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I feel that the most revolutionary social and economic developments of the last quarter of thenineteenth century were oil; coal, the railroads, electricity, the formation of unions and politicalparties were the most revolutionary developments of that time. The growth of big business in thelast part of the 19th century brought a fundamental change in the nature of work. Before the CivilWar, the United States was a nation of craftsmen with craft skills who relied on themselves todefine the structure of the day and environment in which they worked. After the Civil War, thesecraftsmen began to fade away as large organizations found that the use of machinery increasedprofits and lowered the dependence of skilled labor. For an employer or business owner, it wasmuch more profitable to invest in advanced machinery tended by unskilled laborers than to sharepower and control with a skilled labor force. As a result, the craftsmen faded from importanceand gave way to the growth of the new wage earner. This laborer was dependent upon an