Postwar Issues Economic Problems: • Unemployment • Cost of living doubled during WWI • Weak demand for farm products American public divided over U.S. joining League of Nations: 1. Isolationism rose 2. Nativism rose
Isolationism pulling away from involvement in world affairs. Nativism Fear / distrust of foreigners
Fear of Communism Could communists overthrow the U.S. gov’t. as they had done in Russia? The Red Scare of 1919 Atty. Genl. Mitchell A. Palmer authorized the “Palmer Raids”
The case of Sacco and Vanzetti
Part 2The Business of America and the Consumer Economy in the 1920’s(Read P. 660-64)
The auto industry was the backbone of the American economyfrom 1920 through the 1970s. • It also profoundly altered the American landscape and society.
Paved roads, traffic lights, motels, billboards • Home design (garages, driveways) • Gas stations, repair shops, shopping centers • Freedom for rural families • Independence for women and young people • Cities like Detroit, Flint, Akron grew • By 1920… 80% of world’s vehicles in U.S.
Production of cars doubled by 1929…1 in 5 Americans had a car by the end of the decade.
Economic Effects • More jobs (auto industry & related industries: Steel, rubber, and oil ) • Roads and highways are built (more new jobs!) • Gas stations, hotels, and restaurants popped up across the country (more new jobs!) • Social Effects • Growth of suburbs • People could live outside the city and drive to work (commute) • Driving gave women more freedom • Easier to interact with others in cities & states
Advertising in the Jazz Age • Modern advertising began to take shape using pop culture and celebs • new appliances and consumer goods available at a lower cost spurred consumption. • Businesses had learned HOW to efficiently produce goods; now the focus was creating desire. This ad uses a celebrity endorsement to glamorize smoking and exploits the image of the “new woman” of the 1920’s.
Americans on the Move(P. 664-65) • Urbanization still accelerating: 1920 New York = 5 million Chicago = 3 million
Americans on the move 1920: • First time in American history that there were more people living in cities than on farms.
Americans on the Move • 1920s: Farming was not profitable. • 6 million farmers or their children left the farms for the cities.
Between 1910 – 1920, many African Americans moved from the South to the North • Called the Great Migration • Racial tensions increased in Northern cities • Races riots occurred in # of cities
African Americans in the North • Jim Crow laws in the South limited life for African Americans. • Lack of education • Lack of housing • Lack of jobs • Lynchings
Other Migrations • Immigrants from Mexico to fill low pay jobs. • came to cities…the BARRIO… Spanish speaking neighborhoods. • LA: Mexican barrio • NYC: Puerto Rican barrio
Republicans Control White House • Warren G. Harding (1920-23) • Harding wins landslide election promising a “return to normalcy” • Return to isolationism • Pro-business policies • Make economy grow and create jobs • Administration rocked by scandals "Return to Normalcy" Read P. 666-69
Coolidge Prosperity “The business of America is business. The man who builds a factory builds a temple. The man who works there worships there” Calvin Coolidge • Coolidge’s priorities: • Protect big business…urged Congress to pass Fordney-McCumber Act (raised tariff 25%) • Business was the “key to creating the American way of life…”
Industry Booms: • Quantity of goods made by industry doubled • More jobs created and incomes rose • People spent money on new products • Refrigerators, radios, phonographs, vacuum cleaners • Installment buying (credit) allowed people to spend more money than they could afford • BUT…Overspending would become a serious economic problem…more on this later!
A Soaring Stock Market (“bull market”) • More people invested in the stock market than ever before • Stocks were bought on margin • Buyers put down 10%, borrowed 90% • Margin buying works as long as stock prices rise • Margin buying became a 2nd cause for The Great Depression of the 1930’s
How did presidential leadership influence US policy during the 1920’s? • Presidential leadership: • Created a strong economy • Created a bull market • Returned the nation to pre-WW1 isolation • Increased jobs and family income • Created an era of peace & prosperity …life was good!
Social & Cultural Tensions • Collision of Traditional & Modern Values • Restricting Immigration • The “New” Ku Klux Klan • Prohibition & Crime
Rural and Urban Differences • By 1920, with MORE living in cities than rural areas… • Urban values began to dominate • Diversity: • Politics • Language • Social customs
SCIENCE AND RELIGION CLASH • Fundamentalist vs. Secular beliefs • Fundamentalists believe in a literal interpretation of the Bible • Secular means things NOT connected to religion
The Scopes “Monkey Trial” • In March 1925, Tennessee passed the nation’s first law that made it a crime to teach evolution • The ACLU promised to defend any teacher willing to challenge the law – John Scopes did John T. Scopes was a biology teacher who dared to teach his students that man MAY HAVEevolved from lower species
SCOPES TRIAL • The ACLU hired Clarence Darrow, the most famous trial lawyer of the era, to defend Scopes • The prosecution countered with William Jennings Bryan, a fundamentalist & the 3 time Democratic presidential nominee
The Scopes “Monkey Trial” • Darrow put Bryan on the stand to testify as an expert on the Bible. • Bryan admitted some things in the Bible could not be taken literally…showed flaws in some of his logic
Scopes Trial: Fundamentalism v. Modernism • Darrow & Scopes lost the case but won the point with the public. • Scopes fined $100
A 2nd example of the clash between city & rural values was the passage of the 18th Amendment in 1920. • Launched era known as Prohibition (the “Noble Experiment”) • Made it illegal to make, distribute, sell, transport or consume liquor. Prohibition lasted from 1920 to 1933 when it was repealed by the 21st Amendment
Support for Prohibition • Reformers had long believed alcohol led to crime, child & wife abuse, and accidents • Supporters were largely from the rural south and west
Speakeasies and Bootleggers • Many did not believe drinking was a sin…con’t. to drink • Went to hidden saloons known as “speakeasies” • People also bought liquor from bootleggers who smuggled it in from Canada, Cuba and the West Indies • All of these activities became closely affiliated with …
ORGANIZED CRIME • Prohibition contributed to the growth of organized crime in every major city • Al Capone – • “Scarface” • Chicago, Illinois • Capone took control of the Chicago liquor business by killing off his competition Al Capone was finally convicted on tax evasion charges in 1931
Capone • 200 murders are directly tied to Capone. • St. Valentine’s Day Massacre was also his work. • During Prohibition, he made $100,000,000.
Territories expanded and gang warfare erupted over turf and control of liquor • Org. crime moved into other areas: • Gambling • Drugs • prostitution
Gangsters bribed police and other government officials to look the other way They forced businesses to pay a fee for “protection” • If you didn’t pay …
Support Fades… Prohibition repealed • By the mid-1920s, only 20% of Americans supported Prohibition • Many felt Prohibition caused more problems than it solved • The 21st Amendment finally repealed Prohibition in 1933
1920’s Life & Times Shipwreck Kelly 49 Days Flagpole sitting
1920s DANCING • Dance Marathons • Charleston
Radio • KDKA (Pittsburgh) the FIRST radio broadcast