1800s America

Topics: Women's rights, United States, Immigration to the United States Pages: 2 (646 words) Published: April 10, 2013
During the 1800s, many major changes happened in America, whether it be changes in the cultural makeup of the people, American culture of the time, or freedoms and rights for women and African Americans. Many people immigrated to America during this time period, and cities grew very rapidly as a result of it, which caused some problems. Many reforms of art, literature, and society took place too. Finally, thoughts and ideas about abolishing slavery and granting women equal rights took place. As you can see, the 1800s was a period in America where change happened left and right that later on affected it both positively and negatively.

In the mid-1800s, millions of immigrants from Europe, mainly Ireland and Germany, began new lives in the United States. In the mid-1840s, more than a million Irish folk fled to the United States because of a failed potato crop due to disease. Many were extremely poor, and had to settle in cities and work unskilled jobs with low wages and poor housing just to make ends meet. The Germans, who also had many immigrate into the U.S, had staged a failed rebellion and saw the U.S as a place of economic opportunity and increased freedom.

Due to the huge droves of immigrants who were willing to work low-paying jobs, many Americans, known as nativists, feared that they would soon be jobless or just mistrusted them due to religious reasons and opposed immigration. These nativists soon formed the Know-Nothing Party, which supported measures slowing down the process of making foreigners citizens or allowing them to hold office. Due to later arguments over slavery, however, it soon fell apart.

American cities grew rapidly, partially because of the huge influx in people, which was both a blessing and a curse in a way. The new metropolises provided many sources of entertainment and an enriched cultural life, as well as recreation, but they were very crowded. Many, including immigrants, could only afford to live in tenements, which were unsafe...
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