• Sharecropping Definition

Sharecropping Definition

Jeffery Paige distinguished between centralized sharecropping in cotton plantations and decentralized sharecropping with other crops. The first is characterized by political conservatism and a long tenure. Tenants are linked to the owner via the plantation shop. This form of tenure is usually replaced by salaries paid when markets flood. Decentralized sharecropping plays virtually no role for the landowner: plots are dispersed, farmers manage their own work, and landowners do not produce the crop. This form of occupation becomes more common when markets invade. [3] A new credit system, the harvesting privilege, was closely linked to sharecropping. Under this system, a planter or merchant granted a line of credit to the partial tenant while taking the year`s harvest as collateral. The tenant could then get food and supplies throughout the year.

When the harvest was harvested, the planter or traders who held the lien sold the crop for the tenant and paid off the debts. The sharecropping system persisted beyond the late 1800s. In the first decades of the 20th century, it was still in effect in parts of the American South. The cycle of economic misery created by sharecropping did not completely fade during the Great Depression. While sharecropping gave African Americans autonomy in their daily work and social life, freeing them from the gang labor system that had dominated during the slavery era, it often resulted in tenants owing the landowner more (for example, for the use of tools and other supplies) than they could repay. While the sharecropping system emerged from the devastation after the civil war and was a response to an urgent situation, it became a permanent situation in the South. And for decades, this has not been beneficial to agriculture in the South. In the 1930s and 1940s, increasing mechanization virtually ended the institution of sharecropping in the United States. [26] [38] The sharecropping system in the United States increased during the Great Depression with the creation of tenant farmers after the bankruptcy of many small farms in the Dustbowl. Traditional partial cultivation declined after the mechanization of agricultural labor became economic in the mid-20th century.

As a result, many tenants were evicted from farms and emigrated to cities to work in factories or to become migrant workers in the western United States during World War II. The sharecropping system also locked much of the South into cotton dependence – just as the price of cotton was falling. In the United States at the time of Reconstruction, sharecropping was one of the few options for freedmen who were destitute to feed themselves and their families. Other solutions included the harvesting privilege system (in which the farmer received loans from the trader for seeds and other supplies), a rental labor system (where the former slave rents his land but keeps all his harvest) and the wage system (the worker earns a fixed salary but keeps nothing of his harvest). Sharecropping was by far the most economically efficient, as it encouraged workers to produce a larger crop. It was a step beyond just salaried work, as the tenant had a one-year contract. During the reconstruction, the Freedmen`s Federal Bureau ordered the agreements[27] and wrote and implemented the treaties. Some blacks managed to acquire enough money in the late 1860s to move from sharecropping to renting or owning land, but many others went into debt or were forced by poverty or the threat of violence to sign unfair and abusive partial leases or employment contracts that left them with little hope of improving their situation. About two-thirds of all tenants were white and one-third were black. Although both groups were at the bottom of the social ladder, tenants began to organize for better labor rights, and the integrated Southern Tenant Farmers Union began to take power in the 1930s.

The Great Depression, mechanization and other factors caused sharecropping to fade in the 1940s. See the full definition of tenants in the dictionary of English language learners It can have more than a temporary resemblance to serfdom or engagement, especially if it is large debts in a plantation business that effectively binds workers and their families to the land. It was therefore seen as a matter of agrarian reform in contexts such as the Mexican Revolution. However, Nyambara notes that Eurocentric historiographical means such as “feudalism” or “slavery,” often referred to by weak prefixes such as “semi-” or “quasi-,” are not useful for understanding the precursors and functions of sharecropping in Africa. [7] The family had grown up dirty poor and had registered the 20,000 hectares of cotton that stretched under Sand Mountain. Owners opt for sharecropping to avoid administrative costs and avoid plantations and haciendas. It is better to pay for the rental, because tenants in cash take all the risks and any poor harvest will harm them and not the owner. As a result, they tend to charge lower rents than tenants.

[9] However, many external factors make it effective. One of the factors is the emancipation of slaves: sharecropping gave access to land to freed slaves from the United States, Brazil and the end of the Roman Empire. .