Warren G. Harding became the 29th President in 1921. His administration gave way to wide spread government corruption. Attorney General Harry Daugherty took money in lieu of prosecuting criminals and his Secretary of Interior Albert Fall took money from private businesses for leases of government oil reserves at Teapot Dome, Wyoming in which he became the first official to be convicted of a felony.
Calvin Coolidge, became President in 1923 after President Harding died from a sudden heart attack. He later went on to win the election of 1924 against John Davis. Coolidge was known as "Cool Cal" because he was a very quiet and reserved person. He helped businesses grow during his presidency by not promoting government regulations on business practices and is known for saying "The chief business of the American people is business"
Businesses began to grow and adopt assembly line techniques while new businesses were formed through development and advances in aviation, electronics and chemicals. Manufactures began to produce labor saving devices such as washing machines, toasters and vacuums cleaners. The Dollar replace the Pound as the dominant trade currency and by 1929 85% of vehicles and 40% of overall manufactured goods were produced in America
American standard of living was born, Americans began to go into debt through credit. By 1929 half of the American people owned a car. Through the magic of cinema and leisure activities, celebrities wore made such as Enrico Caruso, Babe Ruth and Rudolph Vallenato. Charles Lindbergh who in 1927 made the first solo flight across the Atlantic from New York to Paris.
African Americans migrated to the north and Harlem became the capital of black America. This became the birthing grounds for black cultural community with Jazz clubs and where writers such as Claude McKay, who wrote "If We Must Die", laid their roots.
Women's liberation gained momentum through the development of birth control. This gave rise to a new type of women. Yong single women of the 20's were know as a "flapper", she had short bobbed hair style, wore make up, drank alcohol, smoked cigarettes and had a rebellious attitude. Alice Paul backed the Equal Rights Amendment which was to give the same rights to women as men, however it failed to be passed.
In 1919 the 18th Amendment was passed by Congress which prohibits the production, transportation and sale of alcohol although consumption was not prohibited. Probation bread government corruption and allowed many to profit from illegal production and sale which was known as "bootlegging" and created "speakeasies" which were clubs that illegally sold alcohol.
New Ku Klux Klan, led by William Simmons, was brought back to life during 1915 in Atlanta, Georgia with the lynching of Leo Frank. The KKK denounced all immigrants, Jews and Catholics along with any group that was against their idea of American Traditions, and by the mid twenties had over 3 million members.
In 1921 the first immigration bill was signed and limited the amounts of European immigrants to 357,000. In 1924 the National Origins Act was signed by President Coolidge which decreased the number of immigrants to 150,000 and denied all Asian immigrants with the exception Philippian immigrants which had a cap of 50 per year. However restrictions were not put on western hemisphere immigrants due to the needs of seasonal labor. This law established the criteria for an Illegal Alien and created the border patrol for enforcement.
During 1925 a Tennessee teacher named John Scopes broke the law and was arrested for teaching Darwin's theory of evolution in a public school. This was very controversial between the strong beliefs of Christians and the American Civil Liberties Union. Although Scopes attorney made a strong argument during his trial , he was found guilty but was later over turned by the Tennessee Supreme Court.
On .October 29, 1929, which is also known as "Black Tuesday", the U.S. stock market lost over fourteen billion dollars. The huge drop in stock prices caused bankruptcies, bank failures and unemployment to rise. This was the end of the roaring twenties and the beginning of the "Great Depression".