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HIST-2020-001 Notes, Week 6

by: Andrew Hull

HIST-2020-001 Notes, Week 6 HIST-2020-002

Andrew Hull
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The beginning of the Progressive Era: the Spanish-American War and Theodore Roosevelt.
U.S. History Since 1877
Dr. Daniel Newcomer
Class Notes
U.S. History, Progressive Era, Spanish-American War
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This 10 page Class Notes was uploaded by Andrew Hull on Friday September 30, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to HIST-2020-002 at East Tennessee State University taught by Dr. Daniel Newcomer in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 8 views. For similar materials see U.S. History Since 1877 in History at East Tennessee State University.

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Date Created: 09/30/16
ROAD TO WAR ● 1898: U.S. investment in Cuba was $50 million ● with the sinking of the ​​ aine, the U.S. Army gains 100 million volunteers ○ encouraged/inspired by sensationalist journalism ● liberate Cuba or acquire it? ○ two factions emerge ○ imperialists vs. anti-imperialists ● April 1898: Teller Amendment ○ U.S. may declare war against Spain ○ but it may not acquire Cuba “SPLENDID LITTLE WAR” ● Secretary of State John Hayes coined this name ○ saw it as an excellent opportunity for U.S. to demonstrate its power to the world ● a little war, indeed--only lasted from April to August ○ resounding victory for U.S. ○ shocking defeat for Spain (and Europe) ● Spanish navy was stationed at the Philippines in Pacific ○ instead of protecting Cuba directly ○ Philippines were “gateway to China” ○ saw the Chinese market as more valuable to U.S. than Cuba and predicted that the Americans would go for it ○ beginning of war was actually fought in Pacific ● U.S. had British allies attack Spanish fleet out of Hong Kong ● U.S. beat Spanish navy ○ one of the foremost naval powers in the world NAVAL SUPERIORITY ● George Dewey ○ commanded U.S. fleet in war ○ not only defeated Spanish navy with startling rapidity ○ but only had one casualty--the result of seasickness ● without navy, Spain had no way to defend Cuba CUBAN CAMPAIGN ● intensive fighting ○ just as U.S. was asking what their intentions were, Cubans were asking the same question ○ leery of U.S. intervention--would they keep their word? ● Theodore Roosevelt ○ secretary of navy ○ politician who led military campaign as a way to build political reputation ○ put together personal cavalry called Rough Riders ● 1 July 1898: Battle of San Juan Hill ○ difficult uphill battle ○ notable symbolic victory RACE ISSUES ● black soldiers fighting alongside white soldiers ● American press advertised Cuba as a “nation of whites” ○ wanted to convince Americans that Cuba was just like them ○ white soldiers got to Cuba and saw the black majority ○ many desertions by white soldiers ○ didn’t want to fight for black people ● 9th and 10th Cavalries were recreated ○ famous units of black soldiers during Civil War ○ U.S. sent in black troops to liberate black people ○ service was unquestionable ● Roosevelt defended them ○ praised them--absolutely essential to Cuban campaign ● if blacks could fight alongside whites--treated as equals ○ should they be given full citizenship? ● as he began pursuing presidential office, he backed off of these statements ○ the debate was dropped ○ and black units in Cuba were written out of history ○ as a result, the military became more and more segregated as country approached World War I SPOILS OF VICTORY ● with the U.S. was victorious, people began asking what they would get out of it ● 1899: Treaty of Paris ○ Spain and U.S. sat down in neutral territory ○ not a single Cuban representative at negotiations ○ though he had originally not been keen on the war, McKinley was now pushing for U.S. getting spoils of war ○ the Teller Amendment made Cuba off-limits ○ U.S. acquired Puerto Rico/Guam/Philippines ● did this make U.S. an empire? ○ would these new territories become colonies? ○ what was the deal, yo? NEW CUBAN GOVERNMENT ● 1901: Platt Amendment ○ Cuban Constitution ○ not written by Cubans ○ actually an amendment to the U.S. Constitution ○ U.S. set up republic for Cuba ● Cubans began asking whether they were really independent ● the U.S. made them a protectorate ○ limited self-government ○ overseen by U.S. government ○ could elect own officials/etc. ○ couldn’t declare war/create treaties with foreign nations/etc. ○ if Cubans “made mistakes,” U.S. would intervene ○ an attempt to prepare this “savage race” for democracy U.S. OCCUPATION OF CUBA ● 1899-1902: reconstruction of Cuba ○ actually pretty earnest attempt ● pros: schools/hospitals/roads ● Walter Reed discovered cure for Yellow Fever ○ found that it was carried by mosquitos ○ used soldiers as test subjects ● cons: corruption ○ lots of corruption in Cuban government ○ Cuban officials were reckless/careless since they knew U.S. would kick them out anyway/clean up the mess ○ Cuba was too dependent on U.S. ○ 1906-1921: five different military interventions even after U.S. withdrew its forces in 1902 TROUBLE IN THE TERRITORIES ● 1899-1902: American/Filipino War ○ Philippines had been fighting Spanish for independence for decades ○ Filipinos saw U.S. as a reincarnation of Spain ○ rebellion led by Emilio Aguinaldo ○ bloody war: casualty rate was 15:1 ○ not really resolved until 1940s ● 1917: Puerto Rico ○ embraced U.S. rule ○ but sued for citizenship, which they got ● 1900: U.S. had established an expansive series of territories in Pacific WAS THE U.S. AN EMPIRE? ● American territories offered citizenship, but did natives want it? ○ was it true citizenship? ● people were asking where democracy had gone ● sewed seeds for Progressive Era AGE OF REFORM ● turn of the 19th Century ○ 20th Century symbolized change ○ the time when humanity would overcome all its problems ○ human society would be perfected ● end corruption ○ Progressivism would head up efforts to realize this goal ○ with mixed results PROGRESSIVISM ● 1890s-1920 ● broad urban movement ○ really sprung up in cities ○ everyone was calling themselves progressives--regardless of political background ● wanted to close the income gap ● rejected Social Darwinism/Gospel of Wealth ○ the state of the nation was the result of people’s actions ○ not acts of nature/God ● therefore, it was people who would reform the U.S. ● wanted to redefine democracy NEW DEMOCRACY ● everyday people should control government ○ “take back the government” ● government should work for “public interest” ○ work in favor of majority ● eliminate influence of big money GRASSROOTS PROGRESSIVISM ● mostly a middle class movement early on ● women ○ lots of qualified/skilled women who were denied careers ○ used these skills to reform nation ● Christians ○ really in favor of Progressivism ○ didn’t like Social Darwinism or Darwinism itself ● activism ○ if they didn’t do something, society would deteriorate CLEAN UP THE CITY ● enthusiasm for medical advances ○ Progressives thought they would help perfect society ○ viewed the world through medical lens ● saw poverty as disease ○ tenements “infected” the city ○ fear that “disease” of poverty would spread ○ had to cure it before everyone became “infected” ● 1890s: Settlement House movement ○ led by Jane Addams, who founded the Hull House in Chicago ○ more dignified/healthy/clean living space for workers ○ offered basic education ○ idea was that, if working class people were put into clean/dignified environment, they would become upstanding/productive citizens MORAL REFORM ● new “Gospel of Wealth” ○ impoverished people weren’t bad people, they were simply experiencing bad things ○ vice was to blame ○ thought alcoholism was cause of poverty, not condition ● alcohol cause poor citizenship ○ poor work ethic ● sewed seeds of Prohibition GOLDEN AGE OF JOURNALISM ● caught Progressivist bug ● had been under fire during early 20th century ○ for misleading public about Spanish-American War ○ began adopting Progressivist ideals as a response to this criticism ● beginning of investigative journalism ○ exposed societal/political corruption ● critics called them “Muckrakers” ○ Roosevelt headed up this criticism ● Ida Tarbell ○ journalist who exposed John D. Rockefeller’s corruption ● this got people excited ○ their suspicions of corruption were correct ○ many began jumping on Progressive bandwagon PROGRESSIVISM IN POLITICS ● politicians were slower on the uptake ○ didn’t want to rock boat ● 1900: Progressives were dominating local politics ● reform at city level ○ public utilities: water/sewage/electricity ○ public transportation ○ with intent of reducing poverty ○ erected streetlights for policing after dark ● used taxpayer dollars to support these endeavors ● even wealthy people joined this movement ● Thomas Lofton Johnson ○ multimillionaire ○ mayor of Cleveland ○ personally funded streetcar system so workers could get to/from work easily ● Upton Sinclair ○ published a series of investigative articles about Chicago meatpacking industry ○ was investigating series of illness that had been afflicting series ○ traced sicknesses back to meatpacking plants ○ compiled series into single publication​ he Jungle ● this incited outrage in public ● 1906: Pure Food and Drug Act ○ some of the first Progressive reform on the federal level ○ introduced federal standards for food production ○ one of the first great protections for consumers ○ though companies were pouty at first, Pure Food and Drug Act actually helped them make more money ○ when people were confident in product, they bought more of it PROGRESSIVISM AND RACE ● run-of-the-mill Progressives weren’t talking about race issues at first ○ it wasn’t until later that people started this conversation ● National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) ○ beginning of new civil right movement ● segregationist laws had become more and more prominent by the turn of the 19th Century ● NAACP addressed this “new segregation” ● WEB Dubois ○ favored integration ○ couldn’t have a segregated democracy ○ all people should have one law with similar representation ○ the more radical of the two ○ thought the very concept of race should be reconstructed ● Booker T. Washington ○ favored self-help/segregation ○ thought blacks could take advantage of segregation ○ whites would never truly integrate society ○ so black would reject white society and create an independent black society ● Theodore Roosevelt ○ 1901-1909 ○ invited Washington to White House ○ assured Washington that he was firmly in segregationist camp NATIONAL PROGRESSIVISM ● gradually, national politics became Progressive ● new era of federal reform ○ the question was: could it really happen? PROGRESSIVE CONSENSUS ● 1890s: grassroots progressivism flourished at local level ● politicians were conservative ○ slow to embrace movement ○ didn’t want to rock boat ○ most progressive politicians weren’t your average progressive THEODORE ROOSEVELT ● Republican ● former governor of New York ○ made progressive reforms in city that didn’t sit well with rest of party ○ was constantly at odds with Republican old guard ● party tried to hide him away ○ made him vice president under McKinley during his second term ○ put him in a position of no power ○ then McKinley was assassinated, so Roosevelt became president ● progressivism ○ pro-big business--anti-monopoly ○ wanted to eliminate abuses of power ○ in order to protect capitalism ● wanted to curb special interests ○ personally knew big business owners ○ knew how they operated ○ they were buying votes and such ROOSEVELT’S FIRST TEST ● Progressive Party was skeptical of Roosevelt ● 1902: United Mine workers strike ○ massive strike ○ Pennsylvania ● company owners refused to meet with miners ● Roosevelt demanded that leaders of both parties come meet with him in Washington ○ company owners refused ○ so Roosevelt sided with the miners ○ raised their wages/etc. ● astonishing blow to big business ○ first pro-labor ruling by a president ○ showed that Roosevelt meant business ○ won the trust of Progressive Party CURBING SPECIAL INTEREST ● Roosevelt targeted the railroads ○ understood them as the great symbol of big business/trusts ● became known as the “Trust Buster” ○ wanted to “break up the trusts” ○ wanted them to stop sharing resources ○ they were supposed to be competing with each other ● began enforcing 1890 Sherman Act ○ previously used exclusively against workers ○ but now Roosevelt turned it on 43 different trusts ● Northern Securities Company ○ J.P. Morgan’s railroad trust ○ ran from Chicago to Seattle ○ 1904: government ordered breaking up of trust ○ “restoration of competition” ○ huge symbolic victory for labor ○ Roosevelt had faced down the dragon that was J.P. Morgan ● 1906: Hepburn Act ○ further targeted railroads ○ reinforced 1877 Interstate Commerce Act ○ federal government set railroad rates ○ regulation of practices ○ popular among commonfolk ○ but business owners were outraged--should federal government have that kind of power? CONSERVATION ● Roosevelt administration was first to tackle the issue of conservation ○ worried that future generations wouldn’t be able to sustain themselves ○ great outdoorsmen who spent much of his time in the wilderness ● natural resource depletion ○ 90% of timberland gone ● 1905: National Forest Service ○ first led by Gifford Pinchot ○ regulated resource use ○ if it was used, it had to be replenished ● not environmentalism by today’s standards ○ instead of restricting access to wilderness, more strictly managed it ● land use rights became an issue ● government domain expanded from 45 million to 190 million acres ● began requiring people to purchase hunting/fishing/foraging licenses ○ people who’d been living in these areas for generation thought this was unconstitutional ○ were considered “squatters” ○ often violently opposed new regulations ROOSEVELT’S FOREIGN POLICY ● progressive at home ● Social Darwinist abroad ○ militaristic ○ did little to change people’s opinions on this ○ saw world as a group of competing nations (races) that had evolved through struggling with each other ● “uncivilized” nations needed to be “civilized” ● “Speak softly and carry a big stick” ○ this wasn’t progressivism ○ progressives were abhorrent of Roosevelt’s militaristic foreign policy ● 1904: Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine ○ addressed a sticky situation the U.S. was in with nations in Caribbean/Central America ○ U.S. banks had loaned millions of dollars to unstable foreign governments ○ Roosevelt’s corollary justified U.S. intervention in foreign nations ○ if they didn’t pay their debts, U.S. would send in military to collect ● strictly regulated interests at home, but gave them free reign abroad ○ “Big Stick” diplomacy nicknamed “Dollar Diplomacy” PANAMA CANAL ● 1904: civil war in Colombia ○ state of Panama wanted to secede from unstable government ○ U.S. sponsored Panama’s independence ○ in exchange for rights to build canal, which was to be returned in the year 2000 ○ provided Panama with arms/military advisors ● canal opened in 1914 ○ by this time, was already becoming obsolete ○ air travel was becoming popular ● Roosevelt Corollary was hated in Latin America ROOSEVELT’S BALANCE SHEET ● domestic policy: genuinely progressive ● foreign policy: imperialist ○ was this worth dying for? ○ was this what being in the military meant? ● made many political enemies ● should the government have this kind of power to dictate policy? ○ under Roosevelt’s administration, modern, large government began to take shape ○ government power grew


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