Directions: Read and annotate the following secondary and primary sources. Answer all questions in this packet. You can use your own paper if you need more room. Turn in packet and your responses at the end of the block. If you finish early you can begin discusssing the next group task titled “Political Machines.” Political Machines Key terms Political Machines: In U.S. politics, a political organization that controls enough votes to maintain political and administrative control of its community. Tammany Hall: the Democratic Party political machine that played a major role in controlling New York City politics and helping immigrants, most notably the Irish, rise up in American politics from the 1790s to the 1960s. Boss Tweed: politician most famous for his leadership of Tammany Hall, the Democratic Party political machine that played a major role in the politics of 19th century New York. Polls: The place were votes are cast Constituency: People, particularly voters, who are served by a political organization Naturalized: To become a citizen Expedited: To speed up the process The rapid growth of cities in the 19th century created huge problems for city governments, which were often poorly organized and unable to provide services. Enterprising politicians were able to win support by offering favors, including jobs, housing, and citizenship, in exchange for votes. Though machines often helped to restructure city governments to the benefit of their constituents, they just as often resulted in poorer service (when jobs were doled out as political rewards), corruption (when contracts or concessions were awarded in return for kickbacks), and aggravation of racial or ethnic hostilities (when the machine did not reflect the city's diversity). Famous machines include those of William Magear Tweed (New York), James Michael Curley (Boston), Thomas Pendergast (Kansas City, Mo.), and Richard J. Daley (Chicago). The rapid growth of American cities in the 19th century, owing to both immigration and migration from rural areas, created huge problems for city governments, which were often poorly structured and unable to provide services. In these conditions, political machines, such as Tammany Hall, run by William Magear Tweed (Boss Tweed) (1823–73) in New York City, were able to build a loyal voter following, especially among immigrant groups, by performing such favors as providing jobs or housing. Political machines are characterized by a disciplined and hierarchical organization, reaching down from wards to neighborhoods and block organizers that enable the machine to respond to the problems of individual neighborhoods, or even families, in exchange for loyalty at the polls. Tammany Hall’s electoral base lay predominantly with New York’s growing immigrant constituency, which often exchanged political support for Tammany Hall’s help. The extralegal services that Tammany and other urban political machines offered served as a rudimentary public welfare system. The patronage Tammany Hall provided to immigrants, many of whom lived in extreme poverty and received little government assistance, covered three key areas. First, Tammany provided the means of physical existence in times of emergency: food, coal, rent money or a job. Second, Tammany served as a powerful intermediary between immigrants and the unfamiliar state. In an example of their involvement in the lives of citizens, in the course of one day, Tammany figure George Washington Plunkitt assisted the victims of a house fire; secured the release of six "drunks" by speaking on their behalf to a judge; paid the rent of a poor family to prevent their eviction and gave them money for food; secured employment for four individuals; attended the funerals of two of his constituents (one Italian, the other Jewish); attended a Bar Mitzvah; and attended the wedding of a Jewish couple from his ward. Tammany Hall also served by helping immigrants to become naturalized citizens. One example was the massively expedited, although legally questionable, naturalization process organized by William M. Tweed. Under Tweed special naturalization committees were established to complete the forms, pay the fees and obtain the witnesses necessary for naturalizing immigrants, and judges were compelled to expedite naturalization proceedings. Boss Tweed Tammany Hall URBAN POLITICAL MACHINES Interpreting Primary Sources An army led by a council seldom conquers: It must have a commander-in-chief, who settles disputes, decides in emergencies, inspires fear or attachment. The head of the Ring is such a commander. He dispenses places, rewards the loyal, punishes the mutinous, concocts schemes, negotiates treaties. He generally avoids publicity, preferring the substance to the pomp of power, and is all the more dangerous because he sits, like a spider, hidden in the midst of his web. He is a Boss. --Lord James Bryce Have you ever though what would become of the country if the bosses were put out of business, and their places were taken by a lot of cart-tail orators and college graduates? It would mean chaos. It would be just like takin' a lot of dry-goods clerks and settin' them to run express trains on the New York Central Railroad. It makes my heart bleed to think of it. --George Washington Plunkitt The Alderman...bails out his constitutents when they are arrested, or says a good word to the police justice when they appear before him for trial; uses his "pull" with the magistrate when they are likely to be fined for a civil misdemeanor, or sees what he can do to "fix up matters" with the State's attorney when the charge is really a serious one. Because of simple friendliness, the Alderman is expected to pay rent for the hard-pressed tenant when no rent is forthcoming, to find jobs when work is hard to get, to procure and divide among his constituents all the places which he can seize from the City Hall.... The question does, of course, occur to many minds, Where does the money come from[?]...He...sells out the city franchises...he makes deal with the franchise-seeking companies...he guarantees to steer dubious measures through the [City] Council, for which he demands liberal pay.... --Jane Addams Boss Magee's idea was not to corrupt the city government, but to be it; not to hire votes in councils, but to own councilmen; and so, having seized control of his organization, he nominated cheap or dependent men for the select and common councils. Relatives and friends were his first recourse, then came bartenders, saloonkeepers, liquor dealers.... Businessmen came almost as cheap as politicians, and they came also at the city's expense....The manufacturers and the merchants were kept well in hand by little municipal grants and privileges.... --Lincoln Steffins on corruption in Pittsburgh, 1904 The civil service of the government has become a mere instrument of partisan tyranny and personal ambition, and an object of selfish greed. It is a scandal and reproach upon free institutions, and breeds a demoralization dangerous to the perpetuity of republican government. We therefore regard such thorough reforms of the civil service as one of the most pressing necessities of the hour; that honesty, capacity, and fidelity, constitute the only valid claims to public employment.... --Liberal Republican Platform, 1872 Questions to think about: 1. Were urban political machines evil? 2. What functions did they serve? 3. Which groups opposed the political machines? Why? INTERPRETING STATISTICS: ETHNOCULTURAL VOTING PATTERNS, 1870-1892 Proportion Democratic Immigrants Dutch Reformed German Catholic German Lutheran Irish Catholic Irish Protestant Polish Catholic Swedish Lutheran Native Born North Baptist 45 Congregational Methodist Presbyterian South Baptist 60 Disciples of Christ Presbyterian 30 85 55 95 5 95 10 Proportion Republican 70 15 45 5 95 5 90 55 10 10 30 90 90 70 40 60 55 40 45 Questions to think about: 1. Which groups were most likely to vote Democratic? Republican? 2. Is there a connection between religion and ethnicity and voting patterns? 3. Do the same patterns hold true today? THE RISE OF THE CITY Interpreting Primary Sources Today, what is a tenement? "It is generally a brick building from four to six stories high on the street, frequently with a store on the first floor which, when used for the sale of liquor, has a side opening for the benefit of the inmates and to evade the Sunday law; four families occupy each floor, and a set of rooms consists of one or two dark closets, used as bedrooms, with a living room twelve feet by ten. The staircase is too often a dark well in the center of the house, and no direct through ventilation is possible, each family being separated from the other by partitions. Frequently the rear of the lot is occupied by another building of three stories high with two families on a floor." It no longer excites even passing attention, when the Sanitary police report counting 101 adults and 91 children in a Crosby Street House....Or when a midnight inspection in Mulbury Street unearths a hundred and fifty "lodgers" sleeping on filthy floors in two buildings....The tenements today are New York, harboring threefourths of its population.... --Jacob Riis, 1890 In most large cities...there are too many scattered efforts, aiming in a desultory manner at this and that particular evil, resulting from the condition of the children of the streets. There is no unity of plan and of work....So threatening is the danger in every populous town from the children who are neglected, that the best talent ought to be engaged to study their condition and devise their improvement....We would not breathe a word against the absolute necessity of Christianity in any scheme of thorough social reform....To attempt to prevent or cure the fearful moral diseases of our lowest classes without Christianity, is like trying to carry through a sanitary reform in a city without sunlight. --Charles Loring Brace, 1872 Heretofore the church has addressed itself to the inner life and left the home to supply a healthy environment; but this the congested tenement cannot do; the socialized church therefore provides certain home conditions which are absolutely essential to normal life and growth....Under the assimilating influence of the Parish House, foreigners are being Americanized....Another admirable institution is the Loan Association which has saved many from falling into the clutches of Shylock....Clinics,--medical, surgical, dental, eye, ear, throat, and nose,-are held daily except Sundays. --Josiah Strong Never before in civilization have such numbers of young girls been suddenly released from the protection of the home and permitted to walk unattended upon city streets....Never before have such numbers of young boys earned money independently of the family life, and felt themselves free to spend it as they choose in the midst of vice deliberately disguised as pleasure....Let us know the modern city in its weakness and wickedness, and then seek to rectify and purify it until it shall be free at least from the grosser temptations which now beset the young people who are living in its tenement houses and working in its factories. --Jane Addams Questions to think about: 1. What political, economic, and moral problems were raised by the late 19th and early 20th century city? 2. How did reformers propose to solve the problems of the city? INTERPRETING STATISTICS: THE GROWTH OF CITIES Urban Growth 1860 1900 7 32 Number of Cities 100,000-499,999 500,000 or more 2 6 Percent of total population 100,000-499,999 500,000 or more 4 4 8 11 Question to think about: 1. What factors contributed to the growth of cities in the late 19th century? 2. How does life in a very large city differ from that in smaller cities and towns? Deaths per 100,000: Boston, New York, New Orleans, and Philadelphia 1864-1888 1899-1913 Tuberculosis Intestinal Disorders 365 223 299 196 Diphtheria 123 58 Typhoid Typhus 66 19 Smallpox 53 25 Questions to think about: 1. Why were death rates so high in 19th century cities? 2. What factors contributed to a decline in urban death rates? Concentration of Immigrant Groups in Cities, 1890 Native Born Americans Chinese Germans 48 Irish Poles Russians Italians Percent in Cities of 25,000 or more 18 40 56 57 58 59 Question to think about: 1. Which groups of Americans were most likely to live in cities? least likely? 2. What difference might it have made that native born Americans were unlikely to live in large cities?