Cover image for Slavery in America : from colonial times to the Civil War
Slavery in America : from colonial times to the Civil War
Schneider, Dorothy.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Facts on File, [2000]

Physical Description:
v, 458 pages : illustrations, maps ; 29 cm.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E441 .S36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
E441 .S36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize
E441 .S36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
E441 .S36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Black History Non-Circ
E441 .S36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
E441 .S36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

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The history of the enslavement of African Americans in North America stretches from the beginning of European colonization and lasted until the end of the Civil War. Slavery in America recounts this history by examining

Author Notes

Dorothy Schneider holds a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Nebraska. She has taught at the University of Nebraska and at Utica College and was academic dean at Upsala College and Marymount College. She has also taught in Japan and Korea for the University of Maryland
Carl J. Schneider holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Wisconsin. He has taught at numerous universities, including the University of New Hampshire, the University of Nebraska, Kirkland College (which he helped found), and Montclair State University, where he was dean of graduate studies

Reviews 4

Choice Review

Informative and detailed, this reference work covering many essential aspects of slavery appears in Facts on File's "Eyewitness History" series. The chapters begin with "The West Coast of Africa (1441-1866)" and end with "The End of Slavery (1861-1865)." The other ten chapters describe the Middle Passage, Americans' involvement with the slave trade, slave life, slave work, runaways, Canada, rebels such as Nat Turner, Native Americans, abolition, and African American soldiers in various wars. Each chapter includes an extensive historical essay, a detailed chronology of events, and compelling eyewitness testimonies; notes are gathered at the end of the book. The appendix contains 45 historic documents, biographies of major personalities, and a glossary. One of the most readable and comprehensive guides to slavery available; highly recommended for public and academic libraries. S. Dupree; University of Arkansas at Monticello

Booklist Review

Typical for Facts On File publications, this is a well-researched volume that will find users from middle school and up. The Schneiders have organized this "eyewitness history" on slavery in the U.S. into 12 thematic and roughly chronological chapters, such as "West Coast of Africa," "Slave Life," "Runaways," "Argument over Slavery," and "End of Slavery." Each chapter begins with "The Historical Context," which includes an overview of the topic, followed by a "Chronicle of Events" and "Eyewitness Testimony" excerpted from letters, diaries, and old papers. Each excerpt notes the author and provides a reference to its source. Information blows away some stereotypes, clarifies slave life (for example, there are specific descriptions of poor food and medical care), and includes information on lesser-known topics such as Canadian refugee communities. The use of consistent subheadings in the "Historical Context" and "Eyewitness Testimony" sections of the chapters might have made it easier for students to connect the two, but this isn't too serious a flaw. Following the text are three appendixes, the first a 45-item list of documents (colonial, state, and U.S. acts, laws, speeches, court decisions), including Benjamin Franklin's 1790 Antislavery Petition to the U.S. Congress and Angelina Grimke's 1836 Appeal to the Christian Women of the South. Appendix B contains very short biographies of almost 200 "major personalities," including abolitionists, political figures, slaves, and other activists. The third appendix is a four-page glossary of some terms related to slavery. The "Notes" section provides brief citations for resources referenced in the text, with fuller information contained in the 25-page bibliography. An index and photographs add to the work's usefulness. No other single work is quite comparable, although there are many other descriptions of slavery, and first-person accounts are becoming more readily available both in print and on the Internet. With the current curricular emphasis on primary documents, Slavery in America will be used in most libraries.

Library Journal Review

In 1839, Theodore Dwight Weld's American Slavery As It Is was published, shocking its readers with its detailed documentation of the human impact of the "peculiar institution." Authors and social scientists Carl and Dorothy Schneider (American Women in the Progressive Era, 1900-1920) follow in the tradition of Weld with their comprehensive study of this dark side of our nation's history. Moving from 15th-century Africa to 19th-century America, this highly useful reference volume combines easy-to-read overview essays, useful chronologies, access to otherwise elusive eyewitness accounts and other historic documents, a useful glossary, and extensive biographical references. Because of its format, scope, and focus, the book will be a frequently consulted reference tool in both public and academic libraries, though similar material will also be found in more general reference works, such as Kwame Appiah's Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience (LJ 11/15/99).ÄTheresa McDevitt, Indiana Univ. of Pennsylvania (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

School Library Journal Review

Gr 9 Up-A history of slavery with an emphasis on primary-source material. Each of the 12 lengthy chapters covers a different topic and period from "The West Coast of Africa: 1441-1866" to "Runaways: 1619-1865" to "The End of Slavery: 1861-1865." Each has the same format: an introductory summation of the period is followed by a chronology and relevant excerpts from contemporary newspaper articles, diaries, speeches, letters, memoirs, and advertisements. These documented pieces offer a range of viewpoints and often powerful testimony. Well-chosen, black-and-white reproductions and photographs are scattered throughout. Three appendixes include excerpts from 45 additional documents, short biographies of major personalities, and a glossary. A thorough index allows access to all references on a subject or person. A minor drawback to this title is that the full bibliographic citations for the primary-source material are given only at the end of the volume. A comprehensive resource that gathers together a diverse amount of information in one place.-Janet Woodward, Garfield High School, Seattle, WA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



The history of the enslavement of African Americans in North America stretches from the beginning of European colonization and lasted until the end of the Civil War. Slavery in America recounts this history by examining, chapter by chapter, many of its aspects: the slave catchers and their coffles in Africa, the crowded slave ships that transported Africans along the triangular trade routes to America, slave auctions, life and labor on a plantation, escape attempts and insurrections, and finally the Civil War and eventual emancipation. The authors capture the complexities and the extent of slavery and document the wide differences in the ways people reacted to this terrible institution. Slavery in America, a volume in Facts On File's acclaimed Eyewitness History series, provides hundreds of firsthand accounts--from diary entries, letters, speeches, and newspaper accounts--that illustrate how historical events appeared to those who lived through them. Among the eyewitness testimonies included are those of Sojourner Truth, Nat Turner, Benjamin Franklin, Harriet Tubman, and Abraham Lincoln. In addition to the firsthand accounts, each chapter provides an introductory essay and a chronology of events. The book also includes such critical documents as the 1672 charter of the Royal African Company, the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, the Emancipation Proclamation, and the Thirteenth Amendment, as well as capsule biographies of more than 100 key figures, a bibliography, an index, and 80 black-and-white photographs. Eyewitness Testimony from Slavery in America: [The cargo hold] became absolutely pestilential. The closeness of the place, and the heat of the climate, added to the number in the ship, which was so crowded that each had scarcely room to turn himself, almost suffocated us. This produced copious perspirations, so that the air soon became unfit for respiration, from a variety of loathsome smells, and brought on a sickness among the slaves, of which many died... --Gustavus Vassa (Olaudah Equiano), describing his experiences on a slave ship in 1756 [Wanted:] One hundred Negroes, from 20 to 30 years old, for which a good price will be given. They are to be sent out of state, therefore we shall not be particularly respecting the character of themâ€"Hearty and well made is all that is necessary. --A 1787 advertisement in Richmond, Virginia I never knowed what it was to rest. I just work all de time from mornin' till late at night. I had to do everythin' dey was to do on de outside. Work in de field, chop wood, hoe corn, till sometimes I feels like my back surely break... --North Carolina ex-slave Sarah Gudger The whites for their slaves, but some of them will curse the day they ever saw us. As true as the sun ever shone in its meridian splendor, [people of] my Colour will root some of them out of the very face of earth....The whites shall have enough of the blacks, yet, as true as God sits on his throne in heaven. --David Walker, from Walker's Appeal (1829) I lived in that dismal little hole, almost deprived of light and air, and with no space to move my limbs, for nearly seven years [after I had hidden from my master]...[M]y body still say nothing of my soul... --Harriet Jacobs, recounting her seven-year-long hideout from her master in her grandmother's crawl space, from Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861) [I took the Emancipation Proclamation] for a little more than it purported, and saw in its spirit a life and power far beyond its letter. Its meaning to me was the entire abolition of slavery, and I saw that its moral power would extend much further. --Frederick Douglass, recounting his thoughts after President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation Excerpted from Slavery in America: From Colonial Times to the Civil War by Dorothy Schneider, Carl J. Schneider All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. iv
Acknowledgmentsp. v
1. The West Coast of Africa: 1441-1866p. 1
2. The Middle Passage: 1500-1866p. 28
3. Americans in the Slave Trade: 1526-1865p. 51
4. Slave Life: 1619-1865p. 81
5. Slave Work: 1619-1865p. 113
6. Runaways: 1619-1865p. 139
7. Canada, Other Refuges, and the Colonization/Emigration Movement: 1501-1865p. 166
8. Rebels: 1526-1865p. 194
9. Indians as Slaves, as Friends and Enemies of Black Slaves, and as Slaveholders: 1529-1865p. 220
10. The Argument over Slavery: 1637-1865p. 247
11. Black Soldiers in America's Wars: 1635-1865p. 287
12. The End of Slavery: 1861-1865p. 316
Appendix A Documentsp. 342
Appendix B Biographies of Major Personalitiesp. 375
Appendix C Glossaryp. 412
Notesp. 415
Bibliographyp. 421
Indexp. 445