America's History

Proud and Shameful


Political - Clayton and Sherman anti-trust act

Passed in 1890, the Sherman Antitrust Act was the first major legislation passed to address oppressive business practices associated with cartels and oppressive monopolies. The Sherman Antitrust Act is a federal law prohibiting any contract, trust, or conspiracy in restraint of interstate or foreign trade.

The purpose of the Clayton Act was to give more enforcement teeth to the Sherman Antitrust Act. Passed in 1914, the Clayton Act regulates general practices that may be detrimental to fair competition.


Economic - Labor Unions

The labor movement in the United States grew out of the need to protect the common interest of workers. For those in the industrial sector, organized labor unions fought for better wages, reasonable hours and safer working conditions. The labor movement led efforts to stop child labor, give health benefits and provide aid to workers who were injured or retired.


Social/Cultural - Building tenement housing

The term "tenement" originally referred to tenancy and therefore to any rented accommodation. Any house, building, or portion thereof, which is rented, leased, let, or hired out to be occupied or is occupied, as the home or residence of more than three families living independently of one another and doing their own cooking upon the premises, or by more than two families upon a floor, so living and cooking and having a common right in the halls, stairways, yards, water-closets, or privies, or some of them. Most housing was ruined and run down, it was a test tube for diseases to run wild.



Political - Chinese exclusion act

In 1882 the Chinese Exclusion Act was passed by Congress and signed by President Chester A. Arthur. This act provided an absolute 10-year moratorium on Chinese labor immigration. For the first time, Federal law proscribed entry of an ethnic working group on the premise that it endangered the good order of certain localities.


Economic - Immigrants come in and start working in factories and on railways

Immigrants from other countries and try to start and new life in America. They begin by working in factories and on the railway for cheap wages. once enough money is acquired they send it back to their country to bring more relatives until their entire family can move.


Social/Cultural - Ellis Island

Ellis Island is an island that is located in Upper New York Bay in the Port of New York and New Jersey. It was the gateway for millions of immigrants to the United States as the nation's busiest immigrant inspection station from 1892 until 1954. The island was greatly expanded with land reclamation between 1892 and 1934. Before that, the much smaller original island was the site of Fort Gibson and later a naval magazine.



Political - Statue of liberty is dedicated

The Statue of Liberty, a gift of friendship from the people of France to the people of the United States, is dedicated in New York Harbor by President Grover Cleveland.Originally known as “Liberty Enlightening the World,” the statue was proposed by the French historian Edouard de Laboulaye to commemorate the Franco-American alliance during the American Revolution. Designed by French sculptor Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi, the 151-foot statue was the form of a woman with an uplifted arm holding a torch.


Economic - Trolley cars

Before the 1870's street cars were pulled by horses were the only way to get around the city besides walking. Andrew Hallidie invented the Trolley cars in 1873 as a cheap mode of transportation they were used throughout the 1880's and 1890's. They helped workers get to the factory and around the city.


Social/Cultural - Brooklyn Bridge opens

The Brooklyn Bridge looms majestically over New York City’s East River, linking the two boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Since 1883, its granite towers and steel cables have offered a safe and scenic passage to millions of commuters.The bridge’s construction took 14 years, involved 600 workers and cost $15 million (more than $320 million in today’s dollars). At least two dozen people died in the process, including its original designer.



Political - Upton Sinclair

His involvement with socialism led to a writing assignment about the plight of workers in the meatpacking industry, eventually resulting in the best-selling novel The Jungle (1906). The Federal Meat Inspection Act of 1906 was passed by Teddy Roosevelt after reading the jungle and hearing about food poisoning his troops.


Economic - Jacob Riis

Riis argued for better housing, adequate lighting and sanitation, and the construction of city parks and playgrounds. He portrayed middle-class and upper-class citizens as benefactors and encouraged them to take an active role in defining and shaping their communities. Riis believed that charitable citizens would help the poor when they saw for themselves how "the other half" lived.


Social/Cultural - Ida B. Wells

A daughter of slaves, Ida B. Wells was born in Holly Springs, Mississippi, on July 16, 1862. A journalist, Wells led an anti-lynching crusade in the United States in the 1890s. Ida B. Wells established several civil rights organizations. In 1896, she formed the National Association of Colored Women. After brutal assaults on the African-American community in Springfield, Illinois, in 1908, Wells sought to take action: The following year, she attended a special conference for the organization that would later become known as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.



Political - U.S. annexes Hawaii

In January 1893, the planters staged an uprising to overthrow the Queen. At the same time, they appealed to the United States armed forces for protection. Without Presidential approval, marines stormed the islands, and the American minister to the islands raised the stars and stripes in Honolulu. The Queen was forced to abdicate, and the matter was left for Washington politicians to settle.


Economic - Islands taken over after Spanish war

The result was the 1898 Treaty of Paris, negotiated on terms favorable to the US, which allowed it temporary control of Cuba, and ceded ownership of Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippine islands. The cession of the Philippines involved payment of $20 million ($568,880,000 today) to Spain by the US to cover infrastructure owned by Spain.


Social/Cultural - Ruining Hawaiian culture and overthrowing their queen

Queen Liliuokalani was overthrown by Americans with the help of American troops in 1898. After annexing Hawaii America imposed its own culture and practically forced the people of Hawaii to conform.


World War I

Political - Treaty of Versailles

The Treaty of Versailles (French: Traité de Versailles) was one of the peace treaties at the end of World War I. It ended the state of war between Germany and the Allied Powers. It was signed on 28 June 1919, exactly five years after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand.


Economic - Liberty bonds

A Liberty Bond was a war bond that was sold in the United States to support the allied cause in World War I. Subscribing to the bonds became a symbol of patriotic duty in the United States and introduced the idea of financial securities to many citizens for the first time.


Social/Cultural - Victory gardens

Victory gardens, also called war gardens or food gardens for defense, were vegetable, fruit, and herb gardens planted at private residences and public parks in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and Germany during World War I and World War II. This was to help the troops by allowing them to get the canned goods while at war and the citizens could get them from the gardens.