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Why did they come? Escape religious persecution Rising population in Europe Independent lives in America Shortage of work in homeland
Where did they come from? Southern and Eastern Europe Northeast States China & Japan West Coast West Indies Eastern and Southeast States Mexico Southwestern States
A Difficult Journey Steerage Cargo hold of ship
Ellis Island New York Harbor Open 1892-1924 Chief immigration station for East coast 2% denied entry Processing took about 5 hours Physical exam Government inspector – easy questioning 17 million immigrants passed through
Angel Island San Francisco Bay Open 1910-1940 Chief immigration station for West coast Processing took weeks to months Lived in filthy buildings Physical exam Government inspector - harsh questioning Approximately 50,000 Chinese passed through
Nativism Favoritism toward native born Americans
What did they believe? Anglo-Saxons superior Immigrants from“right”countries OK Immigrants from“wrong”countries caused the problems Objected to religious beliefs of Jews and Roman Catholics Immigration restrictions
Nativism Groups American Protective Association Vicious anti-Catholic attacks Immigration Restriction League Pushed for literacy tests
Chinese Exclusion Act Banned entry to all Chinese except Students Teachers Merchants Tourists Government officials Not repealed until 1943
Gentleman’s Agreement Japan agreed to limit emigration of unskilled workers to US In exchange for repeal of San Francisco segregation order Local government segregated Japanese children in separate schools
Politics in the Gilded Age Section 3
What does it mean? Gild: to coat with gold leaf or a gold color. To make seem more attractive or valuable than it is. Synonyms: overlay with gold, varnish, give glitter to, paint in rosy colors
The Gilded Age1876-1900 The term Gilded Age refers to the political and economic situation of the United States from approximately 1876-1900. It created a number of immensely successful businessmen as public figures; these were often referred to as the“robber barons”.
“What is the chief end of man? To get rich. In what way? Dishonestly if we can; honestly if we must.” -Mark Twain 1871
The Gilded Age Phrase coined by Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner in their 1873 book. Video
It was the best of times for the rich, it was the worst of times for the poor. At the height of the Gilded Age, 90% of the nation’s families earned less than $1,200 a year and the average annual income was $380, well below the poverty line.
Robber Barons built mansions on Fifth Avenue
While the rich wore diamonds, many wore rags. For immediate relief, the urban poor turned to political machines. Video
The Political Machine An organized group that controlled the activities of a political party in a city by taking advantage of the needs of the immigrants and urban poor. Ensured voter loyalty by providing jobs and social services to immigrants’ most pressing problems.
The Political Machine City Boss Controlled the activities of the political party throughout the city. Ward Boss Secure the vote in all the precincts in the ward, or electoral district. Local precinct workers & captains Gained voters’ support on a city block or neighborhood.
What was the role of the political boss? Controlled access to municipal jobs and business licenses Influenced the courts and other municipal agencies Provide government support for new businesses Often paid extremely well Reinforce voters’ loyalty Win additional political support Extend influence
What role did immigrants play? Immigrants provided the political machine with votes. Many precinct captains and political bosses were 1st or 2nd generation immigrants Entered politics & worked way up from bottom Able to provide solutions
How did political machines maintain power? Fraud Graft – illegal use of political influence for personal gain Bribes “kicked back” Granted favors in return for cash Credit Mobilier
Tammany Hall NYC Democratic political machine
The Tweed Ring William Tweed (Boss Tweed) head of Tammany Hall 1868 Graft involving construction of NY County Courthouse Group of corrupt politicians The “forty thieves” Cost taxpayers $13 million, actual cost $3 million Tweed and his henchmen were tried, convicted and jailed in the scandal
Thomas Nast Political cartoonist Santa Claus, Uncle Sam, and political symbols – elephant & donkey Aroused public outrage against Tammany Hall’s graft, and broke the Tweed Ring. Boss Tweed offered money to get him to cease cartoon attacks.
Patronage Giving of government jobs to people who had helped a candidate get elected. “spoils system” Employees not qualified for positions Used positions for personal gain Reformers pressed for adoption of merit system Civil service
Could not convince Congress to support reform. Named independents to his cabinet Set up commission to investigate corrupt custom houses President Rutherford B. Hayes
Roscoe Conkling New York senator and political boss. Head of The Stalwarts. Opposed change in the spoils system. Video
President James Garfield Gave reformers most of the patronage jobs` July 1881 was shot 2 times by mentally unbalanced lawyer whom Garfield had turned down for a job
President Chester A. Arthur Nominated for vice president by Conkling supporters. Turned reformer in office Encouraged Congress to pass civil service law Video
Pendleton Civil Service Act of 1883 Authorized a bipartisan (supported by two parties) civil service commission To make appointments to federal jobs through a merit system Based on performance on an examination Video
Business Buys Influence With civil service reform, employees no longer source of campaign contributions Turned to wealthy business owners Alliance between government and big business Business wanted tariffs raised to protect domestic industry from foreign competition
President Grover Cleveland Democratic president elected in 1884 Tried to lower tariff rates Congress refused to support him
President Benjamin Harrison Defeated President Grover Cleveland in 1888 Won passage of the McKinley Tariff Act of 1890 Raised tariffs to their highest levels
Here comes Cleveland again… Only president to serve two non-consecutive terms Supported a bill to lower the McKinley Tariff Would not sign the bill because it contained a federal income tax Wilson-Gorman Tariff became law in 1894 without his signature
President William McKinley Inaugurated in 1897 Raised tariffs once again
Taking Notes In a chart like the one shown, list examples of corruption in 19th century politics. Corruption
Taking Notes In a chart like the one shown, list examples of corruption in 19th century politics. Election fraud kickbacks Corruption graft bribery patronage