Sunday, November 18, 2018

The Mass Exodus of Confederates to Brazil after the Civil War

From The Vintage News:
At the time, the Empire of Brazil spanned the territory of today’s Brazil and Uruguay, and the Emperor, Dom Pedro II was interested in creating his own cotton and sugar-cane industry. He had the land, but he lacked skilled farmers. Unable to adapt to the newly formed situation, many southern émigrés from Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia, and South Carolina used the opportunity and moved to Brazil. Their whole life was organized around agriculture on their farms, so they were welcomed by the Brazilian Emperor. He made the southerners a great deal by offering financial help with travel expenses, subsidizing the price of the land, and letting them build plantations tax-free. Those wealthy Confederates who had too much land in the US couldn’t leave it, which left more opportunities for many farmers to gain large tracts of land at a cheap price. Some of them recognized the appeal in the developing urban areas of Sao Paolo and Rio De Janeiro, while others tried their luck in the inhabited regions of the northern and southern Amazon. There were some 20,000 émigrés (according to some sources the figure was around 10,000) who moved to Brazil between 1865 and 1885, a time during which slavery was still legal in the country. The first generations of newcomers remained as cloistered communities marrying exclusively among themselves and refusing to learn Portuguese. (Read more.)

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