The antebellum era in America is strife with the slavery epoch which went contrary to the principles of the War of Independence. It is ironical that the very state, Virginia in which the American Declaration of Independence was signed, would be the first to legitimize slavery. African slaves first set foot in Virginia, America in 1619 with the arrival of captives sold by a Dutch to settlers in Jamestown. Considering their economic worth, particularly in the plantations in the antebellum south, their demand grew and spiraled over time up to the 1800s.(African American History). Colonial courts and legislatures had racialized slavery (Slavery in the United States)The first arm of legalization in 1662 stated that such Africans would be servants for life, and later in a 1667 another act declared that "Baptisme doth not alter the condition of the person as to his bondage or freedome." By 1740 a concrete legal slavery system in colonial America was in place. A Virginia law gave owners absolute right over their 'property' stating that slaves were "chattel personal in the hands of their owners and possessors for all intents, construction, and purpose whatsoever.