AP American History: Social Reform

Topics: Abolitionism, Slavery in the United States, American Civil War Pages: 8 (1905 words) Published: October 24, 2013
SOCIAL REFORM MOVEMENTS
PAGES 351-361

MORAL REFORM, ASYLUMS & PRISONS
Social evil --- alcohol; prostitution ( common in port cities) Evangelical reformers approach
oRescue prostitutes
oOffered salvation of religion, prayer & temporary shelter
Poor rate of success
Offered women domestic work which was low paying/restrictive Campaigns against prostitution organized by women
oContinued throughout the 19th century
Earliest, most effective anti-prostitution movement
oFemale Moral Reform Society
oFounded by Lydia Finney, 1834, in NY
oProstitution ---- moral/economic issue
oOrganized charity
oWorked for poor women & orphans
oDirect action against patrons of prostitutes
Printed names of patrons in the local newspaper
oLobbied the NY state legislature for criminal penalties against male clients/prostitutes Asylum reform
oSpearheaded by Dorothea Dix, 1834
oGraphically described how insane women were treated
Incarcerated w/ ordinary criminals
Locked up in cages, closets, stalls & pens
Chained, beaten & naked
oLed to the establishment of state asylums in Massachusetts as well as similar institution in other states Other reforms active in other areas of reform
oPrison reform
Model penitentiaries built in Auburn, Ossining, NY, Philadelphia & Pittsburg •Strict order & discipline ( silence/isolation only causing despair) •Based on reform rather than incarceration
oOrphanages
oHomes of refuge
ohospitals
UTOPIANISM & MORMONISM
1830s characterized by political activism & reform fever Only a few chose to escape into utopian communities & new religions Upstate NY along Erie Canal site of reform movements & evangelical revivals oThis areas known as the “Burned-Over District”

Apocalyptic religions sprang up in areas where rapid social changes were taking place as well as hard times Panic of 1837, & the depression that followed led some to believe in an imminent catastrophe oMillerites believed in the 2nd Coming of Christ

oFounded by Wm. Miller
oBelieved that this coming would happen on October 22, 1843 oChurch members sold all of their belongings & bought white robes for Judgment Day oDid not happen
oDrifted away from Miller & formed the 7th Day Adventist faith Shakers
oFounded by Mother Ann Lee, 1774
oOldest utopian group
oOffshoot of the Quakers
oRadical social philosophy --- called for the abolition of the traditional family oFavored a family of brothers & sisters joined in equal fellowship oIsolated from the world
oBelief in equality drew many women into the movement
Oneida Community
oBelieved in sexual freedom
oFounded by John Humphrey Noyes, 1848
oViewed themselves as 1 family
oPracticed complex marriage --- system of highly regulated sexual activity Only the spiritually advanced males could father children Children raised communally
oCreated a reputation as the “den of free love” & socialism New Harmony, Indiana
oFounded by Robert Owens, 1825; disappeared in 1828
oManufacturing community w/out poverty & unemployment
oStructured on the social ideas of Charles Fourier’s belief that there was a rational way to divide work Social communities FAILED b/c of
oInadequate planning/organization
oWomen left to do all of the work while men philosophized
Theory of Louisa May Alcott, as founded in her book, Transcendental Wild Ones Most successful 19th century communitarian movements --- Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints oProduct of the Burned Oven District

o1830s
oFounded by Joseph Smith
oBased on the Book of Mormons; officially known as Mormonism Smith claimed that he received the book by an angel in a vision oDifferent from other religious groups & utopian communities in that his group practiced extraordinary unity, close cooperation & hard work oHarassed in NY, driven west to Ohio & finally settled in Nauvoo, Illinois Became a model community

1844, dissention over the...
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