Categories: Transcontinental Railroad Thomas Edison Steel- Bessemer Process Oil Telephone / telegraph Information needed: 1) Technological innovation (electricity), 2) Examples (fridge), 3) Inventor(s) (Edison), 4) Impact on daily life, 5) Picture at middle of chart
New technologies Electrical power replaced steam and water power. Larger factories produced more and more goods. Faster transportation moved people and goods more cheaply.
Railroads made it easier for people to move west and populate territories. transcontinental railroad made travel across the country faster, cheaper and more efficient. made life out west possible by connecting farmers, ranchers, and other settlers to east- coast resources and markets. Following the Civil War, railroads played a major role in industrial growth & expansion.
UP- Laid tracks westward from Omaha, Nebraska Built by Irish immigrant workers. TRR- Fed Funded Between 1865 and 1890, the number of miles of railroad track increased nearly fivefold. In 1862, Congress agreed to fund the construction of the transcontinental railroad. Union Pacific CP tracks were laid eastward from Sacramento, California. Chinese workers laid tracks through tougher terrain, crossing deserts and blasting through mountains. Dangerous work. Chinese workers were often victims of racism and abuse. Paid low wages. Uniting the country physically and economically, the two rail lines met on May 18, 1869 in Promontory, Utah. Central Pacific Transcontinental Railroad
Arguably the most important inventor of the Industrial Revolution was Thomas Edison, who invented: Phonograph: recorded sound Motion picture camera: would eventually make movies possible.
Thomas Edison: Arguably the most important inventor of the Industrial Revolution. Phonograph: recorded sound. Motion picture camera: eventually made motion pictures (movies) possible. Electric light bulb: Edison’s most impactful invention. Transformed how people lived & conducted business.
Creation of rail network promoted trade and provided jobs. Demand for rails and railcars boosted steel industry and train manufacturers. Settlement of the West was easier, and sparsely populated areas began to fill with residents. With railroads, new towns were founded and existing ones expanded. Railroads led to the adoption of standard time. Before, each area had its own local time based on the position of the sun. Accurate timekeeping was needed for the trains to keep to their schedule. C. F. Dowd proposed dividing the earth into time zones, setting the clocks alike in each zone. Railroad officials used this idea in 1883, and by 1918 standard time was adopted for the nation as a whole.
Before electric light bulbs, people were limited to working only during daylight hours. Light bulbs meant that people could work and do more after dark in factories, offices, and homes. Edison also came up with the idea of central power companies that provided electrical power to large numbers of customers. He and his company supplied electricity in NYC by 1882.
Since the prairies of the Midwest lacked wood & other traditional building materials, people had to get creative. Settlers learned to build and live in sod houses (soddies). John Deere’s steel plow allowed farmers to plant crops in the Midwest by enabling them to cut through the tough prairie sod. On the plains, there wasn’t enough wood to build fences. Barbed wire made it possible for farmers to cheaply and efficiently fence in their land and livestock. Barbed wire also closed in lands in the west- hurt cattle herding.
The telegraph Samuel F. B. Morse patented his method of communicating by sending messages over wires with electricity, calling it the telegraph. Operators tapped out patterns of long and short messages that stood for letters of the alphabet. The system was known as Morse code. After the Civil War, the telegraph grew with the railroads. Telegraph wires were strung along the tracks, and train stations had telegraph offices in them. The telephone Two men were working on devices that could transmit voices using electricity. Alexander Graham Bell patented his device hours before his competitor, and he gets the credit for the invention of the telephone in 1876. Companies found the telephone to be an essential business tool. People wanted to have them in their homes as well. By 1900, more than a million telephones had been installed across the nation.
Samuel Morse invented the telegraph. It communicated using a series of beeps (Morse code).
Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone.
Making steel Railroads contributed to the rise of the steel industry. In the 1850s, Henry Bessemer developed a method of converting iron to steel- the Bessemer Process. Manufacturers could make steel much cheaper and easier than before. Cheaper steel led to expansion of railroads, and more construction (made skyscrapers and large bridges possible). Cities began to grow up instead of out where land was limited. Railroads transported steel from factory to markets. Together, railroads and steel led to the growth of big business. Oil industry begins Oil was a key commodity as a fuel source and for lubrication. Edwin L. Drake drilled the first commercial oil well. Oil prospectors, or Wildcatters, looked for oil in other regions. Major sources of energy from oil fueled a revolution in transportation and industry.
Causes Railroad boom lowers cost of shipping New inventions make business more efficient Nation has rich supply of natural resources Small companies grow Effects Steel and oil become giant industries Monopolies dominate industries Factory workers face harsh working and living conditions Labor unions are born Cause & Effect: Growth of Big Business
Free markets With capitalism, competition determines prices and wages, and most industries are run by private businesses. In the 1800s, business leaders believed in laissez-faire capitalism with no government intervention. They believed government regulation would destroy self- reliance, reduce profits, and harm the economy. Social Darwinism Many thinkers believed that inequalities were part of the natural order. Charles Darwin believed that members of a species complete for survival in a natural selection process. Applied to society, stronger people, businesses, and nations would prosper, and weaker ones would fail in a “survival of the fittest.” Social Darwinism. The American ideal was one of self-reliant individualism. A strong work ethic made one successful, and entrepreneurs risked their money and talents in new ventures.
Proprietorships and partnerships Small businesses were run by individual proprietors or had more than one owner in a partnership. In either case, owners are personally responsible for all business debts and obligations. Corporations As industries grew, the structure of ownership changed. Businesses were owned by stockholders; decisions made by a board of directors, with day-to-day operations run by corporate officers. Investment money was raised by selling stock, and investors were bound only by the amount of their investment. Trusts and Monopolies Some companies merged and turned their stocks over to a board of trustees who ran the group of companies as a single entity. A trust is a business arrangement under which a number of companies unite into one system. Trusts destroyed competition and created monopolies (a market in which there is only one supplier of a product and no market competition.)
A pejorative (negative) term used to describe the political and economic power of a corporation that influences prices of goods Wal-Mart Exxon Home Depot Now it’s your turn.
Monopoly One company has exclusive control over their entire industry Wipe out all of the competition Two Methods: Vertical Integration Horizontal Integration
One company controls all means of production and distribution from beginning to end Middleman is eliminated Costs less for company to create a product Lower prices Consumers go with cheaper prices Competition eliminated
Assembly and Manufacturing End Product Distribution Raw Materials One Company Owns all Phases of Production From Top To Bottom Vertical Integration
Buy out the competition If companies refuse to sell, lower prices to undercut the competition Consumers flock to lower prices Competition goes bankrupt or is forced to sell
Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business Small Business To Form a Giant Company (Trust) Purchased by one Company Horizontal Integration
Two conflicting views emerge as a way to describe the Industrialists during the Rise of Big Business Robber Barons Captains of Industry
Negative - a business leader that builds wealth by lying, cheating and stealing Robs from consumers Abuses employees and workers Drives competitors out of business (And enjoys it!) Drains the country of natural resources Bribes government officials
Positive - a business leader that positively contributes to the country Creates jobs Increases availability of goods Expands markets Helps the economy A philanthropists – donates money or goods to a charity Creates museums, libraries, universities
Two men define the era of “Big Business” Andrew Carnegie / U.S. Steel John D. Rockefeller / Standard Oil Company, railroad magnate Both men formed monopolies and eliminated the competition
Richest man in the world - $1 billion in1901 U.S. Steel produced as much as Great Britain Labor issues/Homestead Strike U.S. Steel a monopoly “Gospel of Wealth” – world’s largest Philanthropists
John D. Rockefeller owned the railroads and the oil industries
Rockefeller replaces Carnegie as the richest man 1910, $310 billion in today’s $ Controversial business career – monopolies attacked by journalists The most notorious Robber Baron Gave away over half his wealth
Labor Unions rose out of the deplorable working an living conditions that faced industrial workers in the era of big business. Labor unions are organizations formed to protect the interest of its members. The most influential labor union of this era was the American Federation of Labor (AFL), led by Samuel Gompers. The AFL focused on issues such as wages, working hours, and working conditions. They used the economic pressure of strikes (refusal to work until employers meet certain demands) and boycotts (refusal to buy or pay for certain products or services in the hopes of forcing producers to change their policies.) The AFL also used collective bargaining- employees negotiated as a united group rather than individuals to increase bargaining power.
Employers hated unions and often threatened to fire employees who joined them. Some forced them to sign contracts agreeing not to join a union. Strikes and violent protests broke out. The most drastic was the Pullman Strike: in 1894, a group of employees went to railroad car industrialist George Pullman to protest the laying off of workers. Pullman responded by firing 3 of the union reps, leading the union to go on strike. Pullman closed the plant rather than negotiating with union leaders. Led by Eugene Debs, the American Railway Union called for a boycott of Pullman cars nationwide. The 120,000 striking workers affected shipment of US mail, and the govt responded with a court injunction against the union. President Cleveland sent in federal troops to make sure it was enforced. This would be the 1 st of many failed strikes.
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