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American Stories: A History of the United States Second Edition Chapter American Stories: A History of the United States, Second Edition Brands Breen Williams.

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Presentation on theme: "American Stories: A History of the United States Second Edition Chapter American Stories: A History of the United States, Second Edition Brands Breen Williams."— Presentation transcript:

1 American Stories: A History of the United States Second Edition Chapter American Stories: A History of the United States, Second Edition Brands Breen Williams Gross Political Realignments 1876–1901 20

2 Wealth and Poverty Tiny children peddling newspapers and women domestics serving the rich— their meager earnings were desperately needed.

3 Political Realignments 1876–1901 Politics of Stalemate Republicans in Power: The Billion-Dollar Congress Republicans in Power: The Billion-Dollar Congress The Rise of the Populist Movement The Crisis of the Depression Changing Attitudes The Presidential Election of 1896 The McKinley Administration

4 Hardship and Heartache The depression of the 1890s had profound and lasting effects  Rural hostility toward cities  Fight over currency  Changed attitudes to government, employment, and reform

5 Politics of Stalemate

6 The Party Deadlock Post-Civil War Democratic party divides electorate almost evenly with Republicans Democrats emphasize state’s rights and limited government Republicans see government as agent to promote moral progress and material wealth

7 The Party Deadlock (cont’d) One-party control of both Congress and White House rare Each party has safe states, control of federal government rests with 6 “doubtful” states in North and Midwest Federal influence wanes, state control rises

8 Political Toys A toy scale pitting the presidential candidates of 1888 (Harrison and Cleveland) against each other. More than a plaything, this scale symbolizes the high level of voter participation during the late nineteenth century when elections hung in balance until the last vote was counted.

9 Reestablishing Presidential Power Presidency hits nadir under Johnson Later presidents reassert executive power  Hayes ended military Reconstruction  Garfield asserted leadership of his party  Arthur strengthened navy, civil service reform  Cleveland used veto to curtail federal activities, called for low tariffs

10 TABLE 20.1 The Election of 1880

11 Map 20.1

12 TABLE 20.2 The Election of 1884

13 Republicans in Power: The Billion-Dollar Congress

14 1888: Republicans control both White House and Capitol Hill 1890: Adoption of Reed Rules permits enactment of “billion dollar” program

15 Tariffs, Trusts, and Silver 1890: McKinley Tariff raises duties to historic high Dependents Pension Act: By 1893, 1 million receiving pensions from union army

16 Tariffs, Trusts, and Silver (cont’d) 1890: Sherman Anti-Trust Act regulates big business  U.S. v. E.C. Knight clarifies that law does not apply to manufacturers 1890: Sherman Silver Purchase Act moves country toward bi-metallic monetary system

17 The Battle of the Standards In this 1886, cartoon illustrating the silver standard versus gold standard controversy, Uncle Sam bicycles to national bankruptcy on an enormous silverite dollar.

18 The 1890 Elections “Billion Dollar” Congress alienates people Republicans also assert activist government policies on state level  Sunday closing laws  Prohibition  Mandatory English in public schools 1890: Alienated voting blocks turn out Republican legislators

19 The Rise of the Populist Movement

20 Discontented farmers of West and South provide base of support The National Farmers’ Alliance and Industrial Union the result

21 The Farm Problem Worldwide agricultural economy causes great fluctuations in supply and demand Farmers’ complaints  Lower prices for crops (although purchasing power rising)  Rising railroad rates (rates actually declining)  Onerous mortgages (loans permit production expansion)

22 The Farm Problem (cont’d) Conditions of farmers vary by region General feeling of depression, resentment

23 The Fast-Growing Farmers’ Alliance 1875: Southern Alliance begins Colored Farmer’s National Alliance- destroyed after leaders lynched in 1891 Regional Alliances merge into National Farmer’s Alliance

24 The Farmers’ Alliance The Alliance movement grew quickly in the late 1800s among discontented farmers. This photograph shows Southern Alliance members meeting at the site of their first formal meeting in 1877 in Lampasas County, Texas. The cabin was later uprooted and exhibited at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893.

25 The Fast-Growing Farmers’ Alliance (cont’d) Division in the South  Tillman: Capture existing Democratic party to maintain white supremacy  Tom Watson and Leondias Polk urge new party  Adopts Ocala Demands  Warehouses to hold crops for higher prices

26 The Fast-Growing Farmers’ Alliance (cont’d) Division in the South (cont’d)  Free coinage of silver  End to protective tariffs  Federal income tax  Direct election of Senators  Regulation of railroads

27 The People’s Party Southern Alliance splits from Democrats to form Populist party Southern Populists recruit African Americans, give them influential positions

28 The People’s Party (cont’d) 1892: Populist presidential candidate James Weaver draws over one million votes  Loses South to violence and intimidation by Southern Democrats  Loses urban areas Alliance wanes after 1892 elections

29 Map 20.2

30 The Crisis of the Depression

31 Economic crisis dominated the 1890s Railroads overbuilt, companies grew beyond their markets, farms and businesses went deeply in debt

32 The Panic of 1893 February, 1893: Failure of major railroad sparks panic on New York Stock Exchange Investors sell stock to purchase gold Depleted Treasury shakes confidence May, 1893: Market hits record low, business failures displace 2 million workers 1894: Corn crop fails

33 The Pullman Strike 1894: Pullman strike joined by Eugene Debs’ American Railway Union closed Western railroads President Cleveland suppressed strikes with federal troops and Debs was arrested

34 A Beleaguered President Cleveland repeals Sherman Silver Purchase Act to remedy Panic of 1893 Repeal fails to stop depression Repeal makes silver a political issue Democrats renege on promise of lower tariff

35 Breaking the Party Deadlock Election of 1894 reduced Democrats to a sectional southern organization Republicans swept congressional elections Republicans became majority elsewhere

36 Changing Attitudes

37 Depression of 1893 forced recognition of structural causes of unemployment Americans accepted the need for government intervention to help the poor and jobless

38 Women and Children in the Labor Force Women and children paid lower wages, displaced men during depression Employers retained women and children after depression to hold down costs

39 Changing Themes in Literature Depression encouraged “realist” school Mark Twain’s characters spoke in dialect William Dean Howells, Stephen Crane portrayed grim life of the poor

40 Changing Themes in Literature (cont’d) Frank Norris attacked power of big business Theodore Dreiser presented humans as helpless before vast social, economic forces

41 The Presidential Election of 1896

42 Free coinage of silver the main issue  Boost the money supply  Seen as solution to depression New voting patterns emerged and national policy shifted

43 The Mystique of Silver “Free and independent coinage of silver”  Set ratio of silver to gold at 16:1  U.S. mints coined all silver offered to them  U.S. coined silver regardless of other nations’ policies

44 The Mystique of Silver (cont’d) Silverites believed amount in circulation determined level of economic activity A moral crusade for the common people

45 The Republicans and Gold Candidate: William McKinley Silverite Republicans defeated on convention floor Promised gold standard to restore prosperity

46 The Democrats and Silver Candidate: William Jennings Bryan Free silver promised in "Cross of Gold" speech Democrats were enthusiastic

47 A Crucial Election This cartoon satirizes the religious symbolism in Bryan’s “Cross of Gold” speech, but his stirring rhetoric captivated his audience and won him the Democratic presidential nomination in 1896.

48 Campaign and Election Populist party endorsed Bryan Bryan offered return to rural, religious U.S. McKinley defended urban, industrial society Election was a clear victory for McKinley, utter rout of Populist party

49 Political Conflict in 1896 This campaign card from the 1896 presidential election predicts that Republican candidate William McKinley’s protariff, protectionist policy will lead to prosperity and thriving industrialism while Democratic candidate William Jennings Bryan’s free trade and free silver policies will lead to economic ruin.

50 Map 20.3 This map illustrates McKinley’s victories over a large swatch of states in the North, Midwest and Pacific Coast. It also shows the greater reach of the Democratic party under William Jennings Bryan, though the states he carried in the West tended to have few electoral votes.

51 The McKinley Administration

52 McKinley took office at depression’s end An activist president Dingley Tariff raised rates to record highs 1900: U.S. placed on gold standard 1900: McKinley won landslide reelection against William Jennings Bryan

53 TABLE 20.3 The Election of 1900

54 Conclusion: A Decade’s Dramatic Changes

55 September, 1901: McKinley assassinated Theodore Roosevelt became president In 1896 Henry Ford produced a two- cylinder, four-horsepower car Wilbur and Orville Wright neared the birth of powered flight

56 Timeline

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