This article explores the centrality of slave labor and race to the development of class relations in colonial and early national New York City. Slave labor was central to New York's colonial economy and to the survival of Europeans on the island-no part of the colonial North relied more heavily on slavery than Manhattan. This article will also discuss the lengthy process of emancipation in the city and state. From the time of the Revolutionary War, New Yorkers debated ending slavery, but it took almost fifty years for them to eradicate the institution completely. The legacy of slavery limited the political and economic equality of blacks long after slavery ended in New York.
- African Americans
- New York City
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Urban Studies