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Gilded Age

TermDefinition
Interstate Commerce Act Prohibited unfair practices by railroads such as charging higher rates for shorter routes.
Laissez-faire theory that government should not interfere in the operation of the free market.
Electricity Invention that allowed factories to operate all night.
Bessemer Process New technological process which made steel more affordable and profitable.
John D. Rockefeller Businessman who made his fortune refining oil; founded Standard Oil Co. (monopoly).
Transcontinental Railroad Completed in 1869 at Promontory Point, Utah. Made it possible to travel by land to California and led to the creation of a national market.
Labor Unions Organized workers to act as a group, not as an individual, to leverage for better working conditions.
Child Labor Were used to move, clean, or fix large machines since they were small enough to fit between the parts.
Gospel of Wealth Carnegie's theory that the rich were obligated to help communities by giving back in the form of libraries and schools but NOT giving directly to individuals.
Robber Barons Businessmen who used ruthless tactics to destroy competition and keep workers' wages low.
Andrew Carnegie Scottish immigrant who made his fortune in steel monopoly; known for his "Gospel of Wealth"
Captains of Industry Businessmen known for their positive contributions to the modern industrial economy.
Philanthropy Act of "charitable giving"
Monopoly Complete control of a product or service; the elimination of fair competition
Anti-Trust Acts Laws designed to prevent companies from engaging in unfair practices that eliminated fair competition.
Social Darwinism Economic philosophy based on the "Survival of the Fittest"
Great Plains Area of the country settled by farmers that were brought to the area from the east by the Transcontinental Railroad.
Gold Rush Miners were attracted to the area by discovery of precious metals.
Tenements Single room apartments often without heating, lighting, or sewage.
Political Bosses Corrupt city government officials who promised to provide services and jobs in exchange for votes.
Cattle drive Movement by cowboys of cattle to rail stations in the north to connect to markets in the east.
Ethnic ghettos Immigrant neighborhoods made up of people of similar nationality,
New Immigrants Mostly from Southern and Eastern Europe; mostly Catholic & Jewish.
Chinese Exclusion Act First federal law restricting Asian immigration to the United States.
Push and Pull Factors War, famine, drought, economic opportunity, education
Indian Wars Battles of Little Big Horn, Wounded Knee, Sand Creek Massacre; done to drive Indians onto reservations.
Dawes Act Law that divided up reservations and destroyed Indian culture.
Political Machine Unofficial city organized designed to keep a party in power; usually corrupt and used bribes to get immigrant votes.
Assimilation Process by which people of one culture merge into and become part of another culture.
Homestead Act 1862 law that gave free land to citizens in the Great Plains; led to the closing of the frontier & settlement of the West.
Urbanization Growth of large cities; movement from rural to urban.
Tammany Hall Most notorious political machine designed to keep Democrats in control of NYC; led by "Boss Tweed."
Americanization Learning to dress, speak, and act like other Americans.
Nativism Dislike of foreigners.
Created by: rkrauseemhs