Socioeconomic Impacts Of The Cotton Boom Essay

1788 Words8 Pages
Robert Christian
History 331
Dr. Tucker
29 November 2016
Socioeconomic Impacts of the Cotton Boom The American South is undoubtedly known for cotton when referring to agriculture. While it clearly and quickly became the dominant crop in the South and even the United States as a whole, cotton was not immediately as much of a cash crop as it was a burden. Originally, cotton was hard to cultivate, taking long periods of time to collect and even longer to prepare for the manufacturing process. Not until Eli Whitney’s invention of the cotton gin in 1793 and patented in 1794, and the discovery of a better strain of cotton in the Lower South did cotton production become a viable business on a large scale. King Cotton, as it came to be called, created an explosion in production in the southern economy. This economic boon brought the South, traditionally viewed as rural and backward, to the forefront of the economic picture of the entire United States of America. At the height of the cotton boom during the antebellum era, agricultural production from the South made up a surprisingly significant portion of national exports. Such large amounts of production and national dependence on Southern agricultural resources gave rise to a Southern position of power on the national scale. As a result of the South emerging as a regional power, increased political influence and importance provides the opportunity to protect and prolong the lifestyle of the Old South. Without the
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