Gilded Age Politics II

Gilded Age Politics II - Gilded Age Politics The Farmers...

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Unformatted text preview: Gilded Age Politics The Farmers Problem and the emergence of Populism The Emergence of Political Machines Social Darwinism and Laissez Faire Capitalism Farmers in Debt • ¡ Railroads, investors create bonanza farms —huge, single-crop spreads • ¡ 1885–1890 droughts bankrupt single- crop operations • ¡ Rising cost of shipping grain pushes farmers into debt • Farmers unite to address their economic problems, giving rise to the Populist • movement. Farmers and the Populist Movement • Farmers Unite to Address Common Problems • Economic Distress • ¡ Farmers buy more land to grow more crops to pay off debts • ¡ After Civil War, government takes greenbacks out of circulation • ¡ Debtors have to pay loans in dollars worth more than those borrowed • ¡ Prices of crops fall dramatically • ¡ 1870s, debtors push government to put more money in circulation • ¡ 1878 Bland-Allison Act—money supply increase not enough for farmers • Problems with the Railroads • ¡ Lack of competition lets railroads overcharge to transport grain • ¡ Farms mortgaged to buy supplies; suppliers charge high interest The Farmers’ Alliances • ¡ 1867, Oliver Hudson Kelley starts Patrons of Husbandry or Grange • ¡ Purpose is educational, social; by 1870s, Grange fighting railroads • ¡ Farmers’ Alliances —groups of farmers and sympathizers •- lectures on interest rates, government control of railroads, banks •- gain over 4 million members The Rise and Fall of Populism • The Populist Party Platform • ¡ Populism —movement of the people; Populist Party wants reforms • ¡ Economic: increase money supply, graduated income tax, federal...
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This note was uploaded on 01/13/2012 for the course IS 3020 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at Kennesaw.

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Gilded Age Politics II - Gilded Age Politics The Farmers...

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