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Chapter 16: America's Gilded Age, 1870-1890

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Joseph Floyd

on 14 July 2016

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Transcript of Chapter 16: America's Gilded Age, 1870-1890

Chapter 16: America's Gilded Age, 1870-1890
The Second Industrial Revolution
The Transformation of the West
Politics in the Gilded Age
Freedom in a Gilded Age
Labor and the Republic
Between the end of the Civil War and the early 20th century, the U.S. underwent the most rapid industrial revolution in history
Abundant natural resources, growing supply of labor, expanding markets, world's largest economy
Rapid expansion of factory production, mining and railroad construction signaled transition to advanced industrial society
Between 1870 and 1920, 11 million Americans moved from farms to cities, 25 million immigrants
Second industrial revolution in steel, machinery, chemicals, packaged good, centered in the region around the Great Lakes
Pittsburgh the world's center for steel manufacturing, Chicago had steel factories and stockyards
The Industrial Economy
Railroads and the National Market
Number of miles of railroad track in U.S. tripled between 1860 and 1880 and tripled again by 1920
Opened new areas to commercial farming, created national market for manufactured goods
National brands and chains, advertising creates consumer culture
Mail-order Montgomery Ward, Sears, Roebuck & Co. sell clothing, jewelry, farm equipment to rural families
The Spirit of Innovation
Competion and Consolidation
Workers' Freedom in an Industrial Age
Skilled workers commanded high wages, controlled production process
Most workers suffered from economic insecurity
Millions of workers lost their jobs during depressions of 1870s and 1880s
35,000 workers died each year in factory and mine accidents
Jacob Riis
How the Other Half Lives
(1890) documented conditions among urban poor
By 1890, richest 1% owned more property than remaining 99%
Wealthiest Americans purused aristocratic lifestyle, many married European aristocrats
Sociologist Thorstein Veblen
Theory of the Leisure Class
(1899) critiqued upper-class culture based on conspicuous cosumption
Farming in the Trans-Mississippian West
Territorial, state governments, railroad companies flood European countries and eastern cities with promotional literature
Hundreds of thousands of families acquired land under Homestead Act, more purchased land from speculators, rail companies
New agricultural empire producing corn and wheat in the Great Plains (Minnesota, Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas)
Population rose to 5 million in 1900, native born easterners, blacks fleeing South, immigrants from Canada, Germany, Scandinavia, Russia
Railroads brought factory-made goods, farm families dependent on loans
Agricultural expansion in Argentina, Australia, American West drove grain prices down
Future of western farming lay with giant companies relying on irrigation, chemicals, machinery, preview of this future in California
Landownership concentrated in large units since Spanish and Mexican eras
Giant fruit and vegetable farms, migrant laborers from China, Philippines, Japan, Mexico
The Cowboy and the Coprorate West
Two decades following the Civil War witnessed golden age of cattle kingdom
Cattle drives from Texas to Kansas Pacific Railroad stations
White, Mexican, Indian black cowboys conduct cattle drives, low wage workers, become symbol of freedom
Spread of barbed wire fences ends era of long-distance cattle drives, replaced by large enclosed ranches connected to railways
Mining boom towns created by gold and silver rushes in Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Dakotas in 1880s
Conflict on the Mormon Frontier
Subjugation of the Plains Indians
As settlers encorached on Plains Indian lands, bloody conflicts began
Civil War generals like Philip H. Sheridan destroyed Plains Indian villages, horses and buffalo herds
Lakota (Sioux) and Cheyenne warriors, led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse, defeated U.S. Army at Little Bighorn (1876)
Nez Perce Indians in Oregon led by Chief Joseph sought to escape to Canada in 1877
Between end of Civil War and 1890, eight new Western states entered the Union
Treaty system eliminated in 1871, Indians confined to reservations, famine, disease
Bureau of Indian Affairs boarding schools to assimilate children
Dawes Act broke up tribal lands into indiidual plots, 2 million acres of Indian Territory (Oklahoma) opened to white settlers
Ghost Dance religious movement
On December 29, 1890 U.S. soldiers massacred Lakota Ghost Dancers at Wounded Knee
Corruption in Politics
Americans during Gilded Age saw their nation as an island of political democracy
Power of new corporations raised questions about freedom and self-government
Growth of lobbyists, political machines like New York's Tammany Hall
Credit Mobilier scandal of 1872-73 manipulation of contracts by construction and finance company associated with the first transcontinental railway (Union Pacific)
Politics and the Economy
Reform Legislation
Thomas Edison's research laboratories in New Jersey created new industries and innovations
Phonograph, lightbulb, motion picture, system for generating and distrubuting electrical power
Serbian-American Nikola Tesla works for Edison, designs alternative electrical current
Economic growth was dramatic but volitaile
Downturns in the world economy in the 1870s and 1890s
Railroad tycoons Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jay Gould, railroads set shipping rates
Railroads and other companies formed trusts-legal devices where affairs of several companies managed by a single director
Andrew Carnegie's steel company the first vertically integrated business-controlling every phase of manufacturing and distribution
John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil Company controlled 90% of the nation's oil industry
"Captains of industry" or "robber barons"
Nowhere did capitalism penetrate more rapidly or dramatically than in the trans-Mississippian West
Great Plains had millions of acres of fertile land, home to giant herds of buffalo
Settlers and prospectors passed through en route to California, Oregon
Homestead Act of 1862 provided land to Western migrants
The Overwhelming Labor Question
Burning of Pittsburgh's Union Station, 1877
Middle Class Reformers
Frank J. Ferrell, black delegate from New York, and Terrance Powderly, head of the Knights of Labor
Shift from slavery to "overwhelming labor question" began in 1877
End of Reconstruction, year of Great Railroad Strike
Strikers burned railroad yards in Pittsburgh, paralyzed Chicago and St. Louis, Army used to supress strikes
Knights of Labor rose to 800,000 members by 1886
First to organize unskilled workers, open to women, African-Americans
Members ranged from reformers demanding for 8-hour day to anarchists and socialists
Authors proposed solutions to unequal distribution of weath
Henry George
Progress and Poverty
(1879) described "social distress," call for "single tax" on property
Danish-born Laurence Gronlund popularized and Americanized socialism with
The Cooperative Commonwealth
(1884)
Edward Bellamy's
Looking Backward
(1888) depicts U.S. in 2000 as a socialist utopia
Socialism would develop through peaceful evolution
Social Gospel
The Haymarket Affair
In 1886 some 350,000 workers demonstrated for an eight-hour day
On May 3, 1886 four strikers in Chicago killed by police, rally in Haymarket Square, bomb kills a policeman, police open fire
Eight anarchists charged with bombing
Seven foreign born, six Germans, one English, Alabama native Albert Parsons
Haymarket affair occurred during outburst of labor activity
Black and Irish-American workers elected mayor of Kansas City
United Labor Party in New York supported Henry George
Employer hostility, harassment by authority leads to decline of Knights of Labor
Mormon polygamists,1888
Mormons moved into Great Salt Lake Valley in 1840s
Proposed Mormon State of Deseret not admitted to U.S., due to practice of polygamy (having many wives), close connection between church and state
Conflicts with non-Mormon settlers in 1850s
In 1880 Utah outlawed polygamy
Mormons fleeing federal attempts to prosecute polygamy founded colonies in northern Mexico
The Social Problem
Social Darwinism in America
Liberty and Contract and the Courts
As U.S. developed into an advanced industrial economy, Americans struggled to make sense of new social order
Factor workers lived on edge of poverty
In 1881 Massachusetts Bureau of Labor reports every worker interviewed in Fall River textile-mills complained of overwork, poor housing, tyrannical employers
Many Americans viewed concentration of wealth in class of millionaires as natural and inevitable
Social Darwinism borrowed from Charles Darwin ideas of "natural selection" and "survival of the fittest"
Freedom required acceptance of social inequality
Government should not interere with operations of business
Yale professor William Graham Sumner most influential Social Darwinist
Social Darwinism defined freedom as limited government, unrestrained market
State and federal courts struck down laws regulating economic enterprise
Illinois Supreme Court struck down 1895 state law that outlawed sweatshops, established 48-hour work week
Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, to prevent business mergers stifling competition, used to issue injunctions against strikes
Supreme Court ruling Lochner v. New York voided state law establishing 60 hour work-week
Chicago Stockyards
Homestead Steel Mill, near Pittsburgh, PA
Railroads, 1890
Advertisements, 1880s
Thomas A. Edison with lightbulb
Monster Monopoly, 1885
Baxter Street Court, Jacob Riis
Casino Grounds, Newport, RI
Growing divide between millionaire industrialists, working class living in poverty
Link between freedom and equality appeared out of date
Labor movements and middle-class reformers sought to regulate capitalism, Social Darwinists defended inequality as result of free market
Disputes over the rights of workers dominated American politics in the late 19th century
Rise of radical labor movements in the 1870s and 1880s
The Bosses and the Senate
Agrarian Reform
Farmers and merchants complained about high freight rates charged by railroads, fees of grain warehouses
Critics unite in Patrons of Husbandry or Grange (1867)
Cooperatives for storing, marketing farm output
Greenback Party founded 1874, opposes gold standard
Civil Service Act of 1883 created merit system for federal employees
Appointment via examinations rather than political influence
In 1887 Interstate Commerce Commission created to ensure railroads charged reasonable rates
Sherman Antitrust Act (1890) banned all combinations that restricted free trade
Era from 1870 to 1890 known as Gilded Age from Mark Twain nobel
Gilded means covered with layer of gold, superficial glitter
Age of economic growth, abject poverty, political corruption
Forging the Shaft, 1870
Tammany Ring, "Who stole the people's money?"
Indian reservations, 1885
Wounded Knee Massacre, 1890
Sitting Bull and Buffalo Bill
Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence (1920), set in the 1870s, offered a portrait of upper-class society in Gilded Age New York City that was both satirical and nostalgic
Party politics shaped by legacy of Civil War
Republicans controlled industrial North and Midwest, agrarian West
Supported by native-born and immigrant Protestants
Every Republican President fought in Union army, pensions for Union soldiers
Democrats dominated the South, supported by working-class Irish Catholics in North
Federal government small, weak Presidents
Republicans supported tariffs to protect American industries, gold standard
Linked to New York bankers and financiers, ignored debt-ridden agricultural areas
Tariff policy main issue in 1888 Presidential election, Democrat Grover Cleveland opposed tariffs, defeated by Republican Benjamin Harrison
Republican poster, 1884 election
The tariff as a hydra, 1888
Protestant churches promoted political solutions to moral problems
Women's Christian Temperance Union, National Reform Association sought to Christianize the government, outlaw alcohol, gambling, prostitution
Social Gospel developed in writings of Christian theologians who criticized inequalities of wealth and power as sinful
Walter Rauschenbusch, Baptist minister in New York
Outreach of Protestant churches in poorer neighborhoods
Settlement House movement, helping poor immigrants
Pope Leo XIII recognized workers rights in 1893, Catholic version of social gospel developed
Across the Continent, 1868
Credit Mobilier scandal
Newport, Rhode Island summer "cottages", with the Breakers, purchased by Cornelus Vanderbilt in 1885
Hotel Ponce de Leon, St. Augustine, Florida, built for Henry Flager's Florida East Coast Railroad in 1888
Vanderbilt's New York Central, rivalry with Jay Fisk's Erie Railroad
New York's Grand Central Terminal, opened in 1871, financed by Conrelius Vanderbilt
Children sleeping on Mulberry St.
Factory Workers in Fall River, Massachusetts
Utica, NY baker Joseph Lochner
Settlement house
Walter Rauschenbusch
Haymarket "riot"
Competition between the Southern Pacific and Santa Fe railroads led to a land boom in southern California in the 1880s
California Fruit Growers, Southern Pacific advertising campaign marketed oranges and the warm climate
Homesteaders, Nebraska, 1870s
Farmer in Kansas, 1880s
Orange pickers in California
The most famous gunfight in the American West occurred at the OK Corral in Tombstone, Arizona between a gang of outlaw cowboys and lawmen, the Earp brothers
Cattle Drive on Chisolm Trail
Tombstone, Arizona
Cattle Trails and Railroads
Tombstone (1993)
Wounded Knee Massacre
Geronimo and his followers, 1886
Chricahua Apaches in Arizona led by Geronimo fought against attempts to resettle them on reservations
The Age of Innocence (1993)
The Protectors of Our Industries, Puck (1883)
Great Labor Parade of September 1
Failure of Reconstruction
Reconstruction Act of 1867 granted blacks the right to vote
Fifteenth Amendment (1870) prohibited governments from denying citizen right to vote, did not grant right to vote to women, advocates of women's rights denounce former abolitionist allies
By 1870, Southern states readmitted to Union
2,000 African-Americans in public office
Emergence of Ku Klux Klan, outlawed under Enforcement Acts of 1870-71
Liberal Republicans criticize corruption in administration of Ulysses S. Grant
By mid-1870s, economic depression made African-American rights a less important issue
White Democrats seize power, with terrorist violence (White League)
Reconstruction ends in 1877, Redeemers restore white supremacy
Civil Rights Act of 1875 declared invalid
Mississippi constitution of 1890 disenfranchises all black voters
Battle of Liberty Place, New Orleans, 1874
The First Vote, 1867
Worse than slavery
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