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Progressive Movement. What were the reforms of the Second Great Awakening? The late 1800s can be defined as a time period of ……………. What was a Progressive?. Middle Class is growing…urban….rise of professional organizations…. What was a Progressive?

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progressive movement
Progressive Movement

What were the reforms of the Second Great Awakening?

The late 1800s can be defined as a time period of ……………

what was a progressive
What was a Progressive?

Middle Class is growing…urban….rise of professional organizations….

What was a Progressive?

  • A political response to industrialization and social by products
  • Distinct form Populism
  • Reformers who wanted to remedy evils from capitalism not destroy the system
  • Diverse activity
defining progressivism
Defining Progressivism

Who was a Progressive?

  • Native-born, Protestant, middle class, white collar

How did Progressives make reforms?

  • Private groups, organizations
  • Used scientific approach to solving social problems
    • Used research, expert opinions, statistics
defining progressivism1
Defining Progressivism

Influences on Progressives?

  • Social Gospel Movement
  • Social scientists that believed through statistical analysis human conditions could improve and industry be made more efficient
era of progressivism
ERA of Progressivism

A. The Muckrakers are the voice of Progressivism. Writers expose the truths about social issues

1. Ida Tarbell's work on Standard Oil company helped causes its eventual breakup.

2. Other writers, Lincoln Steffens (Shame of the City), Upton Sinclair (The Jungle), Frank Norris (Octopus – RR and wheat farmers of CA), Theodore Dreiser (Financier – business tycoon devoid of social conscious)

era of progressivism1
ERA of Progressivism

3. Photographs, now available in mass media (newspapers) are critical to convey problems.

- Jacob Riis will become famous for photos of grimy urban life/child labor.

- Ashcan school – paintings of tenement life

progressive issues
Progressive Issues

B. Issue #1. Child Labor. Big Business made huge profits, few laws against it.

1. Middle Class outrage over child labor causes a cry for new legislation to abolish it.

a. The Nat. Child Labor Committee forms. Florence Kelley is leader/famous spokesperson.

child labor continued
Child Labor continued

2. In reality, compulsory school attendance laws do more than specific anti-labor laws on the state and federal level

3. Juvenile court system began; delinquents put on probation, taken from families, and assigned to institution – works, but procedural rights not followed – 1967 changes

progressive issues1
Progressive Issues

C. Issue #2. Women's Labor. The concept of women being inferior actually spurs laws

It was based on the notion of women being weaker. Women shouldn’t work danger jobs.

  • Muller v. Oregon - Supreme Court agreed with Oregon that women should not work 10 hour days
  • Charlotte Perkins Gilman Women and Economics argued for communal living arrangements to help working women
women in labor continued
Women in Labor continued

2. The movement also supported women's suffrage…having the vote is necessary for the

impact ; women's opinions would have on issues affecting daily life (city services, etc)

3. Another off-shoot of the women's labor movement was the birth control movement.

a. Margaret Sangerleads efforts to make BC info. avail to women (especially immigrant); Comstock Act 1873 forbade birth control information, arrested several times

progressive issues2
Progressive Issues

D. Issue #3. Reform in the Cities and States Politics. “Machines” under attack.

1. The "City Commission" idea becomes popular as a replacement for the current mayor/council system. It takes power away from corrupt politicians/machines

2. Reform-minded state governors are elected: Robert LaFollette (Wisc Idea) & Woodrow Wilson (NJ).

3. Initiative and referendum were used to pass local and state laws; recall was used to remove officials

progressive issues3
Progressive Issues

Issue #4. Temperance. The WCTU pushes drinking laws…fight the evil “Saloon”; becomes Anti-Saloon League

  • Link alcohol to drugs, prostitution, and political corruption

1. National prohibition becomes a potent political force, and by the 1920’s it is a reality

2. Dance halls and movies were also seen as threats; “nickelodeons”

    • D.W. Griffith Birth of a Nation-

3. Prostitution – shut down some brothels but did not address poverty that created condition

progressive issues4
Progressive Issues

F. Other progressive issues dealt with…

1. Housing: Reforming immigrant slums. The Dumb-bell building is a disastrous “reform”

2. Schooling: John Dewey leads movement to reform public education methods - students in

- Schools should grow both intellectually and socially; schools incubators for reform; seats

- That could move in a circle, child centered not subject centered

worker reform
Worker Reform

II. The Worker in the Progressive Era – wanted unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation

A. With new mechanization, worker management becomes more "machine-oriented"

1. Frederick Taylor's "Scientific Management" makes workers actions more efficient…but resentful. It made profits for owners…but at a cost.

worker reform1
Worker Reform

B. Union Organizing. The AFL continues to grow in the early 1900's. Still no women allowed

1. Union still hurt by anti-labor court decisions. Injunctions are still used to stop strikes

2. The Progressive Movement tended to support labor with laws, but tended to be anti-strike.

Most middle class Progressives tended to be ignorant about the real plight of workers.

worker reform2
Worker Reform

3. Working unskilled women don't have a voice (not allowed in AFL) yet their #'s steadily rise in the era. Statistic: 5 million in 1900, 8.5 million in 1920

a. The garment trades organize with the ILGWU to fight terrible conditions in factories

1. A strike called by ILGWU in 1909. It paralyzes the industry, and forces some reforms.

worker reform3
Worker Reform

C. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire kills 146 in NYC in 1911, mostly immig. women. Shock over conditions there and the fire spur many to call for real reform; owners locked exit doors, no fire escapes, elevators broke down, 46 women jump to death

1. Triangle led to formation of commissions for social ills. They got public support and media attention…and weren’t affected by machine politics.

-Francis Perkins one of investigators will become Secretary of Labor for FDR

-Women restricted to 54 hours a week; no child labor under 14, improve safety

triangle fire
Triangle Fire

2. Triangle also spurred growth of radicalism in labor. The IWW forms. “The Wobblies”

a. All workers could join, Bill Haywood led group

b.. Similar to the Knights in accepting all workers and races. But also home to many radicals, including Eugene Debs (Socialist leader). The IWW was considered to be an extreme union

teddy roosevelt
Teddy Roosevelt

IV. TR as President 1901-1908. His domestic agenda is called “the Square Deal”

  • TR was raised upper middle class…but slowly develops a social conscience; wrote 40 books
  • TR's first target: the trusts. TR was pro Big Business, but against the rampant greed/corruption
  • First to ride in a car, fly an airplane, and diving in a sub; first to travel outside U.S. while pres.

1. Sherman Anti-Trust Act is given new strength by TR’s administration. In five years, 1897-1904 the number of companies dropped from 4227 to 257; U.S. Steel first billion dollar company

a. TR draws a line against misconduct not wealth

b. The Northern Securities Case sees TR take on a large rail monopoly formed by James J. Hill and JP Morgan. He wins, and the monopoly is broken up.

c. TR aggressively attacks the trusts, but his actions don’t affect the consumer too much.

d. But more regulations do impact the future of trusts in the US economy; strengthen the role of the executive


Elkins Act – Eliminated rebates by RR to gain favor

Hepburn Act – expanded the power of the ICC and gave it the right to investigate and enforce rates


C. TR will play role of mediator between management and labor (he mediates an end to the coal strike of 1902)...but he is more pro-business than pro-labor.

  • John Mitchell led the United Mine Workers in a strike; coal was short supply and TR intervened
  • Workers got 10% raise, back pay, and a 9 hour day

D. He will also use legislation to help the daily lives of Americans.

1. The Pure Food and Drug/Meat Inspection Acts of 1906 are passed in the fury of publishing of Upton Sinclair’s novel "The Jungle", it portrayed conditions in meatpacking.

2. Took the coke out of coca-cola


E. TR is aggressive in conservation. He gets advice from early environmentalists, like John Muir.

  • He will purchase millions of acres of land to keep under federal control.
  • Preservation vs. conservation – Muir v. Pinchot
  • Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts; outdoor activities become popular

F. TR's Square Deal doesn’t help African-Americans. His actions are mostly symbolic (White House)

1. Unsupported by the federal gov’t, Blacks form their own political organization “The NAACP”

- Most prominent blacks, like Booker T Washington, urged conservative approach (work in the system) to get reform. Some more radical approaches (WEB Du Bois). emerge too.

- Du Bois wanted the best education for the top 10%; Washington favored vocational education

-The “Niagara Movement” urged faster, more dynamic change “The Crisis” was the journal


VI. Changes in Politics. TR leaves the White House in 1908. His immense popularity allows him to select his replacement. He chooses Cabinet member William Howard Taft.

B. Taft as President 1908-1912. He's no TR! But in some ways, he’s more progressive! First to golf, first to use a car regularly, dozes off frequently, large bath tub that could was 7 feet and could hold 4 men

1. Mann-Elkins Act strengthens the ICC and helps it regulate Rail, Telegraph, Phone cos.


2. The Federal Income Tax (16th Amend.) passed in 1913. It impacts the “super-rich.” The obscene wealth of the “Gilded Age” begins to disappear.

3. Taft's is unpopular. He’s not TR. Some of his actions are seen as reversals of TR reforms

a. The Payne-Aldrich tariff is passed (rates up!). It benefits east big business, hurts Midwest.

b. He also reverses some conservation actions of TR (sells off land)...which angers TR.

election of 1912
ELECTION of 1912

C. The Election of 1912 sees the return of both TR and the Democratic Party!

1. Dems nominate. Gov. Woodrow Wilson (NJ). A powerful, respected Progressive/Intellectual.

2. Republicans are stuck with unpopular Taft. TR and his supporters walk out!

a. TR forms the Progressive party. Its platform is radical: 8 hour day, disability payments, old age pensions, unemployment insurance, suffrage. TR has changed!

election of 19121
ELECTION of 1912

4. Election is between Wilson and TR. A proud Taft concedes defeat almost immediately

a. TR pushes "New Nationalism" use vast power of gov’t to help people (Hamilton!)

b. Wilson’s "New Freedom" urges less gov’t interference (Jefferson)

c. Eugene V Debs, Socialist candidate gathers an impressive amount of support.

5. Wilson wins, largely due to the spilt of the Republican Party. Debs gets 6%…a record


VII. Wilson as President. 1912-1920. This era sees dynamic changes in both domestic and foreign affairs

A. Wilson’s domestic actions end up like TR! He use power of gov’t to push progressive reform

1. The Underwood Tariff reduces tariff levels for 1st time in years

2. The Federal Reserve System is created. It is the first reorg of the banking system since the Civil War. It creates a series of Federal Reserve banks and a flexible currency.


3. He gets bills passed on workman's compensation, child labor, federal farm loans. He has the Clayton Act passed. It regulated corporate practices

4. The Federal Trade Commission. Gave Fed gov't more power to regulate competition

B. Wilson’s a contradiction on social issues. He appoints reformer Louis Brandeis to Supreme Court (he’s Jewish), but he bitterly opposes women's suffrage, he also orders Fed gov't to be segregated! Supporter of movie Birth of a Nation