In 1619 the first Africans were brought to Jamestown as slaves. These Africans were stripped of their homes, cultures, and languages. Africans were the perfect victims because they were transported thousands of miles away from home. Therefore, it was nearly impossible to escape slavery. In addition, most of these Africans, men and women, came from different tribes, which made communication between them very difficult. Despite their common bondage, men and women did not experience slavery the same way. .
Slavery of black men in America was one of the cruelest periods in American history. However, black women in slavery experienced sexual exploitation, childbearing, motherhood, and the slaveholder's sexism. Women slaves were exploited for their reproductive as well as productive capacities. Slaves were treated and traded like animals. Black men were not considered part of the human race and were taught that their enslavement was the way things were meant to be. Out of all the slaves, black women suffered the most. Women were considered to be inferior to men and Blacks were inferior to whites. I once read, black men were worth a dollar and women a quarter.
Black female slaves did not have the privileged of just staying home, they had to work the fields or in the slave masters home. Black women were denied gender and were treated just like men, sometimes even worse. Black women were denied most of the so-called "rewards" of womanhood while they suffered all of the restrictions and performed all the "woman's work."" There is no question that slave women worked as hard as men. They worked as lumberjacks and turpentine producers in the forest of the Carolinas and Georgia. They hauled logs by leather straps attached to their shoulders. They plowed using mule and ox teams, and hoed, sometimes with the heaviest implements available. They dug ditches, spread manure fertilizer, and piled coarse fodder with their bare hands.