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Upon Arrival

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From Africa To Slavery

The Arrival of New Slaves to the Americas

The preparation for sale, the sales, and seasoning

        Before slaves arrived in the new world they were allowed to stretch and exercise.  The slaves were also bathed so that they could be clean when they are put up for auction.  This bathing process included shaving and dying their hair so that the slaves appeared younger.  Slaves were also wiped down with palm oil so that their wounds from they journey would not be seen.

After arriving the next step was selling the slaves.  The slaves could be sold in three ways the captain could have sold the entire shipment of slaves to a wholesaler, or he could have sold the slaves to individual planters, and the last type of sale was called a scramble.  A scramble is when the captain sets a price for men, women, and children.  After this all of the slaves are put into a pin and potential buyers are allowed to rush in and grab the slave or slaves that he wanted.  The scramble was the least common way slaves were purchased.  Below is a drawing of a slave auction in America.

Picture from http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USASauctions.htm

The final stage in the arrival of new slaves was seasoning.  This is the process by which slaves are taught what they are supposed to do.  A slave who spoke the same language as the new slave would explain how plantation life worked.  The slave was beaten into submission.  The process of seasoning did not end until the new slave broke.  This would happen when slaves gave up their native religion and submitted to the will of their owners and overseers.