HIS 105- Contemporary US History
Industrialization after the Civil War
After the Civil War, the United States became much more industrialized society. Between 1865 and 1920, industrialization improved American life in many ways, transforming it into a modern industrial society but also created problems for the American people. Three major improvements that contributed to the United States economy were the railroads, factories and immigration. Railroads during the period of the industrial revolution were good throughout the north and were supported by the federal government to help build the north into achieving a prosperous economy. The railroads made transportation of goods and products easy, cheap and reliable. The steel industry made the expansion of the railroads possible and by the 1900’s, Carnegie made great contributions to the business world, enabling railroads to connect to seaports, cities and industrial centers. Urbanization and Immigration began around the 1870 and the 1920’s. Immigrants migrated to cities like New York, Chicago and Boston. Approximately 25 million people migrated to the U.S and they contributed to the growth of the cities and new technologies. They worked low- paying factory jobs and overcrowded neighborhoods, moving the middle class out of their communities (Shultz, 2014). While great accomplishments took place during this period, it also affected different people like African Americans, Farmers, Children, Women and Immigrants. African Americans faced many challenges in terms of freedom and acceptance from the old to the new south. In the old south, they were slaves working day and night with no rights. After the civil war, during the reconstruction their lives improved, being freed with rights such as the 14th- and 15th amendments that granted them citizenship and the right to vote. However in the “New South” their rights seemed meaningless because of the Jim Crow laws, violence and...
References: Ashton, T.S. The Industrial Revolution: 1760-1830. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.
Schultz, Kevin: 2014 U.S History since 1865 Volume 11: pg. 291, 311-320
Weightman, Gavin. The Industrial Revolutionaries: The Making of the Modern World, 1776-1914. New York: Grove Press, 2007.
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