DON’T SHOOT THE MESSENGER! This is always a controversial subject matter. Okay…lol…My History Investigation Of my kin may help unlock yours…good luck!
1630–1680 – During this time, 75,000 people immigrate to the Chesapeake Bay colonies, 50,000 of whom are indentured servants. The large majority of these newcomers are men.
The enslavement of Whites extended throughout the American colonies and White slave labor was a crucial factor in the economic development of the colonies. Gradually it developed into a fixed system every bit as rigid and codified as negro slavery was to become. In fact, negro slavery was efficiently established in colonial America because Black slaves were governed, organized and controlled by the structures and organization that were first used to enslave and control Whites. Black slaves were “late corners fitted into a system already developed.” (Ulrich B. Phillips, Life and Labor in the Old South, pp. 25-26).
White slavery was the historic base upon which negro slavery was constructed. “…the important structures, labor ideologies and social relations necessary for slavery already had been established within indentured servitude… white servitude… in many ways came remarkably close to the ‘ideal type’ of chattel slavery which later became associated with the African experience” (Hilary McD. Beckles, White Servitude, pp. 6-7 and 71). “The practice developed and tolerated in the kidnapping of Whites laid the foundation for the kidnapping of Negroes.” (Eric Williams, From Columbus to Castro, p. 103). And why do all of this begin? By one thing-A Charter from James I of England-
The first Charter issued to the Virginia Company in 1606 authorized the investors “<em”>to make Habitation, Plantation, and to deduce a colony of sundry of our People into that part of America commonly called VIRGINIA, but settlement was allowed only on territory “not now actually possessed by any Christian Prince or People.”1</em”>
I’m researching my Own Kin being “Made Free” in the early Virginia Colonies-Birthplace of American Slavery-in the 1600’s and after many, many years of Research, I had given up. But then came this DNA Testing a bunch of folks are doing. And I did that too. And they can trace the Male DNA all the way. But researching this Question of Slavery brings about a lot of Controversial Stuff. One is if you are Open Minded and can accept that Whites were the 1st Slaves. Yes, being an Indentured Servant was Being a Slave. But I believe “Indentured” was a way of mostly saying WHITE and it was an acceptable word to the Crowd in England in the 1600’s. And it was being used in Countries all over the World. But Indentured was Being a White Slave or Black as you will read later about Anthony Johnson.
But the real thing that I see is that there are two Requirements that qualifies a person for being called a “Slave” during the 1600’s and that is
1. Being Black.
2. Never being “Made Free”.
I’ve already discovered one other big controversy. When did the 1st Slaves come to America? And the controversy is twofold. One is the actual Date of Arrival.
Slaves in Mines in Ancient Greece! And who were they? From Greece or Imported?
Evidence of slavery predates written records and has existed in many cultures. Slavery is rare among hunter-gatherer populations because it requires economic surpluses and a high population density to be viable. Thus, although it has existed among unusually resource-rich hunter gatherers, such as the American Indian peoples of the salmon-rich rivers of the Pacific Northwest Coast, slavery became widespread only with the invention of agriculture during the Neolithic Revolution about 11,000 years ago.
In the earliest known records, slavery is treated as an established institution. The Code of Hammurabi (c. 1760 BC), for example, prescribed death for anyone who helped a slave escape or who sheltered a fugitive. The Bible mentions slavery as an established institution. Slavery was known in almost every ancient civilization and society. Such institutions included debt bondage, punishment for crime, the enslavement of prisoners of war, child abandonment, and the birth of slave children to slaves.
And here comes that Date Controversy, some list the 1st arrival as a Dutch Man-o-War in 1640 and reads very similar to the same as below but another Ship-
As was quite common, about 150 of the 350 captives aboard the ship died during the crossing. Then, as it approached its destination, the ship was attacked by two privateer ships, the White Lion and the Treasurer. Crews from the two ships stole up to 60 of the Bautista’s slaves. It was the White Lion which docked at Virginia Colony’s Point Comfort and traded some of the prisoners for food on August 20, 1619.
And here’s another discussion of the same event-
Virginia’s first Africans arrived at Point Comfort, on the James River, late in August 1619. There, “20. and odd Negroes” or more from the English ship White Lion were sold in exchange for food and some were transported to Jamestown, where they were sold again. Three or four days later another English ship, the Treasurer, arrived in Virginia, where its captain sold two or three additional Africans. Historians have long believed these Africans to have come to Virginia from the Caribbean, but Spanish records suggest they had been captured in a Spanish-controlled area of West Central Africa. They probably were Kimbundu-speaking people, and many of them may have had at least some knowledge of Catholicism. While aboard the São João Bautista bound for Mexico, they were stolen by the White Lion and the Treasurer. Once in Virginia, they were dispersed throughout the colony. The number of Africans in Virginia increased to thirty-two by 1620, but then dropped sharply by 1624, likely because of the effects of disease and perhaps because of the Second Anglo-Powhatan War (1622–1632). Evidence suggests that many were baptized and took Christian names, and some, like Anthony and Mary Johnson, won their freedom and bought land. In 1628, after a shipload of about 100 Angolans was sold in Virginia, the number of Africans in the colony rose dramatically. MORE…
Free Early Africans in Virginia
Other than John Phillip, there is no evidence any Africans in Virginia by 1625 arrived as free people.
However, at least three early Africans in Virginia became free after a long period of enslavement. Most
free Africans purchased freedom by breeding and selling their own livestock. Antonio, later Anthony
Johnson, arrived on the James in 1621, and his wife Mary (Johnson) arrived in 1622 on the Margrett
and John. They were free by 1645 and herded livestock before acquiring land on Virginia’s Eastern
Shore, which had a free black population much larger than Virginia’s mainland counties, made up
mostly of former slaves who became free in the 1640s and 1650s. John Pedro arrived on the Swan in
1623 and was free by the early 1650s. He briefly owned land in Lancaster before moving to Maryland.
Significantly, these Africans who became free arrived on English ships after 1619, rather than from the
San Juan Bautista. Africans who had already spent time in England or on English ships perhaps had
more familiarity with English language, culture, and legal systems that allowed them to do business
and negotiate with English colonists. Free Africans appear disproportionately in the historical record,
whereas the lives and stories of most enslaved Africans are hidden or lost. The experiences of these
freed Africans were exceptional, not typical of the vast majority of Africans brought to early Virginia.
But then here comes another not so controversial Topic-
1st Black African “Made Free” was Anthony Johnson who then bought African Indentured Servants to work his Plantation.
Many Africans had earned their freedom, and they were each granted 50 acres (200,000 m2) of land when freed from their indentures, so they could raise their own tobacco or other crops. Although at a disadvantage in that they had to pay to have their newly acquired land surveyed in order to patent it, white indentured servants found themselves in the same predicament. Some black indentured servants patented and bought land after gaining freedom.
Anthony Johnson was an African who was freed soon after 1635; he settled on land on the Eastern Shore following the end of indenture, later buying African indentured servants as laborers. George Dillard, a white indentured servant who settled in New Kent County after his servitude ended, held at least 79 acres (320,000 m2) of his own land and married, despite a dearth of women in the colonies at that time.
Nicholas Ferrar wrote a contemporaneous text Sir Thomas Smith’s Misgovernment of the Virginia Company (first published by the Roxburghe Club in 1990). Here he alleges that Smith and his son-in-law, Robert Johnson, were running a company within a company to skim off the profits from the shareholders. He also alleged that Dr. John Woodall had bought some Polish settlers as slaves, selling them to Lord de La Warr. He claimed that Smith was trying to reduce other colonists to slavery by extending their period of indenture indefinitely beyond the seventh year.
Here comes another Controversial item-this issue of a Black Person being an Indentured Sevant? Here, it’s stated that Anthony Johnson was an Indentured Servant, but other Sources say No Such Thing existed for a Black Person. Also, the 1624 Census and 1625 Muster lists
Blacks are either Negro or “Other”.
Anthony Johnson (b. c. 1600 – d. 1670) was a black Angolan known for achieving freedom and wealth in the early 17th-century Colony of Virginia. He was one of the first African American property owners and had his right to legally own a slave recognized by the Virginia courts. Held as an indentured servant in 1621, he earned his freedom after several years, and was granted land by the colony.
But here comes the biggest Controversy for you if you are Black reading this? Who are you? I mean, what is Your Actual Last Name? Your true African Heritage? Right now, I purchased and am reading a Historical Index Record of the Men and Women that lived in the early Virginia Colonies. And there is an INDEX of 50 pages with about 150 Names per page. So, out of 7500 Names, did your present Family Last Name that you USE TODAY come from one of these 7500 Names of one of these Colonists or their children? With DNA Testing on the Male Side, your DNA can possibly tell the Whole Story of where your Name and Your Story Began…how neat is that? How cool is that?…
My History Investigation may help unlock yours…