-The Planter Elite 2.5% (owned more than 50 slaves) of the population. They controlled everything in society. Large estates, elegant mansions-modeled on English aristocracy.
Enjoyed respect and political power that many Southerners hoped to emulate. As the slave system spread farther west, the ranks of this elite group expanded to include plantation owners from Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas.
-Planters-15.5%-owned 5-50 slaves
-Yeoman Farmers-18%-Owned up to 5 slaves-owned their land, moved in and out of slaveholding.
-Middling Sort-Middle class-shop keepers, merchants, lawyers, doctors- planters looked down on the middling sort because they had to please customers
-Poor Whites-Owned no land, transient, in search of work—tenant farmers-owned no land no slaves
-Up to 1830's slavery was described (even by southerners) as a necessary evil
-Biggest fear of the south was a slave insurrection. Haiti, Denmark Vesey, Nat Turner,
And publication of the Liberator (William Lloyd Garrison) made south paranoid
After these events, anything that did not support slavery seen as a threat
-Southerners justified slavery through verses in the bible, references to
Successful societies throughout history (Greeks, Romans) that had slavery
-South's primary argument for slavery was that the constitution protected
-By 1830's Calhoun and others realized that if they continued to refer to slavery as a
Necessary evil, sooner or later, it would be abolished
-Calhoun made to case that slavery was a positive good. He compared it to the Northern
Free labor system that he said exploited women and children, injured and in some cases,
Killed them, terminated their employment without notice, and paid them nothing.
-Calhoun said that Northern free labor started with Irish, German, or English people and
Reduced them to slavery.
On the other hand, Said Calhoun, Slave labor brought a lesser race of people and fed,
Clothed, and cared for them. Gave them stability. In effect, slavery took a lesser race
And elevated them where northern free labor took a superior race and reduced them