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Ch. 26: The Great West and Agricultural Revolution: 1865-1896 PowerPoint Presentation
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Ch. 26: The Great West and Agricultural Revolution: 1865-1896

Ch. 26: The Great West and Agricultural Revolution: 1865-1896

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Ch. 26: The Great West and Agricultural Revolution: 1865-1896

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  1. Ch. 26: The Great West and Agricultural Revolution: 1865-1896 AP US History

  2. WHAT MADE WESTWARD EXPANSION POSSIBLE? • Transcontinental Railroad (main reason) • Land (Homestead Act 1862) • People (immigrants) • Opportunity for wealth • Mining, Livestock and Agriculture

  3. Transcontinental Railroad • Construction • First transcontinental Railroad was completed in 1869. • Five total during the 19th Centrury • Irish and Chinese workers played key roles in their construction. • Land grants were given to the RR companies

  4. Transcontinental Railroad • Consequences for the Great Plains • Played a key role in the near-extinction of the buffalo herds. • Devastated the culture of the Plains Indians • Brought a tidal wave of troops, farmers, miners, and cattlemen to the Great Plains • The buffalo was replaced by range-fed cattle as more farmers came. (Ranches, cowboys, fences)

  5. Clash in Cultures • What are the causes of the transformation of the Native American way of life? Especially on the Plains. • Near extermination of the buffalo doomed the nomadic lifestyle of the Plains Indians. • White man’s disease/alcohol • US Gov backed land claims with force (Army) • Ghost Dance, Custer, Etc. • Transcontinental RR transformed the economy of the whole region (now valuable) • Brought unlimited # of troops, pioneers, etc.

  6. Reform Minded America • Publication of Century of Dishonor (1881) • Written by Helen Hunt Jackson • PURPOSE: • To arouse public awareness of the federal government’s long record of betraying and cheating the Native American’s. • EXAMPLES: • “Treaties” • Land • Buffalo • Promises of food, clothing, supplies, etc

  7. Reform Minded America • Christian reformers • Would run schools on reservations • Often withheld food to force Indians to give up their religious rituals and assimilate into white society. • EXAMPLE: • “Ghost Dance” • The dance was a sacred ritual expressing a vision that the buffalo would return and the white civilization would vanish. • Battle of Wounded Knee (1890) • As many as 200 Indian women and children killed at Battle of Wounded Knee.

  8. Reform Minded America • The Dawes Act of 1887 • GOALS: • Misguided attempt to reform Native American Policy • Inspired by Century of Dishonor by Helen Hunt Jackson • To assimilate Native Americans into the mainstream of American life by.. • Dissolving tribes as legal entities • Setting up families with 160/acres • Making them citizens if they behaved like “white citizens” for 25yrs.

  9. Reform Minded Americans • CONSEQUENCES: • Ignored the inherent reliance of traditional Indian culture on tribally owned land. • By 1900, Indians had lost 50% of 156 million acres they had held just two decades prior. • Forced-assimilation doctrine of the Dawes Act remained the cornerstone of the government’s official Indian policy for half century. • Indian Reorganization Act 1934 partially reversed the individualistic approach of the Dawes Act by restoring tribal basis of Indian life.

  10. Expanding West • The West has been expanding at an unreal pace. • “great migration” 1870s-1890s • New states join the Union • N/S Dakota, Montana, Washington, Idaho and Wyoming • This is a political move as well: Rep Congress was seeking Rep votes. • Utah joined in 1896 • Only Oklahoma, NM and Arizona were still territories. • Oklahoma made available in 1888: “sooners”

  11. The Fading Frontier • A Watershed Report • IN 1890, the superintendent of the census reported for the first time in American History a frontier lineno long existed! • Frontier is the definition of America’s uniqueness • Land = opportunity/money: now gone • Secretary of War had said it would take 500 years to populate in 1827 • It was a safety valve

  12. An Influential Essay • “closing” the frontier inspired Fredrick Jackson Turner to write “The Significance of the Frontier in American History” • Significance: • Argued cheap, unsettled land helped make American society more democratic (opportunity) • Frontier helped shape distinct American spirit of democracy and egalitarianism • Frontier was a safety valve for factory workers and immigrants to escape and find new opportunities • Frontier stimulated American nationalism and individualism • Frontier killed any notion of a hereditary landed aristocracy

  13. The Fading Frontier • Frontier was a state of mind and symbol of opportunity: NOW GONE! • Government now began to set aside land for national parks. • Yellowstone 1872 • Remember George Catlin wanted to do this in the past. • Where do we go now? Imperialism (ch.27)

  14. New Way of Farming • Single Cash Crop (like tobacco in S) = farming becomes big business. • If prices are high this is great system! • More crop = more money = need for more land = need for machinery = need for money = loans = debts. • FARMERS ARE NOW TIED TO BANKING, RR AND MANUFACTURING.

  15. Problems with Single Crop • Success hinges on demand of global market • No protection in world market • Not enough cash to go around • Machines increase output but decrease prices • Mortgages • Nature (Grasshoppers, floods, droughts, etc) • Corporations “farmed” farms.

  16. Agrarian Discontent • CAUSES of Agrarian Discontent • Belief that railroads were using discriminatory rates to exploit farmers. • Led to Interstate Commerce Act • Belief that Big Business used high Tariffs to exploit farmers • Belief that a deflationary monetary policy based on gold hurt farmers • Belief that corporations charged exorbitant prices for fertilizers and farm machinery (Trusts)

  17. Farmers Political Organizations • 1868 Greenback Party-fought against deflation • 1867 Grangers- looked to improve farmers collective plight • Farmers Alliance:break grip of RR and manufacturers through cooperative buying and selling of goods.

  18. Farmers Political Organizations • POPULIST PARTY: • Attempted to unite discontented farmers by improving their economic conditions. • Supported the following • Increasing the money supply with the free and unlimited coinage of silver and gold at the legal ratio of 16:1 (worth 32:1) • Prevent discrimination against small customers with Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 • Organize cooperative marketing societies • Supported William Jennings Bryan in 1896 Election

  19. Farmers Political Organizations • REASONS THE POPULISTS FAILED: • Western/Southern farmers didn’t agree on political strategies (different candidates) • Racism prevented poor whites and blacks from working together. • Increase in pop. In cities = higher agricultural prices • New gold discoveries = easier credit • Democrats absorbed most of their programs • William Jennings Bryan lost the 1896 election.