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Even as post-Civil War America expanded and industrialized, political life in the Gilded Age was marked by ineptitude, stalemate, and corruption. Despite their similarity at the national level, the two parties competed fiercely for offices and spoils, while doling out "pork-barrel" benefits to veterans and other special interest groups.
Describe the political corruption of the Grant administration and the mostly unsuccessful efforts to reform
politics in the Gilded Age.
Patronage, Credit Mobilier Scandal, stalwart, Half-breeds
Ulysses S. Grant
an American general and the eighteenth President of the United States (1869-1877). He achieved international fame as the leading Union general in the American Civil War.
corpulent and unscrupulous, provided the the "brass"; worked with Jay Gould - wanted to corner the US gold market and convince the treasury not to release gold so they could have control over the gold market - almost worked- showed corruption of grant presidency - lead to black friday - in 1869
undersized and cunning, provided the brains; an American financier who became a leading American railroad developer and speculator. Conned President Grant into ceasing the sale of gold on market to stop inflation and help farmers, but resulted in "Black Friday," Spetember 24,1869
Explain the intense political partisanship of the Gilded Age, despite the parties' lack of ideological difference
and poor quality of political leadership.
Gilded Age was given the name by Mark Twain to the three-decades of post-Civil war ear. House of Representatives switched six times out of the eleven reelections. "Ticket Splitting" happened.
Former Governor of New York, Nominated by the Democrats In the 1868 election. Militant platform renouncing Reconstruction acts. VP Frank Blair. Did well in the South, but lost to Grant
Panic of 1873
Four year economic depression caused by overspeculation on railroads and western lands, and worsened by Grant's poor fiscal response (refusing to coin silver
Show how the farm crisis of the depression of the 1890s stirred growing social protests and class conflict, and
fueled the rise of the radical Populist Party.
The Homestead Strike
The serious issues of monetary and agrarian reform, labor, race, and economic fairness were largely
swept under the rug by the political system, until revolting farmers and a major economic depression beginning in 1893 created a growing sense of crisis and demands for radical change.
Explain the rise of class conflict between business and labor in the 1870s and the growing hostility to immigrants, especially the Chinese.
Chinese Exclusion Act
The Compromise of 1877 made reconstruction officially over and white Democrats resumed political
power in the South. Blacks, as well as poor whites, found themselves forced into sharecropping and tenant farming; what began as informal separation of blacks and whites in the immediate postwar years evolved into systematic state-level legal codes of segregation known as Jim Crow laws.
Describe the economic crisis of the 1870s, and explain the growing conflict between hard-money and soft money
"Crime of '73", Panic of 1873
Indicate how the disputed Hayes-Tilden election of 1876 led to the Compromise of 1877 and the end of
It led to the Compromise of 1877 because they weren't sure who was supposed to count the ballots.
Compromise of 1877
Ended Reconstruction. Republicans promise 1) Remove military from South, 2) Appoint Democrat to cabinet (David Key postmaster general), 3) Federal money for railroad construction and levees on Mississippi river
Describe how the end of Reconstruction led to the loss of black rights and the imposition of the Jim Crow system
of segregation in the South
Compromise of 1877
Explain the economic crisis and depression of the 1890s, and indicate how the Cleveland administration failed to address it.
He battled for a lower tariff..Failed to address because the depression was still strong leading into the mid-1890s
240 pounds - employed bribery, graft, and fraudulent elections to milk the metropolis of as much as $200 million. William Tweed, head of Tammany Hall, NYC's powerful democratic political machine in 1868. Between 1868 and 1869 he led the Tweed Reign, a group of corrupt politicians in defrauding the city.
cartoonist; Political cartoonist who's work exposed the abuses of the Tweed ring, criticized the South's attempts to impede Reconstruction, and lampooned labor unions. Created the animal symbols of the Democratic and republican parties.
An American newspaper editor and founder of the Republican party. His New York Tribune was America's most influential newspaper 1840-1870. Greeley used it to promote the Whig and Republican parties, as well as antislavery and a host of reforms.
1876: Grant's secretary of war who was forced to resign after he was found to have accepted bribes from suppliers to the Indian reservations.
Unblushingly embraced the time-honored system of swapping civil-service jobs for votes, politician from New York who served both as a member of the United States House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. He was the leader of the Stalwart faction of the Republican Party. Was highly against civil service reforms, it was thought that the killing of Garfield was done in Conkling's behest.
James G. Blaine
A radiantly personable congressman with an elastic conscience. , a U.S. Representative, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, U.S. Senator from Maine, two-time United States Secretary of State, and champion of the Half-Breeds. He was a dominant Republican leader of the post Civil War period, obtaining the 1884 Republican nomination, but lost to Democrat Grover Cleveland
Rutherford B. Hayes
"The Great Unknown", 19th president of the united states, was famous for being part of the Hayes-Tilden election in which electoral votes were contested in 4 states, most corrupt election in US history
Irish immigrant who settled in San Fransicso and fought for workers rights. He led strikes in protest of the growing number of imported Chineseworkers who worked for less than the Americans. Founded the Workingman's Party, which was later absorbed into the Granger movement.
Winfield Scott Hancock
The democratic candidate for president in 1880 and civil war hero. He nearly took the national election, as Garfield failed to get a majority, but lost overwhelmingly in the Electoral College
New York attorney headed the prosecution, gaining fame that later paved the path to his presidential nomination. (February 9, 1814 - August 4, 1886) was the Democratic candidate for the US presidency in the disputed election of 1876, the most controversial American election of the 19th century.
James A. Garfield
1881, Republican, Greenback Labor Party, Republican - protective tariff, Democrats - revenue tariff, shot by Julius Guiteau (mental unstable, thought unfair spoils system)
Chester A. Author
vice pres. who became pres. after garfield was assassinated in 1881, helped create Pendleton Act
Winfield S. Hancock
Civil War general who appealed to the South due to his fair treatment of it during Reconstruction and a veteran who had been wounded at Gettysburg, and thus appealed to veterans. he was chosen by the democrats
Charles J. Guiteau
In 1881 Charles J. Guiteau shot President Grafield in the back in a Washington railroad station. Guiteau allegedly committed this crime so that Arthur, a stalwart, would become President. Guiteau's attorneys used a plea of insanity, but failed and Guiteau was hung for murder. After this event politics began to get cleaned up with things like the Pendelton Act.
22nd and 24th president, Democrat, Honest and hardworking, fought corruption, vetoed hundreds of wasteful bills, achieved the Interstate Commerce Commission and civil service reform, violent suppression of strikes
23rd President; Republican, poor leader, introduced the McKinley Tariff and increased federal spending to a billion dollars
"The Czar" When Republicans controlled everything, he was Speaker of the House and he ran the House like his own castle. He and
Twenty-fifth President of the United States, and the last veteran of the Civil War to be elected. By the 1880s, this Ohio native was a nationally known Republican leader; his signature issue was high tariffs on imports as a formula for prosperity, as typified by his McKinley Tariff of 1890. As the Republican candidate in the 1896 presidential election, he upheld the gold standard, and promoted pluralism among ethnic groups.
James B. Weaver
He was the Populist candidate for president in the election of 1892; received only 8.2% of the vote. He was from the West.
Elected to the U.S congress, became known as a champion of Georgia's farmers, and he sponsored and pushed through a law providing for RFD-rural free delivery
Creates Carnegie Steel. Gets bought out by banker JP Morgan and renamed U.S. Steel. Andrew Carnegie used vertical integration by buying all the steps needed for production. Was a philanthropist. Was one of the "Robber barons"
Adlai E. Stevenson
Gaining the support of Truman who did not want to run again, this man of Illinois was the clear choice to be the democratic candidate in 1952. Unable to produce a war record like Eisenhower, he was solidly defeated everywhere but the deep south, gaining only 89 electoral votes
William Jennings Bryan
United States lawyer and politician who advocated free silver and prosecuted John Scopes (1925) for teaching evolution in a Tennessee high school (1860-1925)
Business man -refinanced railroads during depression of 1893 - built intersystem alliance by buying stock in competeing railroads - marketed US governemnt securities on large scale
Paper money which is not connected to a treasury or gold supply, favored by debtors so their debts could be payed off for lose, when issued caused depreciation
Paper money backed by gold; extremely important during late 1860's and early 1870's (Panic of 1873). "hard-money" (creditors) people wanted disappearance of greenbacks
Policy which decreased the amount of money per capital in circulation between 1870 and 1880
The "Bloody Shirt"
During the election of 1876, the Republicans backed Rutherford Hayes against the Democratic candidate, Samuel Tilden. They resorted to a tactic known as "waving the bloody shirt," which was used in the last two elections. The tactic emphasized wartime animosities by urging northern voters to vote the way they shot.
A term given to the period 1877-1896 by Mark Twain, indicating both the fabulous wealth and the wide-spread corruption of the era
Policy of rewarding political supporters with public office, first widely employed at the federal level by Andrew Jackson. The practice was widely abused by unscrupulous office seekers, but it also helped cement party loyalty in the emerging two-party system
Similar to sharecropping — merchants loan food and supplies to farmers so they can farm; farmers have to pay them back with some of their crops. When harvests were bad, farmers got deeper and deeper in debt to merchants.
When congress votes for an unnecessary building project so that a member can get more district popularity
Farm-based movement of the late 1800s that arose mainly in the area from Texas to the Dakotas and grew into a joint effort between farmer and labor groups against big business and machine-based politics. The movement became a third party in the election of 1892.
A regulation established in many southern states in the 1890s that exempted from voting requirements (such as literacy tests and poll taxes) anyone who could prove that their ancestors ("grandfathers") had been able to vote in 1860. Since slaves could not vote before the Civil War, these clauses guaranteed the right to vote to many whites while denying it to blacks
called for redemption in greenbacks, 1867 - Senator George H. Pendleton proposed an idea that Civil War bonds be redeemed with greenbacks. It was not adopted.
September 24, 1869 - Fisk and Gould madly bid the price of gold skyward in order to corner the gold market
A symbol of Gilded Age corruption, "Boss" Tweed and his deputies ran the New York City Democratic party in the 1860s and swindled $200 million from the city through bribery, graft, and vote-buying. Boss Tweed was eventually jailed for his crimes and died behind bars.
Credit Mobilier Scandal
1872: A construction company was formed by owners of the Union Pacific Railroad for the purpose of receiving government contracts to build the railroad at highly inflated prices - and profits. In 1872 a scandal erupted when journalists discovered that it had bribed congressmen and even the Vice President in order to allow the ruse to continue
During the Grant administration, a group of officials were importing whiskey and using their offices to avoid paying the taxes on it, cheating the treasury out of millions of dollars.
Freedmen's Savings and Trust Company
Made unsecured loans to several companies that went under, Blacks entrusted over $7 million to the bank - lost their savings
Party formed in 1872 (split from the ranks of the Republican Party) which argued that the Reconstruction task was complete and should be set aside. Significantly dampened further Reconstructionist efforts.
"Crime of '73"
Through the coinage act of 1873, the US ended the minting of silver dollars and placed the country on the gold standard. This was attacked by those who supported an inflationary monetary policy, particularly farmers and believed in the unlimited coinage of silver.
1878 law passed over the veto of President Rutherford B. Hayes requiring the U.S. treasury to buy a certain amount of silver and put it into circulation as silver dollars. The goal was to subsidize the silver industry in the Mountain states and inflate prices.
Greenback Labor Party
Political party devoted to improving the lives of laborers and raising inflation, reaching its high point in 1878 when it polled over a million votes and elected fourteen members of Congress.
Grand Army of the Republic (GAR)
a fraternal organization composed of veterans of the Union Army who had served in the American Civil War
A republican political machine, headed by James G. Blane 1869. They pushed republican ideals and were almost a separate group that existed within the party.
Compromise of 1877
The agreement that finally resolved the 1876 election and officially ended Reconstruction. In exchange for the Republican candidate, Rutherford B. Hayes, winning the presidency, Hayes agreed to withdraw the last of the federal troops from the former Confederate states. This deal effectively completed the southern return to white-only, Democratic-dominated electoral politics.
Civil Rights Cases
1883 - These state supreme court cases ruled that Constitutional amendments against discrimination applied only to the federal and state governments, not to individuals or private institutions. Thus the government could not order segregation, but restaurants, hotels, and railroads could. Gave legal sanction to Jim Crow laws.
Civil Rights Act of 1875
The last piece of federal civil rights legislation until the 1950s, the law promised blacks equal access to public accommodations and banned racism in jury selection, but the Act provided no means of enforcement and was therefore ineffective. In 1883, the Supreme Court declared most of the Act unconstitutional
1883: Congressional legislation that established the Civil Service Commission, which granted federal government jobs on the basis of examinations instead of political patronage, thus reigning in the spoil system
Republican political activists who supported Democratic candidate Grover Cleveland in the United States presidential election of 1884. They switched parties because they rejected the financial corruption associated with Republican candidate, James Blaine.
Southern Democratic politicians who sought to wrest control from Republican regimes in the South after Reconstruction
Plessy v. Ferguson
a 1896 Supreme Court decision which legalized state ordered segregation so long as the facilities for blacks and whites were equal
System of racial segregation in the American South from the end of Reconstruction until the mid-twentieth century. Based on the concept of "Separate but equal" facilities for blacks and whites, the Jim Crow system sought to prevent racial mixing in public, including restaurants, movie theaters, and public transportation. An informal system, in was generally perpetuated by custom, violence, and intimidation
Chinese Exclusion Act
1882: Federal legislation that prohibited most further Chinese immigration to the United States. This was the first major legal restriction on immigration in U.S. history.
A series of letters written by James G. Blaine to a Boston businessman, Warren Fisher Jr., that indicated Blaine had used his official power as Speaker of the House of Representatives to promote the fortunes of the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad.
United States vs. Wong Kim Ark
born in San Franisico, goes to china to visit family and then goes back to US but cannot because of laws immigration laws, challenges what the 14th amendment mean, does it only apply if your parents are citizens?
1. Ark wins the case, it doesn't matter that his parents were not US citizens, they were here legally
Gave pensions to Civil War veterans, increased government silver purchases, and passed McKinley Tariff Act of 1890: First time Congress spent a billion dollars
People's Party (Populists)
Represented Westerners and Southerners who believed that U.S. economic policy inappropriately favored Eastern businessmen instead of the nation's farmers. Their proposals included nationalizing the railroads, creating a graduated income tax, and most significantly the unlimited coinage of silver
Sherman Silver Purchase Act
1890, an act was passed so that the treasury would by 4.5 million ounces of silver monthly and pay those who mined it in notes that were redeemable in either gold or silver. This law doubled the amount of silver that could be purchased under the Bland-Allison Law of 1878.
Colored Farmers' National Alliance
More than 1 million southern black farmers organized and shared complaints with poor white farmers. By 1890 membership numbered more than 250,000. The history of racial division in the South, made it hard for white and black farmers to work together in the same org.
Passed by Congress in 1894 restricted US sugar imports. The tariff led to an economic downturn in Cuba, and in turn helped to increase the anger of Cuban natives against colonial Spain. Was 40% rate compared to McKinley Tariff, however again he was defeated on tariff program
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