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Farmers and the Populist Movement

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Presentation on theme: "Farmers and the Populist Movement"— Presentation transcript:

1 Farmers and the Populist Movement
Chapter 5 Section 3

2 Main Idea Farmers united to address their economic problems, giving rise to the Populist movement.

3 Farmers and Common Problems
Problems for the farmers: Prices for crops were falling (deflation) Farmers often mortgaged their farms to buy more land and produce more crops (never-ending cycle of mortgage and debt) Good farming land was becoming scarce Railroads were charging high prices for shipping and for storage (high railroad rates)

4 Reform 1867 – Oliver Hudson Kelley founded the Grange
Grange – a social and educational organization through which farmers attempted to combat the power of the railroads in the late 19th century (aka the Patrons of Husbandry) Taught farmers how to organize How to set up farmers’ cooperatives How to sponsor state legislation to regulate the railroads

5 Farmers’ Alliances Groups of farmers (or those that had sympathy for farmers) who sent speakers from town to town to educate people about agriculture and rural issues

6 Rise and Fall of Populism
Movement that demanded that people have a greater voice in government and seeking to advance the interests o farmers and laborers Populist Party Platform: Increase in money supply Graduated income tax Eight hour work days Immigration restrictions Single terms for the presidents and vice-presidents

7 Panic of 1893 Causes: Overexpansion of key industries like the railroad companies Shrinking of the federal gold reserve

8 Silver or Gold Gold Bugs Bankers and businessman
Wanted less money in circulation Loans would be repaid in stable money Deflation – prices fall, value of money increases, fewer people have money Silverites Farmers and laborers Bimetalism More money in circulation Products would be sold at higher prices Inflation – prices rise, value of money decreases, more people have money

9 definitions Bimetallism – the use of both gold and silver as a basis for a national monetary system Gold standard – monetary system in which the basic unit of currency is defined in terms of a set amount of gold (backing dollars solely with gold)

10 Question…? Why was the metal that backed currency so important?
Because people thought that paper currency only had value if it could be turned in for precious metals such as gold or silver

11 McKinley vs. Bryan Election of 1896
William McKinley – Republican candidate William Jennings Bryan – Democratic candidate McKinley, with the help of a much larger bank account, won the 1896 election This effectively ended the populist movement

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