Chapter

From a Common Man's Utopia to a Planter's Paradise, 1732–1776

Watson W. Jennison

in Cultivating Race

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780813134260
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813135984 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813134260.003.0002
From a Common Man's Utopia to a Planter's Paradise, 1732–1776

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The first chapter examines the abandonment of the Trustees' vision of a common man's utopia in favor a hierarchical slave society. The founders imagined a society based upon small-scale agriculture and limited landholdings. The transformation to a slave society occurred quickly. Within two decades of the end of the slavery ban, a full-blown slave society had emerged based on the cultivation of rice. A planter elite arose to political power and created a slave society modeled on South Carolina and the West Indies. The planters' reliance on slave labor to fulfill their labor needs meant that there was little demand for most white skilled workers. And planters showed little inclination to place restrictions on their slaves.

Keywords: trustees; slavery; rice; planter elite; South Carolina; West Indies

Chapter.  12345 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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