slave state


Definition of slave state

1 : a state of the U.S. in which slavery was legal until the Civil War
2 : a nation subjected to totalitarian rule

Examples of slave state in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Problem solved with a little boundary redrawing, sending them all back to Maryland’s arms, a former slave state. Washington Post, "D.C. statehood is about more than getting a vote," 22 Mar. 2021 Missouri was a slave state at the time and was forcing free Black people like Bush to leave. Chron, "Washington Capitol to honor Black pioneer with monument," 24 Feb. 2021 His chief and highly controversial accomplishment in that office was to annex Texas and admit it into the Union as a slave state, setting off the Mexican-American War. Charlotte Allen, Washington Examiner, "The ghost of John C. Calhoun," 18 Feb. 2021 The Washingtons regularly rotated people back to Virginia or, in a pinch, over the border to New Jersey — a slave state — to reset their time in the capital before six months were up. Washington Post, "George Washington’s 1795 Thanksgiving celebrated liberty. But the chef behind the feast had none.," 19 Nov. 2020 Per Lehman, a few state lawmakers had even proposed a bill in the 1860s to make Minnesota a slave state — it was voted down — to entice tourists who owned slaves. Myron Medcalf, Star Tribune, "How can Minnesotans face the truth about racism, past and present? Start with a book," 12 Dec. 2020 As secretary of state under President John Tyler, Abel P. Upshur — who owned enslaved people — worked on the treaty that ensured Texas was admitted to the United States as a slave state. Washington Post, "A guide to every person whose name could be removed from D.C. buildings or sites, from the famous to the forgotten," 4 Sep. 2020 In 1800, only five of 16 states had instituted white-only voting, yet from 1802 onward, every new free or slave state to join the Union except for Maine banned Black people from voting. Amy Mckeever, National Geographic, "Voter suppression has haunted America since it was founded," 21 Aug. 2020 To placate white Southerners who wanted to establish a slave state in Southern California, Congress forged the Compromise of 1850. James Delle, Smithsonian Magazine, "In 1851, a Maryland Farmer Tried to Kidnap Free Blacks in Pennsylvania. He Wasn’t Expecting the Neighborhood to Fight Back," 17 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'slave state.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of slave state

1809, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for slave state

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The first known use of slave state was in 1809

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Statistics for slave state

Last Updated

27 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Slave state.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for slave state

slave state


English Language Learners Definition of slave state

: a state of the U.S. in which slavery was legal until the American Civil War

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