The Antebellum Period

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The Antebellum period of the old South is considered the peak of the Southern aristocracy. Although the aristocrats owned a majority of the wealth and land, it was their slaves who made the plantations a success. The slaves had to undergo the worst conditions during the antebellum period such as the amount of work, lack of food, health, punishments, and clothes.
Slavery became the worst of work ever. Their labor services are obtained through force and their physical beings are regarded as the property of others. Most slaves were given tasks to do due to their physical wellbeing. A work day consisted of 15 to 16 hours a day during harvest time and could go on through harvest and milling for 18 hours per week for 7 days a week. There were little differences in the work field involving gender. Women, who were pregnant, were still sent to work. "Hard driving" was quite common, which was working slaves past their abilities. In the South there was no time to rest, the climate was always considered work weather, so everyone was active all year round. Children that were 6-10 might be active as water carriers. Children that were 10-12 were organized into groups and put to weeding.
Punishment was a horrible part of the slave system. The physical punishment brutal but the mental and sexual abuse was also a huge part of slavery. Each plantation had its own set of social, religious, and labor codes. The slave master reigned as god. He maintained the element of slave misery, by controlling the amount of pain giving. Treatments were given such as mutilation, branding, chaining, and murder which were supposedly regulated or prohibited. Whippings, beatings, drowning’s, and hangings were as unpredictable as they were awful. It was clear to plantation owners that slavery could not survive without the whip because they weren’t allowed to kill there slaves intentionally. Males and…...

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