•But it didn’t define "trust" or "restraint of trade."

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Classes 1 & 2

  1. How effective was the Sherman Anti-Trust Act as a weapon against “big business”? Was “Big Business” the only kind of “combination” the act was used against in the late 19th century?
    •The Act outlawed trusts and monopolies that fixed prices and restraint of trade.
    •But it didn’t define “trust” or “restraint of trade.”
    •Was not effective: Standard Oil Trust turned into a “holding company” (in which they hold a controlling percentage of the stock and made more money) when they were at risk from the Act.
    •Supreme Court interpreted this law to favor big businesses.

Squaw in the Tipi, Painted Feather, Firefly & Windrunner

    1. The Act outlawed trusts and monopolies that fixed prices in restraint of trade and slapped violators with fines up to $5,000 and one year in jail.

    2. The Act failed to define trust or restraint of trade clearly which made it ineffective.

      1. Allowed big businesses to find loopholes in the Act

    3. The Supreme Court called the Act “sympathetic” to big businesses

      1. (ex: US v. EC Knight Case)

    4. The only successful prosecution of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act was not against big businesses but against labor unions during the Pullman Strike of 1894.

      1. Government argued that by striking, the railroad workers were placing a restraint on trade and commerce (violation of the Act)

    5. The Act was not only used to keep big businesses in check but also labor unions and smaller corporations

Nemo, Sharp Knife Syd, Story of Man, and Manahan

  1. Discuss the factors that drew more and more women into the work force during the second half of the 19th century. What kinds of women were likely to work outside of their homes? What kind of work was available to them?
    A. Factors:
    a. Immigrant parents sent daughters to work in the factories and mills to bring in extra money
    b. Earning their own income gave single women a sense of accomplishment and pride
    c. Some married women, when they had time, would work in order to bring in some extra pay around money. This strengthened the family economy and brought families closer together
    d. Pay was better in the textile industry than in the domestic system
    e. Clean and orderly conditions drew women to working as assistants or secretaries in offices

B. At this time, 13% of the American workforce consisted of women. These women working outside of the home were usually white single females with no one to support them except themselves. Immigrant women would also work in the factories. Blacks were still discriminated against so they usually were denied jobs. Some married women worked but their jobs consisted mostly of little finishing jobs such as making buttons or being seamstresses.

C. Women in the work force were found in textile factories, as cooks, maids, cleaning ladies, or laundresses. Men still didn’t view women as equals and most still believed their rightful place was at home so women were denied higher ranking jobs. As the turn of the century came, women began working in offices, under male supervision, as assistants or secretaries. However, the late-nineteenth-century press portrayed women’s work outside of the home as “temporary.” The idea of women entering the corporate world or gaining local or national prominence was ludicrous.

Running Stallion, Blackhawk, Runs with Scissors

  1. Why did the South lag behind the North in industrial development? What was the New South Creed, and how did the South start to catch up in manufacturing? How did shifts in the southern economy affect blacks and poor rural whites? Crooked Arrow, Southwind, Nut Brown Hare, Smell the Flowers

The South lagged behind the North during the 2nd industrial Revolution due to the physical devastation, not many towns and cities, the high rate of illiteracy, the North’s control and patents and the low rate of technological innovation. The New South’s Creed was the rich coal and timber resources and cheap labor that made the South a site for industrial development. Textile mills became catalysts for the formation of new towns and villages. Post war railroad construction sparked the building of new towns and textile mill expansion. Southern worker’s wages were dramatically low and blacks migrated to the cities. Blacks did the jobs that whites wouldn’t do. Whites had a greater chance to advance than blacks.

Another answer

After the Civil War, the economy of the South was ruined, causing the North to industrialize much quicker than the South. Also, the Southern states were still very dependent on agriculture whereas the North, with its high population density, was better set up for large factories. Even once the South began to industrialize, the industries developed were still very focused on agriculture.
The New South Creed referred to the doctrine that after Reconstruction ended, the South would utilize its rich coal and timber resources and cheap labor in order to increase its industrial development and therefore catch up with the North. The South offered tax exemptions for new businesses, set up industrial and agricultural expositions, and even leased prison convicts to serve as cheap labor in order to speed up its industrialization. In addition, multiple states gave large amounts of land to railroad companies, while others sold forest and mineral rights on federal lands to speculators, a move that expanded the production of iron, sulfur, coal, and lumber. Iron and steel industries also expanded and hired black workers for cheap labor. Finally, southern textile mills helped to create new towns and cities when they cropped up around the factories that would hire poor whites.

As the southern economy shifted to iron, steel, and textile mills, blacks and poor, rural whites were affected. As large scale recruiters of black workers, the southern iron and steel mills contributed to the migration of blacks to the cities. By 1900, 20% of the black population was urban. In the iron and steel industry, blacks made up 60% of the unskilled workforce, but they had practically no chance of advancement. However, southern blacks in the iron and steel industry earned more than southern white textile workers. To run the textile mills, poor whites were hired from nearby farms; they were promised work that would free them from poverty. The reality was different. Textile mill owners exploited their workers, paying 30-50% less than what workers in New England were paid. The workers were paid once a month in scrip which was redeemable only at a company store. Since they were paid so little they usually overspent each month, and were in a cycle of indebtedness.

She who shoots straight, Railroad Bill, Catch the Bear

4. Describe the traditional “working-class culture_ of skilled craftsmen in the first-half of the nineteenth century. How did industrialization affect the working conditions and status of these craftsmen? What did they do in response to industrialization?

The early nineteenth century found skilled craftsmen at a high demand. Mass production and industrialization had not yet taken off, so necessities like shoes and clothes had to be made by hand. Skilled craftsmen, then, were sought-after individuals, earning decent wages. Once industrialization took off, however, the United States experienced dramatic change. Specialization developed; workers in factories were now only responsible for a part of an entire product. As a result, the demand for skilled craftsmen declined because unskilled workers could produce a similar product faster and for a cheaper price. The prices of products fell as well due to mass production. Working conditions in the factories were dangerous as a result of the machines and the repetition of a task. Additional health problems surfaced. In an attempt to regain relevance in the industrial nation, some skilled workers began making custom products that they could sell for higher prices than those produced in a factory.

Machu Pichu, Runs with Ponies, Sitting Girl



  • Increased productivity, efficiency, and output

  • Lowered the cost of products

  • Lowered productivity costs

  • Doesn’t require skill to work (anyone qualifies)

  • Boosted economy

  • Increased railroads – stimulated other industries

  • Made U.S. a global economic power

  • Gave females opportunity to work


  • Demoralization of worker

  • Loss of skilled labor > even drop to lower class

  • Unreliable jobs/dangerous & dirty jobs

  • Workers = expendable b/c of cheap immigrant labor

  • Expanded the gap between lower and higher classes

  • Difficult to move from low class to a higher class

  • Pollution

  • Women felt like servants/Child labor>cruddy education

  • Segregation in factories between workers

BabyDash, Pinhead Larry, Manhoode, Soaring Kitten

5.Immigrants often saw America as a land of opportunity. What was the reality of the opportunity for most immigrants? Did an immigrant’s ethnic background--German, Irish, Chinese, Slavic, French-Canadian-- have an effect on his or her place in America, particularly in the work force?

•work was better in America than work in their home country
•Irish were unskilled horse-carters and construction workers
•1890s - new immigrants came from southern and eastern Europe
•poor French-Canadians had the lowest working conditions
•Chinese had dirtiest and most physically demanding jobs (on the West Coast)
•the work in steel mills was hazardous and draining
•immigrants worked for much less than the locals, however, the conditions were better than in their home countries
•84 hour weeks in steel mills - could save up to $15 per month
•it was hard to adjust to the fast pace of the factories
•southern Europeans - employers thought they didn’t have some rights because of darker skin color and weren’t native born
•Irish, Greek, Italian, Jewish, and others were also considered non-white

Tenements (slums), ethnic ghettos; chain migration

Chinese/Southern European plan on returning to homeland

Chinese Exclusionary Act (workers push for this to keep them from taking their jobs)

Some immigrants take advantage of minority immigrants (Irish unfair to
Squaw in the Tipi, Painted Feather, Firefly & Swimming the Jordan

6. Compare and contrast the strategies, membership, leadership, and philosophies of the National Labor Union, the Knights of Labor, and the American Federation of Labor. How successful was each organization in attaining its goals?

National Labor Union:
Leader-William H. Sylvis
Philosophies- 8 hour day, end to convict labor, establishment of Federal Dept. of Labor, currency and banking reforms, endorsed restrictions on immigrations (especially Chinese)
Strategies-participated in one strike but it failed miserably (winter of 1866-67)
Membership- women, blacks, skilled and unskilled workers, everyone was included
Success: after Sylvis died, the union faded quickly

The Knights of Labor:
It began in 1869 as a secret society. The leader was Uriah J. Stephens and then Terence V. Powderly
Philosophies: goals were economic and social reforms such as producers cooperatives and codes for safety and health, favored industrial arbitration and did not like warfare, eight hour work day rather than ten, equal pay and equal work for men and women, child labor laws, federal income tax, govt ownership of railroad and telegraph lines
Membership: skilled and unskilled workers, men, women, underprivileged African Americans and whites only exception: was non producers such as bankers and lawyers
Strategies: opposed strikes, encouraged cooperation between producers and consumers, Powderly allowed striking against Jay Gould at the Wabash railroad plant for firing active union members, urged temperance
Success: too many demands, unsuccessful (keep it simple stupid) KISS

American Federation of Labor:
Leader: Samuel Gompers
Philosophy: focused on higher wages, shorter work days, and better conditions
Strategies: avoided political issues, methods were to boycott or walk out
Membership: skilled worker and did not include women African Americans or unskilled workers
Successful: most successful because it had the least number of demands

Tipischooler, Red Moccasin, Jumping Hunter, Prancing Prairie Dog

7. Compare and contrast the social philosophies of Social Darwinists Andrew Carnegie and William Graham Sumner; reformers Lester Frank Ward, Henry George, and Edward Bellamy; and Marxist socialists. Include issues of class structure, wealth, and industrial society in your discussion.

Sumner and Carnegie both disapproved of government interference. They were both defenders of capitalism, and preached laissez-faire, insisting that government should never attempt to control business. Carnegie and Sumner both were talking of the importance of competition, leading to the idea of Social Darwinism. An unregulated, competitive environment is a source of positive, long-term society. The state owes the citizens nothing but law, order, and basic political rights. Ward believed the laws of nature could be circumvented by human will instead of strictly followed as with Social Darwinism, used to regulate big business and protect society's weaker members. George proposed to solve the nation's uneven distribution of wealth through the single tax of vacant land profit that speculators collect. This system would bring the benefits of socialism without the stifling of the individual. Bellamy envisioned a future American society in which the economy is state-run, centralized, and operates on the basis that everyone works for the common welfare. Americans that were afraid of corporate power and working-class violence were inspired by Bellamy and his vision of a conflict-free society. Marxist socialists rested on the proposition that the labor required to produce a commodity was the only measure of its value (Adam Smith also accepted this). Any profit made by the employer was "surplus value." Marxists thought that wages would continue to decline until society was cleanly divided into the upper/middle class and the lower working class, which would grow until it revolted. His eyes were fixed on a classless utopia. Doublewide, Brave Tiny Hands, Bronze Eagle

7. Similarities:

  • Both Social Darwinists and Marxist Socialists both presented struggles in terms of the human condition

    • Darwinists- survival of the fittest

    • Marxists- struggle between the bourgeoisie and proletariats

  • Henry George’s ideas were very similar to Marxist ideas because he believed that a “single tax” would solve the nation’s uneven distribution of wealth

  • Bellamy- everyone worked for the “common welfare” and shared the fruits of industrialization equally

    • Similar to Marxism


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