Second Industrial Revolution (1865-1900)
through numerous discoveries and inventions. The original industrial revolution was ignited by the discovery of
the goods that generated economic growth.
was ignited and
Coal feed steam engines powered factories and the factories produced
• • • • •
The second revolution was spurred by the development of steel. Steel was used to construct:
heavy machinery railroad tracks bridges tall city buildings (skyscrapers)
• Steel could be produced as early as the mid-1800’s, but the process was so expensive that it was not practical. This changed in 1859 when two gentlemen (one from Great Britain and one from the U. S.) developed a process (called the
) that used a blast of hot air to burn off impurities.
• Those men were
William Kelley (U. S.) and Henry Bessemer (G. B.).
More steel was produced in a day than the old process could produce in a week. An American engineer named by 1900.
adapted the Bessemer process and improved it. Steel production went from production of 15,000 tons in 1865 to more than 28 million
• • • • allowed for the developments of industrial cities such as Gary, Indiana; Cleveland, Ohio; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania and West Virginia provided most of the coal that fueled steel production.
allowed the railroad industry to replace their old iron rails with stronger steel rails that lasted much longer.
builders began to use steel to build buildings and bridges. Buildings could be built higher and bridges built longer due to the stronger substance.
steel’s resistance to rust made it ideal for used in wire and nails.
• Petroleum had been used early on by Native Americans for medicinal purposes and to grease wagons and tools. • By the late 1850’s, a process for refining crude oil into kerosene had been perfected and this could be used to burn in lamps or used as a fuel. It was a cheap substitute for whale oil (which was hard to acquire).
• Demand for crude oil became great and a man named
used in steam engine to drill for oil near
Titusville, Pennsylvania in 1859
and his efforts proved successful. It was called early on because it seemed so impractical to drill for oil. Once the well started producing about 20 barrels a day, those skeptics hurried to dig their own wells and the scene mirrored the Golf Rush of 1849. The crude oil was called ‘Black Gold’. By 1880, 25 million barrels was priced by Pennsylvania alone. Ohio and West Virginia also had oil wells dotting their countryside.
• • •
kerosene waxes lubricating oils
• A son of runaway salves (
) developed a
that fed oil to parts of a machine while it was running. He received a patent to sell the invention and it helped many kinds of machines to operate more smoothly and efficiently.
(Second Industrial Revolution)
When the price of steel was reduced from about 100 dollars to about 12 dollars a ton by 1873, railroad companies made the decision to lay thousands of miles of new track that would be much stronger and efficient.
Early on, rail lines were not long. An individual line would not extend further than 100 miles long and served local transportation needs. You didn’t have any large railroad corporations. In order to get from New York to Chicago in 1860, you would change lines 17 times over 2 days. By 1870, you could make the trip in a day with no changes.
• The first transcontinental railroad was completed in 1869 when the
were joined to create a line that ran from Omaha, Nebraska to the Pacific Ocean
. Leland Stanford
( a railroad tycoon) drove the final spoke at
Promontory Point, Utah in 1869
. By 1900, there were numerous trunk lines that ran from the Great Plains to the Pacific Ocean.
Railroad locomotives improved and made the trips quicker. A man named
George Westinghouse Granville Woods
developed an came up with a
that increased railroad safety by allowing the locomotive and all the cars to stop at the same time.
communication system between trains
were laid in order for trains to travel in both direction without problem. Also, a and improved the air brake. Track improved when two sets of tracks
standard gauge was adopted
so that trains would be more efficient and transfers didn’t have to take place so often.
• • • • • • • • •
small towns and communities linked to large population centers increase in western settlement urban growth increased many jobs were produced other industries thrive (need for locomotives, rails and rail cars) refrigerated cars developed for transferring perishable foods.
products can sold on a national level a national standard time system developed in order for railroads to run on schedule.
popular culture and folk music is affected as songs about ‘Casey Jones’ and the ‘Wabash Cannonball’ become standards.
• A French military officer named inefficient.
Nicholas A. Otto
in the future.
developed the original automobile. It was steam powered and developed the first gasoline fueled internal combustion engine in 1876 and the first ‘practical’ car built in the United States was in 1893 by
Charles and J. Frank Duryea
. Americans first used cars in their everyday lives in the early 1900’s, but they were so expensive that only the wealthy could afford them. It did establish a new industry, though, that would promised to grow
Orville and Wilbur Wright
conducted the first successful test of an airplane on
December 17th of 1903 in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina
. It lasted only 12 seconds but proved that flight was possible and sent the message that a new industry was possible.
Samuel F. B. Morse’s
communication over wires with electricity led to the development of a company called distances.
1837 invention that allowed for
. By 1866, the company had 2,000 telegraph offices that sent messages using
which was a dot and dash code that allowed communication over long
• In 1876, homes.
Alexander Graham Bell
successfully demonstrated the telephone at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. By the end of the century, over one million has been installed in offices ands
Early phones required operators to connect persons and a new job industry was formed which hired women.
documents to be produced that were easily legible, He sold the patent to developed the typewriter in 1867. It allowed for
E. Remington & Sons
. His first keyboard is essentially what is still used today on our compute keyboards. Carbon paper was used to produce the first copies of documents.
The typewriter proved to be another job opportunity for women.
Arguably the greatest inventor of all time was Thomas Alva Edison.
• • • • • • •
a telegraph that could send four messages at once over the same line.
the electric light bulb the phonograph the motion picture machine the electric vote recorder the telegraphic stock ticker opened the first electric power plant
• George Westinghouse and Nikola Tesa developed AC (alternating current) electrical current. It was more efficient than Edison’s early patent. This AC power allowed for cities to be lighted at night with electricity rather than gaslights and to provide transportation through electric streetcars rather than horse-drawn carriages.