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Chapter 19: Political Stalemate and Rural Revolt (1865-1900)
Terms in this set (17)
An era of dramatic industrial and urban growth characterized by widespread political corruption and loose government oversight over corporations.
Shabby, low-cost inner-city apartment buildings that housed the urban poor in cramped, poorly ventilated apartments.
Wave of newcomers from southern and eastern Europe, including many Jews, who became the majority among immigrants to American after 1890.
Members of a reactionary conservative movement characterized by heightened nationalism, anti-immigrant sentiment, and the enactment of laws setting stricter regulations on immigration.
Chinese Exclusion Act (1882)
Federal law that barred Chinese laborers from immigrating to America.
Bars or taverns where mostly men would gather to drink, eat, relax, play games, and, often, to discuss politics.
The application of Charles Darwin's theory of evolutionary natural selection to human society; social darwinists used the concept of "survival of the fittest" to justify class distinctions, explain poverty, and oppose government intervention in the economy.
A social philosophy developed by Lester Frank War that challenged the ruthlessness of social darwinism by asserting that humans were not passive pawns of evolutionary forces. Instead, people could actively shape the process of evolutionary social development through cooperation, innovation, and planning.
Powerful political leaders who controlled a "machine" of associates and operatives to promote both individual and party interests, often using informal tactics such as intimidation or the patronage system.
An informal system (sometimes called the "spoils system") used by politicians to reward their supporters with government appointments or contracts.
Civil Service Reform
An extended effort led by political reformers to end the patronage system; led to the Pendleton Act (1883), which called for government positions to be awarded based on merit rather than party loyalty.
Reformers who bolted the Republican party in 1884 to support Democratic Grover Cleveland for president over Republican James G. Blaine, whose secret dealings on behalf of railroad companies had brought charges of corruption.
Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC)
An independent federal agency established in 1887 to oversee businesses engaged in interstate trade, especially railroads, but whose regulatory power was limited when testes in the courts.
Effort led by the Democratic party to reduce taxes on imported goods, which Republicans argued were needed to protect American industries from foreign competition.
(also called Populists) is a Political party largely made up of farmers from the South and West that struggled to gain political influence from the East. Populists advocated a variety of reforms, including free coinage of silver, a progressive income tax, postal savings banks, regulation of railroads, and direct election of U.S. Senators.
Panic of 1893
A major collapse in the national economy after several major railroad companies declared bankruptcy, leading to a severe depression and several violent clashes between workers and management.
Late-nineteenth century national debate over the nature of U.S. currency; supporters of a fixed gold standard were generally money lenders, and this preferred to keep the value of money high. while supporters of silver (and gold) coinage were debtors, they owed money high, so they wanted to keep the value of money low by increasing the currency supply (inflation).
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