Cause and effect of the Automobile on American Society

Topics: Road, United States, Transport Pages: 4 (651 words) Published: December 5, 2014
Tristin Willingham
Professor Hoke
Monday/ Wednesday 1:00-2:15
November 10, 2014
Effects of the Automobile on American Society
Americas shift from horse and carriage to automobile was not the smoothest transition. The first automobile is highly argued, but the Ford Model T is considered America’s first affordable automobile. The automobile lifted the limitations on geography, created new jobs, prompted the development of highways, demanded the need of licensure and safety regulations, and is ultimately a part of every Americans daily life. Automobiles impact American society in countless ways, and with new technology being developed on a daily basis, the automobile will always play a major role in America.

Before the invention of the automobile the most common way of transportation was by horse, bike, horse and carriage, train, or by foot. These old school ways of transportation were either highly unrealistic for most Americans or too dangerous and tiresome. The invention of the automobile allowed for the limitations set on geography to be lifted for a wide range of people, which prompted the decrease in inner city populations as Americans took to the outskirts of large cities. Americans were no longer confined to city limits and could venture out and explore new territories on their own.

The need to drive and explore also prompted the development of paved roads and highways. Mary Bellis wrote in her article, “[The] Federal- Aid Road Act of 1916[…] created the Federal-Aid Highway Program under which funds were made available on a continuous basis to state highway agencies to assist in road improvements. But before the program could get off the ground, the United States entered World War I.” Even though the idea was delayed until the roaring twenties, this was the first step in creating a more unified way of travel. Rough, bumpy dirt roads would eventually become a thing of the past and the smoothly paved roads of the roaring twenties would connect...

Cited: Bellis, Mary. “History of American Roads and the Fist Federal Highway.” Web.
“Better Auto Laws are now needed.” New York Times. Web. 18 August 1907
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