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Politics of the Gilded Age Chapter 19. Unhappy Farmers  Chained to one crop  Instability of currency; deflation common because not enough money in circulation.

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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:

1 Politics of the Gilded Age Chapter 19

2 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.

3 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

4 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.

5 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.

6 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.

7 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

8 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

9 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

10 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

11 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

12 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

13 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

14 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


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