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Unit 3: South/West Transformed | Issues of the Gilded Age

American History II

Clint Longwell

on 4 November 2013

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Transcript of Unit 3: South/West Transformed | Issues of the Gilded Age

South/West Transformed
Issues of the Gilded Age
Unit 3:
South/West Transformed
Issues of the Gilded Age
- Explain how the southern economy changed in the late 1800s.
- Analyze how southern farmers consolidated their political power
- Describe the experience of African Americans in the changing South.
Cash Crop - Farmers' Alliance - Civil Rights Act of 1875
How did the southern economy and society change after the Civil War?
In the postwar years, railroads crisscrossed the South and industries grew.
Yet many challenges remained - for the South's economy and its people.
In the years following the Civil War, southern leaders hoped to build a "New South"
They worked to modernize the economy by:
Supporting Industry
Diversifying Agriculture
Textile factories/lumber mills, iron/coal/steel processing plants.
Railroad construction boomed - new connected cities, moved products/people, cities grew.
Yet economic expansion in the South lagged behind the rest of the country.
War damage was extensive
No well-trained labor force/low wages
Lack of capital - needed northern bankers
Life was hard for farmers
Many still depended on "cash crops" like cotton
Boll weevils wiped out entire crops
It was a struggle to survive for many farmers.
Faced with serious problems, farmers joined together to form the Farmers' Alliance
worked together to negotiate better prices on supplies, freight charges, and loan rates
connected farmers in the South with the West.
Black southerners made important political and economic advances in the postwar years.
Most importantly
Right to vote
Access to education
In time, many of their gains were reversed.
Groups such as the Ku Klux Klan terrorized African Americans
Freedoms were stripped away
Segregation was enforced
The Civil Rights Act of 1875 banned discrimination in public facilities and transportation
The Supreme Court ruled in a series of cases in 1883 that such decisions were local issues.
Southern towns/cities used the ruling to further limit the rights of African Americans.
Compare the ways Native Americans and white settlers viewed and used the land.
Describe the conflicts between white settlers and Indians.
Evaluate the impact of the Indian Wars.
Chief Joseph Wounded Knee
Assimilate Dawes General Allotment Act
Reservation Sand Creek Massacre
Sitting Bull Battle of the Little Big Horn
How did the pressures of westward expansion impact Native Americans?
As American settlers continued to push west, they increasingly came into conflict with Native Americans.

Such conflict often led to violence, with tragic results.
After the Civil War, about 250,000 Indians lived in the lands west of the Mississippi
Native Americans came from many diverse cultures.
Had different belief systems
Spoke different languages
Lived in different types of houses
Ate different foods
The diverse Indian peoples, however, shared a common view toward nature - a view that conflicted with that of many white Americans.
Native Americans saw themselves as part of nature and viewed nature as sacred.
Many white Americans viewed the land as a resource to produce wealth.
During the 1800s, the government carried out a policy of moving Indians out of the way of white settlers
At first, Indians in the East were moved west, into the Indian Territory of the Plains.
As frontier settlers continued pushing west, however, this plan changed.
Indians were forced into reservations, no longer free to roam the Plains.
Two other crises also threatened Native American civilizations.
Disease: Settlers introduced diseases to which Indians had no immunity.
Loss of the Buffalo: Settlers slaughtered buffalo herds.
Some Native Americans fought to defend their lands
But attacks and retaliation led to distrust - and to tragedy.
The Sand Creek Massacre saw an unarmed camp of Indians under the U.S. Army protection killed by Colorado militia.
Promises were made and peace treaties were signed, but they were often broken.
Frustration turned to violence as the government moved to crush Indian resistance.
The Red River War led to the defeat of the Southern Plains Indians
The Sioux were victorious at the Battle of the Little Bighorn (Montana)
Chief Joseph and the Nez Perces surrendered after attempting to retreat to Canada.
As their way of life slipped away, some Indians turned to a religious revival based on the Ghost Dance.
The ritual preached that white settlers would be banished and the buffalo would return.
Fear of Insurrection, government officials tried to ban the practice.
In an effort to end the Ghost Dance, the government attempted to arrest Sitting Bull.
However, he was killed in a confrontation with U.S. troops.
More than 100 Indians who fled were killed at Wounded Knee.
The Indian Wars were over.
Some critics attacked government policies and defended the Indians' way of life.
Most leaders, however, hoped that Native Americans would assimilate into American life.
In 1887, Congress passed the Dawes General Allotment Act to encourage assimilation.
Replaced the reservation system with an allotment system.
Granted each Indian famil8y its own plot of land
Specified the land could not be sold for 25 years.
Analyze the impact of mining and railroads on the settlement of the West.
Explain how ranching affected western development.
Discuss the ways various peoples lived in the West and their impact on the environment.
In the late 1800s, miners, rail workers, ranchers, and farmers moved to the frontier in hopes of building better lives.
The industrial and agricultural booms they created helped transform the West.
The discovery of gold and silver created the first great boom in the West - MINING!
With each new find, prospectors rushed to the site, hoping to strike it rich. Others followed, bringing food/supplies.
Mining camps quickly sprang up - many grew into large communities.
Because they had no judges/jails, miners often set their own rules for justice.
Vigilantes took the law into their own hands
Some towns, however, disappeared as quickly as they appeared. Boomtowns turned to ghost towns when the gold and silver ran out.
Large companies soon took over the mining business from individual prospectors.
They could afford the heavy equipment needed to bring mineral ores out from deep underground and the government gave them the land on the cheap.
As industries grew in the West, so did the need for railroads to transport goods and people.
The railroads soon began to work to fulfill a longtime goal - to build a transcontinental railroad linking the East and the West.
In 1863, the Central Pacific headed eastward from Sacramento. The Union Pacific headed westward from Omaha.
In 1869, they met in Promontory, Utah completing the railroad
Work on the railroads had been difficult and dangerous. But it brought tremendous changes to the country.
tied the nation together
moved products and people
spurred industrial development
stimulated the growth of cities/towns
encouraged settlers to continue to move west
The railroad boom encouraged another western boom - the cattle boom
For years, ranchers had used an open-range system for raising livestock.
Property was not fenced in, cattle were branded, then grazed freely, cowboys rounded up the cattle each spring.
Cowboys then drove cattle north to the rail lines, so they could be transported to markets.
The long, hard cattle drives could last for months.
They ended @ railroad towns, called cow towns.
By the mid 1800s the cattle boom was coming to an end - the open range system was coming to an end
Barbed wire made fencing cheap
The supply of beef exceeded demand and prices dropped
Extreme weather led to the death of herds
Like miners/ranchers, farmers also moved west, looking for a better life
Railroad companies encouraged pioneer settlement - so did the government
Under the 1862 Homestead Act, the government gave land to farmers willing to tend it.
Easterners, Exodusters, and immigrants soon poured onto the Great Plains.
Life on the plains was difficult and lonely.
With little wood available, homesteaders made houses from sod. Storms, droughts, and locusts ruined crops.
New inventions and farming methods made life easier.
- Barbed Wire - Windmill
- Stronger Plow - Dry-Farming Techniques
- Grain Plow
For many Americans, the West was a place to build new lives. But it was also a place of conflict.
Economic Rivalries
cattle destroyed crops
sheep ruined grass
mining runoff polluted water
control of resources disputed
Social Conflicts
ethnic tensions
The last land rush took place in 1889, when the government opened the Oklahoma Territory to homesteaders.
"Boomers" lined up to stake claims
"Sooners" sneaked in early to take the best ones
The next year, the government declared there was no land left for homesteading. The frontier closed.
Assess how whites created a segregated society in the South and how African Americans responded
Analyze efforts to limit immigration and the effects.
Compare the situation of Mexican Americans adn women to those of other groups.
Jim Crow Laws Poll Tax
Literacy Test Grandfather Clause
Booker T. Washington W.E.B. Du Bois
Ida B. Wells Las Gorras Blancas
How were the civil and political rights of certain groups in American undermined during the years after Reconstruction?
In the course of the Gilded Age, the equal rights extended to African Americans during Reconstruction were narrowed.

This move away from equality for all had a lasting impact on society in the United States.
Federal troops were removed from the South in 1876.
Ways in which blacks' rights to vote were restricted in the South:
Poll Taxes
Literacy Tests
Grandfather Clause
Segregation via Jim Crow Laws became the norm, and blacks lost voting rights.
In addition to losing their voting rights, blacks also faced widespread segregation in the South and in the North.
The constitutionality of Jim Crow Laws was upheld by the Supreme Court in the 1896 case Plessy v. Ferguson.
Still, African Americans refused to accept their status as second-class citizens. Several important leaders emerged and called for equality.
Booker T. Washington was the most famous black leader of the late 19th century.
Washington believed that black citizens should accommodate themselves to segregation and build up their own economic resources through hard work.
Some disagreed with Booker T. Washington
W.E.B. Du Bois argued that blacks should demand full and equal rights immediately.

Du Bois felt the burden of achieving equality should not rest on the shoulders of African Americans alone
Ida B. Wells devoted her life to the crusade against lynching.
In the Southwest, 4 out of 5 Mexican Americans lost their land after the Mexican-American War, despite a treaty which guaranteed their property rights.
Las Gorras Blancas, a Mexican American group, fought for their rights by inflicting property damage on landowners and publishing grievances in their own newspaper.
Chinese immigrants also faced racial prejudice in the West at this time
Faced with severe job discrimination, some Chinese-Americans started their own businesses.
Leaders wanted to further the rights of women and were disappointed when women were not included in the 14th and 15th Amendments.
Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton formed the National Woman Suffrage Association in 1869.
Susan B. Anthony voted in an election in 1872 and was arrested.
Awaiting trial, she toured the nation, delivering a power speech on the issue.
Activists did not secure women's suffrage during the 19th century.
Analyze the issues of corruption in national politics in the 1870s and 1880s.
Discuss civil service reform during the 1870s and 1880s.
Assess the importance of economic issues in the politics of the Gilded Age.
Spoils System
Civil Service
Pendleton Civil Service Act
Gold Standard
Congress passed few laws between 1877 and 1900, in an era marked by inaction and political corruption.
The Gilded Age raised questions about whether or not democracy could succeed.
Between 1877 and 1897, party loyalties were evenly divided.
Neither political party achieved control of both the White House and Congress for more than 2 years.
Presidents during the Gilded Age were elected only by slim margins.
Corruption plagued national politics as many officials accepted bribes.
Writers such as Mark Twain expressed concerns over the corruption.
Party supporters received government jobs regardless of their qualifications, shifting power to a few - made political parties extremely powerful.
It was difficult but changed when President Garfield was assassinated by a man who believed the Republican Party owed him a job for getting Garfield elected - dude was cra-cra!
Chester A. Arthur replaced Garfield and supported civil service reform
In 1883 he signed the PENDLETON CIVIL SERVICE ACT establishing a merit-based system for government employment.
The economic issues of tariff and monetary policy caused debate during the Gilded Age.
Tariffs taxed imported goods which supported American industry but increased consumer prices.
Monetary policy disputes concerned the gold standard, where gold became the basis of the nation's currency.
Monetary policy centered on a debate over the Coinage Act of 1873.
Some people wanted to use only gold as money
Some wanted to use both gold and silver
Bankers worried silver would undermine the economy. Farmers favored it to create inflation and raise their income.
Analyze the problems farmers faced and the groups they formed to address problems.
Assess the goals of the Populists, and explain why the Populist Party did not last.
What led to the rise of the Populist movement, and what effect did it have?
Millions of Americans moved west after the Civil War to pursue the American dream.

A variety of factors made their lives extremely difficult, which led to the social and political revolt known as Populism - and created one of the largest third party movements in American history.
People moving to the West and South in the late 1800s knew that their lives would not be easy.
Problems facing the farmers in the West/South:
low prices for crops
high transportation, equipment, and loan costs
reduced influence in politics
They did not anticipate many problems that made survival nearly impossible - they began to organize
Farmers created groups to address their problems:
These groups formed a network called the Granger movement. The GRANGE was formally organized by Oliver H. Kelley in 1867 and gained a million members
The Grange declined after the 1870s, but Farmers' Alliances became important reform organizations that continued the Grange's goals.
The spread of the Farmers' Alliances led to the formation of the Populist Party in 1892.
The Populist platform, outlined at the party's 1892 convention in Omaha, Nebraska called for:
Coinage of silver
An income tax
Government ownership of railroads
Bank regulations
The debate over monetary policy was an important issue of the day.
Gold standard
Supported by bankers and factory owners
Prices fell
Less money in circulation
Supported by farmers and workers
Prices rise
More money in circulation
The Populists did well in 1892, electing three governors, five senators, and ten congressmen.

The Populist candidate for president received more than 1 million votes.
An economic depression began in 1893 and labor unrest and violence broke out. The Populist Party grew.
In 1896, a young lawyer named William Jennings Bryan spoke at the national Democratic convention.

The speech, with its Populist message of "free silver," moved Democrats to nominate Bryan. The Populist Party chose to give him their support.
William Jennings Bryan
William McKinley
William Jennings Bryan campaigned against Republican candidate William McKinley in a way that it had never been seen before.

He toured the country talking directly to the voters.
McKinley won against Bryan in 1896 and in 1900.

Bryan's emphasis on money reform wasn't popular with the urban workers.
The Populist Party was weakened by supporting William Jennings Bryan on the Democratic ticket.
It survived another decade, but its viability as an alternative to the 2 major parties was over.
Many of the reforms sought by the Populist became a reality. The new campaigning style used by Bryan became the norm.
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