35 terms

Honors US History Unit 2 Terms


Terms in this set (...)

Bessemer Process
A steel-making process in which carbon, silicon, and other impurities are removed from molten pig iron by oxidation in a blast of air in a special tilting retort

Its effect was that it lowered the cost of producing steel enough that it replaced the use of cast iron in manufacturing. As a result of its low production cost, small towns were able to explode with industry and jobs.

Andrew Carnegie controlled steel production in the United States until control was purchased by him by John D. Rockefeller.
Transcontinental Railroad
A railroad stretching either East to West or North to South across the United States.

There were three railroads stretching form the Atlantic to the Pacific. The first,
Robber Barons
A slang term for a person who has become rich through ruthless and unscrupulous business practices (originally with reference to prominent US businessmen in the late 19th century).

Examples of these people are Jay Gould, John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, and Henry Flagler.

Many of these businessmen and businessmen like them grew their companies into massive empires which had a monopoly on their respective industries.
George Pullman was an American engineer and industrialist. He designed and manufactured the Pullman sleeping car and founded a company town, Pullman, for the workers who manufactured it.

When the demand for manufacturing dropped, Pullman cut jobs, lowered wages, and increased working hours as a way to maintain his profits. Although, he did not lower the price of rent and supplies in his town. As a result of such harsh treatment, his workers went on strike. In the end, Pullman was forced out of ownership of the town by The Supreme Court of Illinois.
A monopoly exists when a specific person or enterprise is the only supplier of a particular commodity

One example of a monopoly is the oil industry owned by John D. Rockefeller. Rockefeller, the founder of Standard Oil, once owned over 90 percent of the oil pipelines in the US. In 1911, The US Supreme Court found Standard Oil to be in violation of anti-trust laws ordered the company to disband.
An economic system in which transactions between private parties are free from government intervention such as regulation, privileges, tariffs and subsidies.

The United States does not operate under the laissez-faire system. For example, regulations on working conditions, pollution, and child labor exist in the US. These would not exist in a true laissez-faire economic system.
Interstate Commerce Act
A federal law enacted in 1887 that was designed to regulate the railroad industry, particularly its monopolistic practices. However, this law failed to the government any real power to correct any unfair rates.
Andrew Carnegie led the expansion of the American steel industry in the late 19th century and is often identified as one of the richest people (and richest Americans).

He accumulated his wealth as a bond salesman, raising money for American enterprise in Europe. He built Pittsburgh's Carnegie Steel Company, which he sold to J. P. Morgan in 1901 for $480 million.

During the last 18 years of his life, he gave away almost 90 percent of his fortune.
Vertical Integration
Vertical integration is an arrangement in which the supply chain of a company is owned by that company. Usually each member of the supply chain produces a different product or (market-specific) service, and the products combine to satisfy a common need.
Horizontal Integration
Horizontal integration is the process of a company increasing production of goods or services at the same part of the supply chain.

The process can lead to monopoly if a company captures the vast majority of the market for that product or service.
Social Darwinism
The belief that only the fittest survive in human political and economic struggle.

Many Social Darwinists embraced laissez-faire capitalism and racism.
Built the Standard Oil company. He once controlled over 90% of the oil industry. In 1911, the US Supreme Court ordered Standard Oil to dissolve.
Sherman Antitrust Act
First federal action against monopolies. Government regulation stopping companies from becoming or carrying on monopolies. Was meant to protect consumers from unfair pricing. However, it was initially misused against labor unions.
a combination of firms or corporations formed by a legal agreement, especially to reduce competition
Holding company
A company whose primary business is owning a controlling share of stock in other companies. In the context of monopolies, these companies were used to split up and protect the wealth of their owners.
A business owned by stockholders who share in its profits but are not personally responsible for its debts. Engages in business practices.
Homestead Act
The policy of the federal government of giving out free land in the West to those who lived and farmed on it for at least 5 years. This was done to entice people into moving out West, therefore giving the US government more of presence in it.
Sitting Bull
A Lakota Indian leader who led Native forces in the final battles of resistance against US government forces. These final battles include The Battle of Little Bighorn (a native victory), and The Battle of Wounded Knee (the final Native battle).
General Custer
He and his entire army were killed by the Sioux Indian tribe at the Battle of Little Bighorn.

This loss enraged Americans and motivated them decimate all remaining Native American resistance.
The social process of absorbing one cultural group into harmony with another.

In the context of the Native Americans, this was a process in which, through the passing of different laws, the US government tried to force the Natives into adopting American culture and customs.
The Granger Movement
Beginning in the 1870s, farmers organized to protect their interests in an economy that was rapidly shifting towards industrialization.

This movement eventually developed into the Populist Movement.
A person who organizes, manages, and takes on the risks of a business.
Knights of Labor
A radical labor union which advocated for public ownership of the railroads, an income tax (because most wealthy weren't being taxed), equal pay for women workers, the abolition of child labor, creation of single, massive union that would unite all workers across the country.
Labor Unions
An organization of united labor workers whose main was to achieve better treatment of workers by their employers.

Examples are Knights of Labor (KOL), Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), American Federation of Labor (AFL), American Railway Union (ARU).
people who oppose all forms of organized government
An umbrella term for people of diverse perspectives but many of whom typically advocate equality, protection of workers from exploitation by property owners and state ownership of major industries. This ideology led to the founding of certain labor parties in the late 1800s.
Credit Mobilier
a joint-stock company organized in 1863 and reorganized in 1867 to build the Union Pacific Railroad. It was involved in a scandal in 1872 in which high government officials were accused of accepting bribes.
Munn v. Illinois
1876; The Supreme Court upheld the Granger laws. The Munn case allowed states to regulate certain businesses within their borders, including railroads, and is commonly regarded as a milestone in the growth of federal government regulation.
Samuel Gompers
United States labor leader (born in England) who was president of the American Federation of Labor from 1886 to 1924 (1850-1924)
Eugene V. Debs
Head of the American Railway Union and director of the Pullman strike; he was imprisoned along with his associates for ignoring a federal court injunction to stop striking. While in prison, he read Socialist literature and emerged as a Socialist leader in America.
Henry Flagler
Was a self-made millionaire and industrialist who co-founded the Standard Oil Company. He masterminded the plan that transformed Standard Oil into the most successful monopoly of the nineteenth century. During the second half of his life, he developed land and built railroads in Florida, establishing agriculture and tourism as the state's leading industries.
Morill Land Grant Act
In 1862, this act gave public land to state governments to sell. The money was to be used to finance public education. This led to the formation of many state schools and colleges 4: 1825-1865
Dawes Severalty Act
Bill that promised Indians tracts of land to farm in order to assimilate them into white culture. The bill was resisted, uneffective, and disastrous to Indian tribes
American Federation of Labor (AFL)
*Combination of national craft unions representing labor interests in wages, hours, and safety
*Individuals were members of their local unions, which in turn, were members of the AFL
*Rather than revolutionary changes, they sought a better working life; their philosophy was "pure and simple unionism"
*First president was Samuel Gompers
Industrial Workers of the World (IWW)
Founded in 1905, this radical union, also known as the Wobblies aimed to unite the American working class into one union to promote labor's interests. It worked to organize unskilled and foreign-born laborers, advocated social revolution, and led several major strikes. Stressed solidarity.