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"The Free State of Jones, Movie Edition"Mississippi's Longest Civil War$
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Victoria E. Bynum

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781469627052

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469627052.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

Piney Woods Patriarchs

Piney Woods Patriarchs

Class Relations and the Growth of Slavery

(p.47) Chapter Three Piney Woods Patriarchs
"The Free State of Jones, Movie Edition"

Victoria E. Bynum

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter examines the transition of Jones County, Mississippi, from a frontier society in 1830 to a slave-based, commercial community by 1860 as self-sufficient farming and herding increasingly gave way to production of cash crops. Founding families developed slaveholding and non-slaveholding branches as a small but powerful commercial class of planters and merchants emerged. Many non-slaveholders, continued, however, to trade more in livestock and surplus produce rather than cash crops. In 1841, noted Mississippi politician John F. H. Claiborne romanticized the region as one of simple rural bliss in his “A Trip Through the Piney Woods.” In fact, this chapter demonstrates, economic divisions that would explode under the pressures of the Civil War were well under way by the 1840s.

Keywords:   Mississippi slavery, market economy, herding economy, rural self-sufficiency, cash crops, class conflict, John F. H. Claiborne

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