Forging the National Economy Ch. 14 kayla&cassie

The Westward Movement
  • Andrew Jackson was the first president beyond the Appalachian Mountains.
  • The west was known as the most American part of America.
  • In 1850, half of Americans were under the age of thirty.
  • Unbearable loneliness haunted them, especially women, who were often cut off from human contact.
Shaping the Western Landscape
  • Pioneers in a hurry often exhausted the land in the tobacco region.
  • By the 1820's, American fur-trappers were settling their trap-lines all over the Rocky mountain region.
  • George Catlin, was the first American to stand for the preservation of nature as a national policy.
  • In 1832, Catlin observed Sioux Indians in South Dakota who were recklessly slaughtering buffalo in order to trade them.
The March of the Millions
  • As American people moved West, they also multiplied at an amazing rate.
  • The immigrants came partly because Europe seemed to be running out of room.
  • 60 million people abandoned Europe in the century after 1840, and almost 25 million went somewhere other than the United States.
  • In 1842, the towns were falling apart, with pigs roaming the streets, sewage systems failing, and rats roaming all areas of the town.
The Emerald Isle Moves West
  • Ireland, got struck with potato crops rotting, causing the people to get diseases and starvation. Ending with 2 million deaths.
  • The newcomers were too poor to more west, so they were forced to live in large seaboard cities.
  • As the Irish Americans increased in number, nearly 2 million arrived between 1830 and 1860.
The German Forty-Eighters
  • Between 1830 and 1860, over a million and a half Germans stepped on American soil as refuges, with the bulk of them being uprooted farmers.
  • Many of the German newcomers possessed a modest amount of material goods unlike the Irish.
  • Germans had fled from Europe to become a bulwark of isolationists sentiment in the upper Mississippi Valley.
Flare-ups of Antiforeignism
  • Newcomers took jobs from the “native” Americans.
  • The most frightful flare-ups occurred during 1844 in Philadelphia, where the Irish Catholic fought back against the threats of the nativists”.
  • The City of Brotherly Love did not quiet down until 2 Catholics churches had been burned.
Creeping Mechanization
  • In 1750 a group of British inventors, perfected a series of machines for mass productions.
  • Factory systems spread through British and then to other lands.
  • The young countries had difficulty producing goods of high quality and cheap enough cost.
Whitney Ends the Fiber Famine
  • Laboriously reconstructing the essential apparatus with aid of blacksmith and carpenter, put in operation in 1791.
  • Handpicking 1 pound of lint from three pounds of seeds was a full day of work.
  • In 1793 Eli Whitney built a machine called the cotton gin.
Marvels of Manufacturing
  • America's factories slowly spread until 1801.
  • In 1844 Morse code strung a wire 40 miles from Washington.
  • The principle of interchangeable parts as widely adopted by 1850.
Workers and "Wage Slaves"
  • 1 ugly outgrowth of the factory systems was increasingly acute labor problem.
  • Only 24 recorded strikes occurred before 1835.
  • Labor’s early and painful efforts at organization has netted some 300,00 trade unionists by 1830.
Women and the Economy
  • Woman were also sucked into clanging mechanism of factory production and had a important place such as weaving cloth and making candles.
  • “Factory girls” typically toiled 6 days a week.
  • The average household had 6 members at the end of the 18th century later.
Western Farmers Reap a Revolution in the Fields
  • Smoke-belching factories altered the eastern skyline flourishing farms were changing the West.
  • John Deere of Illinois in 1837 finally produced a steel plow that broke the soil.
  • No other American invention cut so wide a swath as the McCormick reaper.
Highways and Steamboats
  • In 1789, when the Constitution was launched, primitive methods of travel were still in use.
  • A promising improvement came in the 1790s, when a private company completed the Lancaster Turnpike in Pennsylvania.
  • By 1820, there were some sixty steamboats on the Mississippi and its tributaries.
"Clinton's Big Ditch" in New York
  • Resourceful New Yorkers, dug themselves the Erie Canal, linking the Great Lakes with the Hudson River.
  • Begun in 1817, the canal reached 363 miles long.
  • The cost of shipping a ton of grain from Buffalo to New York fell from $100 to $5, and the time of transit from 20 days to 6 days.
The Iron Horse
  • The most significant contribution to the development of such an economy proved to be the railroad.
  • The first railroad appeared in the United States in 1828.
  • By 1860 the United States boasted thirty thousand miles of railroad tracks.
  • In 1840 there were seven transfers between Philadelphia and Charleston.
Cables, Clippers, and Pony Riders
  • A crucial development came in 1858 when Cyrus Field, called "the greatest wire-puller in history".
  • In the 1840s and 1850s, a golden age dawned for American shipping.
  • Even more dramatic was the Pony Express, established in 1860 to carry mail speedily the two thousand lonely miles from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Sacramento, California.
The Transport Web Binds the Union
  • Until about 1830 the produce of the western region drained southward to the cotton belt or to the heaped-up wharves of New Orleans.
  • The Mississippi was robbed of its traffic, as goods moved eastward on trains, lake boats, and canal barges.
  • By the 1840s the city of Buffalo handled more western produce than New Orleans.
The Market Revolution
  • Under Chief Justice John Marshall, the U.S. Supreme Court vigilantly protected contract rights by requiring state governments to grant irrevocable charters.
  • Spectacular was the case of fur-trader and real estate speculator John Jacob Astor, who left an estate of $30 million on his death in 1848.
  • Wages for unskilled workers in a labor-hungry America rose about 1 percent a year from 1820 to 1860.

Key Terms

  • Limited liability: Legal principle that facilitates capital investment by offering protection for individual investors
  • Commonwealth v. Hunt: Massachusetts Supreme Court decision that strengthened the labor movement
  • Factory girls: Young women employed in the growing factories of the 19th century
  • McCormick reaper: Mechanized the harvest grains allowing farmers to cultivate larger plots
  • Turnpike: Privately funded, toll-based public road constructed in the early 19th century
  • Erie Canal: New York State canal that linked the Lake Erie to the Hudson River
  • Clipper ships: Small, swift vessels that gave American shippers an advantage in the carrying trade
  • Pony express: Speedy mail service between Missouri and California
  • Market Revolution: 18th and 19th century transformation from a disaggregated, subsistence economy to a national commercial and industrial netwrok
  • Cotton gin: Eli Whitney's invention that sped up the process of harvesting cotton

Key People


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