Slavery, The Quakers and Abolition

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1 Slavery, The Quakers and Abolition The United States was not always a free country for everyone. The United States was built on the backs of slaves. Slaves worked in fields and in houses so the plantation owners could make money. A plantation is a large farm in the southern United States. Slavery, and the work the slaves did, made the United States a very rich country. The first slaves came to the United States in In the middle of the 1500 s, England and Spain went to Africa. On the west coast of Africa, Europeans found gold, ivory and millions of people. The Europeans started to use the Africans to work in the gold mines. A mine is deep under the ground. It is very dangerous work. In the early 1600 s, Europeans went to North and South America. They wanted to have slaves there too. The Europeans would go to African villages and take men, women and children. Then the African people walked for hundreds of kilometers to the ocean. Many people would die on the walk. There was no food and very little water. At the ocean, the slaves went on big ships. There were hundreds of slaves on the ships. They slept on the floor. There was very little food. There was very little water. There were no washrooms or doctors. Many slaves died on the ship. In North America, mothers, fathers and children did not stay together. The slaves went to a slave auction. A slave auction is like a market. White farmer owners looked at the slaves. They looked at their teeth and bodies. They wanted to buy healthy slaves. Owners bought slaves and took them to their plantation. The slaves were the property of the slave owners. Slaves were property of the owner until they were sold again or until they died. White people were terrible to the African people. They did not think African people were equal. Being a slave was very difficult work. There was little food, and water. Slaves worked very long hours. They started when the sun came up and they stopped when the sun went down. Slaves worked in fields with rice, cotton, tobacco, coffee and sugar. If a slave did not listen or did not work hard, the master would beat him or kill him.

2 The northern states abolished slavery in The south had slavery until The south had many farms, and needed many workers. The slaves were free labour. This meant the plantation owners could make a lot of money because they did not have to pay people. Not all people agreed with slavery. Some people thought it was wrong and wanted slavery to end. The Quakers did not agree with slavery. They thought all people were equal and that slavery was against God. They believed in equality for all and they wanted to abolish slavery. The Quakers started a group called the Society of Friends. This group talked about the abolition of slavery. The Society of Friends had meetings, spoke with the government, put up posters and made speeches about abolition. This was called the Abolitionist Movement. Slave owners did not like the Quakers. The Abolitionist Movement made them very angry. The slave owners did not want slavery to end. They wanted to keep making a lot of money. The Quakers helped slaves to be free. Slaves would sometimes run away from the plantations. They ran to the north. The slaves needed food and a place to sleep when they ran. The Quakers took the slaves into their homes and gave them food and clothes. It was illegal to help slaves. The Quakers could be beaten or killed. The Society of Friends was an important part of the Underground Railway. The Quakers had courage to help the slaves. People started to think slavery was wrong. The north thought the south should use new machines on the plantations, not slaves. The south did not want to change. During this time, a new president took over the leadership in the United States. The new president was Abraham Lincoln, who was against slavery. He wanted the United States to be a country without slavery. The southern states strongly disagreed. the United States had a Civil War from A Civil War is when one country fights against itself. The north won the Civil War. Slavery eneded in After abolition, African Americans continued to work on farms. They got very little money. They were free, but they were not equal. They could not vote, buy property of marry white people. African Americans would not truly be free for over a hundred years after abolition.

3 Comprehension Questions 1. Who are the Quakers? 2. What is a slave? 3. Who helped the slaves to escape? 4. How did the slaves come to the United States? 5. What did the slaves do for their owners? 6. What does plantation mean? 7. How did slaves escape? 8. Where did slaves live in the United States? 9. What year did slavery start in the United States? 10. What does labour mean? 11. Who was the president in 1860? 12. What does master mean? 13. How long have slaves been free? 14. Who went to Africa in the 1500 s? 15. What did the Europeans find in Africa?

4 Vocabulary Work Use the story to fill in the blanks. 1. and are two European countries that had slavery. 2. In Alberta, there are many coal. People are paid a lot to work in them because it is very dangerous work. 3. Slaves, houses and animals were the of the slave owners. 4. If you go to the Southern United States, you can see big that used to have slaves. Now, they are just farms with big houses. 5. Years ago, Europeans took the tusks of elephants for the. This is illegal today. 6. Europeans also found in Africa. This was used for jewelry. 7. The United States slavery in The Society of Friends wanted of slavery. 9. Slaves worked on farms that had cotton, tobacco, coffee and. 10. After abolition, slaves were. They could leave the plantation if they wanted to. 11. In South Sudan, there was a for many years. 12. Slaves called their owners. 13. At the, slaves were sold like cows or sheep. 14. Most slaves came from Africa. 15. Someone who wanted to abolish slavery is called a. Questions to think about. a) How did the slaves get from the middle of Africa to the coast? What was this trip like? good, bad?

5 b) Why did some people hate the Quakers and the Abolitionist Movement? c) Were African Americans free and equal after abolition? Explain your answer. d) Do you think people in the South like Abraham Lincoln? Explain your answer. e) Slaves did not usually fight back against their owners. Why not? f) Do you think life was difficult for slaves after slavery? Explain.

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