Us History

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After the Civil war in the United States, Corporations grew significantly in number, size, and influence between the 1870s and 1900s. Big business impacted America’s economy, politics and as well as the Americans responses to these changes. Big business began when entrepreneurs in search for wealth and success combined their business into massive corporations. Vertical and horizontal integration were tactics used to make business grow faster. Vertical integration is the acquiring of material from the bottom up for means of production, for example Carnegie used this strategy. Horizontal integration is the controlling of other companies that produce the same product, which Rockefeller used. The corporations were so large that they could and some did, force out the competition which resulted them in gaining control of that particular market. This allowed corporations to set the prices they desired, which affected the consumers pocket as that was the only place they could obtain the product or good from. Business men who ran these large industries became extremely wealthy, powerful and influential, often at the expense of many poor workers, and much of the public saw them as robber barons who exploited workers, in order to accumulate immense fortunes. For example, in 1882 Rockefeller solidifies his control by establishing a monopoly or trust, which centralized control of a number of oil related companies under one board of trustee. By 1879, Rockefeller controlled 90% of the county’s oil capacity. As a result of this, companies in other industries quickly imitated this trust model and used their broad market control to raise prices. Also in document A, statistics are shown of the index prices to the average prices during a certain period of time and it is evident that as the years progressed, the cost for food, fuel and lighting decreased significantly but the cost of living of also decreased but not to the degree of the above mentioned. Trusts were a common way to...
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