Task System

Task System (HMR3U)

Location: Jacksonville, FL 32226 Duval County
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Country: United States of America
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N 30° 26.354', W 81° 26.272'

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Managing Labor

Many crops were grown on the plantation, but sea island cotton produced the highest profit. Grossing and processing it required a complex work structure.

The task system was used to manage the many specialized requirements of sea island cotton production. Often tasks were measured out in quarter-acre increments. Each slave was assigned a task to plow, plant, pick, or gin cotton. Once tasks were done, slaves used the rest of the day to tend to personal needs, including growing their own food.

To see how big a quarter acre is, look at the area defined by the four posts.

February 1: "preparing the land for a cotton crop, at which all are busy ..."
March 6: "commenced planting Cotton, and kept at it ..."
April 29: "We begin to thin the Cotton, which looks very well ... and the planting season having now passed ... everything is devoted to cultivation."
May 31: "The cotton is quite forward and now begins to blossom ..."
June 1: "still busy at work at the cotton & it will now be constant work till the end of the year."
July 31: began to pick a little cotton ..."
August 31: We now have all hands picking Cotton, and during this month have gathered near 3000 lb. in the seed ..."
October 2: "There is quite a strong N.E. wind, but we commenced to Gin today."
November 1: "... the operations on the plantation, have been those usually, at this time of the year ... picking, sorting and Ginning of Cotton-packing cotton, and preparing land for another year.

Kingsley Beatty Gibbs journal, 1840
HM NumberHMR3U
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, October 4th, 2014 at 8:03am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17R E 457955 N 3367538
Decimal Degrees30.43923333, -81.43786667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 30° 26.354', W 81° 26.272'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds30° 26' 21.24" N, 81° 26' 16.32" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)904
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 11698 Palmetto Ave, Jacksonville FL 32226, US
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