Chapter 18 Industry, Immigrants, and Cities 1870–1900
MAP 18–1 Patterns of Immigration, 1820–1914 The migration to the United States was part of a worldwide transfer of population that accelerated with the industrial revolution and the accompanying improvement in transportation.
MAP 18–2 The Growth of American Cities, 1880–1900 Several significant trends stand out on this map. First is the development of an urban-industrial core, stretching from New England to the Midwest, where the largest cities were located. And second is the emergence of relatively new cities in the South and West, reflecting the national dimensions of innovations in industry and transportation.
Photographer Lewis Hine’s portrait of a young Jewish woman arriving from Russia at Ellis Island in 1905. Like hundreds of thousands of other immigrants who passed through the portals of New York harbor, this young woman’s expression carries the hope, fear, and remembrance that touched her fellow wanderers as they embarked on their new life in America.
FIGURE 18–1 Changes in the American Labor Force, 1870–1910 The transformation of the American economy in the late nineteenth century changed the nature and type of work. By 1910, the United States was an urban, industrial nation with a matching workforce that toiled in factories and commercial establishments (including railroads) and, less frequently, on farms.
Electricity conquered space and the night. The yellow glow of incandescent bulbs, the whiz of trolleys, and the rumble of elevated railways energize the Bowery, an emerging entertainment district in lower Manhattan at the end of the nineteenth century. W. Louis Sonntag, Jr., The Bowery at Night, watercolor, 1895. Copyright Museum of the City of New York. 32.275.2
A family takes a spin in their Model T Ford with the boys up front. The Ford Motor Company built affordable machines for the expanding middle-class, changing patterns of recreation and expanding work commutes and tourism.
The industrial revolution in the United States generated enormous sums of wealth, and in the years before the federal income tax was enacted in 1913, magnates like railroad tycoon William K. Vanderbilt, whose Louis XVI dining room is pictured here, could keep it all. The opulent room was part of Vanderbilt’s summer retreat in Newport, Rhode Island. The rest of the year he resided in an $11 million mansion on the corner of Fifty-first Street and Fifth Avenue in New York City.
Noted urban photographer Lewis Hine captures the cramped working conditions and child labor in this late-nineteenth-century canning factory. Women and children provided a cheap and efficient workforce for labor-intensive industries.
Before the typewriter was invented, most office workers were men. However, employers believed that women exhibited greater dexterity with the new machines, and besides, they could pay them less. Note the male supervisor.
The new industrial age created great wealth and abject poverty, and the city became the stage upon which these hard economic lessons played out. Here a “modest” Fifth Avenue mansion in turn-of-the-century New York City; farther downtown, Jacob Riis found this tenement courtyard. Getty Images Inc., Hulton Archive Photos. Photograph by Jacob A. Riis, The Jacob A. Riis Collection, Museum of the City of New York
During the Great Uprising of 1877, federal troops clashed with striking workers. Here the Maryland militia fires at strikers in Baltimore, killing 12. As Reconstruction ended, government attention shifted from the South to quelling labor unrest.
FIGURE 18–2 Immigration to the United States, 1870–1915 The graph illustrates the dramatic change in immigration to the United States during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. As immigration from northern and western Europe slackened, the numbers of newcomers from southern and eastern Europe swelled. Latin American and Asian immigration also increased during this period.
Hope for a new generation. Victoria de Ortiz came to Nebraska with her family around 1915 to escape the turmoil in Mexico and, like millions of other immigrants of that era, to make a better life for herself and her family. The black lines are part of the photograph.
Mulberry Street, New York, 1905. The vibrant, predominantly Russian-Jewish Lower East Side of New York at first reflected more the culture of the homeland than of the United States. Language, dress, ways of doing business, keeping house, and worshiping, all followed Old World patterns. Gradually, thanks especially to the influence of school-age children, a blend of Russian Jewish and American traditions emerged.
An African-American religious meeting, New York City, early 1900s. Black migrants from the South found vibrant communities in northern cities typically centered around black churches and their activities. Like immigrants from Asia and Europe, who sought to transplant the culture of their homelands within the urban United States, black migrants reestablished southern religious and communal traditions in their new homes.
Amusement for the masses. Better transportation, more leisure time, and disposable income fueled escapes such as Luna Park in Coney Island, Brooklyn, a place where people could come together and have fun in a relatively controlled environment.