Chapter 23 the jazz age
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Chapter 23: The Jazz Age . US History - HOnors. The 1920s was a decade of great prosperity and productivity Republican tax cuts and limited involvement in the economy encouraged investment Wages increased as companies made better profits

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Chapter 23 the jazz age

Chapter 23:

The Jazz Age

US History - HOnors


  • The 1920s was a decade of great prosperity and productivity

  • Republican tax cuts and limited involvement in the economy encouraged investment

    • Wages increased as companies made better profits

    • Electricity became common in most homes, leading to household appliances like washing machines, vacuums, and radios

  • Much of the success was the result of scientific management

    • All tasks could be broken down into smaller tasks that people specialized in

    • This cut down the amount of time that it took for products to be made, increasing production

    • The automobile industry was a perfect example of scientific management


Henry ford and the automobile

  • The first automobiles were produced in the 1890s, but Henry Ford revolutionized the industry

    • Ford Motor Company created in 1903

    • Introduced the Model T in 1908

  • Ford perfected the assembly line to cut production times

    • People stood in a particular area and completed a specific task in the building of the car

    • By 1914, over 250,000 Model Ts were sold a year

    • Other companies followed suit

  • To provide for the auto industry, many other industries also prospered

    • Glass, rubber, steel, and other industries blossomed

    • Over 1 million were employed in the auto industry in some way by 1929

Henry Ford and the Automobile

Ford s effect on america

  • Ford also revolutionized working conditions for his employees

    • Guaranteed an 8 hour workday

    • Paid $5 a day

    • However, Ford was a stickler not only at work, but monitored his employees’ home lives as well

  • The booming auto industry changed the American landscape

    • People could buy a new car for $800

    • Service and gas stations sprang up throughout the nation

    • People could travel easier, thus roads were built and motels opened to accomodate tourists

Ford’s Effect on AMerica

Consumer america

  • The prosperity of American in the 1920s created a nation of consumers

  • For the first time, people could buy products on credit

    • Companies offered installment plans for various products

    • This led to the creation of credit cards

    • Companies competed for the nation’s business through advertising

    • Companies continued to use newspapers, magazines and billboards, as they had before

    • However, the new medium of radio was the mode of advertising choice

      • Jingles, slogans, and celebrity endorsements became common

  • Some companies expanded the locations, having stores throughout the country

Consumer AMerica


  • The 18 consumersth Amendment (1919) outlawed the manufacture, sale, distribution and consumption of alcohol

  • The law was very hard to enforce and created a unique American culture in the 1920s

    • The Volstead Act of 1919 was passed to enforce the law

  • People could obtain alcohol in different ways

    • Speakeasies were illegal bars

    • Bootleggers smuggled alcohol into the US from Canada and other places

    • Some people made their own liquor (“moonshine”)

  • Organized crime became rampant

    • Most notorious was Chicago’s Al Capone

    • Led by Eliot Ness, his group of detectives, the Untouchables, tried for years to convict Capone, to no avail

    • Finally, in 1931, Capone was sent to prison for tax evasion

  • The amendment was repealed in 1933 by the 21st Amendment


Youth culture of the 1920s

  • The younger generation began to openly reject the values and morals of previous generations

  • Women were especially open to change

    • The “new woman” of the 1920s was the “flapper”

    • Not all women became flappers, but the flapper symbolized the 1920s

    • Flappers were very different than women before

      • Short, bobbed hair

      • Shorter skirts

      • Career minded and bold in manners and style

  • More and more people began to attend college

Youth Culture of the 1920s

The flapper
The Flapper morals of previous generations


  • Radio: first stations went on the air in 1920 morals of previous generations

    • Played a variety of programs, such as music, sports, and news

    • Companies such as NBC were created

    • Millions were made by selling advertising slots

  • Movies: became easier to produce and hundreds were made a year

    • The earlier part of the decade was dominated by silent films and stars such as Charlie Chaplin

    • In 1927, the first “talkie” was produced

  • Sports: both professional and college athletics

    • Football and baseball were the most popular

      • Stars like Red Grange, Ty Cobb, Lou Gehrig, and Babe Ruth became heroes to many

  • Books and Magazines: reading was a popular pastime

    • New weeklies and monthlies like Reader’s Digest were printed for the first time


Celebrities and heroes

  • Sport stars were among the many heroes of Americans morals of previous generations

    • Babe Ruth (“Sultan of Swat”)

    • Jim Thorpe, a Native American multisport star, also competed in the Olympics

  • Movie stars were emulated

  • One of the biggest of the decade was Charles Lindbergh

    • Pilot that flew mail between St. Louis and Chicago

    • Became the first person to fly non stop from New York to Paris in 1927

    • Took 33.5 hours to fly his plane the Spirit of St. Louis

    • Inspired Amelia Earhart to become the first woman to do it the following year

Celebrities and Heroes

Stars of the 1920s
Stars of the 1920s morals of previous generations

Stars of the 1920s1
Stars of the 1920s morals of previous generations

Religion of the 1920s

  • Because of the decline morals of the decade, preachers began to stress a revival of faith

  • Fundamentalism developed as preachers insisted that the words of the Bible should be taken literally

    • Claimed that scientific development and liberal thought “weakened” Christianity

  • In 1925, a trial in Tennessee tested fundamentalism

    • The theory of evolution was banned from schools in TN

    • John Scopes was accused of teaching the theory

    • Clarence Darrow represented Scopes, while William Jennings Bryan represented the prosecution

    • The Scopes trial divide views on religious fundamentalism and freedom of expression

    • Scopes was found guilty and fined $100

    • However, the trial weakened support for fundamentalism

Religion of the 1920s

Music of the 1920s

  • The new music craze was jazz to stress a revival of faith

    • Jazz was hybrid of musical styles popular among black musicians of the south

    • Ragtime, spirituals, and West African rhythms were the basis, as well as blues

  • Louis Armstrong was one of the first and most influential musicians

  • Duke Ellington also had a strong influence on the style

  • Both artists took jazz to the north, where it quickly gained popularity

  • The popularity of the music is the reason why the 1920s is considered the “Jazz Age”

Music of the 1920s

Jazz musicians
Jazz Musicians to stress a revival of faith

Harlem renaissance

  • The predominantly black neighborhood of Harlem, NY was the site of an influential movement in the arts

  • This movement was known as the Harlem Renaissance

    • Theater: actors, playwrights and singers gained popularity

    • Literature: poets and novelists wrote stories that described what it was like being black in America

      • Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston were among the most famous

Harlem Renaissance

The lost generation

  • At the same time the Harlem Renaissance took place, another literary movement occurred

    • Ernest Hemingway dubbed the movement the Lost Generation

  • Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald, among others, wrote stories of disillusionment and criticized the new America

    • Conformity, materialism and close-mindedness were common targets

The Lost Generation

The arts

Painting and photography were common forms of expression literary movement occurred

Much of the influence came from Mexican artists like Diego Rivera and their elaborate murals that depicted industrial development

Architecture also changed, especially with the boom of skyscraper building in cities

Frank Lloyd Wright was one of the most influential architects of the time

The Arts

The arts1
The Arts literary movement occurred