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Chapter 20 Politics and Expansion in an Industrializing Age 1877-1900.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 20 Politics and Expansion in an Industrializing Age 1877-1900."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 20 Politics and Expansion in an Industrializing Age 1877-1900

2 Introduction This chapter covers: – national politics between 1877 and 1900 – U.S. participation in the Spanish-American War – the race for empire

3 Introduction (cont.) 1.) What were the issues and the political spoils that the Democrats and Republicans fought over? 2.) What caused the rise of the Grange, Farmers’ Alliances, and the Populist Party? 3.) What was at stake in the election of 1896, and what was its outcome?

4 Introduction (cont.) 4.) Why did the United States go to war with Spain in 1898 and what resulted from the American victory?

5 Party Politics in an Era of Upheaval, 1877-1884 Contested Political Visions – The Republicans and Democrats differed on tariffs and money supply – The majority of politicians of both parties held that the federal govt. had no right to regulate business or protect workers’ welfare They were willing to subsidize and in other ways encourage corporate growth – People looked to state and local govts. to address their economic and social problems

6 Patterns of Party Strength Male voter turnouts were high Democratic and Republican parties were closely matched in strength Democratic support was: – Solid South – States that bordered the South – Recent immigrants in the big cities – Most Catholics

7 Patterns of Party Strength (cont.) Republican support was: – Rural areas – Small-town New England – PA – Upper Midwest – Native-born Protestants

8 Regulating the Money Supply The nation split on the questions of how much money the govt. should issue and what should back it Those that supported limiting the money supply to what the govt. could back with its holding of gold: – Bankers – Creditors – Most businessmen – Economists – politicians

9 Regulating the Money Supply (cont.) Debt-ridden southern and western farmers wanted: – Larger money supply – Retention of the unbacked Civil War currency (greenbacks) – The issuing of notes backed by silver and gold – The minting of silver coins They believed this larger money supply would raise falling farm prices and make it easier to pay off debts

10 Regulating the Money Supply (cont.) In the 1870’s, the Greenback Party tried to further the increased money supply idea – Even after the Party’s demise, debtor groups continued to demand a larger money supply 1890 Sherman Silver Purchase Act – Called for the U.S. Govt. to purchase silver and issue noted redeemable in gold or silver

11 Civil-Service Reform The spoils system had operated since the days of Andrew Jackson A group of reformers saw its defects and demanded a “professional civil service based on merit” After a crazed job seeker assassinated President James A. Garfield in 1881, Congress acted

12 Civil-Service Reform (cont.) Pendleton Act – 1883 – Created a civil-service commission to prepare competitive examinations for federal jobs – It prohibited politicians form asking govt. employees for campaign contributions Gradually it began to raise the honesty and competence of the federal bureaucracy

13 Politics of Privilege, Politics of Exclusion, 1884-1892 A Democrat in the White House: Grover Cleveland, 1885-1889 – Republicans nominated James G. Blaine Tainted by corruption of the Grant era Identified with the spoils system – Democrats nominated Cleveland Reputation for fighting the spoilsmen A number of Republican civil-service reformers bolted their party to support him – The Mugwump switch helped Cleveland win 1st Democrat elected after the Civil War

14 1884 Election

15 A Democrat in the White House: Grover Cleveland Cleveland believed in laissez-faire govt. Had little understanding of the social problems caused by industrialization

16 A Democrat in the White House: Grover Cleveland He attempted to lower the tariff He argued that reduced rates would remove a potentially corrupting govt. surplus of funds---reduce prices for consumers---slow the growth of trusts Lower tariffs appealed to: – farmers and many Democrats from the West and South Lower tariffs alarmed: – Manufacturers – Those Republicans who looked out for their own interests

17 A Democrat in the White House: Grover Cleveland Cleveland also angered Civil War veterans when he halted wholesale granting of disability pensions to them

18 Big Business Strikes Back, Benjamin Harrison, 1889-1893 The tariff became a major issue in the election of 1888 Democrats renominated Cleveland Republicans nominated Benjamin Harrison – High protective tariffs Industrialists contributed heavily to the Republicans Cleveland received more popular votes than Harrison (48.6% to 47.8%) Harrison won the Electoral College (233 to 168)

19 1888 Election

20 Big Business Strikes Back, Benjamin Harrison, 1889-1893 McKinley Tariff – 1890 – Passed by Republicans – Raised the tariff rates to an all-time high They also rewarded Civil War veterans with generous pensions

21 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party When prices of wheat and other agricultural products dropped in the 1870’s, debt-burdened farmers fell on hard times They responded by forming the first nationwide agricultural organization – The Patrons of Husbandry – A.k.a. Grange – Led by Oliver H. Kelley

22 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party (cont.) The Grange tried to help farmers economically by organizing cooperatives to market their crops and buy supplies It also lobbied state legislatures to regulate the railroads – Stop the overcharging of farmers, giving of discounts to large shippers, and bribing state officials A number of states did pass Granger Laws – They were bitterly attacked by the railroads as unconstitutional

23 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party (cont.) At first federal courts upheld state regulations 1886 Wabash case – The Supreme Court ruled that states could not regulate interstate railroads Congress stepped into the void by passing the Interstate Commerce Act (ICA) in 1887 ICA created the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) to investigate and oversee railroad practices

24 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party (cont.) The ICA did little to curb railroad abuses The law and the ICC set a precedent for future federal regulation of interstate commerce The failure of the Granger Laws and the Grange’s other efforts to help farmers economically led to the organization’s decline after 1878

25 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party (cont.) Farmers believed that the federal govt. was unresponsive to their needs Western and southern farmers suffered from: – falling agricultural prices – A tight money supply – High interest rates – Heavy in debt – Being overcharged by industrial trusts, grain elevator operators, and railroads

26 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party (cont.) Earlier, farmers had turned to the Grange and the Greenback Party to redress their grievances When these failed, farmers joined the Southern Alliance, National Colored Farmers’, or the Northwestern Alliances The alliances called for: – Tariff reduction – A graduated income tax – Public ownership of railroads – “free silver”

27 Agrarian Protest and the Rise of the People’s Party (cont.) In 1892, the alliances founded the People’s Party (or the Populist Party) Developed a platform on their program They also endorsed the direct election of senators and other electoral reforms Nominated James B. Weaver for president

28 African-Americans After Reconstruction After Reconstruction, white Democrats in the South increasingly deprived black southerners of the right to vote At first the whites used intimidation and terror After 1890 they used more effective means: – Poll taxes – Literacy tests – Grandfather clauses

29 African-Americans After Reconstruction (cont.) Southern blacks also were victimized by: – segregation laws – the convict-lease system – Lynching Some southern Populists attempted to combat prejudice – Encouraged white and black farmers to unite against their exploiters The Southern Democratic elite purposely inflamed racial antagonism to keep poor farmers divided

30 African-Americans After Reconstruction (cont.) The federal govt. did nothing to protect black rights The Supreme Court gave it stamp of approval to segregated but equal facilities in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) – Plessy summary Plessy summary It also upheld poll taxes and literacy tests in 1898

31 African-Americans After Reconstruction (cont.) Blacks responded to these abuses in several ways Some fled the South only to find de facto segregation in the North Booker T. Washington advised fellow blacks to accept their second-class status for a time and concentrate on getting ahead economically and educationally

32 African-Americans After Reconstruction (cont.) Abolitionist Frederick Douglass still called on blacks to demand full equality The South became a one-party region always controlled by the Democrats – With the disenfranchisement of blacks – The defeat of southern populism

33 African-Americans After Reconstruction (cont.) The South became a one-party region always controlled by the Democrats – With the disenfranchisement of blacks – The defeat of southern populism

34 The 1890’s: Politics in a Depression Decade 1892: Populists Challenge the Status Quo – Democrats nominated Cleveland – Republicans nominated Harrison – Populist nominated Weaver Won about million votes Few came from the urban Northeast Gained less than 1/4 of the votes of the agricultural South – Largely because of the race issue – Cleveland won

35 1892 Election

36 Capitalism in Crisis: The Depression of 1893-1897 Soon after Cleveland was inaugurated, the nation suffered a financial panic that ushered in a severe depression During the depression: – Thousands of banks and businesses failed – 20-25% of the labor force was unemployed – Agricultural prices fell more than 20% Completing the ruin of many farmers already in economic difficulty

37 Capitalism in Crisis: The Depression of 1893-1897 Hard times increased the appeal of the Populists and spawned strikes and protests – In 1894, Jacob Coxey led a march of the unemployed on Washington to demand a public-works program to create jobs He was arrested and the demonstration was broken up The heightened unrest frightened the middle class

38 Business Leaders Respond Cleveland opposed govt. help for victims of the depression His use of force against the Pullman strikers and Coxey’s marchers appeared heartless He angered farmers when he induced Congress to repeal the Sherman Silver Purchase Act – In defense of the gold standard

39 Business Leaders Respond (cont.) Cleveland’s actions split the party – Democrats from agricultural states began to favor free silver Hard times also led many Americans to question the laissez-faire doctrine

40 1894: Protest Grows Louder The voters repudiated Cleveland in the 1894 midterm elections – Congress went Republican – The vote for Populist candidates climbed more than 40% above their 1892 tallies

41 1894: Protest Grows Louder (cont.) The issue of free silver came to symbolize the deep split between economic classes – Creditors feared that abandonment of a strictly gold standard would cause runaway inflation and ruin – Debt-ridden farmers saw silver as the cure that would rise farm prices and return prosperity

42 Silver Advocates Capture the Democratic Party At the 1896 Democratic convention, western and southern delegates gained control – They wrote a platform calling for free silver – Nominated William Jennings Bryan The Republicans nominated William McKinley – Promised to maintain the gold standard – Raise the protective tariff The Populists endorsed Bryan – Feared that if they ran their own candidate, they would split the farm vote – Nominated one of their own, Tom Watson, for VP

43 1896: Republicans Triumphant McKinley received huge campaign contributions from businessmen who feared Bryan Bryan was also handicapped by the lack of appeal of free silver to factory workers and the urban middle class – They realized that it would probably bring about higher food prices McKinley won the election – Carried the Northeast, Midwest,and most cities The Republicans also kept its majority in Congress

44 1896: Republicans Triumphant (cont.) As promised, McKinley and the Republicans maintained the gold standard and raised the tariff to an all-time high These policies aroused little opposition because prosperity returned – More gold became available with new discoveries – farm prices began to rise McKinley easily beat Bryan for a 2nd term in the 1900 election

45 1896: Republicans Triumphant (cont.) The elections of 1894 and 1896 ushered in a long period of Republican dominance in U.S. politics that lasted almost unbroken until the 1930’s The Populist Party disintegrated after 1896 – Many of the reforms it had advocated were enacted by Progressives after 1900

46 Expansionist Stirrings and War with Spain, 1878-1901 Roots of Expansionist Sentiment – In the late 19th century the U.S.A. showed heightened interest in overseas empire – The example of European nations and Japan, which were seizing colonies in Asia and Africa, stimulated U.S. expansionism – During the depression of 1893-1897, American businessmen and politicians argued that the U.S.A. must capture overseas markets to maintain prosperity

47 Roots of Expansionist Sentiment (cont.) Republican politicians claimed that to be a great power the U.S. must: – build up its navy – obtain far-flung colonies to establish fueling stations and bases – Show its influence in the world as a superior county Inspired by: – Alfred T. Mahan’s The Influence of Sea Power upon History – Social Darwinist ideas

48 Roots of Expansionist Sentiment (cont.) Leading Republicans were: – Theodore Roosevelt – Henry Cabot Lodge – John Hay

49 Roots of Expansionist Sentiment (cont.) Our Country – 1885 – Josiah Strong – Combined religion and Social Darwinism racism – Told Americans that, as members of the superior Anglo-Saxon race, they were destined to spread Christianity and civilization to “inferior” people

50 Pacific Expansion Expansionist enthusiasm led the United States to overtake some Pacific Islands: – Samoan Island U.S. established a joint protectorate with Germany and Great Britain – Hawai’i American sugar plantation owners overthrew the govt. of Queen Liliuokalani Asked U.S. to take over the island President Cleveland, who was not an expansionist, declined to do so President McKinley requested Congress to annex Hawai’i 1898

51 Crisis over Cuba The Cubans revolted against Spanish rule in 1895 The Spanish authorities brutally attempted to suppress the rebellion Public opinion in the U.S. turned against the Spanish because of yellow-journalism – William Randolph Hearst=Journal – Joseph Pulitzer=World – Both featured daily accounts of Spanish atrocities

52 Crisis over Cuba (cont.) President McKinley did not want to intervene in Cuba He did send the battleship Maine to Havana to protect the lives and property of Americans on Cuba On Feb. 15, 1898, an explosion the Maine killed 266 of its crewmen

53 USS Maine

54

55 Crisis over Cuba (cont.) The yellow press immediately accused the Spanish of blowing up the ship The public demanded revenge Giving in to popular pressure, McKinley asked Congress to declare war on Spain Congress declared war on April 1898

56 Crisis over Cuba (cont.) Congress also passed the Teller Amendment – Proclaimed that the U.S. had no desire to overtake Cuba and would leave the island as soon as its independence was ensured – Teller Amendment Teller Amendment

57 The Spanish-American War, 1898 The fighting against Spain lasted less than 4 months Admiral George Dewey attacked the Spanish fleet in the Philippines American troops took Manila Bay in August By July, the Spanish were driven from Cuba The defeated Spanish: – Recognized Cuba’s independence – Ceded to the United States: Philippines Puerto Rico Guam

58 The Spanish-American War, 1898 (cont.) Contrary to the Teller Amendment, the U.S. occupied Cuba from 1898 to 1902 The U.S. withdrew its forces only after Cuba agreed to the conditions set forth in the 1901 Platt Amendment – Platt Amendment Platt Amendment – It limited Cuba’s sovereignty by: Reserving to the U.S. the right to intervene in Cuba The U.S. could maintain a naval base on Cuba

59 The Spanish-American War, 1898 (cont.) Although the Platt Amendment was abrogated in 1934, the United States still retains the base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba

60 Critics of Empire Some Americans were horrified by their nation’s actions in the Spanish-American War They founded the Anti-Imperialist League – Pointed out that imposing U.S. rule on other peoples by military force violated the principles of human equality and liberty championed in our own Declaration of Independence

61 Critics of Empire (cont.) Some members of the Anti-Imperialist League: – Carl Schurz (civil-service reformer) – E.L. Godkin (civil-service reformer) – William Jennings Bryan (ag. spokesman) – Jane Addams (settlement house founder) – Mark Twain (writer) – William James (writer)

62 Critics of Empire (cont.) Despite the League’s efforts, the Senate ratified the treaty annexing the Philippines In 1900 pro-expansionist McKinley again defeated anti-imperialist Bryan for the presidency

63 Guerrilla War in the Philippines, 1898-1902 Pres. McKinley was persuaded that the U.S. should keep the Philippines by the arguments of: – the expansionists – businessmen to use the islands as a way of penetrating nearby Chinese markets This U.S. decision led to a war against Filipino independence fighters

64 Guerrilla War in the Philippines, 1898-1902 (cont.) To crush the guerrilla resistance of the Filipinos, the U.S. used brutal tactics The U.S. lost many more soldiers than it had in the Spanish-American War In 1946, the U.S. granted the Philippines their independence

65 Conclusion Between 1877 and 1896, the 2 major political parties (Democrats and Republicans) were closely matched in strength Each party had loyal followers: – Democrats: The South and new immigrants in cities – Republicans: Rural and small town native-born Americans in the Northeast and Midwest

66 Conclusion (cont.) Both parties ignored the pressing economic problems of the country’s farmers The farmers turned successively to the Grange, the Farmers’ Alliance, and the Populist Party In 1896, when the Populist joined the Democrats in backing William Jennings Bryan, big business used its financial might to turn back the Populist challenge and elect McKinley president

67 Conclusion (cont.) McKinley’s victory marked the start of a long period of Republican dominance in national politics The McKinley administration soon led the U.S. into the Spanish-American War and an imperialist foreign policy

68 Conclusion (cont.) However, this burst of expansionism in the late 19th century and early 20th century never fully diverted U.S. attention from domestic issues The Populist Party, thought it was defeated in 1896, left behind the feeling that: – govt. must free itself from business domination – govt. must play a more active role in solving the economic and social problems arising form industrialization After the turn of the century, the Progressive movement would build on that new attitude


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