Homework Question on Agriculture, Slavery and Cotton
- Agriculture, slavery and Cotton We have explored the Arkansas territory and how it evolved into Statehood!
- Although the end of the Civil War saw the end of slavery, agriculture and cotton continue to be a “staple” even up to the present time. What do you think is meant by the term “Cotton Culture?” Does this culture shape Arkansas? Is cotton particular to one part of the State?
- Here is a useful link: http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=2092 However, look in the index of our text; Arkansas: A Narrative History under Cotton. This assignment is a blog entry. It must be at least four pages double spaced 11 point font, either times roman or ariel.
- Find and tell me what you think is meant by the term “Cotton Culture” and how it applies to Arkansas.
- What about slavery? Is practice of slave holding the same throughout the State?
- How does the end of the Civil War affect this abhorrent institution in Arkansas?
Homework Answer on Agriculture, Slavery and Cotton
Cotton is one of the most economically beneficial plants commonly used as natural fabric. During the ancient times, cotton plant was popularly referred to as ‘The fabric of our lives’as it was used for clothing and household furnishings. Cotton farming became a more popular form of cash crop farming during the period of industrial revolution when textile mills were being established in European countries. The rapidly growing demand of cotton plant led to a sudden economic bloom in the United States which was widely recognized for cotton farming.
This opportunity drove both large scale and small scale farmers to Arkansas and other parts of the Southern territories which were characterized with semitropical weather and fertile soils that supported high productivity of cotton crop.
During the ancient days, Arkansas was greatly renowned for tobacco farming and production. However, in the year 1790s, the market demand for tobacco products immensely declined leading to a halt in tobacco farming (Fite 3). The slaves who had been working in many tobacco plantations were required no more.
However, cotton became tobacco’s best alternative crop following Eli Whitney’s invention of the cotton gin in the year 1793(McNeilly 9). Spurred by the high financial returns, Southern states residents began to embrace the practice of cotton farming which ultimately transformed the state’s economy. The era of ‘Cotton Kingdom’ resulted to an increase in the incidence of slave trade as slaves were relied as sources of affordable labor (Fite 19).