Presenter Information

Dieyun SongFollow

Location

Schewel Hall Room 231

Access Type

Event

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Event Website

http://www.lynchburg.edu/academics/red-letter-day/student-scholar-showcase/

Start Date

6-4-2016 2:00 PM

End Date

6-4-2016 2:15 PM

Abstract

The purpose of the research is to examine the social mobility and hierarchy amongst the free colored, immigrant and white ironworkers in Lynchburg from 1850 to 1860. The methodology used primarily lies in examining the United States Census records, Lynchburg local newspapers, and business records. Studies on antebellum southern heavy industry, especially the worker population other than slaves, are limited, which makes this period and subject significant to enrich the field. The major finding of the study is that the access to social mobility was highly selective based race in the iron industry in Lynchburg during 1850 to 1860. Although a very limited number of the free colored workers were able to acquire slaves by 1860, they still had less access to advance their social status compared to individuals of other races. Further, the finding of that poor whites and free blacks owned slaves prove a level of evidence that the institution of slavery is more than an economic tool, but rather for the purpose of exercising social control over the Africans and to advance in the social hierarchy. Additionally, a good amount of slaveholders did not acquire land ownerships, which indicate that slavery was not always plantation based in Lynchburg, or in the antebellum south.

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Adam W. Dean

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Apr 6th, 2:00 PM Apr 6th, 2:15 PM

Race, Freedom and Social Mobility of the Immigrant, Free Colored, and White Ironworkers of Lynchburg during 1850 to 1860

Schewel Hall Room 231

The purpose of the research is to examine the social mobility and hierarchy amongst the free colored, immigrant and white ironworkers in Lynchburg from 1850 to 1860. The methodology used primarily lies in examining the United States Census records, Lynchburg local newspapers, and business records. Studies on antebellum southern heavy industry, especially the worker population other than slaves, are limited, which makes this period and subject significant to enrich the field. The major finding of the study is that the access to social mobility was highly selective based race in the iron industry in Lynchburg during 1850 to 1860. Although a very limited number of the free colored workers were able to acquire slaves by 1860, they still had less access to advance their social status compared to individuals of other races. Further, the finding of that poor whites and free blacks owned slaves prove a level of evidence that the institution of slavery is more than an economic tool, but rather for the purpose of exercising social control over the Africans and to advance in the social hierarchy. Additionally, a good amount of slaveholders did not acquire land ownerships, which indicate that slavery was not always plantation based in Lynchburg, or in the antebellum south.

https://digitalshowcase.lynchburg.edu/studentshowcase/2016/Presentations/17