Muckrakers

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Muckrakers

  1. 1. MUCKRAKERS Exposing the corruption of early 20 th Century America.
  2. 2. Rapid industrialization following the Civil War led to many problems. Rapid Industrialization Robber Barons City Growth Factories Corruption Slums Sweatshops Machine Politics
  3. 3. These problems were too significant to be ignored. <ul><li>Newspapers and magazines began to publish reports. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>McClure’s (most famous “muckraking magazine”) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Novelists and photographers published expos é s and disturbing photos. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Upton Sinclair The Jungle </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jacob Riis: How the Other Half Lives </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. How the Other Half Lives by Jacob Riis <ul><li>Riis was born in Denmark </li></ul><ul><li>Immigrated to the U.S. in 1870 </li></ul><ul><li>1889 his pictures and articles seen by N.Y. Governor T. Roosevelt </li></ul><ul><li>The tenements he exposed were shut down </li></ul>
  5. 5. McClure’s Magazine <ul><li>Founded in 1893 by Samuel McClure </li></ul><ul><li>Began specializing in muckraking journalism in 1902 </li></ul><ul><li>Journalists included: </li></ul><ul><li>Ida Tarbell (Standard Oil) </li></ul><ul><li>Lincoln Steffens (municipal corruption) </li></ul>
  6. 6. Ida Tarbell vs. Standard Oil
  7. 7. By 1890 Standard Oil controlled over 90% of the refined oil flows in the United States. <ul><li>Standard Oil achieved its monopoly through aggressive and often illegal business practices: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Purchasing competitors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Undercutting prices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shady deals with the railroads </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Standard Oil went so far as to destroy a competing oil refinery right here in Buffalo </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Oil could not leave the oil field unless Standard Oil agreed to move it. </li></ul>
  8. 8. From 1902-1904 Ida Tarbell investigated Standard Oil <ul><li>Her articles raised public awareness of Rockefeller’s ruthless monopoly. </li></ul><ul><li>Tarbell’s efforts led to the eventual breakup of the Standard Oil monopoly in 1911. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Lincoln Steffens <ul><li>Born, San Francisco 1866 </li></ul><ul><li>The son of a wealthy businessman </li></ul><ul><li>1902-1911 editor of McClure’s Magazine </li></ul><ul><li>Published books and articles focusing on municipal corruption </li></ul><ul><li>Became a radical communist later in life </li></ul>
  10. 10. The Shame of the Cities
  11. 11. Machine Politics in the early 1900’s <ul><li>By 1900 every major American city was controlled by a single political party. </li></ul><ul><li>These parties be they Democrat or Republican controlled cities through various underhanded and illegal tactics such as: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Physical intimidation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bribery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Voting fraud </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ballot stuffing </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Machine Politics in the early 1900’s Continued… <ul><li>Once in power these machines were interested only in maintaining their power </li></ul><ul><li>They appointed cronies and criminals to important positions </li></ul><ul><li>As a result the cities were poorly run, corrupt, and many people suffered. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Lincoln Steffens <ul><li>Through his articles and books, such as The Shame of the Cities and The Struggle for Self-Government ; Steffens exposed corrupt political machines in St. Louis, Chicago, Philadelphia, and New York. </li></ul><ul><li>Steffens also spoke out about the exclusion of African American voters in the south </li></ul><ul><li>Steffen’s work paved the way for the break-up of these political machines as well as important municipal legislation. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Upton Sinclair <ul><li>Born in Baltimore 1878 </li></ul><ul><li>Began writing at 15 </li></ul><ul><li>Became an active socialist in the 1900’s </li></ul><ul><li>Wrote a “novel” about immigrants working the Chicago stockyards in 1905… The Jungle </li></ul>
  15. 15. The Jungle <ul><li>There would be meat stored in great piles in rooms; and the water from leaky roofs would drip over it, and thousands of rats would race about on it. It was too dark in these storage places to see well, but a man could run his hand over these piles of meat and sweep off handfuls of the dried dung of rats. These rats were nuisances, and the packers would put poisoned bread out for them; they would die, and then rats, bread, and meat would go into the hoppers together. </li></ul>
  16. 16. The Jungle continued <ul><li>This is no fairy story and no joke; the meat would be shoveled into carts, and the man who did the shoveling would not trouble to lift out a rat even when he saw one – there were things that went into the sausage in comparison with which a poisoned rat was a tidbit. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Impact of The Jungle <ul><li>President Theodore Roosevelt read the book and was horrified. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Impact of The Jungle continued <ul><li>As a result of Sinclair’s book and the President’s reaction, Congress passed both the Pure Food and Drugs Act and the Meat Inspection Act in 1906. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Muckrakers: Conclusions <ul><li>Through their tireless individual and collective efforts, this small group of people managed to fundamentally change American society and government in the early 20 th century. </li></ul><ul><li>Have these changes been lasting ones? </li></ul>
  20. 20. Questions <ul><li>Are you sure about the quality and content of the meat you consume? </li></ul><ul><li>Mad Cow Disease </li></ul><ul><li>Bird Flu </li></ul>
  21. 21. Questions <ul><li>How well are your county and city governments being run? </li></ul>
  22. 22. Questions <ul><li>How many people continue to live in dangerous slums and tenements? </li></ul>
  23. 23. Questions <ul><li>Are there still monopolies controlling prices and purchasing competitors? </li></ul>

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