6: When Cotton Became King
This episode was originally released in 2015. In Episode 6 of the History of American Slavery, hosts Rebecca Onion and Jamelle Bouie explore the rise of the antebellum cotton economy in the early decades of the 19th century. They discuss how the growth of the cotton industry transformed the American system of slavery and the lives of enslaved people. And they discuss slavery’s relationship with the development of modern American capitalism. They begin the episode by discussing the life of Charles Ball, who wrote about his experience working on a cotton plantation in his autobiography, Slavery in the United States: A Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Charles Ball. See this episode's complete show notes. This series was made possible by Slate Plus members. To support more work like this at Slate, sign up for Slate Plus now.
Duration: 47 min