How did the revolts of Gabriel, Denmark Vesey, and Nat Turner affect African-Americans?
Although the revolts initially saw a crackdown on African American slaves and an increase in violence against them, they also served as an eye opener for several good natured individuals that slavery was an evil institution and needed to be phased out. The draconian penalties meted out by the Southern states against the slaves who were in some cases badly mutilated and tortured before being put to death also showed the evil role of slavery in a brutalized society.
The revolts by former slaves also meant that abolitionism in the United States continued to flourish and the accounts of certain slaves who were badly ill treated in the South began to surface. The abolitionist movement was mainly active in the Northern states which had already rid itself of slaves and the whole system however these rebellions continued increasing awareness on the issue of slavery especially in the North and led to diverse campaigns to protect slaves in the South from their barbaric masters..
The revolts also led to the foundation of the American Colonization Society which worked hard to resettle freed slaves in newly formed African colonies such as Liberia. Although the experiment was initially unsuccessful, eventually the colonies were to flourish considerably with several freed slaves returning to their country of birth,
African Americans responded strongly to the Civil War and joined up with Northern armies in several cases dying for their cause. Lincoln’s perspective on slavery changed considerably during the Civil War as at first he believed that slavery should remain but as the war developed he knew that this was an issue which needed to be sorted out once and for all.
The Emancipation Proclamation was announced by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 promising all slaves freedom at the end of the Civil War. The 14th Amendment enshrines this proclamation accordingly although in the South it was to take almost another 100 years before blacks could really experience freedom with the passage of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act.