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  1. Bell Ringer • Describe the average city-dweller’s life in the late 1800s. Make sure to include: • Life at work • Life at home • American versus immigrant • What did they do for entertainment • If you do not know 1) look it up, 2) why are you not studying more? • Keep your paper, you are going to answer questions throughout lecture that will count as a participation grade

  2. From Crisis to Empire Chapter 19

  3. On the horizon… • Unit 5 and Unit 6 study guides will be due February 25th!

  4. The Politics of Equilibrium • From Civil War to 1900 the nation was divided almost 50/50 between Democrats and Republicans • 16 (northern) states were Republican • 14 (southern) states were Democrat • Republicans controlled the Presidency and the Senate while Democrats controlled the House • People were fiercely loyal to their parties (something we certainly are not today) • This caused incredibly high voter turnout (~70% compared to today’s 48%)

  5. The Politics of Equilibrium • Why were people so loyal to their parties? • Regional differences: • The South viewed Democrats as the party that ended Reconstruction and maintained White Supremacy • The North viewed Republicans as the party that ended slavery and sought equality • Republicans favored limited immigration and temperance which Catholics/immigrants took as an attack against them • Therefore Catholics/immigrants supported Democrats

  6. The Politics of Equilibrium • The Federal Government was not involved in many substantial issues • They were in charge of the mail, military, foreign policy, taxes, and tariffs • They were also keeping railroads functional by giving land grants to help them build • They also intervened in the case of strikes such as the Pullman Strike • Who benefited from this intervention (the workers or the owners)?

  7. The Politics of Equilibrium • The Federal Government also controlled a pension for Union Civil War veterans • When the soldiers died off, so did the pension program • By 1900 the two most powerful institutions in the U.S. were the parties and the Supreme Court

  8. The Politics of Equilibrium • While the presidency was symbolically important, it was not very powerful • There was a small staff for the president who had to appoint 100,000 people when he was elected • Mostly post office positions • When they appointed people, they had to try to keep harmony within their party which typically had many factions • Sometimes, this was impossible

  9. The Politics of Equilibrium • The Republican Party divided into factions during Hayes’ presidency • The Stalwarts: led by Roscoe Conkling (NY), favored traditional, professional machine politics • The Half-Breeds: led by James G. Blaine (ME), favored reform • Hayes could not make both happy, and announced early he would not seek re-election • He was a weak and unpopular president • His popularity was made worse by “Lemonade Lucy,” his wife who wanted temperance

  10. The Politics of Equilibrium • The only reason the divided Republican Party held the presidency in the 1880 election was because they chose James Garfield (Half-Breed) for President and Chester A. Arthur (Stalwart) for V.P. • Democrats didn’t help themselves by choosing a former Civil War commander-Gen. Winfield Scott Hancock • Republicans also took both houses on Congress

  11. The Politics of Equilibrium • Garfield began his presidency by advocating for civil service reform • A.K.A. ending the “spoils system” • Garfield was assassinated by a gunman who shouted “I am a Stalwart and Arthur is president now!” • Despite being a Stalwart, Arthur pushed for civil service reform • He pushed the Pendleton Act which requires federal jobs to be filled by people who have passed exams to earn those jobs

  12. The Politics of Equilibrium • In 1884 the Republicans put up James Blaine who was associated with corrupt politics • Republican “mugwumps” declared they would bolt from the party and support an honest Democrat (which they did) • The Democrats put up Grover Cleveland—similar to Blaine on the issues, but had a good reputation of fighting corruption • Cleveland won despite the Democrats being called the party of “Rum, Romanism, and rebellion”

  13. The Politics of Equilibrium • Cleveland was well respected (although not liked) for his willingness to say no • He thought that tariffs were too high allowing for a surplus that led Congress to pass “reckless legislation” • He believed that the Federal Government should have a limited role • He asked for lower tariffs which the House passed, but the Senate (led by Republicans) refused (they actually called for a hike) • This made tariffs the center argument in the election of 1888

  14. The Politics of Equilibrium • In 1888 the Democrats re-nominated Cleveland while the Republicans selected Benjamin Harrison (grandson of William Henry Harrison) • Harrison endorsed high tariffs • Cleveland won the popular vote by 100K, but Harrison won the electoral college and therefore the election

  15. The Politics of Equilibrium • Harrison as president was nearly as weak as his grandfather (who died in 30 days) • Congress did pass the Sherman Anti-Trust Act • What was the Sherman Anti-Trust Act? Was it initially successful? • The McKinley Tariff passed and became the highest tariffs known • By this time, the public was not a fan of tariffs • They let the Republicans know this by electing Cleveland to the presidency in 1892

  16. The Politics of Equilibrium • Cleveland supported the same ideas as before • This time he/Congress were also pressured to legislate regulation of railroads • In Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific Railway Co. v. Illinois ruled that only the Congress could regulate interstate commerce—opening the door for Congress to pass the Interstate Commerce Act • The Interstate Commerce Act banned discrimination between long and short hauls, required the railroads to publish their fares, and that rates must be “fair and just” • The Interstate Commerce Commission was supposed to act on these issues (although, like the Sherman Act, it was not well carried out in its first decade)

  17. Question 3—The Agrarian Revolt5 minutesCan’t remember—look on p. 535-39 • Diagram the evolution from Grangers to the Populist Party • Under each group explain what they fought for • If they went away, explain why.

  18. The Crisis of the 1890s • The agrarian revolt was one of many indicators that the 1890s was going to be a decade plagued with issues • The Panic of 1893 brought on the worse recession American had seen • It began with the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad declaring bankruptcy as well as the National Cordage Company • This sparked a stock market crash which led to bank failures (because banks had invested their money in the market)

  19. The Crisis of the 1890s • Within 6 months 8000 businesses, 156 railroads, and 400 banks had failed • Ag prices also fell further • 1 million workers (~20% of the workforce) lost their jobs • The economy did not recovery until 1901 • Instability led to labor radicalism including strikes • “Coxey’s Army” was a revolt led by Jacob Coxey who brought 500 unemployed to Washington to protest the lack of a public works program • They were arrested and put in camps

  20. The Crisis of the 1890s • Our currency grew week in light of the depression • This brought up the question of what should back our money • People grew concerned when silver became “demonetarized” (no longer used for coinage) • This became known as the Crime of `73 • Two groups arose from this: miners who were happy to sell silver at a higher price (for jewelry) • And farmers who were upset because they wanted “free silver” meaning “unlimited” coinage which would cause inflation and therefore a hike in their prices

  21. The Crisis of the 1890s • Trying to appease the silverites Congress passed the Sherman Silver Purchase Act of 1890 forcing the government to buy up $2-4 million in silver from miners and pay for it in gold • The election of 1896 was clearly divided • Silverites (western and southern Democrats) who supported silver viewed as a symbol of liberation while gold was tyranny and oppressive • Gold Bugs (northerner Republicans) considered gold essential to the nation’s stability and honor

  22. “A Cross of Gold” • Populists, needing money for campaigns, allied with silver-miners • Republicans put of William McKinley • They opposed free coinage of silver • Democrats absorbed the Populist/People’s Party’s causes—mainly “free silver” • Their nominee was William Jennings Bryan • He declared that the gold standard was oppressive • “You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns; you shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold.”—from the “Cross of Gold Speech” • What simile is Bryan making with his Cross of Gold Speech? Is this overdramatic, or necessary, given the issue?

  23. “A Cross of Gold” • McKinley conducted a “Front-porch” campaign in which people came to him • This cost $7M while the Democrats only spent $300K • Bryan on the other hand traveled 18K miles and addressed 5M people • With Bryan’s loss came the end of the Populist Party • They had tied themselves to the Democrats and their defeat signified a lack of support for the Populist movement

  24. “A Cross of Gold” • McKinley brought about recovery • He brought in higher tariffs with the Dingley Tariff (highest to date…again) • He enacted the Currency Act (a.k.a. Gold Standard Act) of 1900 making gold the nation’s standard • This was after an attempt to work with Britain and France to see if a silver standard could be used—they said no) • Recovery began to show by 1898 and fully buy 1901 • It also helped that a huge gold supply was found in Africa, Alaska, and Australia causing the inflation that farmers were seeking • The next issue would soon preoccupy everyone—imperialism