After reading chapter 9, Slavery Without Submission, Emancipation Without Freedom and watching the The American Civil War by Oversimplified, I am again overwheled with new facts and ideas about the Civil War and this time period in American history that I was not aware of previously. For starters, slave revolts were not as common as they were in other countries. Rebellion of slaves was also rare. This was very surprising to me because as I learned in the podcast, about 13% of the population in this time were enslaved, and it only takes about 5-10% of a population to create a rebellion. I truly believe things would have been a lot different if the slave population came together as one and revolted. Nonetheless, a war began regardless of the fact it was not initiated by the slaves.
One quote really stuck out to me from this chapter. Zinn states, “Such a national government would never accept an end to slavery by rebellion. It would end slavery only under conditions controlled by whites, and only when required by the political and economic needs of the business elites of the North,” (Zinn 187). This idea really didn’t sit well with me. The fact that the only way for our country to abolish slavery was solely up to when rich whites felt like making a difference and was not based on the hardships of the enslaved is sad to me. The Civil War was truly the only way to solve this huge division in our country. I was unaware of how deadly the war was. 600,000 soldiers died on each side. This war had a positive effect for African Americans for a short time period. I did not know that there was a time when in the South blacks could vote, be elected into state legislators, and there were racially mixed public schools. As we all know, this time did not last long, but I did not know that this time even existed at all. Overall, these resources introduced to me yet again, there is a lot more in history and during the civil war time period that I was unaware of.