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POLITICS OF THE ROARING TWENTIES. Chapter 12. AMERICANS STRUGGLE WITH POSTWAR ISSUES. Section 1. How did World War I affect America?. The end of WWI hurt the economy :. Returning soldiers took jobs away from women & minorities …OR… Returning soldiers faced unemployment themselves.

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the end of wwi hurt the economy
The end of WWI hurt the economy:
  • Returning soldiers took jobs away from women & minorities …OR…
  • Returning soldiers faced unemployment themselves.
nativism isolationism


Swept over America as people became suspicious of foreigners & wanted to pull away from world affairs

fear of communism


Americans saw Communism as a threat to their way of life

communists came to power in russia through violent revolution

Communists came to power in Russia through violent revolution:

Communism is an economic & political system that supports government control over property.

wwi created economic political problems in russia

WWI created economic & political problems in Russia…

1917, the Russian czar (NicholasII) stepped down & a group of revolutionaries called Bolsheviks took power.

this new government called for worldwide revolution

This new government called for worldwide revolution..

Communist leaders wanted workers to seize political & economic power

They wanted to overthrow capitalism.

the red scare


In the U.S., about 70,000 people joined the Communist Party.

Still, the ideas of the communists, or “Reds”, frightened many people

palmer raids
  • Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer set up an agency in the Justice Dept. to arrest communists, socialists, & anarchists (later became FBI).
palmer s raids trampled on people s rights especially radicals

Palmer’s raids trampled on people’s rights…especially radicals.

Many were sent out of the country w/out trial.

sacco vanzetti


Two Italian immigrants who were arrested for robbery & murder in Massachusetts.

Bartolomeo Vanzetti and Nicola Sacco (Dedham courthouse, 1923)

sacco vanzetti were admitted anarchists but

Sacco & Vanzetti were admitted anarchists but…

Denied committing any crime.

The case against them was weak & they were convicted anyway


sacco vanzetti executed in 1927
Sacco & Vanzetti executed in 1927

Sacco and Vanzetti death masks

Funeral Procession

Death Watch in Union Square, New York

limiting immigration


How did Americans show their Nativist feelings?

Immigrants at Ellis Island

some americans used the red scare as an excuse to act against people who were different

Some Americans used the Red Scare as an excuse to act against people who were different.

Example was the Ku Klux Klan.

quota system
  • Congress passed the EmergencyQuota Act of 1921.
  • Set a limit on how many immigrants from each country could enter the U.S. each year.
  • In 1924, a new quota limited immigration from Eastern & SouthernEurope…mostly Jews & Roman Catholics.
3 major strikes in 1919


(Strikes were not allowed during World War I)

1 boston police officers strike for a living wage

1) Boston police officers strike for a living wage.

The cost of living had doubled since their last raise.

Mass. Governor Calvin Coolidge used force to put down the strike.

2 steelworker strike at u s steel corporation

2) Steelworker strike at U.S. Steel Corporation.

Workers demanded right to join unions.

1923, report revealed harsh conditions in steel mills.

Public opinion turned against steel companies & workers were given an 8 hour day….Still had no union.

3 united mine workers strike
3) United Mine Workers Strike
  • Led by John L. Lewis, president of the UnitedMine Workers.
  • President Wilson tried to help settle the dispute b/w miners & mine owners.
  • Miners got higher wages, but didn’t get shorter hours.

John L. Lewis

overall the 1920 s was a bad time for unions

Overall, the 1920’s was a bad time for unions.

Union membership declined from 5 million to 3.5 million.


Immigrants were willing to work in poor conditions
  • Language barriers made organizing people difficult
  • Farmers who had migrated to cities were used to relying on themselves
  • Most unions excluded African Americans.
the harding presidency


Section 2

Personal:• First Lady: Florence "Flossie" Mabel Kling Harding, Wife• Number of Children: 1• Education Level: College• School Attended: Ohio Central College• Religion: Baptist• Profession: Teacher, Insurance Salesman, Reporter, Publisher

washington naval conference 1921

Washington Naval Conference1921

President Warren G. Harding invited several major world powers.

  • At the Conference, Secretary of State Charles Evans Hughes urged that no more warships be built for 10 years.
  • Hughes also urged that the 5 major naval powers (U.S., Great Britain, Japan, France & Italy) scrap many of their existing warships
kellogg briand pact 1928

Kellogg-Briand Pact1928

Frank B. Kellogg, U.S. Secretary of State

64 nations signed that they giving up war as national policy

fordney mccumber tariff of 1922

Fordney-McCumber Tariff of 1922

Tariff protected American business from foreign competition.

But the tariff made it impossible for Britain & France to sell their goods in the U.S.

under the dawes plan
Under the Dawes Plan….
  • U.S. loaned $ to Germany to pay back Britain & France
  • Then Britain & France repaid U.S.

So….the U.S. ended up getting paid w/its own $!

scandal hits harding s administration

Scandal Hits Harding’s Administration…

ohio gang

Some of his cabinet appointments caused problems…… They were part of the so-called “OHIOGANG”

teapot dome scandal
  • Involved pieces of land called Teapot Dome & Elk Hills
  • Was owned by the government & held large reserves of oil.
harding s secretary of the interior albert b fall secretly leased the land to two oil companies

Harding’s secretary of the interior, Albert B. Fall, secretly leased the land to two oil companies

He received $ & property in return.

president harding wasn t charged w corruption himself

President Harding wasn’t charged w/corruption himself….

He suddenly died in 1923 & Calvin Coolidge became president.

the new president calvin coolidge said

The new president, Calvin Coolidge said…

“The chief business of the American people is business”


New roads were built. New businesses sprang up like gas stations, repair shops, public garages, motels, tourist camps & shopping centers.

the automobile also became a status symbol everyone wanted to have one

The automobile also became a status symbol.Everyone wanted to have one.

By the late 1920’s, about 80% of all the cars in the world were in the U.S.


urban sprawl cities spread out in all directions

URBAN SPRAWL(Cities spread out in all directions)

Cars ended isolation of rural families & gave young people & women more independence.

Cars also made it possible for people to live farther from their jobs.

the airline industry also grew

The airline industry also grew.

Planes carried the nation’s mail.

Passenger service began.

america s standard of living soars


How did the American household change?

spread of electricity caused a major change

Spread of ELECTRICITY caused a major change.

In the 1920’s, electric power stretched beyond big cities to the suburbs.

americans began to use all kinds of electrical appliances
Americans began to use all kinds of electrical appliances….
  • Radios, washing machines, & vacuum cleaners became popular.
  • These appliances made housework easier.
more consumer goods appeared on the market

More consumer goods appeared on the market.

Businesses used advertising to sell goods. They used Psychology…tried to use people’s desire for youth, beauty, & popularity to sell products.

business people formed organizations to do charity work

Business people formed organizations to do charity work.

They also formed organizations to promote business.

the national income rose from 64 billion in 1921 to 87 billion in 1929

The National income rose from $64 billion in 1921 to $87 billion in 1929.

Most businesses seemed to make fortunes.

The stock market reached new heights.

the superficial prosperity of the 1920 s


What hidden problems did the economy have?

1 business wasn t as healthy as it seemed
1) Business wasn’t as healthy as it seemed:
  • Large businesses bought up or merged w/smaller ones.
  • But as businesses grew, business managers made much more $ than workers did.
  • Also, mining companies, railroads, & farms weren’t doing well.
2 consumer debt rose to high levels
2) Consumer debt rose to high levels:
  • Businesses encouraged customers to buy on the INSTALLMENT PLAN.
  • Banks provided $ at low interest rates.
  • Average Americans were spending more $ than they actually had.
problems on the horizon
  • Businesses expanded recklessly
  • Iron & railroad industries faded
  • Farms nationwide suffered losses due to overproduction
  • Too much was bought on credit (installment plans) including stocks