Tenant farmer

A tenant farmer is one who farms land owned by a landlord and pays rent in cash or a percentage of the crops they raise on the land. Tenant farmers are sometimes known as sharecroppers.

In the United States a system of sharecropping was established after the American Civil War whereby white landowners provided the land, seed, and tools in exchange for a portion of the goods produced by the tenant. This system was initially beneficial to both parties but as time passed was, in many cases, abused by the landowners. Rather than remaining a mutually beneficial system it often became a peonage system where the tenant was reduced to involuntary labor due to the debts owed to the landowner.

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