age of bosses

age of bosses - AP U.S. History 13 January 2009 The Age of...

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AP U.S. History 13 January 2009 The Age of the Bosses Between 1870 and 1900, the population of American cities tripled as immigrants and rural Americans flocked to factory jobs. The world had never seen so many people of such diversity in one place. Uprooted and bewildered, they had little in common but poverty. The limited city governments couldn’t cope. They had no precedent for providing services for millions of people. The political bosses filled this government gap. Amid the chaos of swift urbanization, the bosses took charge, took shortcuts, and ran the cities through iron control of their party organizations, or machines. By 1890 every major city had a political boss, usually a working-class man of little schooling, often himself the son of immigrants. Many began as saloonkeepers because bars were gathering spots. Bosses were strong, rough-talking, and no strangers to violence, which was common at polling places. They were good organizers and sometimes good speakers. Some held office, some didn’t. William Tweed in New York
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This note was uploaded on 04/16/2010 for the course HIST 110 taught by Professor Unknown during the Spring '03 term at Holyoke CC.

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