Timeline of Events Leading To The American Civil War - Colonial Period, 1607–1775

Colonial Period, 1607–1775

  • A Dutch ship brings about twenty black Africans to the Colony of Virginia as indentured servants. From this beginning, slavery will be introduced to the future United States.
  • The General Court of Virginia orders John Punch, a runaway black servant, to "serve his master or his assigns for the time of his natural Life here or elsewhere."
  • After earlier laws in Massachusetts (1641) and Connecticut (1650) limited slavery to some extent, a 1652 Rhode Island law clearly limited bond service to no more than 10 years or no later than a person attaining the age of 24. Nonetheless, Newport, Rhode Island became a large slave trade center a century later. In 1792, the state of Rhode Island prohibited the slave trade.
  • John Casor of Northampton County is the first Virginian to be judicially confirmed as a slave for life other than for violation of the law.
  • About 2,000 of the 40,000 inhabitants of colonial Virginia are imported slaves. White indentured servants working for five years before their release are 3 times as numerous and provide much of the hard labor.
  • An insurrection of slaves who caused significant property damage and in turn were severely punished or executed occurs in New York.
  • Non-slaveholding farmers in Virginia think slave labor threatens their livelihoods. They persuade the General Assembly to discuss a prohibition of slavery or a ban on importing slaves. In response, the assembly raises the tariff on slaves to five pounds, which about equals the full price of an indenture, so as not to make importation of slaves as initially attractive or preferable to a mere indenture for a term of years.
  • Another insurrection of slaves who caused significant property damage and in turn were severely punishment or executed occurs in New York.
  • Quakers, under the leadership of James Pemberton, and those of other faiths including Dr. Benjamin Rush, organize the first anti-slavery society in the colonies soon to become the United States, The Pennsylvania Society for the Abolition of Slavery, in Philadelphia.

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Famous quotes containing the word colonial:

    In colonial America, the father was the primary parent. . . . Over the past two hundred years, each generation of fathers has had less authority than the last. . . . Masculinity ceased to be defined in terms of domestic involvement, skills at fathering and husbanding, but began to be defined in terms of making money. Men had to leave home to work. They stopped doing all the things they used to do.
    Frank Pittman (20th century)