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The Body of Liberties used the word "strangers" to refer to people bought and sold as slaves; they were generally not English subjects.

Domestic slave trading, however, continued at a rapid pace, driven by labor demands from the development of cotton plantations in the Deep South.

The largest denominations, the Baptist, Methodist, and Presbyterian churches, split over the slavery issue into regional organizations of the North and South.

When Abraham Lincoln won the 1860 election on a platform of halting the expansion of slavery, seven states broke away to form the Confederacy.

Most laborers came from Britain as indentured servants, having signed contracts of indenture to pay with work for their passage, their upkeep and training, usually on a farm. These indentured servants were young people who intended to become permanent residents.