Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Photographs and Prints Division
Cotton Expansion in the Deep South
As the frontier extended further west, immense lands in Alabama and Mississippi were turned into cotton plantations. The Deep South was responding to a steady rise in demand for cotton from textile mills in the North and in Europe, where the demand grew by 5 percent a year between 1820 and 1860. As the Lower South plantations expanded, their owners clamored for increasing numbers of slaves who were brought from the Upper South.