political system during the turn of the century


During the gilded age America was going through rapid economic changes that resulted in lots of americans being mistreated at work. Rich men who ran large corporations filled with hard working americans using their wealth to persuade or buy votes or have laws made in their favor.

Politics through history has always been viewed as a wealthy mans game. Things Started to change during this era. the people’s party was created it was created by farmers and laborers to help fight back against corruption and give a voice to the masses. these people believed that the large corporations where a huge part of the issues america was facing. Large businesses and their wealthy owners would create political machines these where ran by political bosses these people controlled voting, business licenses, and jobs. They also had a strong hold on laws in the United stages these bosses often rewarded people for their votes or Helped immigrants get citizenship in exchange for their vote. Resulting in elections swaying in their favor.

Women during this time were referred to as “new women” as they began playing a major role in the united states.  Going from just a house wife. they began stepping into these areas hoping to have their voices heard. Seeking the respect they deserved. however, they still weren’t able to vote until 20 years later.  African Americans of this era had “The right to vote” but this didn’t mean they had a fair vote. 55% of African Americans during this time were considered illiterate. the poles were typically set up in such a manor that you had to read and understand who was who on the ballots. this was set this way to minimize the voice the african american community had.

labor workers in this era counted heavily on their factory jobs and the owners and management knew this. They knew that if they spoke out and lost their job they didn’t have any others skills to get any other jobs. owners built company towns designated for their works to stay and live it was just another way for the corporations to control their work force. This struck fear in people who ultimately just decided to stay quite and vote in the corporations favor.

The era brought great change for america. both economically and politically. this era marked the ending of abuse in factories and controlling workers. People began to make higher wages and have more leazure time. laws where set in place to help stop corrupt owners and politics. Finally the working class had money and a sense of power.

Keene, Jennifer D. Visions of America: A History of the United States. 3rd ed., vol. 2, Pearson, 2017.

 

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7 thoughts on “political system during the turn of the century

  1. You’re right. Things did change in this era. Parties were formed such as the people’s party. This gave the everyday person a voice politically. Substance wise, your post is solid. Next time though, have someone proof read this for you.

  2. This is very accurate, did you know that this era also had a large impact on young children as well. due to their living conditions, the streets were filthy. these were the same streets where people sold all kinds of goods including food. the water was also contaminated from all the horse mender. This all lead to a epidemic in health issues leading to many deaths in children under five years old. A institution was established in the 1880 that focused on helping the poor with many services, one of those services was healthcare.

  3. While workers did make some gains in rights during the Gilded Age (such as winning shorter work days, which increased leisure time), it does not seem accurate to characterize it as the “ending of abuse in factories” or anything in that manner. This period was still marked with general political inaction regarding workers’ rights – federally, lobbying by massive corporations was too strong for much regulation or policy to prevail in favor of laborers. The Pullman Strike, for example, led to federal troops being deployed on strikers by President Cleveland, and the People’s Party failed to take hold with its pro-worker and pro-farmer platform in the later Gilded Age.

    1. I should clarify that the People’s Party did have some success at the state level and many of its policies would come into fruition later during the Progressive Era, but in federal offices it struggled to make an impact.

  4. Very good information. It was very hard for African Americans to vote, they sometimes had to prove that they could read just to vote. This was the time that workers finally had a voice, and could finally be able to live a life outside of work.

  5. The first paragraph in this blog had my mind thinking. It made me stop and think about how those wealthy men got there. Were they hard working Americans as well? Or because they are in charge of all the other people doing heavier labor does their job lesson on the “hard working” spectrum? What I liked about your blog, was it began to touch on why you made it sound as if they were lesser in their field. You exampled very well on both sides of sexes and touched on many examples. Farmers and laborers fought to be heard and I thought you worded this very well! Good job!

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