Fires of Jubilee Essay

1497 Words Feb 25th, 2011 6 Pages
The Sparks of a Civil War The year is 1831; the University of Alabama is founded, Victor Hugo publishes his work The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and President Jackson is barely keeping the country together. Abolitionists like William Lloyd Garrison are radically protesting slavery, and uneasy southerners are ready to fight for their “property”. Northerners argued that slavery was against the morals of Christians and that it is in fact against the Constitution where it states that “All men are created equal.” Southerners say that in the Bible, the books of Christians, there are stories about men with slaves and that there wasn’t anything in the bible that said it was wrong. Southerners also said that they were actually helping the slaves …show more content…
In fact many Southerners will say that Nat’s literacy was a main reason for his rebellion. He was inspired by scripture and then was able to convince other slaves to join his rebellion with it by reading it to them. “And he that stealeth a man, and selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be put to death” (36). This is a verse from the book of Exodus that Nat read to his fellow rebels and was sure to gain a few followers with it because blacks were very serious about religion. It gave them hope for freedom and survival and actually organized the rebellion. Nat became a prophet to his fellow rebels and his words stroke courage into the hearts f the insurgents. Whites in Southampton were very different than other white southerners. Even though the black population in Southampton was sixty percent total (3), the whites gave the slaves a lot of privileges that other slaves in the south wouldn’t get. In fact 1,745 blacks were “free people of color” (3) in Southampton. Whites believed in the “Happy Slave Myth”, the thought that the southerners were actually helping the slaves by taking them from Africa and that they were happy being slaves. The whites of Southampton rarely beat the slaves unless they committed a serious offense (3). If slaves spoke about Negro liberation there were severe consequences

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