How Free Were Free Blacks

Topics: Civil and political rights, Law, Rights Pages: 2 (293 words) Published: February 26, 2015
How Free Were Free Blacks In The North Prior To The Civil War? Mackenzie Polega
2nd Hour ELA

How free were blacks in the North? Freedom really means to determine action without restraint. Between 1800 and 1860, this was not true. Freedom meant to not be enslaved. The few rights that came with it were bonuses. Blacks did not have freedom in the North.

Blacks in the North were limited to very few political rights. They were given the right to vote in less than half of the states in the North besides the New England States. Despite one exception, there weren't any blacks on any juries except in Massachusetts. Despite few political rights, they had many economic rights.

Blacks were allowed to own property and businesses. Also they had the right to have a job and become economically strong. These rights were limited by segregation. People would not buy from blacks because of their skin color. Black businesses were not often successful due to this factor.

Socially, blacks held no rights and had many restrictions. They could not marry whites, dine with whites, care for whites as a doctor, or talk with whites in the theater, concert room, lecture room, or church. Blacks were treated the same socially as if they were slaves, only not as harsh.

Blacks in the north had few rights. Some say that they were treated the same as blacks in the South. Northern blacks almost had it worse. They could not be socially accepted in the world that they were considered "free". They worked for a living and learned the hard way that they could not support themselves. Blacks in the North weren't entirely free, even with the rights they had, they were still treated quite poorly.
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