Popular in American History since 1865
Popular in History
This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lindley on Saturday November 28, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to History 1020 at Clemson University taught by Rod Andrew in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see American History since 1865 in History at Clemson University.
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Date Created: 11/28/15
93 Industrialization and Big Business By 1890 s Americans were very uneasy Many men were becoming unbelievably rich and their businesses were crazy powerful Andrew Carnegie classic success story immigrant steel industry and railroads Cornelius Vanderbilt made fortune in railroads very powerful and rich John D Rockefeller dominated petroleum industry was hated by many for his shrewd and underhanded business tactics Vertical integration another form of business organization When all key economic processes were performed by one company or corporation John D Rockefeller owned oil wells RR linespipelines refineries and sales outlets Horizontal integration combinations of companies who make the same or similar products You own all oil companies Exxon BP etc and were able to buy out competitors monopoly or a trust People eventually feared these monopolies or trusts scared there were eventually only going to be two classes Henry George Progress and Poverty If things kept going there would be a revolution One time single taX on the rich to distribute wealth Edward Bellamy Looking Backward Essentially called for socialism where everyone would own pieces of the process cooperation over competition George and Bellamy were seen as kind of out there but most wanted the gov t to do something Sherman Antitrust Act outlawed unfair business tactics that were an illegal restraint of trade The problem was that it never defined monopolytrust or what an illegal restraint was Supreme Court tended to rule for business in favor of laissezfaire US v EC Knight gov t tried to apply act against sugar monopoly Supreme Court ruled against gov t weakened the act Very different now in 1900 now it was a system of oligopoly few big businesses competed for the dominance of the industry Rapid industrialization had an effect on workers Before there were skilled artisans working w handful of others in bosses workshops As workshops became factories it became impersonal Began to work and lost social status of being an expert National Labor Union mostly composed of skilled workers but there were many middle class intellectuals Knights of Labor Open to all workers not just skilled Wanted long range reform of American capitalism advocated waterdowned version of socialism where workers own businesses together Usually didn t strike but they were involved in railroad strike By 1886 there were 700000 members but after that they began to lose membership American Federation of Labor Most important Composed of skilled workers only accepted big business was here to stay Instead of huge reforms they were a bread and butter union fought for specifics like shorter hours higher pay etc Led by Samuel Gompers America experienced lots of labor violence and uproars Railroad Strike of 1877 first big one There were pay cuts and in response there were riots fighting and death Rioters viewed as unpatriotic and dangerous believed to be led and instigated by foreign immigrants Haymarket Square Riot of 1866 Anarchists radicals and laborists to push for an 8 hour day Followed by second march where bomb was thrown killing police officials resulting in antilabor sentiment Homestead Strike of 1892 at Carnegie Steel Plant Serious wage cuts Army of strikers confronted strikebreakers those who worked and were backed up by tinkerguards and strikers won Carnegie had state militia sent in and defeated the strikers Pullman Strike 1894 Pullman railroad cart plant resisted wage cuts Joined by American Railway Union led by Eugene Debs Now not just a local strike workers around America refused to loadunload Pullman carts Pullman and other gov t workers claimed these workers were a restraint of trade breaking Sherman Antitrust Act resulting in gov t intervention Act was supposed to be against big business but now worked against these labor unions Whole new field of white collared workers bringing economic growth but also bringing status drop for others At the time economy was subject to panics followed by boom periods Panic of 1893 Big businesses and labor unions socialists foreigners were feared Farmers during this period Farmers were in deep debt because of the growing commitment to commercial agriculture requiring you to mechanize which required you to borrow money De ation agriculture prices were very low and production was very high At this time US was tied to the gold standard any 8 circulating had to be backed by gold which tended to foster de ation Farmers weren t as respected anymore Previously seen as a backbone of the nation Due to urbanization there was a huge lack of respect and loss of status The Grange social group talked about problems Led to Farmer s Alliance more active got into politics really interested in electing officials who were profarmers and they were actually pretty successful In 1892 alliance formed political party People s PartyPopulist Party Omaha Platform 1892 Populist Party s platform 6 planks Called for gov t ownership of utilities railroads telephone and telegraph Democratic reforms such as secret ballot recall and referendum Popular election of senators Subtreasury system Gov t owned warehouses where farmers could store their crops for a small fee and then sale their crops later when prices were better While waiting for better prices gov t would loan you 80 of the estimated price of the crop helped with debt and de ation Called for income taX Free and unlimited coinage of silver Fixed tight money system easier to get credit creating in ation Election of 1892 three big candidates one from the Populist Party carrying 6 states pretty impressive showing Grover Cleveland horrible administration Panic of 1893 strikes etc Against coinage of silver angering own party Lots of criticism for using federal troops to crush Pullman Strike Democrats fed up by next election and didn t reelect William Jennings Bryan won Democratic party nomination Came out in favor of coinage of silver and lots of other planks of the Populist Party Made famous speech Cross of Gold claimed gold was ruining farmers lives and in favor of rich and big businesses Populist Party fused with Democrats and elected Bryan big mistake Americans played it safe and elected William McKinley who was probusiness and the Populist Party faded Political system 18651900 strong political partisan and widespread political involvement Democrats white southemers immigrants Irish Catholics and western farmers Republicans New England Union war veterans midwestem veterans blacks and old stock northern Protestants
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