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AfriGeneas Canada Research Forum

Re: Slavery in Canada
In Response To: Slavery in Canada ()


Now you've really asked a loaded question. I've been involved in very heated discussions with some white Canadians who insist that the total number of slaves held during the 200+ years Canada had slavery numbered only several dozen. Their contention is that blacks were simply "servants." Okay, I get it. You have no rights, are forced into servitude simply because the color of your skin, your offspring are also forced to serve, you are considered property by those you serve, but you're not a slave. Yeah, right.

Okay, Kathryn, I have more information about comparisons that were made, but not with me (I'm at work right now, all my books are at home). Several books, including Robin Winks' "The Blacks in Canada," discusses this, as well as several others. I'll try to pull this together over the weekend and post something.

If memory serves, however, in the beginning, the plan was for Canada to try to get in on the tobacco craze that had produced so much wealth in the American South, but the Canadian climate wasn't conducive to this, thus fewer numbers of slaves were needed in Canada.

Most of the Canadian slaves were used to clear land, build roads, stuff like that ... really hard labor. Thousands of blacks were enslaved in Canada, and though the numbers were not even close to approaching the millions enslaved in the U.S., you ask an excellent question.

Art, do you have anything on this?

... more to follow.

- Lisa B. Lee
Oakland, CA

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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