Chapter 16 - Chapter 16: Americas Gilded Age 1870-1890 The...

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Chapter 16: America’s Gilded Age 1870-1890 The Second Industrial Revolution o The Federal Government actively promoted industrial and agricultural development. o They enacted high tariffs to protect American industry from foreign competition, and granted land to railroad companies to encourage construction and used the army to remove Indians from western lands that farmers wanted. (592) The Industrial Economy o “The rapid expansion of factory production, mining, and railroad construction in all parts of the country except the South signaled the transition from Lincoln’s America – a world centered on small farm and artisan workshop – to a mature industrial society.” o By 1913, the United States produced one-third of the world’s industrial output. o Half of all industrial workers now labored in plants with over 250 employees o Between 1870 and 1890 almost 11 million Americans moved from farm to city, and another 25 million immigrants arrived from overseas (593) o “The heartland of the second industrial revolution was the region around the Great Lakes, with its factories producing iron and steel, machinery, chemicals, and packaged foods.” Railroads and the National Market o The railroad made the second industrial revolution possible o “The number of miles of railroad track in the United States tripled between 1860 and 1880, and tripled again by 1920.” (594) o In 1883, the major railroad companies divided the nation into the four time zones still in use today. The Spirit of Innovation o “The opening of the Atlantic Cable in 1866 made it possible to send electronic telegraph messages instantaneously between the United States and Europe.” (595) o Thomas Edison, the era’s greatest inventor, helped establish entirely new industries stemming from the phonograph, light bulb, motion picture, and a system for generating and distributing electric power. Competition and Consolidation o The combination of a market flooded with goods and federal monetary policies that removed money from the national economy let to a relentless fall in prices. o BEFORE THE 1930’s, THE YEARS FROM 1873 TO 1897 WERE KNOWN AS THE GREAT DEPPRESSION. o Businesses established “trusts” – legal devices whereby the affairs of several rival companies were managed by a single director. (596) o To avoid cutthroat competition, more and more companies battled to control entire industries.
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The rise of Andrew Carnegie o In an era without personal or corporate income taxes, some business leaders accumulated enormous fortunes and economic power. o Carnegie set out to establish a “vertically integrated” steel company – that is one that controlled every phase of the business from raw materials to transportation, manufacturing, and distribution. o
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Chapter 16 - Chapter 16: Americas Gilded Age 1870-1890 The...

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