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Created by Matthew Piccolella

Election of 1920

Democrat James Cox ran against Republican Warren G. Harding who was unclear where he stood, "return to normalcy", Harding elected in a landslide

James Cox

Democrat Ohio Governor, urged adoption of the League of Nations

Republican Control

three Republican presidents would control the executive branch, Congress was solidly Republican too

Business Doctrine

death of Roosevelt combined with disillusionment over the war lead to return of conservative Republicans, accepted the idea of limited government regulation as an aid to stabilize business, agencies run by those sympathetic to business, nation would benefit if business were put in front

Warren G. Harding

had been a newspaper publisher, handsome, well-liked, abilities were less than presidential

Charles Evans Hughes

appointed as Secretary of State under Harding

Herbert Hoover

appointed as Secretary of Commerce under Harding

Andrew Mellon

appointed as Secretary of Treasury under Harding

Harding's Good Choices

appointed a very good cabinet, pardoned Eugene Debs

William H. Taft

appointed as Chief Justice under Harding

Domestic Policy

Harding approved reduction in income tax, increase in tariff rates, establishment of Bureau of the Budget

Fordney-McCumber Tariff

1922 raised the tariff rates under Harding

Bureau of the Budget

created by Harding, procedures for all government expenditures to be placed in a single budget for Congress to review and vote on

Teapot Dome Scandal

under Harding, Secretary of Interior Albert fall had accepted bribes for leasing oil, Daugherty took bribes for agreeing not to prosecute certain subjects

Albert B. Fall

Secretary of the Interior who took bribes for certain oil leases in Wyoming

Harry M. Dougherty

Attorney General who took bribes for agreeing not to prosecute certain criminal suspects

Calvin Coolidge

won popularity by breaking up Boston police strike, "Silent Cal", "business of America is business"

Election of 1924

Coolidge was overwhelming choice of Republican party, Democrats nominated John W. Davis who tried to make Teapot Dome an issue, Coolidge won easily

John W. Davis

conservative lawyer from West Virginia, nominated by Democrats in 1924

Robert La Follette

Progressive candidate in 1924, from Wisconsin, received nearly 5 million votes

Vetoes and Inaction

Coolidge believed in limited government, stood aside while business conducted its affairs, cut spending to bone, vetoed acts of Republicans in Congress

McNary-Haugen Bill

a bill to help farmers cope with their falling crop prices, VETOED by Coolidge

Election of 1928

Hoover nominated by Republicans, Alfred E. Smith was democratic nominee, Hoover promised "Coolidge Prosperity", won in a landslide, even took states in the South because of general dislike of Smith

Al Smith

governor of New York, Democrat nominee in 1928, battled Hoover, Roman Catholic, opponent of prohibition, appealed to immigrant votes

Mixed Economic Development

brief recession, then business prosperity from 1922-1928, then economic disaster in 1929, indoor plumbing and central heating became common, electricity, real income increased substantially

Increased Productivity

greater use of research and Taylorism helped manufacturing process, Ford's assembly line

Henry Ford

perfected a system for manufacturing automobiles by means of an assembly line, workers remained at one place all day and performed some simple operation over and over again, realized major gains in worker productivity

Energy Technologies

increased use of oil and electricity, oil used to power factories and gasoline for automobiles, 23% of US energy, electric motors in factories and appliances

Government Policy

1920s favored the growth of big business by offering corporate tax cuts and doing almost nothing to enforce the antitrust laws of the Progressive era

Farm Problems

farmers didn't share Coolidge prosperity, artificially high crop prices and US government's policy of guaranteeing a minimum price of wheat and corn hurt farmers after the war, new technologies like chemical fertilizers helped but din't fix problems

Labor Problems

union movement went backwards in the 1920s, membership declined 20%, most companies insisted on open shop, welfare capitalism, strong resistance from police

Open Shop

keeping jobs open to non-union workers

Welfare Capitalism

voluntarily offering their employees improved benefits and higher wages in order to remove the need for organizing unions

United Mine Workers

led by John L. Lewis, suffered setbacks in a series of violent and unsuccessful strikes in PA, WV, KY

Jazz Age

high school kids showed rebellion against elders' culture by dancing to music, African American musicians showed symbol of "new" and "modern" culture

Census of 1920

reported that more than half of American population lived in urban areas


electricity enabled millions of Americans to purchase new appliances, automobiles, advertising expanded as shops could appeal to status and popularity of products, customers bought on CREDIT

Impact of Automobile

average of one car per American family, replaced railroad industry as key indicator of economic growth, led to growth of other industries like steel, glass, rubber, gasoline, etc., affected everything people did socially, dating, commuting, etc., injuries and deaths, traffic, etc.


new medium suddenly appeared, first station went on air in 1920, broadcast music, over 800 stations by 1930, NBC, CBS, provided networks that enabled people to listen to the same programs as people across the country

Movie Industry

centered in Hollywood, CA, became big business in 1920s, became national habit, stars like Greta Garbo and Rudolf Valentino were idolized, "palaces" built for the public

Popular Heroes

Americans shifted viewpoint to larger-than-life celebrities rather than politicians, Jack Dempsey, Gertrude Ederle, Jim Thorpe, Babe Ruth, Bobby Jones

Charles Lindbergh

young aviator who flew nonstop from Long Island to Paris in 1927, huge welcome parades, etc.

Women at Home

traditional separation of labor between men and women continued, most middle-class women expected to spend their lives at home, washing machine and vacuum cleaner made t easier but didn't change routine

Women in Work Force

participation remained about the same as before the war, employed women were limited to certain jobs, clerks, nurses, teachers, etc.

Revolution in Morals

young men and women revolting against sexual taboos, influenced by Sigmund Freud, others took to premarital sex, movies and dances increased promiscuity, use of contraceptives was still against law

Margaret Sanger

work of her and other advocates of birth control achieved growing acceptance of contraceptives in the 1920s

Sigmund Freud

Austrian psychiatrist who stressed sexual repression


women influenced by movie actresses, shocked elders by wearing dresses at their knees, cutting their hair short, smoking cigarettes, driving cars, took jobs in office


laws were changed to allow women to escape abusive and incompatible husbands, one in six marriages ended this way by 1930


widespread belief in the value stimulated more states to enact compulsory school laws, number of high school graduates had doubled


took changing roles of women, Social Gospel movement, scientific knowledge, Protestants defined their faith in new ways, historical and critical view of certain Bible passages and believed they could accept Darwin's theory without abandoning their faith


creationism explained the origin of all life, God created the universe in seven days blame for liberal views of modernists for decline in morals

Revivalists on the Radio

preached a fundamentalist message, Billy Sunday attacked drinking, gambling, dancing

Billy Sunday

drew large crowds on the radio as he attacked drinking, gambling, dancing

Aimee Semple McPherson

condemned the twin evils of communism and jazz music

"Lost Generation"

leading writers of postwar decade, scorned religion as hypocritical, war was fraud led by war interests, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Sinclair Lewis, Ezra Pound, TS Eliot, Eugene O'Neill expressed disillusionment with the ideals of an earlier time and with materialism of a business-oriented culture

Frank Lloyd Wright

expanded on idea of functionalism, architects followed this philosophy in building skyscrapers with little decoration

Harlem Renaissance

largest African-American community, 200,000 African Americans, became famous for talented actors, artists, musicians, writers, Langston Hughes, James Weldon Johnson, Claude McKay, jazz age resulted from popularity of Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong, Bessie Smith, Paul Robeson

United Negro Improvement Association

brought to Harlem from Jamaica by Marcus Garvey

Marcus Garvey

UNIA, advocated individual and racial pride for African Americans and developed political ideas of black nationalism, established organization for black separatism, economic self-sufficiency, BACK-TO-AFRICA MOVEMENT

John Scopes

teacher in Tennessee focused the debate between fundamentalists and modernists, taught evolution in his high school class, persuaded by ACLU

Scopes Trial

Clarence Darrow defended Scopes, questioned prosecutor Bryan and made him look foolish, Scopes was convicted, later overturned, laws banning teaching of evolution were rarely enforced


wartime concerns to conserve grain and concern for sober workforce led Congress to pass the 18th amendment, strictly prohibited the manufacture and sale of alcoholic berages

18th Amendment

ratified in 1919, established Prohibition in America

Volstead Act

1919 law passed to enforce Prohibition

Defying Prohibition

many people kept drinking, it became fashionable to defy the law, bootleg liquor sold, Harding served alcoholic beverages, Al Capone fought for control of bootlegging, led to beginnings of organized crime

Repeal of Prohibition

growing public resentment and clear evidence of increasing criminal activity, coming of Great Depression, appeals were heard, 21st amendment ratified in 1933

21st Amendment

ratified in 1933, repealed the 18th Amendment (prohibition)


huge flow of foreigners came, Catholics and Jews from eastern and southern Europe, native-born Protestants were outraged, feared competition for jobs, wanted minimal contact with Europe

Quota Act of 1921

limited immigration to 3% of the number of foreign-born persons from a given nation in 1910 Census

Quota Act of 1924

set quotas of 2% based on Census of 1890 (before most "new immigrants" had come), ended tradition of unrestricted immigration

Sacco and Vanzetti Trial

two Italian immigrants who had been convicted of robbery and murder, liberals protested the men were innocent, had been accused because they were poor and anarchists, executed in 1927

Ku Klux Klan

most extreme expression of nativism, founded in 1915 as strong in midwest as in south, directed efforts against Catholics, Jews, foreignors, etc.

Klan Tactics

used methods for terrorizing anyone labeled as "un-American", dressed in white hoods, punished victims with whips, tar and feathers, even hangman's nose"

Klan Decline

many appeared to tolerate the Klan because it vowed to uphold high standards of Christian morality, would drive out bootleggers, fraud and corruption in the Klan led to its decline

Fictions of Isolation

US foreign policy couldn't be isolationist, Americans were fearful of being pulled into another war, but they actively pursued arrangements in foreign affairs

Washington Conference

1921 Hughes held talks on naval disarmament, hoped to stabilize size of armies, three agreements were important

Five-Power Treaty

nations with five largest navies agreed to maintain ratios with respect to largest warships, US 5, GB 5, Japan 3, France 1.67, Italy 1.67

Four-Power Treaty

US, France, GB, and Japan agreed to respect one another's territory in Pacific

Nine-Power Treaty

all nine nations represented at the conference agreed to respect Open Door policy by guaranteeing territorial integrity of China

Kellogg-Briand Pact

signing of a treaty, almost all nations of the world signed it, renounced the aggressive use of force to achieve national ends, would prove ineffective because it permitted defensive wars and failed to provide for action taken against violators

Latin America

Coolidge negotiated a peaceful resolution negotiating Coolidge's ambassador to Mexico, US troops withdrawn from Dominican Republic, American investments more than doubled

Middle East

oil reserves here were recognized as huge source of wealth, Hughes succeeded in winning oil-drilling right for US companies

Fordney-McCumber Tariff

increased duties on foreign manufactured goods by 25 percent, protective of US business interests in short run, but destructive in long run, European nations were slow to recover from war and had difficulty repaying their debts

War Debts and Reparations

US had been a debtor nation before WWI, emerged as creditor nation, having lent $10 billion to Allies, Harding and Coolidge insisted that Britain and France pay back every penny of their debts, British and French objected, pointed out they suffered much worse losses than Americans did

Dawes Plan

established a cycle of payments from the US to Germany and from Germany to the Allies, Germany could rebuild its economy and pay back reparations to Britain and France, who could then use the reparations to pay back the war debt, helped to ease financial problems on both sides, ultimately led to bad feelings on all sides for those who couldn't pay back debts

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