From West Africa
During the late 1600s, English settlers in the new colonies needed more workers to farm thousands of acres of land on Sea Island plantations. Although some of the workers were Native Americans, most were Africans brought to the American colonies as enslaved Africans. South Carolina provided some of the main ports for the European ships that carried people from West Africa and the West Indies.
Many West Africans were skilled farmers and builders. Plantation owners wanted people from this region to farm indigo, rice and cotton. Rice, a crop that the Africans had cultivated for centuries, was highly desired throughout the world. By 1700, "Carolina Golden Rice," as it was called, became a major export from the Sea Islands. Almost as profitable as gold, it brought great wealth to the families who owned the plantations. Although the slaves provided much-needed labor, they were not paid for their work. However, Africans were rich in something that money could not buy - the cultural heritage they brought with them from their homeland.
Sea Islands (sea is.lands) - a group of islands off the coasts of South Carolina, Georgia and North Florida.
Native American (na.tive a.mer.i.can) n. - a descendant of any of the peoples who lived in North, Central or South America before European explorers and colonists arrived.
slave (slave) n. - a person who is owned by someone else and works without pay.
port (port) n. - a town or city with deep water where ships can dock and load or unload cargo.
West Africa (west af.ri.ca) - the region of western Africa between the Sahara Desert and the Gulf of Guinea.
West Indies (west in.dies) - a group of islands between North and South America that includes the Bahamas, the Lesser Antilles and the Greater Antilles.
indigo (in.di.go) n. - a plant used to make blue dye; historically grown on plantations.
cultivate (cul.ti.vate) v. - to grow a crop.
export (ex.port) n. - something that is sent to another country for trade or sale.
cultural heritage (her.i.tage) n. - things handed down from generation to generation, such as traditions and languages that have cultural importance.
- 3-2 The student will demonstrate an understanding of the exploration and settlement of South Carolina.
- 3-2.0 The inhabitants of the early Carolina colony included native, immigrant, and enslaved peoples. To understand how these various groups interacted to form a new and unique culture, the student will utilize the knowledge and skills set forth in the...
- 3.4 Demonstrate an understanding of varied human cultural and economic characteristics across Earths surface.
- 3.5 Demonstrate an understanding of how and why humans have explored and migrated across Earth.
- 3.5.1.HS Investigate and explain the economic, social, and political motivations behind human exploration of Earth.
- 3.5.2.AG Use maps and other geographic representations to identify exploration patterns throughout Earth history.
- 3.5.4.AG Use maps and other geographic representations to identify how migration patterns affect people and places.
- 4.1 Demonstrate an understanding of the settlement and colonization of North America, including South Carolina, between 16001730.
- 4.1.CO Compare the interactions among cultural groups as a result of European colonization.
- 4.1.CE Identify the effects of changing economic systems on the diverse populations in British North America.
- 4.1.CX Contextualize the experience of Africans, Europeans, and Native Americans in South Carolina.
- 4.1.CC Identify patterns of change and continuity in the development of economic systems in British North America.
- 8.1 Demonstrate an understanding of the development of South Carolina during the settlement and colonization of North America in the period of 1500 1756.