South Carolina Rice Culture 1870s
From a book I’m currently researching on “slave botanicals and foodstuffs”. As rice cultivation is important to the slave economy in Suriname, as well as Maroon culture(s), this study is important to the developing of a couple projects I’m working on.
“A Brief History of Rice Culture to the 1870s”
We do not know exactly who brought the first rice to Carolina or under what particulars it arrived. The British backers of colonization, both financial and political, intended for Carolina, like other colonies, to fit into the mercantilist system. To that end they suggested that settlers try a range
of crops, rice among them. Historians of South Carolina continue to argue over the introduction of Madagascar gold seed rice, which apocryphally came via Captain John Thurber’s ship in 1685. Scholars have all but definitively shown that Carolinians grew white rice in the seventeenth century with gold rice being introduced after the American Revolution. Regardless of the circumstances of rice’s introduction, colonists successfully grew small amounts of the grain in the Charlestown colony by 1690.1
History of Rice Plantations In ENC (audio below)