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"Increase in the Slave Population in the United States" article from the Greenfield Gazette and Franklin Herald newspaper

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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This pro-abolition article enumerates the growth in the slave population in the United States from 1790 to 1830. This growth was due in part to the wide use of the plantation system throughout the southern states and the invention of the cotton gin, which was patented in 1794. The cotton gin increased the amount of cotton that could be processed in a day by tenfold. This made cotton a profitable crop and the South quickly became the world's leading supplier of cotton fiber. Much of this cotton was brought north to the textile mills that were producing cotton cloth. In 1835, the three largest mills in Lowell, Massachusetts used twelve million, two hundred fifty-six thousand, four hundred pounds of cotton. By 1848, Lowell mills produced fifty thousand miles of cotton cloth per year--enough to circle the world twice. The Greenfield Gazette and Franklin Herald was the newspaper in Greenfield, Massachusetts, from June 26, 1827 to June 27, 1837. It changed its name to the Gazette & Mercury.


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