Slavery, Religion, and Indentured Servants in Early America


America’s history is filled with heroic acts of selfless people, accounts of individuals with new ideas of shaping the New World. However, like all nations, America’s early history has negative aspects that cannot be avoided. Slavery was used throughout early America, especially in the southern colonies.

Slavery is considered a dark side of American history and it had a tremendous impact on how the new country developed. The impact of slavery was immense and cannot be ignored when examining how America operated at the start of its world influence. From the very beginning, slaves’ lives were altered dramatically as they were taken from their homeland.

Slavery and Religion

Religion in the New World influenced the use of slavery and helped quicken the social ramifications slavery brought to America. It is important to realize that even though in early America where many Americans sought freedom from tyranny, Americans imposed cruelty of human beings in a manner that contradicted what they believed.

As slavery progressed in the country, some individuals spoke out against the inhumane institution. One of the lasting impacts slavery had on the nation was the split between people who advocated the institution and those who spoke against it. Slavery impacted the development of colonial and post-Civil War America immensely and that influence can be seen throughout the development of the country.

Why was There Slavery in America?

The very beginning effects of slavery on its people cannot be taken lightly. But in order to understand why slavery took place, it is important to look at a system that was in place before slavery became as prominent as it did in the colonies. Indentured servants were more widely used than slaves through much of the seventeenth century. The passage to America was too expensive for the average British citizen, so many agreed to give up their freedom for five to seven years in return for the trip to the American colonies.

Being an indentured servant was an experience many early Americans endured. One woman, in a letter to her father, stated: “What we unfortunate English people suffer here is beyond the probability of you in England to conceive”.