The Historical Issues

The civil war caused a lot of effects in the United States: it led to the ‘modernisation’ of the south, which was initially a rural area without transport means, to an urban center with transportation; the carpetbaggers who moved to the south to help in recovering made roads, built factories and education systems in the south, all of which have maintained the place’s economy to date; there was the emergence of many companies in the area, for instance, car companies.

Andrew Johnson was a racist, and entrusting him with the role of enforcing the civil rights of the people, as well as those of former blacks, was a failure. He failed to force the states from the south to grant the blacks equal rights just like the other citizens. He gave amnesty to a number of rebels that shore allegiance to him by swearing. This caused an outrage in the Radical Republicans who felt that the blacks’ rights were not protection. Andrew Johnson only advocated for less qualifications in the voting process to all, as well as racially fighting for the whites’ rights, lacked the skills to guide the state through a successful reconciliation after the war. The Radical Republicans opposed him for his failure to uphold equity to all citizens, his arrogance that led to his loss of the public support, his failure to possess the right political skills to work with the Congress and his contribution to the national conflict.

The Thirteenth Amendment and the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution were reconstruction steps that were meant to ensure that all citizens were treated equally regardless of race. While the Thirteenth Amendment banned slavery, the Fourteenth Amendment banned the voting qualifications that were based on race. The Thirteenth Amendment was the first of the reconstruction amendments that were adopted immediately after the American Civil War which outlaws slavery and the bondage of an individual without their will except when such is done as a punishment for a committed crime. The Fourteenth Amendment contained three clauses that include the citizenship clause which overruled the Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857) case which restricted people of African origin from becoming U.S. citizens and that provides for the qualifications that an individual should meet in order to be a U.S. citizen (McDonald v. Chicago), the due process clause that abolished the depriving of a person’s right to life, right to own property and right to liberty without following certain defined steps aimed at ensuring fairness by the state and the local governments, and the equal protection clause that required the state to provide equal protection to all the people in its jurisdiction (not only citizens).

The black codes are a number of statutes in the U.S. history that were passed to govern the newly freed slaves. They stipulated how the blacks who were previously slaves were to be treated now that they were free men. They gave the blacks basic civil rights such as the right to marriage, the right to own personal property and the right to sue somebody in court. These statutes varied to a greater degree across states in terms of their harshness and restrictiveness. Though the blacks were entitled to these basic rights, they were still segregated in public facilities, as well as their status severely restricted as pertains to their freedom of labor, ownership of real estates and their admission as a witness in court.

Reconstruction is the plans and actions that were taken after the civil war to deal with slavery, equality to all citizens and unite the states. The plans to unite the southern and northern states back into the Union brought about protests from most southern whites. Moreover, the plans by Abraham Lincoln, the Radical Republicans, and Andrew Johnson contained substantial differences. Most southern whites protested against the policies which were enacted championing for welfare of the disadvantaged, especially those that were aimed at improving the political and economic welfare of former slaves.

The Reconstruction that followed the aftermath of the civil war brought a lot of developments to the U.S. For instance, a lot of laws where incorporated into the constitution, which brought about equality of rights to the people in terms of ownership of property, right to liberty and citizenship. There was less qualification requirements during voting and unity among the states. It led to carpetbaggers’ and scalawags’ economic development and increase in political power much to the opposition of the southern whites. Though the reconstruction brought about positive changes, it failed to put in place mechanisms to ensure that the laws that the Congress enacted were actually implemented. The laws were just empty talk since they were not implemented, especially in the south. There was no actual unity between the states since the south felt that they were not considered in the Congress.

The Reconstruction era was mainly marked by the passage of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments while the Compromise of 1877 marked the end of the Reconstruction. Some of the reconstructions include the Freedmen’s Bureau (March 3, 1865) that was established in the War Department to deal with war refugees, the abandoned lands and the men who were freed; the Thirteenth Amendment (December 18, 1865) that banned slavery and involuntary bondage; the presidential reconstruction (November 1866); Tenure of Office Act (Aug 12 1867) that limited the powers of the president and required him to seek the advice of the Congress; the passing of the Civil Rights Act (1866) by congress; the passing of the Fourteenth Amendment (1868) that advocated for equality to all citizens regardless of race. In September 18, 1877, the Reconstruction ended after Hayes took office and withdrew federal troops that were in the south and after the collapse of the last Radical state governments.

Manifest destiny was a widely held belief that American settlers who ventured in anything could be successful anywhere in the continent. It was believed that it was the destiny of the U.S. to grow and spread over its political, social, and economic influences in the whole of the North America. The manifest destiny is one of the reasons why most of the Americans turned their interest to the West for settlement, farming and trade. This was facilitated by Louisiana Purchase, which enlarged the West, as well as the driving away of the Indians who initially lived here in the West. The Indian Removal Act was a law signed by president Andrew Jackson in 1830 requiring the removal and relocation of the Native Americans from east of River Mississippi to its west to provide room for the white American settlers in the west.

The little Bighorn Battle was influenced by the desire of the Americans to exploit gold that was discovered on a land reserved for the Sioux who had an alliance with the Americans to live on that land. This shows that the federal government cared more on the interests of the white Americans than it did the rights of the Native Americans. The Indians refused the advances of the Americans and hence a fight ensured that saw the killing of over 260 American armies.

The Indian Appropriations Act was meant to protect and manage the Native Americans from the increased settlement of Americans in the west. The reservation policy that was adopted by the federal government forced the Native Americans to live under laws that favored the activities of the white citizens and restricted the rest of the citizens.

The industrial revolution came about based on a number of factors:

In the agricultural sector, the increased tendency of the farmers to grow new crops using new technological methods such as the seed drill and iron plow rapidly increased the amount of food available for consumption. This led to increased population as a result of varied and rich diets coupled with good health, which in turn added to the rapid population growth. Improvements in farming methods meant that only a small number of people were required to work. The rest formed a large workforce for the industries.

The textile industry was the pioneer of the industrial revolution. Here, a number of inventions led to increased demand for laborers. New machines such as the spinning jenny, the flying shuttle, and the water-powered loom speeded up the spinning and weaving of cotton wool. New machines which could be powered by water pooled people together into factories which were built near rivers where there was running water. Later, the invention of steam-powered machines replaced those powered by water. Thomas Newcomen and James Watt are some of the people who helped improve the performance of steam engines that boosted the iron and coal industries. There was also the development of new and better processes that produced stronger iron, with Henry Bessemer being a major contributor to the production of steel from a mixture of iron and other materials. Consequently, steel led to the development of some other more industries like transport.

The transport and communication industry greatly improved the way people operated during the industrial revolution. Roads and canals were made out of materials and surfaces that lasted for much longer forming a network that connected all parts of the states. George Stephenson, an engineer in mining developed a locomotive powered by steam that formed the backbone for the building of railroads. The coming of railroads and the ships that also used steam as power revolutionized transportation. Samuel F.B, an American inventor came up with the world’s first telegraph that went on to change the way people communicated to each other.

In the south, the industrial revolution weakened their economy. This is because the South’s economy relied on farming and cultivation which was a contrast of what the industrial revolution was all about. It drew away people to factories where there was more money leaving out the south.

The Industrial Revolution weakened the economy of the South. During the Industrial Revolution, much more work was done in factories. The Southern economy was devoted to farming and cultivating the land. More money and jobs were in the factories and cities. Therefore, the economy of the South was weakened.

In the earlier days, the work of the proletariats and artisans was highly regarded in the society since they are the people who possessed the expertise and skill to do tasks. Production of goods and services was mostly based on these people. In the 1800s, when the industrial revolution set in, machines were preferred to do the jobs that were initially done by artisans and proletarians. This is because; machines are more efficient and more economical than are humans, thus rendering the work on the proletarians and artisans less useful. In the era of machines decreased the demand for hand workers and so their wages were drastically lowered.

A lot of workers where thus retrenched sparking a lot of protests and strikes. Poor working conditions during the industrial revolution that included long working hours a day, low wages, poor healthy conditions of workplaces increasing the risk of injury and sickness are some of the reasons why workers lobbied for labor unions that could protect them and agitate for better working conditions.

The Knights of labor (1879) were led by Terence into a powerful union of laborers that accepted all workers, whether skilled, semi-skilled, women, and blacks e.t.c. It grew in membership for some time until it was brought down by the Haymarket Square tragedy. This led to the emergence of the American Federation of Labor (1866) which only accepted skilled laborers. It grew and took over from Knights of Labor which collapsed and organized several strikes and protests in a bid to improve the conditions of work for its members.

Imperialism in the U.S grew because of the following ideas: economic reasons such as the need to make more money, increase and control foreign trade, discover new product markets, get more raw materials and affordable labor, and export technology on industries and well as methods of transport; political desires in gaining power, for competition among other European countries, enlarge territory, boost national pride and security, and achieve prestige; the religious needs to spread the gospel, safeguard the European missionaries in foreign lands, spread European culture, and abolish slave trade in Africa; exploration motives to ‘discover’ unknown places, do scientific research, adventure and so on.

America had interests in both Cuba and Spain’s Pacific territories which led to it agitating for Spain’s surrender on its rule over Cuba. Imperialism led to a number of positive as well as negative effects. For instance, the empire was able to expand its territories and obtain such resources as land, show its superiority over other nations, spread its culture amongst other countries as well as improve its economy.

Negative impacts of imperialism included the increased tension amongst other European countries who also wanted a share, fostered cold wars between powers who were not European, increased slavery in Africa and other minority states.

Please explain the relationship between Industrial Revolution, Populism and Progressive movement. Do not forget to mention the difference between Populism and Progressivism, as well as the basic ideas of each movement. Finally, please describe and analyze the different areas on which Progressives concentrated. Finally, please develop an argument on the importance of Progressivism. Do you believe it was a blessing or a tragedy? Please justify your argument

Industrial revolution is a period between 1700s and 1800s that saw the agricultural, textile and power sectors transition from hand-based labor to machines leading to adverse impacts on the social, cultural and economic conditions of the countries. While the progressive movement is a period when progressives engaged themselves in social activism and political reforms between the 1890s to the 1920s aimed at purifying the government by eliminating corruption as well as laying off of the people behind it, populism is the struggle of the people for the rights and power that is held by the few elite who are privileged. Industrial revolution brought about a massive change in the political and economy of the countries in which it occurred. It led to a change in the way people live. People moved into towns for jobs and had to deal with those who owned the factories and controlled the resources as well as those who ruled over them. Discontent and possession of different views on the way things are or should be done led to the emergence of such philosophies as the progressive movement and populism. The populists involved people at the grass root level such as farmers and those who earned a small income compared with the elite who controlled most of the resources.

The movement’s aim was to unite the people and together agitate for better living conditions through mass action. On the other hand, progressives advocated for free markets without middlemen who fixed prices for the produce from farmers through legislation and in courts. In my opinion, the progressives was where a blessing to the people because they negotiated for a fair deal and aimed at putting the resources in the hands of the people.

The U.S was a trader partner to all the countries who were involved in the World War 1. It had remained neutral to the war for most of its start, though it was a crucial supplier to the Allied powers during the war. When it formally joined the war in April 6, 1917, in engaged more than four million military personnel, of which over 110,000 died in the war partly because of the influenza pandemic. The war resulted in a significant expansion of the U.S. military. Its economy and manpower played a major role in deciding the outcome of the war. The World War 1 had a number of effects on America and Europe in general. There was an increase in demand for labor, as well as the development of the economy in the U.S. There was a boom in manufacturing due to demand from the war. After the war, several government and military office had to terminate several contracts thus rendering several workers jobless while sending bankrupt a number of businesses. These led to the emergence of labor unions to fight for the retrenched workers.

The women rose to fill the opportunities that were left vacant in the industries since the men had gone to war. This gave them mindset freedom that started such petitions as the right for equality in areas like voting for women, as well. The war also brought to the foe minority groups like the Mexican-Americans and African-Americans who participated in fighting and also in filling the vacancies left open in the industries during the war. This led to cultural integration in areas like factories and urban centers.

The war provided a necessity for innovation in such fields as weapons and transport. There were a lot of inventions in the arsenals used in the war as the fight intensified in search of safer and most efficient weapons. The need to transport supplies led to the development of better vehicles. Airplanes were used for the first time in war, a step that influenced the production of advanced designs that were later to be used for several other purposes. Even after the war was long over, the U.S. remained wary of war. It stayed alert to joining in any conflict that arose and could cause a war. This state led to its reluctance to join the World War 2 later on.

The League of Nations advocated for provisions that could arbitrate any arising disputes, decrease the armaments in member states, and collectively impose sanctions on violators who disturbed the independence and integrity of another country. The U.S could not join the League of Nation because some disputes developed between countries that were for and against the prospect of the U.S expanding its army and navy to independently control the organization. I think the U.S did a wise thing by joining the war since it helped wind up the war and also, it experienced a lot of positive impacts after the war which helped boost its economy and establish the country as a super power.