Several factors led to the rise of U. S. industrialization in the late 1800’s. New technologies like steam engines, railroads, and telegraphs made communication and transportation easier. The ability to source and transport materials across the country with ease turned many local businesses into national companies. Workplace innovations, such as the assembly-line method of production, allowed these companies to produce goods on a mass scale. In the late 1800’s, the American railway system became a nationwide transportation network.
The total distance of all railway lines in operation in the United States soared from about 14,500 kilometers in 1850 to almost 320,000 kilometers in 1900. A high point in railway development came in 1869, when workers laid tracks that joined the Central Pacific and Union Pacific railways near Ogden, Utah. This event marked the completion of the world’s first transcontinental railway system. The system linked the United States by rail from coast to coast. (“History of the United States, Industrialization and reform – TheUSAonline. com,” n. d. ) Why did the rail system replace the canal system as the nation’s major transportation network?
Railroads played no more than a secondary role in the nation’s transportation system in the 1820s and 1830s, but railroad pioneers laid the groundwork in those years for the great surge of railroad building in the midcentury. Eventually, railroads became the primary transportation system for the U. S. Railroads were faster, more efficient, and could cover more land than canals. Just how did the work force in the American Industrial Age change from the 1820’s and the 1840’s? Recruiting a labor force was not an easy task in the early years of the factory system.
Ninety percent of the American people in the 1820s still lived and worked on farms, and many urban residents were skilled artisans who were not likely to flock to factory jobs. The beginnings of an industrial labor supply came instead from the transformation of American agriculture in the nineteenth century. In the Northeast, and especially in New England, where poor land had always placed harsh limits on farm productivity, rural people began leaving the land to work in the factories. Two systems of recruitment emerged to bring this new labor supply to the expanding textile mills. One co e expanding textile mills.
One, common in the mid-Atlantic states brought whole families from the farm to the mill. The second system, common in Massachusetts, enlisted young women (the Lowell or Waltham system). Many of these women worked for several years in the factories, saved their wages, and returned home to marry and raise children. Others married men they met in the factories or in town and remained part of the industrial world. Labor conditions in these early years of the factory system were significantly better than those in English industry. The employment of young children created undeniable hardships.
How did this industrial revolution (to include the factory system) change the life of American families in the areas of social and economic milieus? The new industrializing society of the northern regions of the U. S. produced profound changes in the nature and function of the family. At the heart of the transformation was the movement of families form farms to urban areas where jobs, not land, were the most valued commodities. The patriarchal system of the countryside, where fathers controlled their children’s futures by controlling the distribution of land to them, could not survive the move to a city or town.
Sons and daughters were much more likely to leave the family in search of work than they had been in the rural world. The expansion and diversification of American agriculture, and the ability of famers to ship goods to urban markets by rail from distant regions greatly increased the variety of food available in cities. The story of agriculture in the Northeast after 1840 is one of decline and transformation. The reason for the decline was simple: the farmers of the section could no longer compete with the new and richer soil of the Northwest.
Centers of production were gradually shifting westward for many of the farm goods that had in the past been most important to northeastern agriculture. The confidence in American extension, or the Manifest Destiny theory of the mid-nineteenth century, pushed for the United States to grow across the nation. By the late 1800s, Americans started to see another Manifest Destiny past the continental United States, starting with the acquisition of Alaska in 1867. At century’s end, more foreign territories were obtained, for example, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, Samoa, Hawaii, and other Pacific islands.
American imperialism” is a term that refers to the economic, military, and cultural influence of the United States on other countries. First popularized during the presidency of James K. Polk, the concept of an “American Empire” was made a reality throughout the latter half of the 1800s. (“American Imperialism,” n. d. ) What motivated the European nations to seek out colonies to expand their own empires in the later part of the 1800’s? Empire building is an old theme in world history. Societies have sought to dominate weaker neighbors as long ago as ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt, all the way through to the present.
Motivations have been similar – to obtain natural resources, to subdue enemies, to accrue wealth, to win power and glory – but until the rise of the west, most empires have expanded to territories next to their borders. With the combination of sea power, centralized governments, and industrialized economies, European nations set out to build empires all over the world, like none that had been seen before. The need drove them to provide raw materials for their industrial capacity, and the types of goods exchanged were determined by that need.
Europeans began building their empires in the western hemisphere in the early 1500s, but by the 1800s, Spain and Portugal were no longer powerful countries, and the largest British colony had become the United States. Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and the Netherlands continued to colonize during this era, but they also devised other ways to spread their empires. In the late 19th century lapan and the United States joined the European nations as an imperialist power. Name the areas of the world that the United States acquired as colonies in the latter part of the 1800’s.
Briefly describe how it came to pass that we desired to absorb them in the first place. Discuss if and when we let them gain their freedom to be independent nations. • “Gadsden Purchase” In 1853, the United States purchased land along the Mexico-United States border in what is now New Mexico and Arizona. This territory was intended for a southern transcontinental railroad. • “Alaska” The U. S. purchased Alaska from the Russian Empire in 1867 as a vital refueling station for ships trading with Asia.
The land went through several changes before becoming a territory in 1912, and a state in 1959. “Hawaii” The Kingdom of Hawaii was linked to the U. S. by missionary work and trade in the 1880s. In 1893, leaders of industry known as “Committee of Safety” overthrew the Queen Lili’uokalani and sought annexation. President Grover Cleveland strongly disapproved, so Hawaii set up an independent republic. In 1898, a Congressional resolution was secured by President McKinley and Hawaii joined the U. S. One main factor was the need for U. S. naval bases to fend off Japanese motivations.
The Hawaiian Islands officially became a territory of the U. S. in 1900 and a state in 1959. “Spanish Colonies” After the SpanishAmerican War, the 1898 Treaty of Paris was signed and Spain surrendered Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines. Spain resigned all claim of power over Cuba, but did not cede it to the United States, so it became a protectorate. All four countries were under the United States Military Government for extended periods. However, Cuba became an independent nation in 1902, and the Philippines became an independent nation in 1946. How did the imperial efforts and ambitions of the United States at the later part of the 1800’s compare with those of the European powers?
At the end of the 19th century, the European powers were still busy working out their plans to redraw their national borders. That was imperial ambition compare to the US at this period did not waste time plotting to expand its territory. The US rather worked to confirm its status as world power without staging military conflicts regardless of its own selfimposed isolation. This is not imperialism as the question suggested. The differences can be viewed as world status proclamation. There were attempts to bribe or negligence drafted by the European powers to sway the American’s support and there were failures and successes.