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North Carolina in the 1800s

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Laura Waters

on 24 February 2016

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Transcript of North Carolina in the 1800s

North Carolina in the 1800s:
Under the Surface

Economy
NC was a one-crop agricultural state- cotton. Easy to clean with Whitney's cotton gin
Neglected food crops. They had to be brought from other states at a high price
NC had little industry, commerce, and banking
Wealthy landowners invested money in slave labor rather than making agricultural improvements
Education
not a priority in the state
families thought it was more important for children to stay home than to go to school
Landowners didn't want to pay the taxes for a school system
State legislature didn't follow the rules:
NC State Constitution of 1776 said schools should "be established by the Legislature for the convenient Instruction of Youth, with such Salaries to the Masters paid by the Public"
We had "academies" or schools that depended on local interests and funding
Farm Conditions/ Migration
NC farm conditions were poor. Farmers rarely improved land or its fertility
1815-1833 NC land value plummeted
We lacked quality transportation and communication
rivers were hard to navigate
roads not maintained
no bridges
floods
Farmers could not get to market!
1815-1850: 1/3 of NC population migrated because of these conditions
Geography/Isolation
People in NC lived scattered apart on farms
There were few towns and a small amount of trade
No good transportation or communication
individualism: people only concerned with their own needs and freedoms
they did not welcome state officials regarding taxes or laws
Government
Unequal representation in NC legislature: determined by county
eastern NC had greatest number of counties, and the smallest percentage of the state's voting population
eastern NC basically governed NC
1777-1836: only 6 out of the 24 men that served as governor were from the west
County Competition: when the west would establish a new county, easterners would divide an eastern county (similar to what happened during Regulator movement)
the west could not gain any momentum
Wealthy landowners from east controlled the legislature
Full transcript