GDG- Slavery in the South

CWMHTours at CWMHTours at
Fri Jan 6 11:26:14 CST 2012

Hi John-
You make good points.
Someone correct me if I am wrong but I am of the view that  only a few per 
cent of the white male Southernors owned even one slave and that  of the 
stereotypical picture we have of  large plantations with dozens/hundreds of 
slaves it was less than one per cent of the  Southern population.
And to digress a bit, I think the gap between the enormously  wealthy and 
average people goes back to the American Revolution.
With the exceptions of such people as Samuel Adams, who I  believe was a 
pauper, nearly all those Founding Fathers meeting in Philly were  the 
ultra-rich, millionaires and billionaires.  I have heard that Benjamin  Franklin was 
the richest man in American.  Washington?  He owned most  what is today's 
Arlington cnty across the rived from DC.  Partly as  compensation for his 
military service he owned 10s of 1000s of acres he never  even saw out in Ohio. 
  Thomas Jefferson?   A rich  dude.  Patrick Hemry.  A plantation owner.  
John Hancock was  reputed to be a smuggler.  If you owned a buncha sailing 
ships you were a  rich dude.
On and on.
When the F Fathers came out with the Declaration and later the  
Constitution I don't think they were quite sincere in their talk about Life  Liberty, 
and the Pursuit of happiness.  
I don't think they wanted to give all that stuff to the Common  Man.  They 
wanted it for themselves.
How did this make itself obvious?  They didn't go  around handing out equal 
rights.   They kept as much as they  could.
You couldn't vote unless you were a white male who "owned  property", thus 
keeping that right out of the hands of the great  unwashed.
You had to be 21.
Couldn't be a woman. despite Abigail Adams.
And they  certainly weren't going to free any slaves with  the 
Constitution.  Nor give Indians the right to vote in their own  country.
You couldn't even make a vote for your own senator until, I  think, the 
I don't think the electoral college was put into place to  "improve" 
democracy but rather prevent it.  If the elete didn't like an  election they could 
always send in their own electors to overturn the  election.  It has been 
The elete has fought the great unwashed when it came to  handing out rights 
and equality.
This continued into the Civil War.
But then there is the problem for the elete-  How do you  get the great 
unwashed to do your bidding?
You tell them The Big Lie.  Tell them that they have  equal rights and that 
everything in America is the best in the world  (like  our educational 
system- we actually don't compete in the world).  You  repeat the Big Lie over 
and over.
And that's what the plantation owners did with the Southern  white 
population.  Manipulated them with propaganda like one Rebel can lick  ten Yankees.  
 It is no accident that in the South the local militias  tended to be more 
active and prominent.  Told them horror stories about  freeing the slaves 
which terrified them.  Tell them that misogenation (How  do you spell that?) 
is right around the corner if the Yankees come  down. 
And this worked with many, as is obvious from the rush to  volunteer at the 
beginning at the war.
And it didn't work with everybody.  Thus many months  before the North did 
it the South enacted the country's first draft.  Many  of the commons were 
forced to fight.  There was a lot of resentment on  the part of the poorer 
people that they had to leave to go fight while the  wealthy planation owners 
got to stay home to whip their slaves.
A complicated issue.  That you had to have a draft showed  a distinct lack 
of commitment from the great unwashed.
That's what I say.,
Your  Most Obedient Servant,

In a message dated 1/5/2012 8:19:49 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
jgrim1941 at writes:

Esteemed  GDG Member Contributes:
Esteemed Members

0ne concept that I would  like to throw out has seldom been touched and that
is"Why would the average  southerner fight to support slavery when less than
one in four owned a  slave and an even smaller percentage had plantations
with a considerable  number of slaves".

0bviously people who owned many slaves and great  plantations were looked on
in most communities as wealthy and successful  and living a very indolent
lifestyle.  The average southerner  maintained his small farms with himself
and sons.  A man with a lot of  land was looked on as extremely successful.
If you owned a few horses or  mules you were probably more successful
Therefore, if you could ever get a  few slaves to help you work your farm
you would start to gain wealth and  have a greater status in your community.
0wning slaves created status and  wealth.  In a day when only the rich went
to college owning a slave  became the way to success.  Believing the North
was going to destroy  the only quick way to gaining status made many
southerners believe their  way of life was being destroyed.........just  my
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