The Cotton Gin by ethan kendrick

Claim and Information

What social, economic, or political change in the 1800s was the most significant?

The invention of the cotton gin was the most significant.


The invention of the cotton gin had the most significant impact on 1800s America because it deepened segregation caused by slavery, increased reliance on and support of slavery. It also affected the economy by allowing goods to be produced faster, resulting in more profit.

How did this change affect people directly?

Slaves and other African-Americans were seen as even more subhuman than before and it caused people to rely more on the mass production of cotton.

How did it effect the country?

The economy of slave states relied on slavery and tensions grew as people disagreed over slavery. Political parties revolved around slavery.


When did this change happen?

The cotton gin was invented in 1793 by Eli Whitney.

Why did this change occur?

It was a hard and slow process to manually remove seeds from cotton, so the gin was invented so people (mostly African-American slaves) could pick cotton more efficiently.

What else was happening when this occurred?

During this time, the United States was beginning to realize goals of westward expansion while industry and mass production was being developed in bigger communities.

Did it affect the north or south more?

It affected the South more because the southern states were slave states.

How did this affect westward expansion?

People would travel westward to get access to the new territory's potential cotton-producing territory. The United States produced as much as 75% of the world's cotton at one point.


evidence 1

The cotton gin lead to the civil war. After the civil war "the life of black americans improved little... slavery... was merely replaced with racial discrimination and injustice."

evidence 2

Slavery became a norm through Whitney's simplistic invention. "The simplicity of the invention—which could be powered by man, animal, or water—caused it to be widely copied... it is credited with fixing cotton cultivation... in the US south and so institutionalizing slavery."

evidence 3

"The economic impact of Whitney's gin was vast; after its invention, the yield of raw cotton nearly doubled each decade after 1800."

evidence 4

"But harvesting cotton remained a very labor-intensive undertaking. Thus bigger cotton farms meant the need for more slaves... Southern wealth had become dependent on slave labor.


"Racial Segregation in the American South: Jim Crow Laws." Prejudice in the Modern World Reference Library., n.d. Web. 01 May 2017.Bush, George.

"Explore Encyclopedia Britannica." Encyclopedia Britannica. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 May 2017.

"Civil War History: How the Cotton Gin Contributed to the Civil War." Civil War Trust. Civil War Trust, n.d. Web. 01 May 2017.

"Cotton Gins." New Georgia Encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 May 2017.


Created with images by Gruenemann - "Burton Cotton Gin" • bptakoma - "cotton" • born1945 - "Cotton Gins in Arkansas, in about 1900" • Boston Public Library - "One hour of American slavery is fraught with more misery than ages of that which we rose in rebellion to oppose." • LOSTMIND - "civil war military portrait"

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