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Word Count: 2,107
During the era of slavery in the United States not all blacks were slaves There were a many number of free blacks consisting of those had been freed or those in fact that were never slave Nor did all slave work on plantations There were nearly five hundred thousand that worked in the cities as domestic skilled artisans and factory hands Green 13 But they were exceptions to the general rule Most blacks in America were slaves on plantation-sized units in the seven states of the South And with the invent of the cotton gin by Eli Whitney more slaves were needed to work the ever-growing cotton game Frazier 14 The size of the plantations varied with the wealth of the planters There were small farmers with two or three slaves planters with ten to thirty slaves and big planters who owned a thousand or more slaves Scholars generally agree that slaves received better treatment on the small farms and plantation that did not employ overseers or general managers Almost half of the slaves however live worked and died on plantations where the owners assigned much of their authority to overseers The plantation was a combination factory village and police precinct The most obvious characteristic was the totalitarian regime placed on the slave One example of this was a communal nursery which prepared slave children for slavery and made it possible for their mothers to work in the fields The woman who cared for black children was commonly designated aunty to distinguish her from the mammy the nurse of white children Sometimes one women cared for both white and black children Boys and girls wandered in around in a state of near-nudity until they reached the age of work On some plantations they were issued tow-linen shirts on others they wore guano bags with holes punched in them for the head and arms Children were never issued shoes until they were sent to the
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