18 Important Events for America

Early 1800 to 1920



Populism. The emergence of populism was preceded by the following events. After the Civil War of 1861-1865, American farmers, especially in the Midwest and the South, began to suffer losses from a permanent reduction of prices for their products. The main reasons for this are: firstly, the increase in production, thanks to the emergence of new technology, and secondly, the revolution in transportation, which forced American manufacturers to compete with manufacturers from other countries. American farmers have tended to ignore these underlying causes, and pinned the blame on excessive rail costs, high interest rates, unreasonably high returns mechanics and traders and even some cash conspiracy, possibly international, designed to maintain the lack of money. Populists appearing on this foundation, trying to create a party that serves primarily the interests of agricultural workers, although they vainly hoped to win the support of the workers also. Their opponents were the "plutocrats" who controlled finance and industry, as well as two old political parties.


Working conditions and wages in America in early 1900s were terrible. Child Labor were also very common. Children were often employed to move between dangerous machines as they were small enough to fit between tightly packed machinery. Workers worked for 12 hours in the hot and physically exhausting work places. The wages were very miserable. Average worker made between $400 and $500 per year. Luckily it changed and now in America is one of the best working conditions and wages in the world.


America struggle against poverty in the early 1800s. Because of the low wages a lot of families was suffering in the very bad life conditions. The wages are low, but the rent for the house is high, so even if all members of the family were working, it wasn't enough for a good life. The workers, poor, helpless, work on in dirt, often in filth unspeakable, in the presence of all contagious and other diseases. Unable to make a living, many rural people began flocking to cities as early as the mid-eighteenth century.



Chinese Exclusion Act. The Chinese Exclusion Act was approved on May 6, 1882. It was the first significant law restricting immigration into the United States. This is a special Act of the US Congress, in response to the mass migration of Chinese to the West of the country. The first and only official law in the history of the United States directed against members of a particular nationality. Originally, the law was extended to 10 years, but in general, it lasted until 1965. Despite the fact that the Chinese Exclusion Act suspended their immigration for ten years, the western United States were already about 200 thousand workers from China who came back to this decision. Some of them have already managed to have family. September 2, 1885 Wyoming Territory gained notoriety on the carnage of the Chinese with white in Rock Springs, which occurred because of the intense competition between the two groups in the highly specialized labor market.


Tenements. Factory workers in large industrial cities were often forced to live in tenement housing. Wages were low so workers couldn’t rent any houses or even live in the hotels. So they had to live in cheap, dirty, unsanitary lodging houses. Tenants often paid by the day. Tenements were always overcrowded and it was not unusual to find a whole family living in one small room. Later reformer Jacob Riis decided to change this life conditions. So together with other reformers, they got the Tenement Law of 1901 passed. Thanks to this law every new building had to have a toilet and running water, windows had to have twelve feet of space in front, and stairways and fire escapes had to be sturdy and kept clear. Two years after the tenement law, the city opened the first permanent playground on the Lower East Side.


Nativism. The word "nativism" was used to distinguish between native-born Americans and new immigrants 'first generation'. Concerns about immigration during the historical period referred to as the Gilded Age, led to the rise in Nativism in America. The industrial revolution and the transport revolution violated habitual way of life and contributed to the influx of immigrants-workers. Nativism in America spawned a powerful political movement called the Know Nothing Party, which made anti-immigration central to its political agenda. Despite the Civil Rights Movement many elements of Nativism still resonate in American society of today.



Political Machines. Political Machines were groups that were designed to keep a particular political party or group of people power. It was organized like four level pyramid. Local precinct workers -->Ward Boss -->City Boss. Many precinct captains and political bosses were first-generation or second-generation immigrants. It was very useful because they could understood immigrant problems better than others. In return, immigrants provided votes political machines needed. The system of political machines bagel to decline in the early 20th century, but corruption in politics is still fairly common. While most of the machines' methods are now illegal, it is not unusual to hear in the news about reports of elected officials receiving "favors" from those seeking to influence their votes.


The Grange Movement. Grangers set ourselves a limited task to achieve "fair" share of profits in the implementation of agricultural products. On a more radical stance in addressing the urgent needs of farmers in the late 60's - early 70-ies were farmers' clubs. The crisis in 1873 dealt a heavy blow to the entire mass of the working people of the country, including the farmers, leading to activation of the farmers' movement. The mass entry of farmers' clubs in the League Grangers. Gradually Granger, experiencing ever-increasing pressure of the broad masses of farmers, began to take a more radical position on issues that had great importance for migrant farmers. They were demanding the introduction of control over the activities of railway companies, cooperatives of farmers, to change the financial policy of the federal government.An important form of farmers fighting for their interests was the boycott of the railways. Farmers have suffered defeat after defeat in the fight against a powerful enemy, which gave rise to pessimism, disbelief in the efficacy greyndzherskogo movement. In 1875 there was a massive exit of farmers from Grange leagues.

Social/Cultural. The rural populations were displaced by increasing agricultural efficiency prompting a move from rural areas to the towns and cities. During the Urbanization in America massive rises in the population of cities. That's why all cities were overcrowded , and there was a lot of pollution . Poor sanitation led to deadly epidemics in the towns an cities. Cities rise in crime due to poverty and lack of control. There was a couple benefits in that time. For example, new public transport systems were developed and new roads and bridges were built.


Political. The woman suffrage movement actually began in 1848, when the first women’s rights convention was held in Seneca Falls, New York. At the turn of the century, women reformers in the club movement and in the settlement house movement wanted to pass reform legislation. Thus, over time women began to realize that in order to achieve reform, they needed to win the right to vote. In 1848, in the town of Seneca Falls was the first conference on women's rights. Thus, since the beginning of the struggle for universal suffrage by gender has been more than 70 years, the founder of this movement - Elizabeth Stanton, Lucretia Mott and Susan B. Anthony did not see during the life of the results of their actions. However, suffragists succeeded, and American women won the right to vote.

Economic. In times of progressivism, corruption undermines the foundations of the American state and progressives demanded clear all levels of government from the corrupt. Progressives demanded better control by the authorities through the introduction of mechanisms of direct democracy. For example, in some states, it has implemented a direct initiative of voters, referendum and recall of deputies that do not satisfy their requirements.

Social/Cultural. In this period of time society in America was suffering from poverty, gender inequality and race & segregation. Industrial safety was a large issue: factory work was very dangerous, and it was difficult if not impossible to hold factory owners responsible for deaths and injuries. The success of progressivism owed much to publicity generated by the muckrakers, writers who detailed the horrors of poverty, urban slums, dangerous factory conditions, and child labor, among a host of other ills.


Political. Open Door policy. The import policy of the country, is where all goods are imported from everywhere and under the same conditions, is usually freed from import taxation. Open door policy - a policy pursued by the United States to China from 1899 until 1949, which is based on the doctrine of the Secretary of State John Hay. The essence of this policy was that China should be conducted free trade and free capital penetration.

Economic. Marxist Theory . Marxism became political doctrine. It is a philosophy, a world-view and a system of social and economic analysis. Marxism is based on philosophical materialism. Philosophical materialism is the view that all things in the universe are natural and follow the laws of nature, i.e. that there is no such thing as the supernatural. A principle development of Marxism is the theory of class-struggle. The theory of class-struggle is that societies and civilizations evolve through a process of struggle between the conflicts of interests among classes, and that dominant institutions in a society are a means of support for the dominant class in that society. In the political sense "Marxism" embodies many different, and sometimes conflicting, political ideologies.

Social/Cultural. The Monroe Doctrine. The Monroe Doctrine is a declaration of principles of US foreign policy, proclaimed in 1823 in his annual address to US President James Monroe to the US Congress. The idea of the proclamation of the Americas zone, closed to the intervention of the European powers, it belonged to John Quincy Adams. The Monroe Doctrine was a turning point in US foreign policy: It immediately became aggressive, predatory nature of this doctrine. The proclamation of the Monroe Doctrine the United States arrogated to themselves the right to "protect" the American continent alone, ie, substantially interfere in the affairs of Latin American countries, turning these countries into its protectorate. In 1840 Monroe Doctrine, and calls for continental solidarity served as a cover for connection to the United States more than half of what was then the territory of Mexico.

World War 1

Political. Wilson's Fourteen Points. In his speech to Congress on Jan. 8, 1918 Woodrow Wilson formulated his theses on war aims, known as the 'Fourteen Points'. This cloud has been controversial both in the US and that of their allies. France would like to receive reparations from Germany, as the French industry and agriculture have been destroyed by the war, and the United Kingdom as the most powerful naval power did not mean freedom of navigation. Wilson went to compromise with Clemenceau, Lloyd George and other European leaders during the Paris peace talks, trying to keep the fourteenth paragraph still been executed, and the League of Nations was established. In the end, an agreement on the League of Nations was voted down by Congress, and in Europe, only 4 of the 14 theses were implemented.

Economic. War Bonds. The last time the United States issued war bonds was during World War II, when full employment collided with rationing, and war bonds were seen as a way to remove моней from circulation as well as reduce inflation.The governments of all belligerent countries issued special loans to finance their expenditure after the war began. To mobilize the financial resources of their peoples required concerted war bonds propaganda. War bonds were seen as the home front’s contribution to victory. War bonds are a means for governments to borrow money in times of war. In World War I, Americans could buy “Liberty Bonds,” while other nations issued an assortment of bonds and savings stamps to finance their war efforts.

Social/Cultural. Home Front. The Home Front during World War 1 refers to life in Britain during the war itself. The Home Front saw a massive change in the role of women, rationing, the bombing of parts of Britain by the Germans , conscientious objectors and strikes by discontented workers. The whole nation was under the jurisdiction of Defence of the Realm Act. The home front became a nation of working women and African –Americans, who not only worked in factories to produce goods needed for the war, but also cared for the sick and wounded men from the war, recruited men and also supported to war with bonds and boycotts.