Essay On Progressive Movement

1684 Words7 Pages
Michael Dudash
Professor Kersey
U.S. History (Post 1877)
28 September 2016
The Progressive Movement
The progressive movement, the era of change in a “New America”, occurred in the late 19th century into the early 20th century. Debated as the most influential time in history, this period birthed three amendments (17th, 18th, and 19th) along with much social and political change. Sandwiched between “societal depression”, this was a breath-catching interlude of reform and social justice. This movement was definitely a people’s movement. But what caused it? How did it start and why?
One of the sparks in the blaze called the Progressive Movement was the shadow cast upon the working class by big business and corrupt politics (The Gilded Age). The big business interacted with and basically controlled politics (mainly because of monetary control). John Powell said in his article, “Unraveling the Progressive Movement”, “Men such as
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The big cities often favored middle class and upper class individuals. The standard and quality of life was much higher for those with money. This may seem obvious, but the lower class individuals were in diseased, highly populated areas in the slums of the city. These ghettos and slums of the cities held a high number of immigrants. These immigrants were competing for low-wage jobs, swarming into heavy industrialized areas. Dr. Hansan, the author of the article, “The Progressive Era”, says, “The progressives came from a long tradition of middle-class elites possessing a strong sense of social duty to the poor.” Progressives felt an obligation to help the lower class. The biggest group that helped were middle-class women. These women helped immigrants to speak English, helped with child care, and helped with health care (Red Cross). Along with immigrants, lower class citizens were also helped. Labor Unions were formed to reduce hours and improve safety condition in the work
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