The industrial revolution reshaped America’s cities, society and way of life in the 1800’s. America is what it is today because of this shift from farmers, craftsmen, and merchants to factory workers, working middle class, and the wealthy class. News ways of transporting goods by using canals, steamboats and trains helped jump start the revolution. The invention of the cotton gin reshaped American slavery, shifting it to the Deep South. The rise of factories led to a new working class of semi-skilled and unskilled workers. All three of these things are responsible for the industrial revolution and bring America in the modern world of today.
During the 1800’s, America was going through a time of invention and discovery known as the Industrial Revolution. America was in its first century of being an independent nation and was beginning to make the transition from a “home producing” nation to a technological one. The biggest contribution to this major technological advancement was the establishment of the Transcontinental Railroad because it provided a faster way to transport goods, which ultimately boosted the economy and catapulted America to the Super Power it is today.
The American Revolution, lasting from 1775 to 1781, followed with the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. According to an article, The Industrial Revolution in America, “all thirteen original states of the newly established United States ratified the constitution.” America had four fundamental changes that increased this remarkable economic growth which according to the book Understanding the American Promise, “Millions of Americans moved from farms to towns and cities. Factory workers increased to about 20 percent of the labor force by 1860. A shift from water power to steam as a source of energy raised productivity, especially in factories and transportation. Railroads in particular harnesses stream power, speeding transport and cutting costs. And Agricultural productivity nearly doubled between 1800 and 1860, spurring the nation’s economic growth than any other factor.” Basically these major changes did not cause a sudden discontinuity in America’s economy or society since much of the land was manly agriculture and the production continued to be the same. Some historians often refer to the 1840’s and 1850’s to be better termed as “industrial
In a matter of time, Great Britain was the first to go through the Industrialization phase. “The pace of Industrialization accelerated rapidly”. (Beck, 723) Industrialization had eventually spread to the United States. These two nations have many things in common in regards of the process and impacts of this era. Both nations had natural resources such as large bodies of water, new inventions, rivers, coal deposits, iron ore, and many laborers (Beck, 729)...
The economy of the United States became strong rapidly after the Civil War. Before the Civil War and immediately thereafter, businesses in the U.S were not large and a small market was targeted. The incapacity of the businesses to expand was attributed to the fact that there was little capital to fund expansion. Furthermore, technology was not yet at its best and thus the volume of production was much lower given the fact that human labor was heavily relied on. As a result, there was need to establish a bigger market for businesses and widen the scope of operation. In the period between 1870 and 1900, commonly referred to as the Gilded Age, there were remarkable advances in technology. “Technology as a supplement to the slower human labor
The Industrial Revolution changed America’s exceedingly in more positive than negative ways. The American industrial revolution has its roots in the Industrial Revolution which began in England. The demand for cotton was huge during this time. Many new industries that helped America’s business were developed, but some treated their workers poorly. Also, many new forms of transportation and communication were developed and improved. Agriculture became industrialized by teaming up with some industries to produce the needs of Americans and many immigrants. This event helped the U.S.’s population and economy to grow, even though it had some malicious things that went on it was still more positive than negative.
These powerful companies that have become large and powerful, such as the railroad industries, mining companies, and textile factories to name a few, helped to shape the United States through several government assistance. They were encouraged to aim their efforts at settling the west either directly through the laying of hundreds of miles of track for trains, or mining for coal, the chief source of fuel for almost all forms of daily activities. In addition to this, the U.S. government had hoped to become a larger part on international trade with other countries. To do this the American government needed to provide an open market so that these companies could grow uninhibited and not be delayed by regulations and restrictive policies. I think that almost anyone can agree that it is this freedom that is allowed to these companies that made a shift in the economy forcing workers to move to the cities and provide the necessary workforce to support the rapidly growing industries.
Industrialization is the process in which a society transforms itself from an agricultural society, farming, to a society based on manufacturing goods and services, using machinery. The Industrial Revolution acquired a colossal impact on societies, making forceful changes in the lives of individuals, and changing the social classes drastically, but not all classes benefited equally. Those who were lucky enough to be business owners or had the opportunity to obtain a better profession, were able to enjoy leisure time and comfort in many ways. Those who were uneducated and were limited to unskilled labor work, remained at the bottom of the economic ladder. Furthermore, the two classes that benefited from the Industrial Revolution were the “upper” and “middle” class, leaving the “lower” class to be the only one who suffers. In other words, the rich got richer, the middle class grew, and the poor remained poor. The deeper the Industrial Revolution grew, the more powerful the “upper” and “middle” class became. To remain at the top of the social ladder, the upper class had to continue being the wealthiest and most powerful.
The Transportation Revolution in the 1800s, sparked up industrialization and the building of railroads that stimulated every other industry causing an economic boom known as the Gilded Age. From the outside, America seemed like the place to go to make all your dreams come true. But in reality, in was an era of serious social problems mainly caused by an economy with a free market policy, low tariffs, low taxes, less spending, and a hands-off government. This type of economy would eventually lead to the development of monopolies. These monopolies would then, in turn, lead to worker uprisings ‒caused by the suppression of unions created mostly by unskilled workers‒ that would contribute to the rapid rise and downfall of America. An example of this suppression is the Homestead Strike of 1892; due to hostility created by the unions, the employer fired all the workers, and rehired them on the basis that there would not be any more unions. After the workers started working again, the conditions were still unbearable, so the workers shut down the facility. The police got involved, the workers were pushed back, and the facility was reopened union free.
The end of the Civil War brought a whole new era of economy, political control, and Presidential intervention. The economy emerged from its agriculturally based economy into a flourishing big business dominated world and eventually in 1929 came crashing down. I agree only partially with the quote " The Civil War saw the beginning of an 80-year decline of real individual economic opportunity; nonetheless, the vast majority of Americans continued to profess their belief in individualism as evidenced by the Presidents they elected. Thus, between 1865 and 1939, the majority of Americans accepted big business dominance and rejected all forms of government interference and regulation contrary to individualism."
The years after the civil war left one half of America, the north, satisfied and the other half, the south, mostly dissatisfied. Therefore the last third of the nineteenth century, 1865-1900, was a time period in which America was mending, repairing, improving, reshaping, and reconstructing its society, economy, culture, and policies. Basically it was changing everything it stood for. This continual change can be seen in the following events that took place during this time. These events are both causes and effects of why America is what it is today. These are some examples: the reconstruction of the south, the great movement towards the west, the agricultural revolution, the rise of industrialism, the completion of the transcontinental railroad, and America's growth to gaining world power. All of these are reasons and events that characterize America as being an ever-changing nation.
After the Civil War America boomed. Cities such as New York and Chicago grew exponentially in only a few short years. New York, for example, increased by over a million in just a decade. It seems the national morale greatly increased once the war ended. Jobs were plentiful in a vast variety, drawing people from all over the world. Advancements in technology, amusements and advertising helped to create a consumer culture which in turn created jobs for the people. This demand however came at a cost. The average per capita of all Americans increased by 35 percent which at face value is a remarkable increase in wages. However, the reality was that due to inequality of wages by skill, region, race and gender, the real wage of the average American
American had an economy based on manual labour which was replaced by one dominated by industry and the manufacture of machinery. It began with the expansion of the textile industries and the development of iron-making techniques, and trade expansion was enabled by the introduction of canals, improved roads and railways.