Alexis De Tocqueville wrote one of the most insightful books on American society after his travels through the USA in 1831. Amazingly his observations are hauntingly descriptive of today's America in many situations. This 900 word passage imagines a trip down the Ohio River where the traveler sees and hears the difference in the work going on for each side of the river. De Tocqueville also shares his observations of he effects of slavery on work and the slave owners.
I included several questions/activities to help your students get the most out of the passage. The passage also sets up well for analysis through graphic organizers such as Thinking Maps.