SAT Subject US History Practice Question 37: Answer and Explanation
3. How did the invention of the cotton gin affect the South?
A. Planters divided their large plantations into smaller farms.
B. The economy boomed because one gin could do the work of 1,000 slaves.
C. Slavery began to be less profitable and started to die out.
D. Southerners began to build textile mills and make their own cloth for export and trade.
E. Southerners began building factories to manufacture more cotton gins.
Correct Answer: B
One cotton gin could process as much cotton in a day as 1,000 slaves could. This made slavery more profitable. The textile industry devel- oped in the North, not the South; the South planted and harvested the cotton and then shipped it north, where the mills were. The gin did not make the South an industrial or manufacturing society; it remained an agricultural society.