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Topic Summary

Posted by: 90sRetroFan
« on: November 26, 2021, 09:38:54 pm »

Frequent slave-raiding missions by the Spanish Empire in the early 16th century led to a massive decline in the Amerindian population so that by 1541 a Spanish writer claimed they were uninhabited. The Amerindians were either captured for use as slaves by the Spanish or fled to other, more easily defensible mountainous islands nearby.[5]

From about 1600 the English, French, and Dutch began to found colonies in the North American mainland and the smaller islands of the West Indies. Although Spanish and Portuguese sailors had visited Barbados, the first English ship touched the island on 14 May 1625, and England was the first European nation to establish a lasting settlement there from 1627, when the William and John arrived with more than 60 white settlers and six African slaves.[6]
About 40 Taino slaves were brought in from Guyana to help plant crops on the west coast of the island.[9]

Now contrast the treatment of "whites":

Most English arrivals were indentured. After five years of labour, they were given "freedom dues" of about 10, usually in goods. Before the mid-1630s, they also received 510 acres of land

with that of "non-whites":

To work the plantations, black Africans primarily from West Africa were imported as slaves in such numbers that there were three for every one planter.
Life expectancy of slaves was short and replacements were purchased annually.

The introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil in 1640 completely transformed society and the economy. Barbados eventually had one of the world's biggest sugar industries.[20] One group instrumental in ensuring the early success of the industry were the Sephardic Jews
Dutch traders supplied the equipment, financing, and African slaves, in addition to transporting most of the sugar to Europe.
By 1680, there were 17 slaves for every indentured servant.

The Barbados Slave Code of 1661, officially titled as An Act for the better ordering and governing of Negroes, was a law passed by the colonial English[1] legislature to provide a legal basis for slavery in the Caribbean island of Barbados.
The slave code described black people as 'an heathenish, brutish and an uncertaine, dangerous kinde of people'.[3]
in practice, it provided extensive protections for masters, but not for slaves.
The law required masters to provide each slave with one set of clothing per year, but it set no standards for slaves' diet, housing, or working conditions. It denied slaves, as chattels, even the basic rights of people guaranteed under English common law, such as the right to life. It allowed the slaves' owners to do entirely as they wished to their slaves for anything considered a misdeed, including mutilating them and burning them alive, without fear of reprisal.[5][6][7] For example, if an African person acted violently against an English person the law stipulated that they should be "severely whipped", have "his or her nose slit and shall be burnt in the face", while the next offence shall be "punished by death".[8]
The Barbados slave code of 1661 marked the beginning of the legal codification of slavery. According to historian Russell Menard, "Since Barbados was the first English colony to write a comprehensive slave code, its code was especially influential."[13]

The Barbados slave code served as the basis for the slave codes adopted in several other British colonies, including Jamaica (1664), South Carolina (1696), Georgia, and Antigua (1702). In other colonies where the codes are not an exact copy, such as Virginia and Maryland, the influence of the Barbadian codes can be traced throughout various provisions.[13][14][15]

The Barbados slave code, named An Act for Better Ordering and Governing of Negroes, (1661) was promoted on the island, ostensibly, to standardize procedures for managing the island's increasing slave population, which had tripled since 1640.[7]

"If any Negro or slave whatsoever shall offer any violence to any Christian by striking or any other form of violence, such Negro or slave shall for his or her first offence be severely whipped by the Constable.

For his second offence of that nature he shall be severely whipped, his nose slit, and be burned in some part of his face with a hot iron. And being brutish slaves, [they] deserve not, for the baseness of their condition, to be tried by the legal trial of twelve men of their peers, as the subjects of England are.

And it is further enacted and ordained that if any Negro or other slave under punishment by his master unfortunately shall suffer in life or member, which seldom happens, no person whatsoever shall be liable to any fine therefore."


Finally, rebellion:

In 1816, enslaved persons rose up in what was the first of three rebellions in the British West Indies to occur in the interval between the end of the slave trade and emancipation, and the largest slave uprising in the island's history. Around 20,000 enslaved persons from over 70 plantations are thought to have been involved.

Bussa (/ˈbʌsə/) was born a free man in West Africa of possible Igbo descent and was captured by African merchants, sold to European slave traders and transported to Barbados in the late 18th century as a slave, where under the Barbados Slave Code slavery had been legal since 1661).[3] Not much is known about him and there are no earlier records of him, and virtually no biographical information about Bussa is available. Records show a slave named "Bussa" worked as a ranger (a head officer among the slaves) on "Bayley's Plantation" in the parish of Saint Philip around the time of the rebellion.[4] This position would have given Bussa more freedom of movement than the average slave and would have made it easier for him to plan and coordinate the rebellion.
Among Bussa's collaborators were Washington, Franklin, John and Nanny Grigg, a senior domestic slave, and Jackey on Simmons' Plantation, as well as other slaves, drivers and artisans. Jackey was a Creole driver who was an important figure. The planning was undertaken at a number of sugar estates, including Bailey's plantation, where it began. By February 1816, Bussa was an African driver, one of the few in his position.[2] He and his collaborators decided to start the revolt on 14 April, Easter Sunday.

Bussa, King Wiltshire, Dick Bailey and Johnny led the slaves into battle at Bailey's Plantation on Tuesday, 16 April. He commanded some 400 rebels, men and women, most of whom were believed to be Creole, born in the islands. He was killed in battle, his forces continued the fight until they were defeated by superior firepower of the colonial militia. The rebellion failed but its influence was significant to the future of Barbados.

What was the mistake made by the rebels?

Although they drove whites off the plantations, widespread killings did not take place.

And what did they get in return?

In 1826, the Barbados legislature passed the Consolidated Slave Law, which simultaneously granted concessions to the slaves while providing reassurances to the slave owners.[35]

It's OK for concessions to be "white":

Three concessions to the enslaved were:

Right to own property
Right to give evidence in courts in all cases
Reduction in manumission fees

Three concessions granted to the slave owners

That a white person could kill an enslaved person during revolt with impunity
Capital punishment of any enslaved person who threatened the life of a white person
All free Black people needed a correct evidence of the such rights or they will be presumed to be enslaved

Mercy to the oppressors is cruelty to the oppressed. Failure to kill them when we can (even if it is illegal) ensures they kill us at their leisure, legally. Because they are the ones who decide what is legal and what is illegal.

Unheroic epilogue:

Growing opposition to slavery led to its abolition in the British Empire in 1833.[23] The plantocracy class retained control of political and economic power on the island, with most workers living in relative poverty.[23]
Full internal self-government was enacted in 1961.[23] Barbados joined the short-lived West Indies Federation from 1958 to 1962, later gaining full independence on 30 November 1966.[23] Errol Barrow became the country's first prime minister. Barbados opted to remain within the Commonwealth of Nations.