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Old 09-06-2013, 01:44 PM
Status: "Even better than okay" (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
51,284 posts, read 50,539,435 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightbird47 View Post
Between 1718 and the Revolutionary war, the British transported fifty thousand convicts to the atlantic coast. It was the lesser option from hanging. The real baddies didn't get it. Often it involved property theft which was considered more than very minor. My getcgrandfather sold his loot and was to hang but argued his own way out of the sentence.

Thing is they did arrive as slaves, at least under the same conditions. The dispersment document from the ship my gfx? was on list each as a sale to an owner. The companies which ran the convict trade were the same which ran the African slave trade. The only difference in method was that there were more guards with convicts since they were more likely to take the boat. In such cases the crew was dispatched and the boat run to ground and the cargo melted away. The other difference was they made even more money off the trade than they did in Africans with the prepaid compensation for each convict as they stepped on the boat, if they died or not.

They used virtually the same restraint system, though it was not unknown to crowd more convicts in haphazardly since the bounty paid by the British government for 'costs' already made it profitable and if more died than normal they didn't lose any.

Convicts were also seperate from those who came to under an indenture. They were suspect. They often brought disease like gaol fever, which was a viriluent form of typhoid which spread quickly. They were also often thieves and suspected of continuing their trade. Convicts were often worked with slaves and housed with them as they were of lesser status than regular indentured. They were generally not welcomed into society after working their time. And the death rate was higher with them than other 'servants' as they were disposable.

Both indentured servants, convicts and the first life indentured ran when possible, but a good many ended up far worse off. This is how the first life indentured africans became the first offical 'slaves'.

All the laws later used against runaway slaves were established to control runaways of the 'servant' or convict kind long before.

After the revolution, Britsh boats contaiing more convicts were turned away and eventually they opened Australia as a new dumping ground.

So there are many many many people here now with ancestors dating back to prerevolutionary times who are descendents of convict who came via a parallel slave system. But we have to remember that at the time even children were hung and thievery was considered by many as simply a way to survive.

Truth is unless your ancestor was the privilidged exception, if they came before the revolution, even possibly after, likely they arrived under some kind of ownership since very few could pay their own way.
I was actually thinking of even further back. Much of Europe in the middle ages was under the feudal system. If you were a serf, you were a slave, you just "belonged" to the land and whomever controlled the land controlled you.
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Old 09-06-2013, 03:21 PM
Status: "happy again, no longer catless! t...." (set 7 days ago)
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,423 posts, read 16,691,770 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
I was actually thinking of even further back. Much of Europe in the middle ages was under the feudal system. If you were a serf, you were a slave, you just "belonged" to the land and whomever controlled the land controlled you.
Yes, and even in the 1700's it was the system in many parts of Eastern Europe. It broke down in western europe when the estates were enclosed and the pesants were no longer needed. By then, sheep paid more than crops. The growing problem of 'excess population' didn't occur until the estates turned away many of those who'd lived there for centuries. They gravitated to the cities like London where they might eek out a living. Thievery wasn't considered anything other than survival.

Interesting that the serf system has its roots in the fall of Rome, leaving many defenseless against the random violence of the early time, and it evolved as what seemed like an equal trade. They'd work the land, even be tied to it, in exchange for food and protection. Many things which come of mutual need end up something else.
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Old 09-09-2013, 07:45 PM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
26,130 posts, read 22,790,774 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blinx View Post
I'd be interested in seeing a "behind the scenes" version of the show. What we see is a neat presentation of the facts, all tied up in a bow, that seems to happen over a few days. How many months of digging and searching were done my how many researchers to find these interesting ancestors? I'd love to know how they verify their facts, that THIS John Smith is the one associated with the celebrity, and not all the other John Smith's out there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cindiana View Post
Now that's what I call service.
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Old 09-09-2013, 07:47 PM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
Well, they say everyone is the descendant of a slave and of a king. Maybe they should add "convicts", too! My great-grandfather was in prison before he came here. And not because of some innocent mistake, either.
That reminds me of the Frazier episode where they discover their ancestor was a Russian maid who stole a priceless statue.

They even had the line, "We're descended from thieves and whores."
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:09 AM
Status: "happy again, no longer catless! t...." (set 7 days ago)
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,423 posts, read 16,691,770 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjh View Post
That reminds me of the Frazier episode where they discover their ancestor was a Russian maid who stole a priceless statue.

They even had the line, "We're descended from thieves and whores."
That would have been a very skilled and even more lucky ancestor if she got away to start a family elsewhere.... But a whole lot of us prettymuch fit that. Mostly the thieves that applies to are the mid range of the time. The really 'bad' ones didn't live to be an ancestor, and the middling one got reprieves and joined the minor ones.
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Old 09-11-2013, 11:19 AM
 
9,209 posts, read 18,055,111 times
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Last night's episode was a great season finale. I knew nothing about the actor, but his family was very interesting. I was also glad that they did multiple generations & ancestors.
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Old 09-11-2013, 07:24 PM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
26,130 posts, read 22,790,774 times
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I missed it. Off to the TLC website later then.
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Old 09-13-2013, 02:30 AM
 
2,319 posts, read 1,982,123 times
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I think they saved the best for last in this season. Jim Parsons' episode was extremely interesting, made more so by his obvious excitement and genuine interest in learning about his family, even at the outset. He was very modest and kind to everyone he met, and to me, that sort of humble, appreciative attitude makes the show better.
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Old 09-14-2013, 01:15 PM
 
11,432 posts, read 19,448,624 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobiashen View Post
I think they saved the best for last in this season. Jim Parsons' episode was extremely interesting, made more so by his obvious excitement and genuine interest in learning about his family, even at the outset. He was very modest and kind to everyone he met, and to me, that sort of humble, appreciative attitude makes the show better.
Out of everyone on the show this time I think he's the one who is more likely to keep on researching.
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