to the West Indies, where they were sold into slavery...” (George Novack, “Slavery inColonial America,”America’s Revolutionary Heritage, p. 142).
On Sept. 11, 1655 came the following decree from the Puritan Protectorate by Henry Cromwell in London:
“Concerning the younge(Irish) women, although we must use force in takinge them up, yet it beinge so much for their owne goode, and likely to be of soe great advantage to the publique, it is not in the least doubted, that you may have such number of them as you thinke fitt to make use uppon this account.” The“account” was enslavement and transportation to the colonies.
A week later Henry Cromwell ordered that 1,500 Irish boys aged 12 to 14 also be shipped into slavery with the Irish girls in the steaming tropics of Jamaica and Barbados in circumstances which killed off White adult slaves by the thousands due to the rigors of field work in that climate and the savage brutality of their overseers. In October the Council of approved the plan.
Altogether more than one hundred thousand Irish were shipped to the West Indies where they died in slavery in horrible conditions. Children weren’tthe only victims. Even eighty year old Irish women were deported to the West Indies and enslaved (D.M.R. Esson, The Curse of Cromwell: A History of the Ironside Conquest of Ireland, 1649-53, p. 176).
Irish religious leaders were herded into “internment camps throughout Ireland, and were then moved progressively to the ports for shipment overseas like cattle.” (D.M.R. Esson, p. 159). By the time Cromwell’smen had finished with the Irish people, only one-sixth of the Irish population remained on their lands. (Esson, p. 168).
Cromwell did not only enslave Catholics. Poor White Protestants on the English mainland fared no better. In February, 1656 he ordered his soldiers to find 1,200 poor English women for enslavement
and deportation to the colonies. In March he repeated the order but increased the quota to “2,000 young women of England.” In the same year, Cromwell’sCouncil of State ordered all the homeless poor of Scotland, male and female, transported to Jamaica for enslavement (Eric Williams, p. 101).
Of course, Cromwell and the Puritan ruling class were not the only ones involved in the enslavement of Whites. During the Restoration reign of King Charles II, the monarch with Catholic sympathizers who had been Cromwell’s arch-enemy, the king enslaved large groups of poor Presbyterians and Scottish Covenanters and deported them to the plantations in turn.
Legislation sponsored by King Charles II in 1686, intended to ensure the enslavement of Protestant rebels in the Caribbean colonies, was so harsh that one observer noted, “The condition of these Rebels was by this Act made as bad, if not worse than the Negroes.” (Richard Hall, Acts Passed in the Island of Barbados, p. 484).