[Unit 4] Modified DBQ Practice Prompt

Here is a modified DBQ with 2 docs from the Period 3 & 4 live stream on 4-16-20 at 9 PM EST. Try to come up with your own introductory paragraph (with Contextualization and a Thesis) as well as a body paragraph that includes Outside Evidence, Doc Usage, and Doc HIPP analysis.

Evaluate the extent to which economic changes impacted labor in the United States from 1800 to 1850.

Doc 1 - Source: Advertisement from Thomas Griggs, a South Carolina Slave Dealer, 1835.

Doc 2 - Source: Letters from a Lowell Mill Girl, 1844.

“…I went into the mill to work a few days after I wrote to you…There is…the carding room, where the cotton flies most, and the girls get the dirtiest. But this is easy, and the females are allowed to go out at night before the bell rings…The girls here are not contented; and there is no disadvantage to their situation which they do not perceive as quickly, and lament as loudly, as the sternest opponents of the factory system do…[t]he work here is not disagreeable. Not when one is accustomed to it. It tried my patience sadly at first, and does now when it does not run well; but, in general, I like it very much. It is easy to do, and does not require very violent exertion, as much of our farm work does…”

After you’ve submitted your response below, check out some exemplar paragraphs that we showed during the period 3/4 review live stream.

  • Evaluate the extent to which economic changes impacted labor in the United States from 1800 to 1850.

Since the invention of cotton gin by Eli Whitney in 1793, Southern land owners needed more and more labors to help with the production of cotton. Cotton gin helped with the process of taking the seeds off the cotton from the fiber. Therefore, more slaves are needed to take off the cotton to the machine. During 1800 to 1850, with more productions both in industry and in the field, both men and women were able to work. However, the extensive farming also leads to higher number of slaves.

People of all genders were employed to work in order to help with the production. From the letters from a Lowell Mill Girl in 1844 (Doc2), a girl described her feelings of going to work. Although the working condition is terrible and the work is bored some, the girl enjoyed her freedom and the easiness of the work. It is clear that even girls at the time were employed because of the high demand of labor in the factories. With more and more development in farming tools and productions, more workers were needed to process the raw materials. Thus, men and women were both employed rather than just men. The letters’ purpose is to give people a general idea of the conditions at the working place and the type of work women usually do in the factories. Therefore, the economic prosperity during 1800-1850 increased number of both genders as workers.

Although many white men and women had jobs in factories, it was common for African Americans to be slaves in the South. From the advertisement from Thomas Griggs (Doc 1), a South Carolina Slave Dealer had a poster that asked to buy slaves, including men, women, and children. With the development of cotton gin and the need for production, many slave dealers need to buy slaves in order to have enough labor force in the field. The intended audience for the advertisement is other white landowners who have enough slaves and are willing to sell. The Southerners not only trade slaves, but also passed Fugitive slave law, asking Northerners to catch and send back Southerners’ runaway slaves in the Missouri Compromise. Therefore, in order to help with the economy, slaves became the main labor source in the South, limiting the rights of African Americans.

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The influence of economics always changes labor, as there is more demand in the market more labor is needed to produce the good that is demanded. Between the times of 1800 and 1850 America went from a small collection of farmlands to companies that ruled entire product lines. The fast growth of economics during this time period supported and paved the way for plantations with hundreds of slaves, Lowell Mills, and later monopolizing companies like Andrew Carnegie’s Carnegie steel in the later 1800’s.

Slavery started as indentured servitude before the revolution, as towns began to grow and more food or other necessities were needed indentured servitude faded and slavery took its place. Slave owners were very cruel and made the slaves do as much work as humanly possible so that they could get as much money as possible from selling the crops that were grown. In the case of Thomas Griggs some slave owners would buy slaves(1) just to sell them to other owners, often splitting up families with no remorse. Later in the 1840’s when more factory worker were needed Lowell Mills were started in hopes to make working conditions a little bit better so that people would keep working for them. While the working conditions weren’t good they were much better than working in a field for 12 hours a day(2) in the heat of the south.

Nice work, Angelia. You clearly understood the content of the documents and tried to add outside evidence when you could.

A few comments: first, try to keep your response in the past tense when possible. It just makes it more professional and easier to follow. Second, remember that the Fugitive Slave Act was part of the Compromise of 1850, not the Missouri Compromise. Otherwise, that was a great idea for outside evidence.

Sierra, nice work with your paragraphs.

I particularly liked how you summarized and thus used each document without explicitly saying “Document” this or that. It flowed nicely.

For your next steps, try adding more direct HIPP analysis after you summarize the docs. You could add more to your Contextualization in the intro paragraph: you were describing the Market Revolution with “America went from a small collection of farmlands to companies,” so name it! :slight_smile: Also, remember that Carnegie steel is going to be after the Civil War and thus shouldn’t be a part of your thesis.

Despite the sectional divisions that resulted from slavery disputes, it was slavery based industries that allowed for the development of a market revolution that catalyzed the concept of industries in America. The shift from slave to industrial labor caused the economic changes that arose as big businesses grew. Although the economical changes in the 1800 to 1850 period did allow for the beginnings of freedoms in the workforce to develop, ultimately the continued oppressive nature of the existing labor systems and view of the worker as expendable was what characterizes the continued mistreatment of the laborer.

Like the slaves who worked the cotton gins, industrial workers in the Lowell mills were seen as less than humans than workers. While the worker was viewed as more expendable than a slave, as a slave was seen expensive property by slaver dealers like Thomas Griggs (1) and society alike, both were treated with an inhumanity that economic changes did not alter. As the development of labor unions and the populists in the 1890s suggests, the treatment of big businesses towards industrial workers was not much better than the treatment of slaves as they were both viewed as machines that could be exploited to their master’s money bag’s content.
AHH I need to work on timing because this took way too long :frowning:

As the US began to look westward to expand, whether it was for the desire to grow Southern’s plantation size or for an outlet to release social frustration, it often came with disputes on the consequences that would come with it. Debates in how to manage the growing conflicts over the usage of slaves became a pivotal point of tension. Compromises began to have less of effect, as the sectionalism that was created for reasons like slavery and states’ rights could less and less be compromised on due to the different ways that the North and South developed. The North became a much more prominent in manufacturing, while the South was rather left out of the Market Revolution and relied on agriculture, and this difference often became root of issues. Although changes in industrialization and the work force needed in the North made some women become more involved in the labor system, there wee more continuities in Americans’ growing Southern practices of an agricultural-based economy and the increasingly prominent role of women leading to strident calls of working improvements, which both impacted the labor system.

Southerners continued to use have an agrarian-based economy, which caused labor in the US to become a more convoluted. Some Southerners wanted to by slaves in exchange for giving money (1). This showed that slavery was still very much in usage and Southerners were desperate for owning them, as seen that a poster was necessary to search for one. The agrarian economy correlated with the usage of slavery, and thus the agriculture the South’s economy was relying on made the harsh system of slavery continue to be used. The historical context was that the North had been operating under the Personal Liberty Laws. This protected runaway slaves to the North and it was in effect from 1789 to 1859. This would support why more slaves attempted to run away, and thus slave dealers and Southerners needed more slaves to either make up for those that escaped or to distribute it to those that wanted to own slaves. Further, the need for more land for cotton plantations caused Southern owners to look for more land, which would in turn impact the labor system by increasing the amount of slavery used on these plantains. In the early 1830s, Southerners had already spread the cotton plantations to Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, and more, but Mexico had some land. Americans willingly used this land to continue growing their agricultural needs as they agreed that they wouldn’t mind the Indian attacks. Thus, they brought in the slavery that was necessary,. The economic continuity of relying on agricultural led to the necessarily expansion of land, which increased slavery usage as the primary labor system in the South.

The change in industrialization and manufacturing in the North changed the labor system to be more inclusive of women, but to a lesser extent in comparison to other impacts on the labor system. As the North began to industrialize, more jobs were open to women to work in, outside the home. Notably, the Lowell Mill was a place that young women began to work in. Some women described the rather unpleasing working environment, but nevertheless, the new opportunity for women still excited them (2). This showed that the women were rather enthusiastic to begin working outside of the sphere inside their home due to the industrializing of the North. This change to working in textile mills was had an impact on the labor system of the US in the North, but it was to a lesser degree in comparison to the intensity of slavery and the continuing demanding calls for change from even these Lowell Mill girls had a more profound impact, than simply some women being content and obedient to poor conditions.

Sorry for submitting this late, and I realized that I wrote 2 body paragraphs rather than 1 :confused:

@perlaalvarez431, yes, timing is often an issue. Keep working on practice prompts and HIPPing documents! See if you can drop some specific evidence in your Contextualization section to tie it to the prompt: you mentioned the Market Revolution, but either define that with more depth (cotton textiles, et.c) or mention the cotton gin, etc. You did a good job using the document in your body paragraph. Just be careful and remember that the “industrial workers were treated just as poorly as slaves” line was used by racist Southern slavers just justify their treatment. No matter how nicely slaves were treated, they were considered property or chattel, and thus dehumanized in a way that was far worse than any northern mistreatment of workers. You’d still earn full points.

@angelayuan1210, nice work! Manifest Destiny works for Contextualization, and your thesis answered the question with nice categories. Two points there! Your body paragraph also worked out well. Just be careful not to suggest that Personal Liberty Laws existed uniformly throughout all states in the North: there were some states that passed these laws, but it was on a state-by-state basis similar to nullification with other topics. You also used and analyzed both documents well. Add a bit more specificity or a vocab word or two to your second paragraph to ensure you get the HIPP analysis point. Perhaps mention King Cotton as historical context.

In the broader context, sectionalism and expansionism influenced labor in the united states. Sectionalism, specifically growing agrarianism in the southern states like North and South Carolina and growing industrialization in northern states divided the country as Northern states profited from high tariffs and southern states did not profit from high tariffs as they made the raw products the northern states shipped out such as tobacco. Therefore, the labor preferences of each side differed. Expansionism, specifically the Louisiana purchase opened up the question of expanding slavery and because only the south primarily profited from slavery, they pushed for slavery expanding in order to have enough workers in plantations. Taken together, sectionalism and expansionism influenced labor in the united states from 1800 to 1850. Social mobility minorly impacted labor in the United States. However, Slavery in perpetuity and technological diffusion majorly impacted labor in the United States. Therefore, there are more major causes of labor in the Economy than minor causes of labor in society from 1800 to 1850.
Social mobility minorly impacted labor in the united states. In document two a girl writes a letter saying that she likes working at the Lowell mill compared to working at home at the farm and explains that it is much less rigorous. The Lowell factory system allowed young women to work in factories and this gave economic independence to many women as they no longer relied solely on the income from their husbands. To contradict, ideas of cult of domesticity pushed women to work at home and take care of kids which resulted in less women working outside of the home. Social mobility only minorly impacted labor in the U.S because not everyone could receive economic independence and therefore achieve social mobility due to conflicting ideologies on who should be working at home vs who works outside of the home. Because of this, labor systems in the united states did not solely develop due to pulling factors such as economic independence.
Slavery in perpetuity majorly impacted labor in the united states. In document 1, Thomas Griggs offers to pay slave owners top price for slaves including men, women, and children. The historical context for this document is the growing demand for labor in the south due to the increased demands of raw products such as cotton. Because the south profited primarily from agrarianism, they needed cheap labor, such as slaves, to quickly produce raw products to send to the north so that the north can then sell to other parts of the world such as Europe. To corroborate, the south adopted the Barbados slave code gave slave owners complete control of slaves meaning that now, children of slaves were also considered the property of owners, therefore owners saw slave families as a never-ending source of labor. A never-ending source of labor meant continued profit as cotton production would increase and with the growing demand for cotton, the south depended more and more on slaves.

As a new century dawned on the American Experiment, many wondered what the coming years would hold. Slavery was becoming an increasing burden, as was the constant pressure to keep pushing West. Some, like Thomas Jefferson, argued for an agrarian society based on small yeoman farmers. But others were beginning to argue. To argue for change. And soon, the USA would jump on the bandwagon of a little European trend called the Industrial Revolution, taking it in a whole new direction.

By the 1800s, slavery was, in effect, dying out in the American South. Centuries of tobacco-growing had depleted the soil of its nutrients, making it nearly impossible to grow most alternative crops. This rendered mass amounts of slave labor obsolete, causing many to believe that the “peculiar institution” was surely near the end. But then a young inventor by the name of Eli Whitney came up with the cotton gin. This was just what plantation owners had been waiting for! Previously they had not attempted to grow cotton, as it takes an inordinate amount of time to separate the seeds from the fibers. But now that Whitney had eliminated that time-suck, they were free to plant cotton. And better yet, cotton actually adds nutrients to the soil, so the damage caused by the tobacco could be undone! This new “cash crop” meant that, sadly, slavery as well was restored to its former glory. An example of this is Thomas Griggs’ 1835 advertisement for the sale of “Men, Women, and Children” (Document 1). Here, a slave owner in South Carolina expresses his need to “dispose of” some of his slaves.

But, once the cotton was made, where did it go? The answere is, up North. Though they would rail against the evils of slavery, a good portion of the New England states’ income actually came from the textiles made from the cotton produced by the slaves. Mills were a common sight in New England by the 1830s. They were, for the most part, staffed by young women drawn from the surrounding farms and small towns by the prospect of earning their own wages. Once there, however, they often became disenchanted, as Letters from a Lowell Mill Girl proves (Document 2). In this piece, a young woman working in a mill expresses her love for the mills, yet simultaneously admits that most of her peers are not half as pleased as she is. However good or bad, these textile mills were the first time women really got a chance to have choice besides housewife, teacher, and a burden on their parents.

@Beth_D: Nice work. I like how you used sectionalism and expansion for your Contextualization. You don’t need to use “in the broader context”; you Contextualization should speak for itself as it’s your responsibility to connect your Contextualization evidence to the thesis, as you did well here. Also, be wary of spending too much time on your Contextualization since you don’t have too long. You also had a nice thesis with the categories “slavery” and “technological diffusion.” That’s 2 good points there. You also used and HIPPed the docs well, using both a summary in your owns words and Historical Context very well.

@elijahcockey_59200: Nice work with your Contextualization, especially in your use of Thomas Jefferson. I’m not quite sure where your thesis was, but make sure that you make the end of your intro paragraph a clear argument that answers the questions directly. Tell us HOW the industrial revolution changed labor. Your documents usage and HIPPing was well done, especially given the Historical Context of Whitney & cotton. Also, remember you don’t need to cite with “document 1” and can save time with just using “(1)”.

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Thank you for your input, Mr Lagerwey! I’ll be completing more prompts this week; I am looking forward to your commentary! Thanks again!

The Industrial and Market Revolution during the early 1800s led to sectionalism in the United States as its political parties were based on the Northeast and the South. The Democrats tended to have agrarian supporters as it was based on an economy of exporting cotton and importing other goods. Meanwhile, the War of 1812 and Embargo Act helped grow the nation’s infant industries in the Northeast, resulting in the Whig party favoring high tariffs. Economic changes in the form of the Industrial Revolution in the respective regions greatly impacted the source and type of labor in the United States as the North became more industrialized while the South grew its cotton economy. This led to wage labor in factory jobs in the north, while the practice of slavery became more entrenched in the south.

The growth of cotton industry in the south led to the growth of its labor source, slavery. The invention of the cotton gin by Eli Whitney allowed for quicker harvest and seeding of cotton, making it more profitable and widespread. This greatly increased production, requiring more slave labor for planting and growing cotton on plantations. Similarly, the invention of the steel plow byJohn Deere allowed for Americans find better soil to plant the cotton yet again making the cash crop even more profitable. The rise of King Cotton perpetuated slavery within the United States, despite the ban on transAtlantic slave trade with other nations. This growth in slavery is reflected by the profitability of slave dealing as many farmers planned to get rich quick with King Cotton (Document 1). Thus, the growth of cotton farming over subsistence farming led to a greater demand for slaves, transforming the labor population.

Meanwhile, the north became known for its burgeoning industry. After the first textile mill was established by Samuel Slater in the New England region, the north found it profitable to use Southern cotton to produce textiles to export. However, the shift from working at home to working under a common roof in a factory, though extremely practical, was not welcomed by everyone. Since the northern economy was based primarily on capitalism, these textile mills sought to attract cheap labor from young lower-class girls in nearby farms through the Lowell system, in which they would be housed in company dorms in exchange for cheap labor (Document 2). The letter, though annoyed with the monotony of factory life, claims that it is sufficient, setting a neutral tone and encouraging others to pursue a factory job if they are in need of money. Thus, the growth of industry in the north led to the growth of paid factory labor.

Ultimately, the demands of each section affected by the Industrial Revolution in different ways was instrumental in the growth of various labor systems. Though both regions required cheap labor, the existing institution of slavery sufficed for the south, while the north found cheap labor in immigrants and women due to the policy of capitalism.

With freedom being won in the Revolutionary War, America now had the power to dictate its own economy without foreign interference. Heavy debates between Federalists and Democratic-Republicans regarding economical developments were settled when George Washington favored the Hamilton Financial plan during his first term as president. With American support leaning toward the future and expansion of American industrial economics, a pattern of high tariffs and a large supply of cheap labor, both in the North and the South, pushed America headfirst into the market revolution. 

One cannot talk about labor in early America without mentioning the importance of slavery to the economy of the South. In 1808, Congress abolished the slave trade so that no more new slaves would come into the South from Africa. It was a belief that the slave trade was a dying part of society, and this legislation was seemingly a nail in the coffin. However, the South held onto their “peculiar institution” as seen in Document 1 where the purchase and selling of slaves were still in full effect. The ability of slaves to reproduce and multiply kept the slave trade alive in the South and large amounts of slave labor was still used to grow and export cash crops. The audience of Document 1 is fellow southerners and it shows that if the trade couldn’t be kept alive cross continentally, then they would adapt their way of life between buyer and seller in the south. Even in spite of the ever-growing popularity American System pushed by Henry Clay which favored high tariffs (Tariff of Abominations in 1828) that hurt the South exports, the slave trade was still thriving in the South and aimed to expand. However, the constant “northern aggression” shown through tariffs and the restriction exercised on the spread of slavery pushed for more sectionalist sentiments in the North and the South and thus led toward the secession of South Carolina and the Civil War.

In the North, where slavery wasn’t prevalent, a shortage of cheap labor was not an issue either. With a constant influx of immigrants from Ireland and Germany, as well as many women, factories were able to hire at will and keep production up a running. As Document 2 shows, the women working in the factories known as Lowell Mills, went as far as to say that “I like it very much.” It was an effective system in early America more so by the power it had over labor unions. If women or immigrants did not like their wages or conditions, there were plenty more coming off the ships who would work for anything. On top of this, the American System lobbied by Henry Clay helped the northern industry tremendously with the formation of the Bank of the US which provided early stability for the economy coupled with high tariffs to protect American industry (not so much American exports like in the South.)

In conclusion, economic developments driven by the new American System helped to protect a growing northern economy in the early stages of the market revolution while slightly inhibiting, but largely provoking, the still-thriving slave trade in the South.

I know the test is tomorrow so this probably wont matter at all but good luck to everyone! We’ve all studied hard.

I don’t know why my context paragraph is in its own little box like that.

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