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Urban Politics, Populism, and Progressivism

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Presentation on theme: "Urban Politics, Populism, and Progressivism"— Presentation transcript:

1 Urban Politics, Populism, and Progressivism

2 Gilded Age Term first seen in Twain & Warner’s novel The Gilded Age Gilded- covered with gold, but made of cheap material beneath the surface (inventions, cities expanding, skyscrapers built & electricity) lay corruption, poverty, & crime

3 Urban Politics Political Machine- informal political group designed to gain & keep power In exchange for votes, the party bosses provided jobs, housing, food, heat, & police protection Party bosses controlled the city’s finances Grew rich by fraud (graft)—getting money through dishonest or questionable means Example- “Boss” Tweed of Tammany Hall “Boss” Tweed

4 Urbanization Town populations of 2,500 or more grew from 10 mil. in 1870 to over 30 mil. in 1900 Most immigrants lacked the money & education—stuck in the cities working long hours for little pay In NY, ¾ residents squeezed into tenements (dirty, crowded apartments)

5 Problems of Urbanization
Crime & Violence Murder rate jumped 25 to 100 mil. b/w Nativists blamed immigrants for increase in crime Fire Buildings/apartments touching each other– fire spread easily Disease & Pollution Improper sewer disposal contaminated drinking water Smoke, soot, & ash accumulated from coal & wood fires

6 Populism- mvmt. to increase farmer’s political power & to work for legislation in their interest
Farmer’s Grievances Farm prices had dropped due to new technology High tariffs made it harder for farmers to sell goods overseas The Grange National farm organization First met about social & educational purposes Formed cooperatives (co-ops) Failed in the 1870s Farmer’s Alliance- 1877 Formed when the Grange failed Organized large co-ops called exchanges Failed to fix farmers’ problems Colored Farmers’ National Alliance 1891

7 Populist Movement People’s Party (from the Farmer’s Alliance)
pushed for political reforms: Adoption of the sub-treasury plan (warehouses that stored crops) Free coinage of silver End to protective tariffs & national banks Tighter regulation of the railroads Direct election of senators by voters 1892- nominated Weaver for Populist Party rep. for Pres. Cartoon, Houston Daily Post, March 30, 1896

8 Populist Movement 1893- Economic crisis- created a crisis for the U.S. Treasury Goldbugs- believed American currency should be based on gold Silverites- believed coining silver in unlimited quantities would solve nation’s economic crisis (supported by farmers) 1900- U.S. officially adopted a gold-based currency Silver Crusade died out & Populism lost its momentum

9 Race Issue Mississippi (1890) required a poll tax of $2 & a literacy test Some states gave whites a special break- grandfather clause (allowed any man to vote if he had an ancestor on the voting rolls in 1867) Segregation- separation of the races Jim Crow Laws- laws that enforced segregation (after Civil War) Violence (average of 187 lynchings carried out each year) 80% in the South

10 African American Leaders
Booker T. Washington Said African Americans should concentrate on achieving economic goals rather than legal/political ones Urged African Americans to postpone the fight for civil rights & instead concentrate on preparing themselves educationally & vocationally for full equality W. E. B. DuBois Said African Americans could regain civil rights & achieve full equality by demanding their rights! DuBois Washington

11 Progressivism A collection of different ideas & activities designed to fix problems in American society Believed industrialism & urbanization had created many social problems wanted govt. to take a more active role in solving society’s problems

12 Muckrakers *journalists who investigated social conditions & political corruption
Upton Sinclair- The Jungle (meat packing industry problems) Ida Tarbell- critical of the Standard Oil Co. Jacob Riis- How the Other Half Lives (described the poverty, disease, and crime in NYC)

13 Govt. Reforms Direct Primary- all party members could vote for a candidate to run in the general election Initiative- allowed a group of citizens to introduce legislation & required the legislature to vote on it Referendum- allowed proposed legislation to be submitted to the voters for approval Recall- allowed voters to demand a special election to remove an elected official from office before his/her term had expired Direct election of senators- by state voters (17th amendment)

14 Suffrage Movement *suffrage- right to vote
1848- began before the progressive mvmt. Felt 14th & 15th amendments should be worded to include women

15 Suffrage Movement National American Woman Suffrage Association (1890)
National Women Suffrage Association Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony Focus on passing a constitutional amendment allowing woman suffrage National American Woman Suffrage Association (1890) Helped by Alice Paul & Carrie Chapman Catt 1912- WA, OR, CA, AZ, KS granted full voting rights Nineteenth Amendment (1920)- gave women the right to vote American Woman Suffrage Association Lucy Stone & Julia Ward Howe Strategy- convince state govt.’s to give women the right to vote before trying to amend the Constitution

16 Social Welfare Reforms
Child Labor mil. under 16 worked outside the home Laws passed limited the age a child could start working Health/Safety Codes Building codes Worker’s compensation Zoning laws Prohibition Many progressives believed alcohol was responsible for many problems Temperance Mvmt.- advocated the moderation or elimination of alcohol Socialism- idea that the govt. should own & operate industry for the community as a whole

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