Chapter 8

The Red Scare
• Following WWI, identify
those factors in that led
directly to a Red Scare in the
U.S. (Why was the U.S. ripe
for a Red Scare at the time?)
Following WWI, the United States:
• The enemy =
Foreign anarchists and communists
• The solution =
The Palmer Raids
• The Result
• ??????
At the end of this lesson you should
be able to:
• Identify the Red Scare
• List 3 characteristics of bolshevism and
why its spread was feared by Americans
• Identify Mitchell Palmer and describe his
policies to ‘defend’ America
• Identify at least 3 separate examples of
labor unrest in 1919, the reasons why they
came about, the outcome
Palmer Raids
• A. What behavior did he exhibit?
• B. What prompted the behavior?
• C. Did the public support or oppose
Palmer’s actions?
• D. What is your view of Palmer’s
actions from today’s perspective?
• E. Can you envision a situation
where you may feel differently?
Galleani (bottom)
Bombing at
Washington D.C. home
of Attorney-General
Literary Digest, 6/14/19
Political Spectrum and Palmer
Where do most Americans fall on the
What types of groups may have helped
someone as extreme as Palmer gain
Labor Unrest
• Post War Recession
• High inflation, low pay,
poor working conditions
• > 3, 600 strikes in 1919
• What did they want?
• Were they successful?
Seattle General Strike
• Began in shipyard (35, 000 workers)
• War-time wage-freeze was not lifted
• 110 other unions sympathized and
shut down the city
• Mayor Ole Hanson armed his police
force and threatened martial law and
federal troops
• Arrested IWW leaders
• Closed the Union Record (labor-owned
daily newspaper)
• Broke the strike within 1 week
Political Spectrum concerning
US Steel Strike
• Working Conditions
• Worked 24 hours straight
each time worker changed
from day to night shift
• Union wanted one day’s rest
• Elbert Gary (head of US
Steel) refused
• Got press to portray strikers
as radicals
• Provoked riots, hired
police/soldiers to break up
strikers, raided meetings
• 18 strikers killed
• None of union demands
were met
Coal Strike
• Only lasted 1 month
(fall of 1919)
• President Wilson
ordered them back to
• None of their demands
were met
Boston Police Strike
• Labeled as “Bolshevistic”
by press
• Theft, looting were
• Coolidge-”There is no
right to strike against the
public safety by anybody,
anywhere, anytime.”
• The propaganda launched by George
Creel and the Committee of Public Safety
taught Americans to hate the Germans.
This hatred was transferred to a new
enemy, radicals. Over 6, 000 citizens and
immigrants, some guilty, some not, were
denied their rights and deported or worse.
Labor unions, portrayed in the press as
being controlled by radicals, met with little
or no success.