Welcome to the Review of American History Gilded Age through Imperialism. The Gilded Age 1877-1900.
While the rich wore diamonds, many wore rags. In 1890, 11 million of the nation's 12 million families earned less than $1200 per year; of this group, the average annual income was $380, well below the poverty line. Rural Americans and new immigrants crowded into urban areas. Tenements spread across city landscapes, teeming with crime and filth. Americans had sewing machines, phonographs, skyscrapers, and even electric lights, yet most people labored in the shadow of poverty.
A period of great industrial and economic growth
in the U. S. between 1877-1900 (End of
Reconstruction to the turn of the Century). The
U. S. grew faster than any other country in the
world at the time, and quickly became the choice
investment area by Europeans. A "golden“
period when capitalism flourished, laissez-faire
was government policy, and some reforms
B. An energetic population who was eager to work
C. Great amounts of wealth from gold, silver, and oil
D. An aggressive group of
E. Great improvements in
a. Railroads helped connect the
eastern and western sections
of the U. S.
b. They helped people settle the
western areas faster.
c. Railroads could go almost
d. Railroads helped end Native
American control of the West
e. Time zones were set up in
the U. S. because of railroad
f. Increased Chinese and Irish
immigration as workers to build
They made the U. S. the industrial, economic, and transportation giant of the whole world. Their methods were brutal and aggressive. Profit and power were their goals.
John D. Rockefeller- Standard Oil Company
Andrew Carnegie – Carnegie Steel Corp.
J. P. Morgan – N. Y. Banker and Financier
Cornelius Vanderbilt – Steamships and Railroads
devices, and made improvements to the telegraph
1. Knights of Labor (1872-1886) – Terence Powderly. Allowed
women, Blacks, and unskilled workers. Violent strikes.
2. American Federation of Labor (1886-1910) Samuel Gompers.
Most successful of early unions. Avoid reformers and violent
3. Congress of Industrial Organizations (1890-1910) split with
A.F. of L. but rejoined in 1910. Led by George Meany.
4. A.F. of L./ C. I. O – formed in 1910 when the two groups
rejoined. George Meany became leader.
Eugene V. Debs
Haymarket Square Riot
1. 8 hour day for federal employees
2. 10 hour work day for women
3. End of child labor (12 and under)
4. Increase in minting of silver money in circulation
5. Use of secret ballot in elections
6. Restrictions on immigration, particularly Chinese
7. Direct election of senators
8. Suffrage rights for women
was a landmark United States Supreme court decision upholding the constitutionality of racial segregation even in public accommodations (particularly railroads), under the doctrine of“separate but equal” treatment. This case set the precedent for segregation in the United States for the next 5o years, until 1954.
U. S. Army as he tried to escape to Canada. “From where the sun now stands, I will fight no more forever.”
American Imperialism States
b. Isolation - after the Civil War the U. S. was more interested in developing itself internally than in becoming involved in foreign affairs
Alfred T. Mahan wrote a book entitled, The Influence of Sea Power Upon History. In his book, Mahan suggested that every great world power in history had had a great navy to support it. This book became a favorite of Theodore Roosevelt and others who wanted to make the U. S. a world power. They pushed for the creation of a new all metal American navy and the creation of an American empire. This group became the biggest supporters of American imperialism.
a. Spanish oppression of the Cuban people during a series of revolt between 1880-1895. American sympathy for the Cuban people.
b. American desire for Cuba - Issued Teller Amendment to deny this.
c. Yellow Journalism - Hearst and Pulitzer's newspapers printed news
stories that stirred up the public against Spain.
d. DeLôme Letter - letter from Senor Depuy DeLôme, foreign
minister to friend in Cuba, criticizing McKinley and the U. S.'s
involvement with Cuba.
e. Sinking of the Maine battleship in Havana harbor - ship was
sunk under mysterious conditions and Spain was blamed.
f. Imperialistic mood in the U. S. - T. Roosevelt and others favored a
war to show America's strength.
Yellow Boys cartoon
The U. S. S. Maine
a. Cuba got its independence from Spain
b. The U. S. defeated a European nation and became a world power
c. The U. S. acquired a colonial empire: Philippines, Guam, Hawaii, and Samoan Islands.
Treaty of Paris 1898
a. Several European countries had taken over land from the weak
Chinese govt. and created "Spheres of influences."
b. Sec. John Hay sent messages to the European nations asking them to open up their "spheres" to all nations for trade and to restore Chinese integrity. When they didn't answer he informed the world press that they had agreed which forced them to comply some.
Spheres of Influence
“Slicing the Chinese Pie
a. 1. To shorten the distance for naval ships to travel and make it
possible to have a 2 ocean navy.
2. To make it more profitable for trade between the west coast
and east coast and with South America.
b. Through Nicaragua which was flatter but longer distance and through Panama which was shorter but more mountainous.
Panama and the canal zone
Roosevelt’s “Big Stick”
Traveling through the canal
Columbia in T. R.’s sights
Through the canal
money, influence, or military might can accomplish anything the U. S. wants. Practiced by Pres. Taft
Roosevelt and his “Big Stick” Policy