The gilded age was a time of poverty and unfair treatment of groups of people. The ones that laid the tracks to the place we are in now, as an industrial based country, were treated poorly. The Gilded Age was covered in corruption, filth, lies, and injustice. The heart of it all, New York City, contributed the most. With the incoming factories, boats filled with desperate immigrants, and developing technologies, nothing but the word gilded could appropriately describe this time.
American’s freedom was transformed in many ways by the economic development of the Gilded Age. The Gilded Age was also known as the second industrial revolution because of the rapid growth in the economy between the end of the civil war and the bringing of the 20th century. This growth in the economy came from “abundant natural resources, a growing supply of labor, an expanding market for manufactured goods, and the availability to capital for investment” (589). From this growth in all the resources the factories and rail roads also expanded so this brought in even more money into the country. The rail roads are a big reason why the second industrial revolution was even possible because of how many miles they traveled around the united states. Foner stated “by 1913 the united states brought in one-third of the worlds industrial output-more than the total of Great Britain, France, and Germany combined” (590). There was so much growth that even the Americans of the late 19th century was amazed by the new economy.
The Gilded Age was a time where new prosperities and opportunities were forming after the end of the bloody American Civil War. The United States was able to rebuild itself after philanthropists started to help change the country into something superior and steered it away from the dreariness of the last few years. The ultra wealthy entrepreneurs of the time primarily were John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, and J. Pierpont Morgan. These men were given the name “captain of industries” coined by Thomas Carlyle in his book, Past and Present, to describe compassionate and important men who made significant impacts on the nation and people of America. The wealthy industrialists of the late 19th century were “captain of industries” because they created new enterprises, they provided jobs for countless citizens, and donated to charitable causes.
Throughout the course of the Gilded Age, several influential figures rose impacting the economy, political factors, and culture of the United States. One of the most important figures of this time period was Frances Willard, born in New York in 1839. She held several important positions, exceeding as an educator, a women’s suffragist, and a co-founder of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. The fact that Frances Willard held these positions indicates that she contributed to the improvement of the United States, specifically by educating Women, fighting for Women’s rights, and fighting for prohibition. These key roles were complementary to the issues associated with the United States at the time. For example, a significantly low percentage of the population attended college after completing high school. Most of the people that attended college at the time were men. Women were typically held to Victorian standards by society’s expectation of them to stay home to raise children, making it uncommon for them to attend college. In terms of alcohol, Christian churches completely disagreed with and despised the consumption of liquor, leading to the establishment of temperance reform. Frances Willard was the most influential figure of the Gilded Age because of her work through the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union that contributed towards the ratification of the 18th and 19th amendment, prohibiting the consumption or production of alcohol and
From 1870 to 1900 era was called the Gilded Age, a time of immense growth in the United States in transportation, especially in railroads, American workers were paid higher wages than their peers in Europe. In this thirty year span the United States saw twelve million immigrants pass through her golden doors, 70% of these immigrants were English, Irish, and German. Crop failures (potato famine in Ireland), job shortages, and religious freedom were the motivations behind many immigrating to America. Newly arrived immigrants faced a harsh reality in America, employers took advantage of them, the men were often paid less than other native born men and the women were paid even less. Immigrants suffered verbal and physical abuse from employers and other employees because they were different. While researching my Italian heritage I learned that Italians, especially southern Italians were not treated well because they were hired as strikebreakers or scabs by mining and railroading companies. They were called derogatory names such as "dagoes or guineas". Newspapers of the time said the southern Italians were "intellectually inferior and having criminal tendencies" (Laura Teddy Turner, Demand Media n.d.) http://www.emmigration.info/us-immigration-tv
The Gilded Age is defined as the time between the Civil War and World War I, during which the United States population grew quickly and the economy prospered greatly. However, it is also known to be cluttered with political corruption and corporate financial misleadings, in which the rich grew very wealthy and the poor were basically peasants. The economic growth of the nation was highly influenced by the availability of land and technological innovations promised through multiple acts passed throughout the time period, and, as a result, there were many negative changes in the social standing of minorities.
The late 19th century of American history is most commonly known as the Gilded Age, because of its attractive appearance, but underlying corruption. Popular themes during this period were greed and guile. This can most clearly be seen in the nature of city governments and political machine systems. Political machine systems were made up influential men preying on the vulnerable for their own gain. A shining example of this unethical system is Tammany Hall. Tammany Hall was a political force in New York City from its 1789 inception as a benevolent association to its infamous end in the early 20th century (Tammany Hall). Run by William M. Tweed, commonly referred to as Boss Tweed, this political ring gained its popularity by supporting immigrants and the lower class. Tammany Hall pushed for real improvements in hospitals, schools, and infrastructure (Burns). Although these examples are viewed as a good within the system, they are irrelevant and ineffective in the overall upheaval caused by Boss Tweed and his political machine. Tweed 's idea of city government and his political machine was a failure because it took advantage of taxpayers, used political graft and corruption to disparage the Constitution, and set a bad example for future political leaders.
Following the Civil War and Reconstruction, the federal government was looking for a way to get the people motivated; motivated to work again, motivated to have a better life again, and then like an answered prayer we entered the ‘Gilded Age’. The rapid growth from 1865 to 1900 was brought on by the availability of money and resources. With entrepreneurs willing to take a risk with this money and new resources, extraordinary growth arose. Railroads were evolving everywhere and as a result the Steel industry started to rise. With this economic boom all people, especially the federal government, sought after means to sustain this sudden increase in the market. The United States government came up with a plan to promote industrial development
The Gilded Age was a time in American history, from the 1870s to the 1890s, which ostensibly characterized the country based on its economic and technological advancements. However this era’s development served as a mere facade for the corruption and classism which occurred during the time. From economic manipulation to immorality in politics, the Gilded Age is best characterized by the unscrupulous nature of individuals who sought to attain superficial success.
The end of the Civil War marked a new integration of industry into American society. Following the war, high tariffs were put in place to compensate for the national debt that were created. The increase in tariffs also promoted domestic industries which became more critical in America. A major shift can be seen during this time, known as the Gilded Age, toward a more industrialized society rather than an agricultural one. One major influence toward this industrialized society was the building of the transcontinental railroad which ran from East to West coast. Finished in 1869, the Railroad allowed for more transport which also benefited the rising of big businesses. Regional companies could become national companies and thus changed the way people looked at industrialization. This industrialization affected the working class the most which consisted of the industrial workers and farmers. One would think that the “Gilded Age” would mean prosperity would be felt throughout the economy but the elite 1% of the population had more money than the rest of the population combined. This did not sit well with the working class, especially the industrial workers, who were the ones making the profit for the elites. However, each the farmers and industrial workers had their own way in which they responded to the industrialization of the Gilded Age.
The 1860s to 1920s was known as the gilded age in the United States of America. Immigrants moved to the U.S. to have a better life but when they arrived, they an unexpected situation. In the gilded age, Robber barons or business owners made a tremendous amount of money. Most of them accomplished this by using monopolies and trusts which led them to gain power and money. While money was flowing in the United States, the lower class population lived in tenements, where diseases would spread fast and comfort was not available. Workers had to work more than twelve hours a day and they could lose parts of their bodies in the machines and therefore get fired. Children worked as much as their parents did. They were in a position of
The Gilded Age was the last three decades of the nineteenth century, when America’s industrial economy exploded generating opportunities for individuals but also left many workers struggling for survival. With the many immigrants, skilled and unskilled, coming to America the labor system is becoming flooded with new employees. During this period, the immigrants, including the Italians, were unskilled and the skilled workers were usually American-born. There was also a divide in the workers and the robber barons. Robber barons were American capitalist who acquired great fortunes in the last nineteenth century, usually ruthlessly. There was much turmoil throughout the business and labor community. Two major organizations, the Knights of
The Gilded Age Mark Twain described the century of the 1800’s to the 1900’s as the “gilded age.” He often wrote about the hardships that many Americans faced throughout this century, like the impact of immigration and fighting for wealth. He believed that America was cheap and flawed because of its lack of sympathy towards those who were poor and its refusal to help those in need. However, America still made significant achievements throughout the century. Many advancements were made in many areas like education and daily living.
Mark Twain was the one to actually dub the 19th century the “Gilded Age”. What he meant by it was that America seemed like a glittering wonderland on the surface but it was in fact very corrupt underneath all the fake glitter. Popular media paints the 19th century as a time when corporations were known for being corrupt, politics were full of scandals, businesses were becoming shadier by the minute, and the military was on a power hungry march for absolute power. However this was a time in America were a once small country of plantations and farms were turning into an urban society that was dominated by industries and big corporations.