Americans Struggle with Postwar Issues *Normalcy* & Isolationism

Americans Struggle with Postwar Issues
“Normalcy” & Isolationism
The Business of America
The 1920s
Politics of the Roaring Twenties
What Soldiers Left…
President Woodrow Wilson
Wilson’s “crusade” for
A traditionalist America.
A society that wanted to get
involved with world affairs.
What Soldiers Came Back To…
A world power that strived for President Warren G. Harding
advancement, change, and
A thriving America, but not
joyous for all…
“America's present need is not
heroics but healing; not
nostrums but normalcy; not
revolution but restoration.”
-President Warren G. Harding
Americans Struggle with Postwar Issues
The Impact of WWI on the USA
4,743,826 Active Serving Troops
53,515 Troops Killed in Battle (or as a result of…)
320,710 US Casualties
But Americans Desired A New Path
1. Nativism
2. Isolationism
3. Conservatism
Changes Toward “Normalcy”
“A sociopolitical policy favoring the interests of
established inhabitants over those of immigrants.”
“A national policy of abstaining from political or
economic relations with other countries.”
“Belief in the value of established and traditional
practices in politics and society.”
Why is the idea of nativism
dangerous or “un-American”?
It creates an “us” verse “them” mentality.
Breeds racist ideas.
A Cause Behind:
The Red Scare.
The second rise of the KKK.
The trial of Sacco & Vanzetti.
The Red Scare
The Russian Revolution of 1917
Lenin led a communist uprising in
Russia to establish the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR).
Peace, Land, and Bread
“Freedom in capitalist society
always remains about the same
as it was in ancient Greek
republics: Freedom for slave
owners.” – Vladimir Lenin & his call
for a communist revolution.
The Red Scare
Small communist party formed in the United States
during WWI, but did not get much attention.
After the war, focus turned toward the communists.
Fear was understandable… a small group had caused a revolution
in Russia, what was stopping it from happening in the US?
Soviet communists were “champions of the workers”.
American communists also sided with labor unions.
Americans were fed up with strikes, and thus connected labor
unions to communist activity.
The Red Scare
The Red Scare of 1920
The Palmer Raids
A. Mitchell Palmer
After anarchists bombed his home:
Few saw the difference between
anarchists and communists.
Palmer Raids resulted:
12 different cities conducted raids
on anarchist meetings. Over 650
workers were arrested.
J. Edgar Hoover
Head of the Bureau of Investigation (Later known as the FBI)
KKK in 1920
Peaked at over 5 million
members in 1923.
Desired to protect an
“ideal American life” from
Catholics, Jews, and
immigrant “corruption.”
Black Lynching in the United
States from 1920-1929
1920 – 53
1921- 59
1922 – 51
1923 – 29
1924 – 16
1925 – 17
1926 – 23
1927 – 16
1928 – 10
1929 – 7
Total Killed: 281
NAACP Blots of Shame Map
The Ku Klux Klan
Sacco & Vanzetti
Nicola Sacco
Bartolomeo Vanzetti
3 Strikes of
Sacco & Vanzetti
Location (Boston)
“If it had not been for these things, I might have lived out my
life talking at street corners to scorning men. I might have died,
unmarked, unknown, a failure. Now we are not a failure.
This is our career and our triumph. Never in our full life could
we hope to do such work for tolerance, for justice, for man's
understanding of man as now we do by accident. Our words —
our lives — our pains — nothing! The taking of our lives — lives
of a good shoemaker and a poor fish-peddler — all! That last
moment belongs to us — that agony is our triumph.”
Bartolomeo Vanzetti
Return to “Normalcy”
Seen in the clashing
ideals of the 1920s
(The Old v. The New)
Seen in the policies of
Warren G. Harding &
Calvin Coolidge.
Flappers v. Traditionalists
Prohibition & Crime
Kellog-Briand Pact
Fordney-McCumber Tariff
Quota System