Chapter 16
Normalcy and Good Times
1921 - 1929
Presidential Politics
• The Harding
 Product of the Ohio
political machine
 Won the presidency in
1920 on the slogan
“Return to Normalcy” –
a return to normal life
after WWI
 Harding very popular
I wonder how
many of these
kids are
gonna pass
the quiz?
President Warren G. Harding
Presidential Politics
• The Ohio Gang
I heard that we
won’t even get to
use notes on the
quiz!! Oh Crap! What
will we do now?
Maybe we’ll
actually have to
 Harding gave many
government posts to
friends and political
allies who were former
poker-playing buddies
 These friends sold
jobs, pardons, and
medical supplies from
VA hospitals
Presidential Politics
• Harding died of a heart
• Teapot Dome and other
 Sec of Interior, Albert Fall,
allowed private companies
to lease lands containing
US Navy oil reserves
 Fall convicted – sent to
 AG Harry Daugherty –
claimed immunity or
freedom from prosecution
 Forced to resign after
taking bribes
The Presidents - Harding
Presidential Politics
• The Coolidge
 Honest and capable
 Took office upon death
of Harding
 Believed that
prosperity rested on
business leadership
 Kept government out
of the way of business
President Calvin Coolidge
Presidential Politics
• The Election of 1924
 Took Democrats 103
attempts to find a
candidate that was
acceptable – John Davis
 Coolidge ran on slogan
“Keep Cool with Coolidge”
 Farm. Labor, and religious
activists formed the
Progressive Party and
nominated Robert La
 Coolidge won the
A Growing Economy
• American wages
increased while work
hours decreased
• Mass Production –
large-scale product
manufacturing usually
done by machinery
created more supply
and reduced
consumer costs
A Growing Economy
• The Assembly Line
 First adopted by
carmaker Henry Ford
 Divided operations into
simple tasks that
unskilled workers
could do and cut
unnecessary motion to
a minimum
 Building one car went
from 12 hours to 93
A Growing Economy
 The Model T – price in
1908 was $850, in 1914
$490, and in 1924 $295
 Lower the cost of the car –
increase volume of sales
 Ford undercut unions by
raising wages to $5 a day
and reducing work hours to
8-hour shifts
 Ford’s success brought
competition from new
companies General Motors
and Chrysler
“You can get the car in any color you want as long as
it’s black” – Henry Ford
A Growing Economy
This would be
so cool if we
actually had
some gas!
 The auto industry
spurred growth in
other industries
including rubber,
glass, nickel and lead
 The automobile went
from a rich man’s toy
to a necessity for the
middle class
 Commuting became a
new phenomenon
A Growing Economy
• Consumer Goods
 More disposable income
spurred new products like
electric razors, disposable
 Labor-saving devices like
electric irons, vacuum
cleaners, and washing
 More emphasis on fashion
and personal care like
mouthwash, deodorants,
and cosmetics
A Growing Economy
• The Airline Industry
 Wright Brothers
 Glenn Curtiss
Made innovations in
design that allowed
rigid wings and much
larger aircraft
Invented first flying boat
 Charles Lindbergh
1927 first solo flight
across Atlantic
Plane named Spirit of
St. Louis
A Growing Economy
• The Radio Industry
 1926 National Broadcasting
Company (NBC) established
 By 1927 almost 700 radio
stations dotted the country
 1928 Columbia Broadcasting
System (CBS) created coastto-coast network
 Radios provided entertainment
in home and advertising
A Growing Economy
• Higher wages / shorter
hours created national
spending spree
• Easy consumer credit
caused many Americans
to go into debt to buy
• Pre-1920’s debt was
considered shamefulnow attitudes changed
• Many bought products on
“installment plan”
A Growing Economy
• Industries began to develop more complex
structure requiring the hiring of managers
• Caused the rise of business schools
• Expanded the size of the middle class
• Welfare Capitalism – companies allowed
workers to buy stock, profit-share, and
receive medical care and pensions
A Growing Economy
• Unions lost influence due to more generous
benefits from management
• Businesses promoted the Open Shop –
workplaces where employees were not required
to join the union
• Farmers left out of the prosperity of 1920’s
• Technology allowed more crops but demand
remained low
• The Fordney-McCumber Act raised tariffs that
actually decreased demand for US farm
Policies of Prosperity
• The Mellon Program
What are you
looking at?
Secretary of the Treasury – Andrew Mellon
 Andrew Mellon was
Secretary of the Treasury
under Harding, Coolidge,
and Hoover
 Mellon focused on reducing
debt, balancing the budget,
and lowering taxes
 The idea that lowering
taxes would cause people
to spend more and thus the
government would collect
even more taxes is called
supply-side economics
Policies of Prosperity
• Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover
• Encouraged
manufacturers and
distributors to form their
own trade associations
which would voluntarily
share information with the
federal government - This
was called cooperative
• This would reduce costs
and promote economic
Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover
Policies of Prosperity
• Trade and Arms Control
 After WWI, America was
the dominant economic
power in the world
 Most Americans did not
want their country
involved in world affairs.
This was called
 America was too
powerful NOT to be a
part of the world
Policies of Prosperity
• The Dawes Plan (Charles
 European Allies owed US
money from war but they
could not make the
 The Allies were making
Germany pay reparations –
payments as punishment
for starting the war
 Germany could not pay
 US made deal that US
would loan money to
Germany to pay the Allies
so the Allies could pay the
Policies of Prosperity
• The Washington Conference
Meeting of US and eight major countries to
halt arms race
Secretary of State Charles Evan Hughes
proposed a 10-year moratorium (a pause) on
construction of warships
The Kellogg-Briand Pact – US and 14 nations
signed pact to ban/outlaw war
Four Power Treaty
US, Great Britain,
France, Japan
All agreed to respect
each other’s territory
in the Pacific
Mutual defense of other
co-signers not specified
Full and open
negotiations in event
of disagreements
Five Power Treaty
Nine Power Treaty
US, Great Britain,
France, Japan, Italy
US, Great Britain,
France, Japan, Italy,
Belgium, China, The
Netherlands, Portugal
All agreed to freeze
naval production at
1921 levels and halt
production of large
warships for 10 years
No restrictions on
construction of
smaller ships such as
submarines and
US and Great Britain
would not build new
naval bases in the
Western Pacific
Did not place
restrictions on land
All agreed to preserve
equal commercial
rights to China – a
reassertion of the
Open Door Policy
No enforcement of the
terms of Open Door
Policy specified
• President Coolidge’s simple and frugal manner
contrasted with the booming, materialistic era called
• Roaring Twenties
• Harding’s Secretary of the Interior, Albert Fall, was
implicated in what scandal?
• Teapot Dome
• What system of production was adopted by Henry Ford
• The Assembly Line
• To create consumers for their products, manufacturers
turned to…
• Advertising
• Henry Ford changed the automobile from a toy of the
wealthy to a necessity of the…
• Middle Class
• What crippled the German economy after WWI?
• Reparation payments
• What was Hoover’s philosophy regarding business and
• Cooperative individualism
• Friends of President Harding who were appointed to
government jobs were called…
• The Ohio Gang
• What raised tariffs to protect US businesses (but hurt
• The Fordney-McCumber Act
• What was the policy of avoiding involvement in foreign
• Isolationism
• What is large-scale manufacturing usually be machinery
• Mass production
• A fancy word for a pause in something…
• A Moratorium
• What pact or agreement outlawed war?
• The Kellogg-Briand Pact
• What was Harding’s campaign slogan in
• Return to Normalcy
• What is another word for freedom from
• Immunity
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