The Rola of The Gilded Age in America

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The Gilded Age served an enormously critical role in shaping the American economy throughout the 18th and 19th centuries. Manufacturing needs from the Civil War, advances in science and technology shifted the American economy into industrialization. Cities quickly became flooded with immigrants and workers from every corner of the country, creating a pool of cheap labor. Railways expanded massively, connecting the nation’s major cities and generating a nationwide marketplace for business to compete. A combination of industrialization, technology, and urbanization transformed the standard of living. During this time, much of the rapid growth that occurred was led by significant inventions that were created.

In the midst of the industrial economy exploding, people saw a wave of opportunity in the marketplace, and a chance to innovate further. There was value in delivering a products, and services that could be beneficial to people, businesses, and society. The timing of innovation often varied from one industry to another, having a ripple effect. Although, this resulted in an unprecedented level of productivity across every field. Profits for businesses were rising from the continuously increasing levels of production, while former workshops were replaced with assembly lines and factories. Larger scale production made economic sense to businessmen as it decreased the overhead costs.

While some people pursued career opportunities in the American frontier, others looked for new ways of doing things incorporating technology. Thomas Edison was one such person. In 1876, he and his colleagues opened an invention workshop in Menlo Park, New Jersey, where they intended to turn out “a minor invention every ten days and a big thing every s...

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...ation.Sir Henry says, converted wrought-iron bars into Bessemer cast steel in thirty minutes, wholly without skilled manipulation.

Reducing costs, labor, and time required to make steel using this valuable process allowed the creation of some of the most remarkable construction projects in history. The Bessemer process had an impact not only on on the manufacturing system, but largely in the US economy. The mass production allowed for, the possibility to use steel in the construction of buildings, bridges, and railroad lines. These infrastructures were crucial to the success of the US economy as it migrated to a free enterprise economy.

Each of these innovations and developments increased productivity, and was the backbone behind the the growth that occured during the Gilded age. Newly created jobs were meeting the demand from the population
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