Gilded Age

By: Caitlyn Ching

A. Glided Age

A name for the late 1800s, coined by Mark Twain to describe the tremendous increase in wealth caused by the industrial age and the ostentatious lifestyles it allowed the very rich. The great industrial success of the U.S. and the fabulous lifestyles of the wealthy hid the many social problems of the time, including a high poverty rate, a high crime rate, and corruption in the government.


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Election of Grant

Ulysses S. Grant ran as the radical republican candidate in the 1868 election. He could have ran for either party but linked up with the republicans better. in the election Grant took 214 electoral college votes to Seymour's 80. However he only won the popular vote by about 300,000. It was evident that the half a million black votes in the election came and helped Grant take the victory in both.


Results: Grant was the first president to be elected with a minority of the white vote. The democratic party was split over the monetary dispute of paper or gold as money, thus giving more advantage to Grant. Grant was pro reconstruction with federal power.



B. "Bloody Shirt" Campaign

This cartoon was from Thomas Nast mocking the southern Democrats. Republicans aimed at Union civil war veterans to revive Civil War memories in support of Grant against the hated south and Seymour.


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C. The Corruption and Boss Tweed

Grant's administration resided over a Gilded time of great corruption. His own VP Colfax was a part of the Credit Mobilier scandal that went with the Pacific Continental Railroad. as the railroad went bankrupt the owners just transferred all the money to the credit co. at the expense of the stock and shareholders.

The Tweed ring in NYC is credited for taking $200 million from the city through kick-backs and bribes. He led the Tammany Hall Political machine that would gain votes into office by any means necessary. The spoils system was prominent here and elsewhere as well. Thomas Nast is known to be the father of the american political cartoon and for helping take down the Tweed ring. He went into the Harper's weekly to attack them with multiple cartoons and in the 1871 election the Tweed ring was voted out and in 1873 Tweed was convited of fraud.


D. Compromise of 1877

Directly after the election of 1876, it was evident that the outcome of the race relied on the controversial returns from South Carolina, Florida, and Louisiana. They were the only states left with Reconstruction republican governments still in power. As conflict from the outcome rose in 1877, supporters of Hayes met with southern democrats in secret to negotiate the acceptance of the election. The states agreed to not block the election if the republicans extracted all the troops from the south and gave democrats power once again. As an effect democratic power was back in the southern states completely thus officially ending the Reconstruction era.