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AfriGeneas Discuss! Forum

Re: Michele Bachmann Thinks Slavery Times Were Bet

First of all, Bachman signed a petition which had the statement. The statement is a statistical comparison which can be verified. In addition, the statement states "more likely" which mean probable not necessarily a fact.

According to Wilma A. Dunaway, at least half of U.S. Southern slave families were headed by two parent households and another 12 to 15 percent consisted of one part time parent, usually from another plantation who would visit regularly. As a result, nearly two-thirds of ex-slaves may have been raised by both parents. In most Virginia and North Carolina slave families, both parents were present at the time of Emancipation and older couples had lived together in lasting relationships. Slave marriages were broken up generally due to master intervention, usually an act of forcible sale, one half of which involved the separation of parent and child.

Herbert G. Gutman, in Family Life, argues “the slave family was a stable unit with long-standing marital unions and strong kinship ties.” In his examination of a South Carolina slave birth registry of the Good Hope plantation, he found most children lived in two parent households and most adults had lifelong marriages. In 1857 on Good Hope, for example, 175 people made up the slave community and nearly all were related by blood or marital ties going as far back as the 18th century. The idea that a closed community could inevitably show familial ties is nothing new but in the case of Good Hope, the documentation intimates behaviors and beliefs of slaves had a much more definitive impact on the slave family than did those of the master.

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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