The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
The Trans-Atlantic slave trade was a transportation of mostly West African slaves over a period of three and a half centuries across the Atlantic Ocean to America and Europe. An estimated twelve million men, women, and children were taken from their African homelands to be used as slaves. The slave trade provided a great labour force for America and both the United States and African economies became increasingly reliant on European trade as America was receiving free labour and Africa was selling off their own people for goods. This resulted in a huge impact on the imperial and economical expansion of both…show more content… Plantation owners in the slave trade played a major role as they used slaves to grow their crops whilst gaining immense profits through the use of unpaid workers. They were the perpetrators of the slave trade and made their living by abusing the work done by the slaves. The plantations grew in popularity when moved from Europe to America, particularly sugar, tobacco and cotton. The rise of cotton initiated towards the end of slavery in the 1800’s in the United States. It was a huge success with over 60 percent of the four million slaves across America working in cotton from sunrise to sunset. The slaves that worked in fields were usually labelled as ‘unskilled’ with ‘skilled’ slaves being responsible for the crucial judgements such as when cane was ready for harvest. When tobacco leaves were right for picking or when sugar juices were ready were among the responsibilities of ‘skilled’ slaves. Plantation owners were well known for treating their slaves as property or commodities. Visitors to plantation crops were often shocked at how many times they saw the physical abuse of the slaves which was often a whipping if they did not perform their jobs to a high standard. Female slaves were also known to have been frequently sexually abused. Violence was the greatest threat and the foundation to a successful system.