Were there more indentured servants or slaves in New England?

Were there more indentured servants or slaves in New England?

More than half of the original population of the North American colonies was brought over as indentured servants. New England colonies were also slower to accept African slavery in general. One reason for this was that there were local alternatives to African slaves.

How did indentured servitude compare to slavery?

Indentured servitude differed from slavery in that it was a form of debt bondage, meaning it was an agreed upon term of unpaid labor that usually paid off the costs of the servant’s immigration to America. Indentured servants were not paid wages but they were generally housed, clothed, and fed.

What race were the first indentured servants?

In 1619 the first black Africans came to Virginia. With no slave laws in place, they were initially treated as indentured servants, and given the same opportunities for freedom dues as whites.

Who were indentured servants in America?

Indentured servants were men and women who signed a contract (also known as an indenture or a covenant) by which they agreed to work for a certain number of years in exchange for transportation to Virginia and, once they arrived, food, clothing, and shelter.

Did New England colonies have indentured servants?

As a carryover from English practice, indentured servants were the original standard for forced labor in New England and middle colonies like Pennsylvania and Delaware. These indentured servants were people voluntarily working off debts, usually signing a contract to perform slave-level labor for four to seven years.

Why did slavery become a better option than indentured servitude?

Another reason slavery became a better option was slaves became cheaper and indentured servants went up in price. According to the article on Colonial Virginia by Wolfe, the English became more involved in the slave trade and as the number of indentured servants willing to go to Virginia fell, the price of slaves went down.

What is the difference between indindentured servants and slaves?

Indentured servants get to be released when they have worked their part of the deal. Slaves don’t get much in return for their work. Something that they do get is shelter, but most of the time, the shelter is small and is shared with other slaves.

How many indentured servants were there in colonial America?

The exact number of indentured servants in colonial America is unclear, however, historians like Richard Hofstadter suggest that more than half the white settlers who arrived in colonial America before the revolution did so under some kind of indenture.

Were indentured servants better off than new immigrants?

An indentured servant’s contract could be extended as punishment for breaking a law, such as running away, or in the case of female servants, becoming pregnant. For those that survived the work and received their freedom package, many historians argue that they were better off than those new immigrants who came freely to the country.