U.S. History
• 1. In what significant way did the
development of the incandescent lightbulb
improve 19th c. urban conditions?
– A. It created the possibility of home-based
– B. It prompted more immigrants to remain
in large cities.
– C. It enabled passenger trains to operate at
– D. It replaced the dirty and dangerous
• 2. What historic situation is most
comparable to the lightbulb replacing oil
– A. The railroad replacing the automobile.
– B. Electric engines replacing steam
– C. Steel production replacing oil
– D. The telegraph replacing the telephone.
Thinking history…..
• http://www.yourememberthat.com/media/21
What are the “big” questions
throughout history?
• For this unit, we’re looking at the
“modernization” of America.
I can. . .
• Evaluate the impact of the new
inventions and technologies of the late
nineteenth century
• Identify and evaluate the influences on
business and industry in the late
nineteenth and early twentieth
• Identify labor and workforce issues of
the late nineteenth century, including
perspectives of owners/managers and
Social Darwinists
Natural Resources Fuel
• Black Gold
– Edwin Drake uses a steam engine to drill in Titusville, PA
– Oil boom in the Midwest, converting it to kerosene
(gasoline was originally thrown away)
• Bessemer Steel Process
– 1887 iron ore deposits discovered in the Mesabi Range
in MN
– Bessemer process infuses air into molten iron to remove
the carbon, making it lighter and stronger (steel)
• New Uses for Steel
– Railroads, barbed wire, and the farm machines of
McCormick and Deere
– Bridges and the first skyscrapers
Brooklyn Bridge
Home Insurance Building
in Chicago
Inventions Promote Change
• The Power of Electricity
– 1876: Edison’s laboratory in Menlo Park, NJ
– George Westinghouse made electricity safer
– Electric streetcars and the spread of the city
• Inspired Inventions
– Incandescent light bulb, typewriter, telephone, phonograph
• New Products and Lifestyles
Expanding urban population demands inventions
Women in the workforce; expansion of all factory work
Workers lose power, but consumers gain power
However, the workweek did lessen by 10 hours
As new industries are born/expanded: Advertising and
New Products and Lifestyles
– Expanding urban population demands inventions
– Women in the workforce; expansion of all factory
– Workers lose power, but consumers gain power
– However, the workweek did lessen by 10 hours
– As new industries are born/expanded: Advertising
and recreation
– Department Stores
– Mail order catalogs
Streetcar (and then the subway)
Phonograph, radio, music, leisure…
Railroads Span Time and Space
• A National Network
– By 1856 RR had expanded to the Miss. River
– By 1869 the Transcontinental RR is completed
• Romance and Reality
– Dreams of unsettled lands and adventure
– However, the building of the road was difficult and
primarily completed with immigrant labor
• Union Pacific: Irish, Civil War Vets, African Americans
• Central Pacific: Chinese
• Railroad Time
– RR created a united nation (Symbolism)
– creation of 24 time zones (4 in the U.S.); Congress
okays it in 1914
Opportunities and Opportunists
• New Towns and Markets
– Cities emerged as specialists (Chicago:
stockyards; Minneapolis: grain industries;
• Credit Mobilier
– Corruption building the RR
– Union Pacific officers skimmed off $23
million in stocks, bonds, and cash (paying off
20 representatives in Congress)
Working Conditions
• 1900: 1 in 6 kids age 10-15 worked outside the
• Most workers had 12-16 hours/day, 6 days/wk
• No paid vacation, no sick leave, no workers
Labor Union Issues
• Knights of Labor 1869
– Blacks, women, unskilled workers
• “an injury to one is the concern of all”
• Equal pay, 8 hour work days
• American Federation of Labor
– Samuel Gompers
– Used strikes as a major tactic
– Achieved shorter workweeks and higher wages
Industrial Unionism
• Both skilled and unskilled workers in an
• Eugene Debs
– American Railway Union
– Eventually turned to socialism: a system based on
gov’t control of business and property and equal
distribution of wealth
Union Incidents
• Great Railroad Strike of 1877
• Haymarket Riot
Pullman Strike
• Pullman
– Pullman sleeper
– He employed so many he built a company town
– See other powerpoint!
– http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xeaixx_impac
Pullman Sleeper
Pullman Company Town
Fewer Control More
• Growth and Consolidation
– Oligopolies form through mergers: when one company bought out
the stock of another
– When firms bought out all others they formed a monopoly
• Often they did this by setting up a holding company: a company that does
nothing but buy up stock
• Another way was to form a trust: turning your stock over to a board of
trustees (who also hold competing companies stock) to manage. You get
• Rockefeller and the Robber Barons
– Standard Oil (Rockefeller) went from controlling 3% to 90% of the
nation’s oil in 10 years
– He paid workers low wages and undercut competitors to run them
out of business
– To counter this they pointed to the “Gospel of Wealth”
• Rockefeller gave away over $500 million to the Rockefeller Foundation, $80
million to the University of Chicago
• Carnegie gave away $325 million; Carnegie Foundation, Carnegie Hall,
3,000 libraries
• Sherman Antitrust Act
The Grange and the Railroads
Railroad Abuses
– RR had a built in monopoly
– Misuse of government land grants
– They fixed prices; charged different rates
Granger Laws
– The Patrons of Husbandry was formed in 1867 for the purpose of est. a
social and educational outlet for farmers (organization, cooperatives,
political action)
– Successful at the state level
– Munn v. Illinois: states won the right to regulate RR
Interstate Commerce Act
– 1886: States cannot set rates for interstate commerce; this is the
national government’s authority
The Panic of 1893
– 600 banks and 15,000 businesses fail; 3 million people lose jobs
– RR were then taken over by the likes of Morgan and Vanderbilt
– By 1900, 2/3 of the nation’s RR tracks were owned by seven companies
Carnegie’s Innovations
• Management Techniques
– Hired the best chemists and metallurgists;
employed the newest techniques and
machines in his plants; offered stock to his
assistants; encouraged competition
amongst them to increase production
• Business Strategies
– Vertical integration
– Horizontal integration
– By 1901 Carnegie produced 80% of the
nation’s steel
Social Darwinism and Business
• Principles of Social Darwinism
– Grew out of Darwin’s theory of biological evolution
– success of a few and the failure of others justified the Laissez-faire
economic principle
– Herbert Spencer applied Darwin to business: Free competition would
ensure survival of the fittest
• A New Definition of Success
– This idea natural was endorsed by the nation’s 4,000 millionaires.
– However, Protestants bought into it as well: personal responsibility
and blame.
– Riches were a sign of God’s blessing; the poor must be lazy or inferior
– Popular novels chronicled this: Horatio Alger “rags to riches” stories
were very popular
Business Boom Bypasses the South
• Economic Causes
• Social Causes

Industrialization - Rowan County Schools