Vocabulary List #2: Progressive Era

Vocabulary for the Progressive Era


Make changes in something (usual social or political) in order to make it better


A person advocating or encouraging social reform or new ideas


A reporter who's goal was to expose corruption or the bad of a particular institution or business

Political Machine

A political business in which one boss commands the support of multiple smaller operatives who receive rewards for their efforts


Early 1900's movement that pushed for the banning of alcohol


Removing the right of suffrage of a person or group of people

De facto segregation

Racial segregation that happens "by fact" rather than law

De jure segregation

Segregation that occurs and is enforced by the law


Practices used to secure illegal gains in politics or business, such as bribery


An act to improve a certain situation


A general vote by the electorate on a single political question that has been referred to them for a direct decision


Officially order someone to return to a certain place


A person who remains completely independent from political parties

Niagra Movement

A black Civil Rights movement organization founded in 1905 by W. E. B. DuBois and William Monroe Trotter

Poll tax

Payment required to register for voting in some states in the US


National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; African-American civil rights organization started in 1909 by Moorfield Storey, Mary White Orvington, and W. E. B. DuBois

Pendleton Act

A federal law established in 1883 that decided government jobs shouldn't be awarded based on political affiliation, but merit and qualification instead

Sherman Antitrust Act

A landmark federal statute passed in 1890 that prohibited trusts

Clayton Antitrust Act

An act passed by Congress in 1914 that provides further clarification and substance to the Sherman Antitrust Act

16th, 17th, 18th, and 19th Amendments

16th Amendment: Allows Congress to levy income tax without basing it on the Census or apportioning it among the states

17th Amendment: US Senate will be composed of two Senators from each state elected for six years, and each Senator has one vote

18th Amendment: The law passed that prohibited alcohol in the US

19th Amendment: Granted women the right to vote

Great Migration

The movement of 6 million blacks out of the Southern US to the urban Northeast, Midwest, and West that occurred between 1910 and 1970

Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)

Supreme Court ruling that declared "separate but equal" in public facilities was constitutional

US vs Ec Knight & Co (1895)

Also known as the "Sugar Trust Case", this was a US Supreme Court case that limited the government's power to control monopolies

American Tobacco vs US (1911)

A Supreme Court decision that found multiple companies responsible of attempting to monopolize all sectors of the tobacco industry