Presentation on theme: "Politics of the Gilded Age Chapter 19. Unhappy Farmers Chained to one crop Instability of currency; deflation common because not enough money in circulation."— Presentation transcript:
Politics of the Gilded Age Chapter 19
Unhappy Farmers Chained to one crop Instability of currency; deflation common because not enough money in circulation Too much global competition kept prices low Eastern bankers often foreclosed Natural disasters and soil depletion Taxed heavily based on bountiful years, not current yields No government protection (tariffs) like with manufacturing Trusts –set high prices for equipment and supplies. RR trusts charged high transport fees. By 1890, nearly ½ of all families were farmers, but could never organize themselves - too individualistic and independent natured.
Populists Early farming organizations (Grange, Farmers’ Alliance) = aid farming families, promote social activities, attempt to stop monopolies (RR, grain elevators). Some success w/ state laws regulating prices and trade, but eventually overturned when Interstate Commerce Act passed in 1887 (only Congress could regulate interstate trade). Populist Party formed in late1880s (West/South) Inflation through free/unlimited coinage of silver Income tax Gov’t ownership of RR’s, banking, communication “Sub-treasury” plan – store crops until prices went up Direct election of U.S. Senators One-term limit on presidency Shorter workday for laborers Immigration restrictions General James B. Weaver – ran for president in 1892
Equal Rights for Women Some western states granted (Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and Idaho) National American Women Suffrage Association – 1890 (only white women allowed) Carrie Chapman Catt became leader of suffrage movement in Women should be allowed to vote b/c responsible for health of family and education of children so should have voice on boards of public health/school boards.
Equal Rights for Women Mid-1800s: Seneca Falls Convention of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony Extended support for women’s suffrage Some western states granted (Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and Idaho) National American Women Suffrage Association – 1890 (only white women allowed) Carrie Chapman Catt became leader of suffrage movement in Women should be allowed to vote b/c responsible for health of family and education of children so should have voice on boards of public health/school boards.
Equal Rights for Women (con’t) Handicapped by Victorian sexual inhibitions Sex was an unmentionable topic and sexual feelings deeply repressed. Many feminists opposed birth control – though it would encourage “masculine lust”. Many believed females morally superior to men and giving women the vote would improve the character of the government and the nation.
Ulysses S. Grant (R) – Continued Reconstruction with Republican gov’ts in South Stabilized currency – Resumption Act of 1875 Sec. of State Seward purchased Alaska from Russia “Alabama” claims settled Gov’t scandals/corruption Credit Mobilier Whiskey Ring Panic & depression of 1873 caused by over-speculation of land rapid expansion of industry w/out substantial markets. “easy” credit Results = banks collapsed; value of “greenbacks” fell. AccomplishmentsFailures
Rutherford B. Hayes (R) – Ended RR strike of 1877 by sending in troops (1 st time) Vetoed Chinese Exclusion Act (violated treaty w/China and was discriminatory) Compromise of 1877 (ending Reconstruction) weakened Rep. commitment to racial equality Unable to keep Rep. together = split into 2 factions (Stalwarts and Half-breeds) Unable to reform civil service AccomplishmentsFailures
James Garfield (R) – 1881 Pushed for civil service reform – accomplished only b/c of his assassination Shot July 2, 1881 by Stalwart Charles Guiteau – thought Stalwarts would be appointed to gov’t positions by Arthur. Died Sept. 19, 1881 AccomplishmentsFailures
Chester Arthur (R) – Worked for reform Prosecuted frauds, refused to hand out political favors 1882 – signed Chinese Exclusion Act 1883 – signed Pendleton Act into law; est. Civil Service Commission to fill federal jobs by competitive exam His reforms angered the Republicans (both factions) and he wasn’t nominated for a second term AccomplishmentsFailures
Grover Cleveland (D) – “Grover the Good” – Supported by “mugwump” Rep. Vetoed bills that wasted $ from surplus of protective tariff, including fraudulent veterans benefits/pensions passed Dawes Severalty Act and Interstate Commerce Act Did use spoils system, although some appointments based on merit Made lowering the tariff the issue in 1888 election; lost because of it AccomplishmentsFailures
Benjamin Harrison (R) – 1890 – passed Sherman Anti-trust Act (“restraint of trade” illegal; not enforced) Sherman Silver Purchase Act (gov’t purchase silver and use along with gold to back currency) Pensions to Civil War veterans He and Congress depleted treasury surplus = Congress had 1 st “billion dollar” peacetime session Tariff backfired = people unhappy with Rep. Lost his bid for re- election and Rep. lost majority in Congress. AccomplishmentsFailures
Grover Cleveland (D) – Ordered troops to stop Pullman strike; Justice Dept. issued injunctions to stop strike (1 st time) Arbitration of Venezuelan border dispute w/Britain Ignored demands of “Coxey’s Army” (march of unemployed) Antagonized labor w/actions in Pullman strike Depression of 1893 – silver dropped in value, paper $ exchanged for gold which depleted gold supply Solution: repealed Sherman Silver Purchase Act Turned to J.P. Morgan, who loaned gov’t $65 million in gold to shore up gold supply in treasury = Cleveland seen as a “tool of Wall Street” AccomplishmentsFailures J.P. Morgan
William McKinley (R) – 1 st “modern election” – campaign manager Marcus Hanna raised millions $ Supported gold standard and opposed “free silver” Won handily over William Jennings Bryan and his “Cross of Gold” speech 1900 – Gold Standard Act – all paper $ redeemable in gold Imperialism – U.S. involved in Sp-Am. War; annexed Hawaii Made enemies b/c of Sp-Am. War Did not complete 2 nd term – shot Sept. 5, 1901 by Leon Czolgosz in Buffalo, NY Died Sept. 14 th. AccomplishmentsFailures