Shiela asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 9 years ago

How did the slaves gained their freedom in the United States?

i know that it was after the civil war, but is there anything else

thanks for helping

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  • 9 years ago
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    Slaves before the Civil War gained their freedom in one of three ways. The most obvious, and most dangerous, was to simply run away. The Underground Railroad assisted them to escape to the northern states, and eventually all the way to Canada. Other slaves managed the journey on their own. But for every slave who gained their freedom this way, there were too many who were recaptured and dragged back into captivity. And as the Civil War approached, laws about runaways made even the northern states a perilous sanctuary. The laws permitted slave hunters to take escaped slaves( and not infrequently free Blacks accused of being runaways) back to the South.

    The second way a slave could gain their freedom was by emancipation. Basically, this meant that their owner legally documented that he or she was giving the slave their freedom. This was a fairly common occurrence., with many owners leaving such instructions in their wills. Of course, it could be abused too. After all, "rewarding" a slave with emancipation when they were getting to be elderly and unable to work efficiently was a nasty means of cost savings. This sort of abuse did not seem to be very common or approved of, even in a slave society.

    The third method of freedom involved the slave purchasing their own freedom. While technically everything a slaved owned belonged to his or her master, in practice slaves were usually allowed to earn money on the side. Those slaves with skills, such as blacksmith, silversmith, carpentry, or other forms of craftsmanship normally could do jobs after they finished their master's work, and keep the money. By saving this extra income, a slave could eventually save enough to purchase their own freedom, and even that of their families. This was a process of years, if not decades, though, and required great financial discipline, as well as an owner who would allow the slave to thus purchase his freedom.

  • 3 years ago

    Slaves Buying Freedom

  • 9 years ago

    Try the 13th Amendment. It certainly wasn't the Emancipation Proclamation which is so often touted as ending slavery. If you actually look at the Emancipation you'll find it was worded in such a way to free no slaves. Only those in areas in open rebellion against the federal government were supposed to be affected. But those areas did not have to obey as they had formed their own separate government. Those slaves in the Border States and areas of the Confederacy already under federal control were not affected. The 13th Amendment was the document that offically granted the slaves their freedom

  • 4 years ago

    sgatlantisrose has the best answer so far: escape to a free state, be given freedom, buy freedom. But, besides for buying freedom with money, a slave could buy freedom with military service. The Revolution offered an opportunity for freedom for many enslaved African American

    men. African Americans on the Patriot side (and their owners) could take advantage of a law passed

    by the New York State legislature on March 20, 1781, which provided that if an enslaved person

    served in the war for three years, he would receive his freedom and his former owner would receive

    500 acres of land.

    • I would love a resource/citation on that New York State legislation. This seems to be relevant to the reparations solution that America desperately needs to make amends with the Descendants of American Slaves!

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  • 9 years ago

    in the third year of the civil war president Lincoln sign the emancipation proclamation which ended slavery

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