industrialization and the gilded age late 1800 s n.
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Industrialization and the "Gilded Age" Late 1800’s. Economic Growth. During and after the Civil War, the United States started to experience economic growth. The United States was becoming an industrialized society during the 19 th century.

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economic growth
Economic Growth
  • During and after the Civil War, the United States started to experience economic growth.
  • The United States was becoming an industrialized society during the 19th century.
  • Industrialization: when a country moves away from farming and starts producing goods in factories.
economic growth1
Economic Growth
  • During the first half of the 19th century, the government had done the following things to help businesses:
    • Started a national bank: this provided capital (money, loans) that businesses needed.
    • Buying land in the west helped business (Louisiana Purchase, Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo, Oregon, etc)
    • Raised the tariffs in order to make American goods cheaper than goods coming from other countries.
  • The Republican Party believed in a strong national government that helped businesses through building railroads, building roads, and starting a national bank.
  • Democrats, on the other hand, believed in a limited government with states having more power.
transcontinental railroad
Transcontinental Railroad
  • During the Civil War, Republicans in Congress decided to build a Transcontinental Railroad.
  • Republicans believed in a powerful government that could build railroads, bridges, canals, etc.
  • Transcontinental meant that the railroad would link the east coast to the west coast.
  • Because there were no southern Democrats in Congress, the railroad was built primarily in the North.
  • The transcontinental railroad and railroads in general created a “national market.”
  • A “national market” means that people in the East could buy things from people in the West.
transcontinental railroad1
Transcontinental Railroad
  • The railroads also had a negative effect on Plains Indians. The buffalo were killed to make room for the railroads.
  • Samuel B. Morse invented the telegraph, which used electrical currents and “Morse code” to send messages.
  • Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone.
  • Thomas Edison invented the light bulb. This enabled factories to stay open after dark.
henry ford
Henry Ford
  • Henry Ford improved upon the automobile when he began mass production.
  • Ford used an assembly line, which allowed him to produce cars at less cost.
  • This allowed him to sell the cars at a cheaper price that most people could afford.
giants of industrialization
Giants of Industrialization
  • The railroad industry was one of the first industries to take off around the time of the Civil War.
  • Railroads made life out west possible by allowing farmers, ranchers, and other settlers access to eastern markets.
  • A few men got rich building railroads.
  • Because some of them were known to be crooked in their dealings, they were called “robber barons.”
  • One key figure in the railroad industry was Cornelius Vanderbilt.
giants of industrialization1
Giants of Industrialization
  • In 1859, oil was discovered in western Pennsylvania.
  • John D. Rockefeller became one of the nation’s richest and most powerful businessmen due to the discovery.
  • Rockefeller’s company was called Standard Oil.
  • It was one of the nation’s first trusts. A trust is when several companies unite to form one big company.
  • This creates a monopoly, meaning that there is no market competition.
andrew carnegie
Andrew Carnegie
  • Andrew Carnegie was another leader in industry.
  • He became rich by starting his own steel company.
  • In the 1850s, a man named Sir Henry Bessemer developed a new method for making steel.
  • This new method was called the Bessemer process.
  • The Bessemer process made steel much cheaper, and allowed Carnegie to become rich.
j p morgan
J.P. Morgan
  • J.P Morgan was another powerful industry leader.
  • He was a banker who bought out dozens of banks.
  • By 1913, all of his companies and associates had assets over $22 billion.
  • Morgan bought out Carnegie’s steel company and named it U.S. Steel.
  • He paid $500 million for the company.
vertical integration
Vertical Integration
  • Carnegie’s success was because of a business strategy called vertical integration.
  • Vertical integration is when a company owns not only the company that produces the finished product, but also the companies that provide the supplies necessary to make the product.
  • Carnegie owned a steel company.
  • So, Carnegie purchased railroads (for transporting his steel).
  • He also purchased iron ore deposits, coke fields, and anything else needed to make steel.
horizontal integration
Horizontal Integration
  • John D. Rockefeller used a business strategy called horizontal integration.
  • In horizontal integration, Rockefeller tried to buy out all of the people who competed with him in the oil industry.
  • He would price his oil so low that it would drive other companies out of business.
  • Once the other companies were out of business, he would raise the price to make more profits.
  • The public became very concerned about the monopoly he was creating. They felt that he was “robbing” them of money.
horizontal integration1
Horizontal Integration
  • Rockefeller also pressured the railroad companies into allowing him to transport his oil and materials at cheap prices.
captains of industry
“Captains of Industry”
  • The term “captains of industry” was another term used to describe Rockefeller, Carnegie, etc.
  • This was a better term because it focused on the positive things that they did.
  • For example, Carnegie wrote an article called “The Gospel of Wealth.”
  • Carnegie said that it was the responsibility of the wealthy to use their money to help others.
social darwinism
Social Darwinism
  • The ruthless strategies that the business leaders used was often justified by Social Darwinism.
  • Social Darwinism is when Charles Darwin's’ ideas are applied to human society.
  • In other words, life is “survival of the fittest.”
  • So, businesses that survived were thought to be the strongest, while those who didn’t were weak.
  • These weak businesses deserved to die out based on this idea.
laissez faire capitalism
Laissez-Faire Capitalism
  • Those who believed in Social Darwinism also believed in laissez-faire economics.
  • Laissez-faire means “hands off” in French.
  • So, what the businessmen believed was that the government should be “hands off” of the economy.
  • Since the strongest always survive (according to Social Darwinism), then the government should not interfere with business.
  • They believed in letting the market take its natural course.
the gilded age
The Gilded Age
  • During the late 1800s, a few people got very wealthy. (Carnegie, Rockefeller, Morgan, etc)
  • But many people in the rest of the country still lived in poverty.
  • They also labored in harsh working conditions for low pay.
  • For this reason, the time period was called “The Gilded Age.”
  • This means that everything looked golden on the outside, but on the inside there were huge problems.
  • As more farmers moved west, they produced an abundance of cash crops.
  • With the new farming technologies (steel plow), farmers were able to produce a lot more.
  • Eventually, SUPPLY was greater than DEMAND.
  • Farmers had more crops than they could sell. This is called overproduction.
  • To top it all off, farmers had to pay high prices to pay railroad owners high prices to transport their crops.
  • Farmers wanted change. They wanted the following things to happen:
  • They wanted the government to regulate the railroads and set prices that were cheaper.
  • Agricultural subsidies: they wanted the government to pay them when they lost money.
  • They wanted for soft (paper) money to be circulated.
  • Bimetallism: they wanted the dollar to be backed by gold AND silver – not just gold.
government regulation
Government Regulation
  • For the most part, the government was on the side of the big business leaders, not the poor.
  • But in the 1880s, some laws were passed to regulate business.
  • In 1887, the Interstate Commerce Act was passed. It created the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC).
  • The ICC made sure that prices set for railroad rates going between states were fair.
  • In 1890, Congress passed the Sherman Antitrust Act.
  • This law made monopolies illegal.
  • Despite this law, monopolies still continued.
the grange
The Grange
  • To deal with the problems they were facing, farmers organized a group called The Grange.
  • In the Grange, local farmers pooled their resources and purchased new equipment.
  • They also worked together to demand that the railroad companies lower their prices.
  • Some states passed laws called Granger Laws to help farmers.
effects of industrialization
Effects of Industrialization
  • Because of industrialization, income inequality increased. Income inequality means that there is a large gap between the rich and the poor.
  • The rise of big business was not all bad for regular people.
  • The standard of living rose in the second half of 1800s.
  • Standard of living means how well people are living based on money, comfort, etc.
  • Also, new inventions meant that people were able to buy consumer goods for the first time.
the populist party
The Populist Party
  • The Populist Party was created in the late 1800s to respond to the demands of farmers.
  • The populist Party focused on trying to help the “common man.”
  • Its main support was farmers and factory workers in the northeast.
the populist party1
The Populist Party
  • The Populist Party supported the following things:
  • Regulation of railroads
  • Bimetallism – gold AND silver
  • Popular election of Senators: Senators were chosen by state legislatures. The Populist Party wanted the people to vote on Senators.
  • Secret voting ballots
  • Graduated income tax – meaning the rich pay more taxes
  • An 8- hour work day, instead of 10, 12, or 14 hour workdays.
the election of 1896
The Election of 1896
  • In the 1890s, the country was in on the worst economic depressions ever.
  • The election was between Democrat William Jennings Bryan and Republican William McKinley.
  • The election was a debate about bimetallism.
  • William Jennings Bryan supported bimetallism (both silver and gold) while McKinley only supported the gold standard.
  • Bryan also supported “soft” (paper) money, while McKinley only supported “hard” (coin) money.
  • Farmers wanted both gold and silver standard and soft money.
the election of 18961
The Election of 1896
  • William Jennings Bryan delivered a very famous speech in which he told his opposition to the gold standard.
  • This speech is called “The Cross of Gold” speech.
  • “You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns; you shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold!”
  • Despite his amazing speech, William Jennings Bryan lost the election.
  • Factory workers were afraid that Bryan’s policies would raise the price of food.
  • The Populist Party ended after this election.
  • During the late 1800s, cities began to grow exponentially.
  • Cities in America began as trade/port centers and then shifted to centers of transportation because of trains and canals.
  • Then, with the invention of electricity, cities became centers of industrial production.
  • The elevator, electric trolley cars, and subways allowed cities to grow “up” and “out.”
  • Cities also grew because of the bad situation affecting farmers.
  • As farmers defaulted on their loans, they had to move to the cities to work in the factories.
  • Despite the huge growth of cities, the majority of Americans lived outside the cities until 1920.
  • Immigration caused cities to explode in population in the 1800s.
  • Before the Civil War, most immigrants were Irish and German.
  • After the Civil War, most immigrants were from Eastern Europe; Italians, Greeks, Poles, Jews, and Russians.
  • These immigrants were too poor to move away from the cities that landed in. So, ghettos like “Little Italy” and “Greektown” sprang up.
  • By the end of the 1880s, nearly 80% of New Yorkers were foreign born.
  • People moved due to industrialization of the cities and came to work in factories.
  • Blacks did not move to cities until the 1920s, though.
  • To handle the large number of people arriving, Ellis Island was opened in 1892 as the waiting place for immigrants.
  • America was becoming a “melting point,” meaning that there was a diverse mixture of people.
  • Many people in the U.S. hated the influx of new immigrants.
  • They felt that immigrants took jobs away from Americans.
political machines
Political Machines
  • With the new population growth in the city, the governments were getting more money to build roads, bridges, etc.
  • All of this money led to the development of political machines.
  • Political machines were meant to keep a certain party in power in the cities.
  • A political machine was led by a “boss.”
  • The political machine would help the immigrants to find somewhere to stay and a job.
  • In exchange for their help, the immigrants would vote for the party that they were told to vote for.
  • The most famous political “boss” was Boss William Tweed.
political machines1
Political Machines
  • Tweed ran the Tammany Hall political machine in New York City.
  • Tammany Hall controlled the Democratic Party in NYC.
  • He basically chose who was going to be the people in government in New York.
  • Over time, Tweed stole about 100 million dollars from the City of New York’s treasury.
  • Thomas Nast, a political cartoonist, helped expose Tweed’s corruption.
  • Nativism grew in the United States as more immigrants came.
  • Nativism means hatred of immigrants coming into the country.
  • The Know-Nothing Party was a political party who started as opposition to immigration.
  • In 1882, the Chinese Exclusion Act was passed
  • This act prohibited Chinese immigrants from legally coming to the U.S.
urban life
Urban Life
  • As cities industrialized, there were many problems that arose.
  • People worked in the factories at very low pay.
  • Whole families had to work in order to buy food and pay the bills.
  • Child labor became common. Children as young as 5 had to leave school to work.
  • Many times, daughters were forced to work so that the sons could go to school.
  • Very few African-Americans were allowed to work in the factories.
  • Some of the problems that faced cities: housing, sanitation, transportation, water, crime, and fire.
working conditions
Working Conditions
  • Working in factories was very long, monotonous, boring work.
  • The employees felt very little sense of pride.
  • It was also very dangerous at times.
  • In 1911, a fire broke out at a sweatshop at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory.
  • A sweatshop is a place where women went to work in bad conditions.
  • The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire killed 146 people, mostly women. The exits to the factory had been locked shut so that the workers could not steal.
living conditions
Living Conditions
  • Living conditions were also hard.
  • Most immigrants and migrants lived in urban slums, which are poor inner-city neighborhoods.
  • They lived in tenements, which are overcrowded apartments that housed several families in one unit.
  • The tenements had air polluted with soot from coil-fired steam boilers.
living conditions1
Living Conditions
  • Living conditions were also hard.
  • Most immigrants and migrants lived in urban slums, which are poor inner-city neighborhoods.
  • They lived in tenements, which are overcrowded apartments that housed several families in one unit.
  • The tenements had air polluted with soot from coil-fired steam boilers.
  • After working long hours in the factories, workers would often go and drink in saloons, dance halls, and cabarets.
  • Capitalism is an economic system in which individuals own property.
  • In capitalism, individuals use their property to make a profit.
  • Capitalism flourished after the Civil War. But, many saw capitalism as being harmful to the rights of workers and consumers in America.
  • Even though Rockefeller wanted “laissez faire capitalism” – he also asked the government to raise tariffs.
horatio alger s stories
Horatio Alger’s Stories
  • During the late 1800s, “rags to riches” stories became very popular. In reality, there were very few actual “rags to riches” stories in America.
  • If a person is born poor in America, statistics show that they are very likely to die poor.
  • Horatio Alger was an author in the late 1800s who wrote fictional stories about young, poor men who became rich through hard work.
  • These stories helped contribute to the myth that a person could become rich in America simply by working hard.