In light of this history, it is probably not surprising that Country colonists began to consider importing slave labor by the late 1600s. Buenos Aires Map Spain’s and Portugal’s relative successes in the enterprise, along with the widespread beliefs that Africans possessed almost superhuman physical strength and were genetically well suited to heavy labor in hotter climates than those of the Europeans’ homelands, made the enslavement of African laborers an attractive solution to the colonies’ need for workers.
In addition, Africans’ skin color was seen as a bonus by potential slaveholders: their blackness would make them stand out from their white fellows and make it more dangerous for them to attempt to escape. Slave-Master Relations in the Country Colonies With the institutionalization of black slavery in the colonies, the relationship between masters and slaves became more rigid than that between masters and their indentured servants.
Virginia led the colonies in slave ownership in 1756; the 120,000 slaves there comprised one half of the colony’s population. In some regions, particularly areas of the Chesapeake tobacco country and virtually everywhere in South Carolina, blacks far outnumbered whites. Majority rule, then, was not in white colonists’ best interests.