Populism
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Populism

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Populism Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Populism & The West
    “What you farmers need to do is raise less corn and more Hell!” Mary Elizabeth Lease (1890) Populist Organizer
  • 2. Populism:
    What?
    2
    • Political movement that tried to help out the nation’s struggling farmers
  • Populism
    Why?
    3
    Farmers were in trouble because of...
    1. Mechanization- More machines = more debt
    2. New Farm Land More land (on credit) = more debt
  • 3. Populism
    Why?
    4
    Farmers were in trouble because of...
    3. Specialization of Crops - Farmers only raise one crop (leads to trouble if that crop has problems)
    4. Disasters - floods, boll-weevil, grasshoppers
  • 4. Farmers Were Mad
    Crop-lien system (collateral was future $); what if you didn’t make enough money?
    Someone else owned the land—Banks, whites
    Interest rates were high (not uncommon—25%)
    Dollars to pay off debts were hard to get
    Delhi, Louisiana (1889): Farmers tried to cancel their debts by tearing down stores and banks!
    5
  • 5. The Grange
    6
    What?
    • Cooperative movement - farmers pooled their money to make shared purchases of machinery, supplies, insurance, etc.
    • 6. One of the largest: Colored Farmers Alliance (goal: education! This would make African-Americans more informed voters
    How?
    • Worked for pro-farmer laws
    • 7. Ex. Interstate Commerce Act - regulated rates of railroads
  • Populist Party & Free Silver
    7
    • Populists believed that this would solve nearly all of the farmer’s problems (Populists urged Black & White farmers to work TOGETHER—they had similar problems; this dramatically increased lynchings)
    Why?
    • They wanted to use both silver and gold coins, thus increasing the amount of money in the country
    What?
    • All money would be worth less, a situation that was bad for creditors (big banks) and good for debtors (farmers)
  • A Populist President?
    William Jennings Bryan
    8
    • Ran as a Populist President in 1896 on platform of Free Silver
    • 8. Big business opposes his run, Republicans win the white house, & Populists fade away
    “You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns. You shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold” -- W.J. Bryan
  • 9. The Wizard of Oz
    • Written by Active Populist L. Frank Baum
    • 10. Most things in the book represent something important to the populist movement
    9
  • 11. The Wizard of Oz
    Basic Symbols:
    10
    Ruby Slippers
    - In the book, were actually “Silver Slippers” (magic of Free Silver)
    Yellow Brick Road
    - “Gold” many dangers for regular people (like Dorothy)
    Oz
    - Abbreviation for Ounce (way gold is measured)
  • 12. The Wizard of Oz
    Characters:
    11
    Dorothy
    - Traditional American Values
    Scarecrow
    - Farmers (no brain)
    Tin Man
    - Industrial Workers
  • 13. The Wizard of Oz
    Characters:
    12
    Lion
    - William Jennings Bryan (a pacifist)
    Temperance Activists (allies of the Populists)
    Toto
    • Money Power (influence is manipulation)
    Wizard
  • 14. The Wizard of Oz
    Places:
    13
    Emerald City
    - Washington D.C. (green glasses)
    Good Witches of North & South
    - Factory and Farm Workers
    Wicked Witch of the East
    - bankers and brokers on Wall Street