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The Progressive Era What is a progressive?  Promoting or favoring progress toward better conditions or new policies, ideas, or methods.  Positive change.

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Presentation on theme: "The Progressive Era What is a progressive?  Promoting or favoring progress toward better conditions or new policies, ideas, or methods.  Positive change."— Presentation transcript:

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2 The Progressive Era

3 What is a progressive?  Promoting or favoring progress toward better conditions or new policies, ideas, or methods.  Positive change.

4 Progressive Presidents  Theodore Roosevelt (R) became Pres when McKinley was assassinated; TR elected 1904 became Pres when McKinley was assassinated; TR elected 1904  William Howard Taft (R) elected 1908; lost reelection bid in 1912 elected 1908; lost reelection bid in 1912  Woodrow Wilson (D) elected 1912; reelected 1916 elected 1912; reelected 1916 Populist Influence??

5 Problems Leading to Progressive Reforms  Political?  Social?  Economic? Progressivism was a result of the dark side of the Gilded Age.

6 Goals of the Progressives  Political: restore control of the gov’t to the people  Social: correct abuses and injustices brought into lives of people by urbanization and industrialization  Economic: restore greater equality of economic opportunity; draw up new rules for the conduct of business

7 MuckrackersMuckrackers GooGoosGooGoos TemperanceTemperance SuffragettesSuffragettes PopulistsPopulists MidclassWomenMidclassWomen LaborUnionsLaborUnions CivilRightsCivilRights

8 Roots of Progressivism  1880’s-90’s –debates on how to reform society-nature v. nurture, James, Addams, etc.  Journalists, Socialists, labor leaders and city gov’t reformers offered ideas  Muckrakers investigated and exposed abuses; alerted public to wrongdoing in politics and business and raised social issues

9 Leading Muckrakers and their works  Jacob Riis – How the Other Half Lives; The Battle with the Slum (urban issues)  Upton Sinclair – The Jungle (consumer protection – abuses in meatpacking)  Ida Tarbell – A History of the Standard Oil Trust (monopolies and trusts)  Lincoln Steffens – Shame of the Cities (political machines, corruption, voting fraud)  Lewis Hine – photographs exposed child labor

10 Article/questions

11 Jungle clip Jungle clip

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17 Local Political Reforms  Machines work with voters: registration; improved city services; public health programs; enforced tenement codes  Cities take over utilities: efforts to regulate or dislodge monopolies providing city services; provided residents w/ more affordable utilities  City-supported welfare services created

18 State Level Political Reforms  Direct primary  Initiative  Referendum  Recall  Australian Ballot – standard ballot printed by gov’t at public expense; cast in secret  Reduced “vote buying” and fraud in elections

19 National Level Political Reforms  17 th Amendment (1913): direct popular election of U.S. Senators; previously chosen by state legislatures  19 th Amendment (1920): women’s suffrage

20 Social Reforms: Consumer Protection  Pure Food and Drug Act (1906): medicine and food must be safe; contents must be labeled; FDA established  Meat Inspection Act (1906): The Jungle influenced Roosevelt and Congress to act; strict sanitary conditions set; rating system for meat; fed gov’t given authority to inspect meat crossing state lines (interstate commerce)

21 Social Reforms: Labor  State Level: labor depts created; workers’ compensation laws; child labor laws (by 1914, all states except 1); min. age laws  National Level: U.S. Dept of Labor created (1913); 8 hr day for federal gov’t workers

22 Social Reforms: Conservation Measures  Roosevelt interested in conservation  Congress created U.S. Forest Service  Gifford Pinchot (expert forester) appointed head of Forest Service  Set aside 200 mill. acres of land for nat’l forests, mineral reserves & water projects  National (Newlands) Reclamation Act passed (1902): set aside $ from sale of public lands to fund construction of irrigation systems in arid states

23 Social Reforms: Prohibition  18 th Amendment (1919): outlawed manufacture, sale, transportation of intoxicating liquor  Reformers believed would protect society from poverty and violence associated with alcohol consumption  Miserable failure; led to bootlegging; widespread lawbreaking; speakeasies; rise of organized crime  Repealed in 1933 (21 st Amendment)

24 Economic Reforms: Tariff Reform  Progressives wanted to lower tariffs (reform); Conservatives opposed reform  Payne-Aldrich Tariff (1909): failed attempt to lower tariff rates; actually raised rates on more items than lowered  Taft sided with conservatives in Rep. Party  Signed bill; this began rift between Taft and progressives in his party  Underwood Tariff Act of 1913: tariff reform finally achieved; lowered tariff rates on thousands of items: lowest tariff since Civil War

25 Economic Reforms: Banking Reform  Federal Reserve Act (1913): created the Federal Reserve System –  Created a decentralized nat’l banking system; 12 district banks distributed throughout country (see $1 bills)  Established a flexible currency – Fed controls amount of $ in circulation by controlling district banks’ lending-how?

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28 Economic Reforms: Business Reform  Hepburn Act of 1906: ICC could regulate RR rates; made ICC effective for 1 st time  Mann-Elkins Act of 1910: gave ICC power to regulate lines of communication such as telephone and telegraph rates

29 Business Reforms (con’t)  Clayton Antitrust Act (1914): finally created effective law gov’t could use to prosecute monopolies; specified illegal business activities & contained protections for unions  Federal Trade Commission Act (1914): created FTC to set up fair trade laws and enforce antitrust laws; could punish companies for unfair business practices created FTC to set up fair trade laws and enforce antitrust laws; could punish companies for unfair business practices

30 Roosevelt as Trustbuster  Did not believe gov’t should attack all trusts, only those that were “bad”  Even those that were “good” should be controlled / regulated  Directed his Attorney General to file antitrust suit against Northern Securities Co. – 1904 gov’t won case & company dissolved  42 antitrust suits were filed during TR’s presidency

31 Split in the Republican Party  Taft did not continue to vigorously push progressive reforms  Progressives in Republican Party became upset with Taft: major causes: 1.Tariff – Taft signed Payne-Aldrich Tariff 2.Taft’s firing of Gifford Pinchot 3.Taft’s support of conservative Speaker of the House Joe Cannon

32 Impact of the Split  1912 Election – Progressive Republicans did not want to support Taft  Split from the party and formed a 3 rd party called the Progressive Party  Nominated T. Roosevelt (“Bull Moose” Party)  This split the Republican vote in 1912; Wilson won (42% the popular vote)

33 1912 Election: Wilson v. Roosevelt  Wilson (D) – New Freedom  Roosevelt (P) – New Nationalism  Roosevelt called for stronger, more active role on part of federal gov’t  Wilson portrayed Roosevelt’s ideas as “radical” (more like socialism)  Wilson’s platform more conservative, but still focused on reforms – enforce antitrust laws without threatening free economic competition

34 Evaluating the Progressive Era: Political Pros / Cons Accomplishments:  Voting rights protected & participation expanded  Some success against polit. Machines Outstanding Issues:  Machines & corruption still existed  African Americans rights still denied

35 Social Pros / Cons Accomplishments:  Labor reforms (esp. child labor laws and workers’ compensation)  Consumer protection  Conservation – TR considered this his greatest achievement Outstanding Issues:  Little done to address plight of farmers  Non-union workers saw little change  Nativism still existed  Jim Crow system continued (segregation)

36 Economic Pros / Cons Accomplishments:  Tariff, tax, banking reform achieved  Stronger, more effective antitrust laws enacted Outstanding issues:  Trusts continued to dominate economy

37 The End of Progressivism  For most part, WW I ended Progressive Era; nation’s attention shifted to foreign affairs (war began 1914; US declared war 1917)  Final reform of Progressive Era was the 19 th Amendment – women’s suffrage (1920); changing roles of women due to WW I gave suffrage its final momentum


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