Unit Seven: 1900-1920
As the 19th century came to a close, many voices cried for American expansionism to match the imperialistic ambitions of Europe and Japan. The dream for global destiny was justified by such logic as the expansion of overseas markets, desire for a stronger navy, and the spreading of Christianity to uncivilized peoples around the globe. Eventually, this expansionism translated into conflict, climaxing in 1898 with the Spanish-American War.
James G. Blaine, Pan-Americanism: As Secretary of State, Blaine fostered closer U.S.-Latin American relations and brought about the first Pan-American Congress in order to forge commercial, social, economic, military, and political cooperation among the 21 republics of North, Central, and South America.
Venezuelan boundary dispute: Venezuela had a dispute over its boundary with the British Colony of Guiana. In 1895, while the British refused to resolve the issue, United States Secretary of State Richard Olney sent a message to London declaring that the US would be "practically sovereign on this content."
Bering Sea seal controversy: When the US purchased Alaska in 1867, it included some small Pribilof Islands in the Bering Sea. Congress leased the island to a US company which killed seals with the understanding that they would not kill more than 10,000 male seals per year. This led to the regulation of pelagic sealing in 1893.
"Yellow journalism": Two rival newspapers in New York City, William Randolph Hearsts Journal, and Joseph Pulitzers World, sensationalized editorializing on the issues to increase circulation. One of Hearsts gimmicks was "The Yellow Kid," which gave the name of Yellow Journalism to this tactic.
Josiah Strong, Our Country: Reverend Josiah Strong wrote the book Our Country: Its Possible Future and Present Crisis expressing his fears of the inability of relief organizations to cope with the explosive growth of the urban poor in the 1870s and 1880s.
Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan: The Influence of Sea Power upon History (1890) helped create and develop the expansionist movement. Mahan, former head of the Navy War College at Newport, Rhode Island wanted to expand United States Navy to build an isthmusian canal, and to establish strategic colonies as cooling stations, and to protect US political and economic interests.
Samoa, Pago Pago: Americas Navy wanted to establish a port in the Samoan Islands, so their ships could refuel in the island of Pago Pago. This was an example of the United States Navys expansion efforts in the pacific. Their goal was to obtain more ports so they could have more ships out on the ocean to control the seas.
Virginius: In 1873 a Spanish gunboat captured the Virginius, a ship fraudulently flying the American flag, in Cuba. Secretary of State Fish and the Spanish minister came together in Washington and signed a protocol bringing the end to the Virginius affairs. Spain paid the US $80,000.
de Lôme letter: On February 8, 1898, Hearsts Journal published a private letter written by Spanish minister to the United States Depuy de Lôme regarding his reservations for Cuban independence and disparaging President McKinley. Many Americans would have agreed, but they resented hearing it from a Spanish diplomat.
Maine explodes: When an explosion rocked the Maine in Havana harbor on February 15, 1898, killing 266 American crewmen, irritation turned to outrage. A review of the evidence later concluded that a ship-board ammunition explosion caused the blast. Still, a navy inquiry blamed the blast on a "Spanish mine."
Teller Amendment: The U.S. had been motivated o war in part by the desire to aid the Cubans in their attempt to liberate themselves from the colonial rule of Spain. To this end the Teller Ammendment was added to the Declaration of War. It speciffically prohibited the annexation of Cuba, as a cause of the war.
· SPANISH-AMERICAN WAR: The Spanish-American War lasted just three months with only a few days of actual combat. Action started on May 1, 1898, when George Deweys fleet steamed into Manila Bay in the Philippines and seized or destroyed all ten Spanish ships anchored there. The war ended after Spanish Admiral Pascual Cervera attempted to break through American forces losing 474 men. The Filipinos celebrated their freedom from four hundred years of Spanish rule on July 4,1898.
Assistant Secretary of Navy Theodore Roosevelt: Theodore Roosevelt was appointed as Assistant Secretary of the Navy by President William McKinley in 1897. Roosevelt was an impatient disciple in the Spanish-American War, acting largely on his own. In 1898, Roosevelt resigned to become second in command of the Rough Riders.
Commodore Dewey, Manila Bay: The first action of the Spanish-American War came in 1898 when Commodore George Deweys fleet steamed into Manila Bay in the Philippines. This fleet destroyed and captured all ten Spanish ships that were assigned in Manila Bay. One American and 381 Spanish men died in the attempt.
Cleveland and Hawaii: In 1887 the United States gained the right to establish a naval port in Pearl Harbor. President Grover Cleveland was troubled with the crisis in Hawaii since Hawaiians claimed to want annexation. However, once their queen was overthrown, Hawaiians were uncertain if they wanted annexation at all.
Queen Liluokalani: Liluokalani was the Queen of Hawaii who did not like Americans since they built their port in Pearl Harbor. Queen Liluokalani was overthrown when Hawaiis sugar prices dropped 40% and planters wanted the independent Republic of Hawaii.
Annexation of Hawaii: In 1890 under the McKinley Tariff, domestic sugar growers ended the duty-free status of Hawaiian sugar. After Hawaiis sugar prices dropped 40% and Queen Liluokalani was overthrown, the Hawaiians decided to request United States annexation.
Rough Riders, San Juan Hill: The battle of San Juan
Hill was fought on July 1, 1898 during the American advance on
Santiago during the Spanish-American War. A division including
the Rough Riders, under the command of General Kent, captured the
hill, placing the American army on high ground overlooking
Treaty of Paris, 1898: The Treaty of Paris ended the Spanish-American War and developed an American empire overseas. In the treaty, Spain agreed to abandon Cuba and exchange Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippines to America for $20 million. The treaty gave the United States a new imperialistic reputation.
American Anti-Imperialist League: The critics of imperialism were many and influential. Forming the Anti-Imperialist League, they believed that every country captured by the U.S. had the same rights under the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.
Philippines, Guam, Puerto Rico: By the terms of the Treaty of Paris in 1898, Spain recognized Cubas independence and ceded the Philippines, Puerto Rico, and the Pacific Island of Guam to the United States in exchange for $20 million. As 1899 dawned Americans possessed an island empire from the Caribbean to the Pacific.
Walter Reed: In 1900 Walter Reed was appointed to the
Yellow Fever Commission as a result of his investigation of the
disease. After being sent to Cuba to find out more about Yellow
Fever, he discovered that the disease was carried by a mosquito.
He later became a curator at Army Medical Museum and a professor
at Army Medical College.
Insular Cases: The decisions regarding whether the Constitution applies to Puerto Rico and the Philippines are known as the Insular Cases. They ruled that the residents are inhabitants but not citizens of the United States. Because of this ruling, these countries were not honored by the Constitution and were treated as colonies.
· Platt Amendment: Senator Orville Platt, at the request of the War department, made a revised bill to remove some of the restrictions stated in the Teller Amendment. The Platt Amendment stated that the United States would withdraw from Cuba if they did not sign a treaty with any other foreign power. It also gave the United States the right to interfere with Cuba if they believed that it was not a fit enough country to take care of itself. Also, they established the right to hold a naval base in Cuba.
Protectorate: When a more powerful state controls the economy, foreign affairs, or police power of another state, it is considered a protectorate. In the case of the United States, Cuba was a protectorate as a result of the Platt Amendment. Other examples might include Nicuaragua, the Dominican Republic, Hawaii, and other Pacific islands.
· Aguinaldo, Philippine insurrection: In 1896 Emilio Aguinaldo started a Filipino movement for independence to get out of Spains control. When Spain surrendered, Aguinaldo drew up a constitution and proclaimed the Philippiness independence. When the Treaty of Paris gave the United States power over the Philippines, Aguinaldo became angry and tried to fight. He soon realized that he would lose and gave up.
Secretary of State John Hay, Open Door Notes: John Hays Open Door Notes was a policy that explained the importance of American commercial influence on foreign policies. The Open Door Notes stated that the pre-thought "informal empire" was correct as opposed to overseas colonies being favored by imperial power.
Boxer Rebellion: The Boxers, a secret group of Chinese men known as I Ho Chuan, opposed Christianity in their country. Numbering 140,000, the Boxers killed thousands of foreigners as well as Chinese suspected of being Christian. British, American, Russian, Japanese and French soldiers were sent to China to end the "Boxer Rebellion."
Extraterritoriality: Extraterritoriality is a principle in international law that allows certain visiting foreign citizens or their property to be exempt from the laws of a host nation. Foreign heads of states traveling abroad and diplomats representing their home countries are examples of people benefiting from extraterritoriality.
Most favored nation clause: The most favored nation clause is a commercial treaty that regulates special low tariffs on goods imported to the United States. All countries awarded the Special Nation Status must be treated equally. Duties for the same group of goods should be the same low regardless from which country signatory of the status they are imported.
Roosevelt & Progressivism
Many intellectuals increasingly challenged the foundations of the social order. Voices of reform thundered over the nation calling for democratic government, better cities, and the curbing of corporate power. This movement, labeled progressivism, found its first national leader in Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt actively pursued many of his goals: labor mediation, consumer protection, conservation, business virtue, and activism abroad. His successor, Taft, continued in Roosevelts aims but lacked his political genius.
Election of 1900: candidates and issues: William McKinley, the Republican candidate, beat William Jennings Bryan, the Democratic candidate, for President. The Republican campaign theme of prosperity, summed up in the slogan "A Full Dinner Pail," easily won him a second term. McKinley had 284 electoral votes where as Bryan had 115.
· Roosevelts Big Stick diplomacy: One of Roosevelts most famous statements was "speak softly and carry a big stick." An example of his meaning in this statement was when Canada wanted the Alaskan land that America owned. They were fighting over the boundaries because of gold found in the area. Roosevelt simply stated that if the boundaries would change, there would be serious consequences. Because of his problem solving method, Roosevelt was known to use "Big Stick" diplomacy.
Clayton-Bulwer Treaty: The Clayton-Bulwer Treaty of 1850 stated that both the United States and Britain promised not to claim control over any canal built between the oceans that separated their countries. This included the Panama Canal which America later took over anyway.
Hay-Pauncefote Treaty: In 1901, the United States planned to construct the Panama Canal. This meant they would be in need of a new treaty. Secretary of State John Hay and British Ambassador Sir Julian Pauncefote agreed on a new treaty that would drop Englands claim on the canal.
Panama Revolution: Financed by Philippe Bunau-Varilla, chief agent of the New Panama Canal Company, the Panama Revolution was a planned revolt by Panamanians against Colombian occupation of the Isthmus of Panama. The United States did not encourage the revolution, but it did make clear that it would not allow it to fail.
· The Panama Canal: When a French company supposed to build a canal across the Isthmus of Panama went bankrupt, it offered to sell its assets to the United States. The Hay-Herrán agreement, which would have granted the US a ninety-nine-year lease on a strip of land for canal construction, was rejected by the Colombian senate. Determined to have a canal, Roosevelt found a collaborator in Philippe Bunau-Varilla, who organized a "revolution." After Panama was recognized, the canal building commenced.
Virgin Islands purchased: Denmark, in 1917, sold to the United States its West Indian territories for $25 million, including the Virgin Islands. These islands, located at the perimeters of the Caribbean, were of great military importance during the Second World War. They mainly served to protect the US mainland as well as the Panama Canal.
Goethals and Gorgas: George Goethel was a civil engineer who directed a completion of the Panama Canal. William Gorgas helped to make it possible to construct Panama Canal by killing mosquitoes carrying yellow fever and malaria. Theodore Roosevelt later appointed these men important positions in The Panama Canal Zone.
Venezuela Crisis, 1902: In 1902 the country's debts became so large that European creditor nations blockaded Venezuela; the United States intervened to obtain arbitration of the dispute. Castro's departure for Europe in 1908 opened the way for his deputy, Juan Vicente Gomez, to seize power.
Drago Doctrine: Luis Maria Drago was an Argentine diplomat who formulated a supplement to the Monroe Doctrine known as the Drago Doctrine. In 1902, Great Britain, Germany, and Italy imposed a joint naval blockade on Venezuela in order to coerce that country into paying its debts.
· Roosevelt Corollary: In 1904, Roosevelt created the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine. This doctrine justified U.S. intervention in the affairs of Latin American nations if their weakness or wrongdoing warranted such action. An example of this interference was the American intervention in Haiti when it was not wanted. The document was primarily a pass for the US to interfere with other countries business when it was not wanted nor needed.
U.S. intervention in Haiti: In 1915, President Woodrow Wilson sent the United States Marines into Haiti. The purpose was to calm the anarchy that the US claimed existed in the country. In 1916, Congress ratified a treaty that would allow the US ten years of control over Haiti to maintain order and give political and economic assistance.
Dominican Republic: In 1915, after bloody upheavals in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, Wilson ordered the marines. A Haitian constitution favorable to U.S. commercial interests was ratified in 1918. The marines remained in the Dominican Republic until 1924, and in Haiti until 1934.
Revolution in Nicaragua: In 1911 a US-supported revolution in Nicaragua brought to power Adolfo Díaz, an officer of the American-owned Nicaraguan mining property. American bankers loaned the Díaz government $15 million in exchange for control of most of Nicaragua. When a revolt broke out, Roosevelt ordered in the marines.
Russo-Japanese War, Treaty of Portsmouth: The Russo-Japanese war (1904-05) was the first conflict in which an Asian power defeated a European country. Fighting began when the Japanese attacked the Russian fleet at Port Arthur after Russia, which had occupied Manchuria during the Boxer Uprising in China, refused to withdraw its troops.
San Francisco School Board Incident: American relations with Japan suffered when the San Francisco school board, in 1906, ordered all Asian children to attend segregated schools. Summoning the school-board members to Washington, Roosevelt persuaded them to reverse this discriminatory policy.
Elihu Root: As secretary of war in the cabinets of William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt, Root reorganized the army and established the Army War College. As Roosevelt's secretary of state from 1905 to 1909, he reformed the consular service, improving US relations with Latin America, and sponsoring a series of arbitration treaties.
Taft-Katsura Memo: By the Taft-Katsura Memo of 1905, the United States and Japan pledged to maintain the Open Door principles in China. Japan recognized American control over the Philippines and the United States granted a Japanese protectorate over Korea.
· Gentlemans Agreement: In the 1890s, workers feared their jobs would be taken by the Japanese immigrants and they wanted a law preventing any more immigrants to move to the United States. In 1907 Japan proposed the Gentlemens Agreement which promised that they would halt the unrestricted immigration if President Roosevelt promised to discourage any laws being made that would restrict Japanese immigration to the US.
Great White Fleet: This was a naval fleet that went on a voyage around the world. After 15 months, when the fleet returned, President Roosevelt met all the crew members personally. The two objects of this voyage were being friendly with the nations allies but also to show other nations the naval power of the United States.
Lodge Corollary: When a Japanese syndicate moved to purchase a large tract of land in Mexicos Lower California, Senator Lodge introduced a resolution to block the Japanese investment. The Corollary went further to exclude non-European powers from the Western Hemisphere under the Monroe Doctrine.
Root-Takahira Agreement: In 1908, Japan and the United States signed the Root-Takahira Agreement. Through this document the two nations promised not to seek territorial gain in the Pacific. These two nations also promised to honor an open door policy in China.
Lansing-Ishii Agreement, 1917: Robert Lansing, Secretary of State under President Wilson, negotiated the Lansing-Ishii agreement on November 2, 1917 with Japan, whereby the United States recognized Japan's special interests in China. However, the US still felt they had a right to China.
Jones Act, 1916 (Philippines): In 1916, Congress passed the Jones Act which provided for a government for the Philippines and committed the United States to granting Filipino independence. The government created was based on the Constitutional model. In 1934, a bill was finally passed to actually grant the Filipinos their independence.
Jones Act, 1917 (Puerto Rico): The Jones Act of 1917 was passed by the United States to regulate trade in Puerto Rico. It established the Sea Land service to prevent carriers and shippers from using unfair pricing practices. Its establishment encouraged parallel pricing for all carriers.
Mexican Revolution, Díaz, Huerta, Carranza: Rebels, led by Francisco Madero in 1911, overthrew Porfirio Díaz. In 1913, Madero was overthrown by a military regime led by Victoriano Huerta. The US refused to recognize Huertas government because it had come to power violently. Eventually, this led to Mexican-American hostilities.
Mexican migration to the U.S.: In the period from 1877 to 1910 economic conditions were worsening in Mexico. By 1914 more than 100,000 Mexicans had migrated to the United States. These new immigrants found mainly in railroad industries and agriculture where jobs were vacated by the war. They filled partly the US need for labor during war.
"watchful waiting": "Watchful waiting" refers to Wilsons policy towards the events unfolding in Europe. In effect, it was Americas policy of neutrality throughout most of the First World War. This policy was taken although it was clear that the United States had obvious ties to Britain and would likely favor it.
ABC Powers: The ABC powers consisted of Argentina, Brazil, and Chile. In 1914, the ABC powers called a conference to prevent a war between the United States and Mexico caused by the Veracruz Incident. When president Carranza rejected the proposal for a new Mexican government, the conference came to an end.
Pancho Villa, General Pershing: During the political turmoil of Mexico in 1916, bandit Pancho Villa murdered 16 Americans, then burned down Columbus in New Mexico. With the U.S. outraged, General John J. Pershing was sent with 12,000 troops to catch Villa with no avail. Massive US response angered some Mexicans and led to hostilities.
Archangel expedition: In 1918, Allied forces landed in the port of Archangel, Russia to defend Allied military stockpiles from German attack. Allied forces later became anti-Bolshevik and seized the port. Allies favored the Whites during the period of Russias civil war. United States involvement in this campaign compromised American neutrality.
Democracy, efficiency, pragmatism: Democracy is a form of government in which a substantial proportion of the citizenry directly or indirectly participates in ruling the state. Pragmatism is a philosophical movement, developed in the United States, which holds that both the meaning and the truth of any idea is a function of its practical outcome.
Wright Brothers, Kitty Hawk: Wilbur and Orville Wright created the modern field of aeronautics. After over 200 calculations and tests at Kitty Hawk they built the first practical airplane, marking the beginning of the individual progressive spirit. They were highly honored internationally and a monument to them was built at Kitty Hawk.
"Muckrakers": Those American writers who early in the 20th century wrote both fiction and nonfiction to expose corruption in business and politics were called the muckrakers. Muckraker was a term first used by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906. They were given this name because of their tendency to "spread the muck around."
Henry Demarest Lloyd, Wealth Against Commonwealth: A leading opponent of business monopolies, Henry Demarest Lloyd was one of the pioneer muckrakers of the late 19th century. He developed his antimonopoly theme as financial writer and editor at the Chicago Tribune.
Thorstein Veblen, The Theory of the Leisure Class: Thorstein Veblen is best known for his book The Theory of The Leisure Class (1899). Veblens book is a classic of social theory that introduced the concept of "conspicuous consumption." Veblen continued to write other books dealing with the same general theories.
Jacob Riis, How the Other Half Lives: A journalist, photographer, and reformer, Jacob August Riis publicized the plight of immigrants in New York City slum tenements. His photographs, articles, and books focused on the squalid living conditions of the city's poor and spurred legislation to improve those conditions.
Lincoln Steffens, The Shame of the Cities: An eminent American reformer and journalist, Joseph Lincoln Steffens, was a leader of the muckrakers. He wrote a series of articles that documented corruption in American cities, asserting that some cities were run by political bosses who remained in power with the help of powerful businessmen.
Frank Norris, The Octopus: The U.S. novelist Frank Norris was a noted pioneer of naturalism in literature. His novels portray the demoralizing effects of modern technology on human fate. His best-known works, The Octopus (1901) and The Pit (1903), attacked the railroad and wheat industries in the United States.
Ida Tarbell, History of the Standard Oil Company: As a Pennsylvania journalist, editor, and biographer, Tarbell became famous as a muckraker through her well-documented articles on political and corporate corruption in McClure's Magazine and American Magazine.
David Graham Phillips, The Treason of the Senate: Author of many popular problem novels of the early 20th century, Phillips was also a prominent journalist. His "Treason of the Senate" series of articles (1906) in Cosmopolitan magazine were an important contribution to the muckraking movement in American journalism.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Woman and Economics: Gilman was a leading American feminist writer known for Woman and Economics (1898), a feminist classic she wrote. It attacked the commonly accepted idea that women should be economically dependent on men while suggesting alternatives such as cooperative kitchens and day-care programs.
John Dewey, The School and Society, "progressive education," "learn by doing": Deweys ideas of progressive education, described in The School and Society, greatly affected educational techniques. He founded the Laboratory School, a school in which students learned of life by actively doing things rather than following a strict curriculum.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., Supreme Court: Holmes was a professor of law at Harvard who resigned to become a member of the Supreme Court. As a jurist he interpreted the Constitution in a very liberal manner, earning him the name "the Great Dissenter" among his colleagues.
Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts: The Boy and Girl Scouts, formed to educate the youth of America, heavily embody Deweys concept of "learn by doing." They focused on teaching children of their proper patriotic role in society and working to broaden the horizons of their members though a number of varied activities.
Edward Ross: Ross wrote one of the first books dealing with social psychology. He analyzed the transmission of social behavior through society by its transmission from one person to another. His ideas conflicted with McDougalls, another psychologist who believed that the process of evolution created instinctive sociological behavior.
Richard Ely: Ely, a progressive economist, was an economics research professor at Northwestern University. He founded the American Economic Association in 1899 and was the first economist to suggest that government interference in regulation of the national economic was not harmful but even sometimes helpful.
Initiative, referendum, recall: These were three types of progressive electoral reforms passed by some western states. Initiative allowed voters to enact laws directly. The referendum allowed voters to express their opinions of specific issues. Through recall voters were able to directly remove public officials from office.
Direct primary: The direct primary was another progressive municipal reform. It originated in Wisconsin (1903) and rapidly spread throughout the rest of the United States. It provided that the members, not the leadership, of each party nominate the partys nominees for public office.
Australian ballot (secret ballot): Many electoral reforms gave voters greater control over the government, especially at the ballot boxes where voters could be easily swayed. By 1910 all states had replaced the corrupt system of preprinted ballots with a new secret ballot, begun in Australia, which was much more difficult to rig.
Triangle Shirtwaist Co. fire: An accidental fire at the Traingle Shirtwaist Company killed 141 workers. It prodded the concerns of many progressive reformers since the workers, locked in the factory and unable to escape, were killed by brutal working conditions. These concerns raised new questions of human and immigrant rights and of existing labor laws.
International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU): This union of American needle-trade workers launched drives to improve working conditions, end the practice of workers paying for their own equipment, and raise working rates. It is remembered for the militancy of its early organizational drives and its fight against sweatshops.
Anti-Saloon League: During and after the American Civil War the laws regulating many aspects of saloons were either reduced or eliminated. As a result, many people united in this league in their fight against saloons. By 1916 they enacted anti-saloon laws in 23 states and in 1917 they passed the 18th amendment beginning prohibition.
Square Deal: Roosevelt, on a speaking tour against the Northern Securities Company, called for a "square deal." This progressive concept denounced special treatment for the large capitalists and is the essential element to his trustbusting attitude. This deal embodied the belief that all corporations must serve the general public good.
Forest Reserve Act, 1891: The Forest Reserve Act, strongly supported by Roosevelt and Pinchot, created a system of national forests, consisting of approximately 200 million acres, which were protected from the short-sighted greed Roosevelt saw in many large companies. Through this act Roosevelt also enlarged Pinchots forest staff from 123 to 1,500 people.
Newlands Reclamation Act, 1902: Roosevelt drafted the Newlands Reclamation Act when he noticed that decades of rapid industrial growth had destroyed much of the limited natural resources of the land. It insured that all natural resources would be managed by experts. Funding came from public-land sales and was used to build irrigation projects.
Conservation conference, 1908: As Roosevelts conservative trend began to permeate through the public mind, he began to create several groups to raise public awareness of nature and the necessity of conservation. The first meeting was of the White House Conservation Conference, followed by the National Conservation Commission.
Anthracite coal strike, 1902, George F. Baer: The Anthracite coal strike was the first strike in which the government became involved but did not side with the management. Roosevelt instead mediated a series of negotiations between the strikers and the owners over issues of wages, safety conditions, and union recognition.
Elkins Act, 1903, rebates: The Interstate Commerce Commission was initially created to regulate the economy for the federal government. It was not originally given enough power to regulate the monopolized railroad system. The Elkins Act strengthened the ICC by stiffening penalties against secret railroad rebates to favored shippers.
Hepburn Act, 1906: The Hepburn Act, in conjunction with the Elkins Act, granted the Interstate Commerce Commission enough power to regulate the economy. It allowed the ICC to set freight rates and, in an attempt to reduce the corruption in the railroad industry, to require a uniform system of accounting by regulated transportation companies.
Mann-Elkins Act, 1910: The Mann-Elkins Act further extended the regulatory ability of the ICC. It allowed them to regulate cable and wireless companies dealing with telephone and telegraph lines. The ICC was also given greater rate-setting power as well as the ability to begin court proceedings against companies disputing the new rates.
· "trustbuster": Teddy Roosevelt, deeply conservative at heart, did not want to destroy the big corporations that he saw necessary to American life. He did, however, believe that they must be held to strict moral standards. He earned the "trustbuster" name when he filed suit against the Northern Securities Company, followed by 43 other cases. He left many of the larger companies serving the public good alone, but he broke up many other large, monopolistic companies in the interests of American welfare and economy.
Northern Securities Co. case: This was the first company Roosevelt filed suit against in his trustbusting stage. It was a large holding company formed by railroad and banking interests. In 1902 Roosevelt "trustbusted" them by claiming they violated the Sherman Anti-Trust Act in holding money against the public good. The company was dissolved.
Meat Inspection Act: The Meat Inspection Act was passed by Roosevelt as a strong response to Sinclair's book describing the conditions of food as well as wartime scandals in 1898 concerning spoiled canned meats. It created strict sanitary requirements for meat, began a quality rating system, and provisioned for a federal department to inspect meat.
Immunity of Witness Act: The Immunity of Witness Act, passed in 1906, prevented corporate officials from pleading immunity in cases concerning their own corporations illegal activities. Previously, many officials used this immunity plea to avoid testifying in any way concerning their actions.
W.E.B. DuBois: For more than 50 years W.E.B. DuBois, a black editor, historian, and sociologist, was a leader of the civil rights movement in the United States. He helped found the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and was its outstanding spokesman in the first decades of its existence.
Niagara movement: At a meeting in Niagara Falls, Ont., in 1905, W.E.B. DuBois and other black leaders who shared his views founded the Niagara Movement. Members of the Niagara group joined with concerned liberal and radical whites to organize the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909.
Springfield Ill riot, 1908: The period of Booker T. Washington represented a period of increasing anti-black violence. The large anti-black riot in Springfield in 1908 was representative of the peak of a period of harsh discrimination, white resentment of black advances, and mass public segregation.
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP): The NAACP was an organization founded in 1909 by blacks and whites under such leaders as W.E.B. DuBois to safeguard civil, legal, economic, human, and political rights of black Americans. It lobbied for legislation, sponsored educational programs, and engaged in protest actions.
The Crisis: The Crisis was the magazine of the NAACP. It generally reflected the views of the blacks and whites who headed the NAACP. W.E.B. DuBois was editor of The Crisis from 1910 to 1934. He often wrote that Blacks should develop industry and business separate from the white economy in order prove their non-dependence on white society
Brownsville Incident: Roosevelt, though not as racist a president as those before him, did not have a perfect record. In 1906 he discharged an entire regiment of blacks accused of rioting in Brownsville. This unfair and illegal action was later reversed by Congress once all involved parties had died.
Upton Sinclair, The Jungle: Sinclair was an American writer and reformer who wrote The Jungle. This book exposed the unsanitary working conditions in the stockyards of Chicago, eventually leading to an investigation of both working conditions and the conditions of food. It eventually led to the enactment of the Pure Food Act.
Pure Food and Drug Act: The Pure Food and Drug Act, enacted through the efforts of Harvey Wiley and Sinclair in 1906, gave consumers protection from dangerous and impure foods. All products must be clearly labeled and must explain a product which cannot be seen or judged by a consumer. This act solved problems concerning fraudulently labeled items.
Panic of 1907: Roosevelts constant trustbusting of large corporations caused questionable bank speculations, a conservative gold standard, and strict credit policies, eventually leading to the Panic of 1907. This panic brought the need for banking reform to the forefront of political activity, finally culminating in the Federal Reserve Act.
Election of 1908: candidates, issues: The Republican platform consisted of Taft and Sherman. They ran for continued anti-trust enforcement, conservation, and increased international trade. William Jennings Bryan ran for the Democratic Party on a similar anti-trust platform. The Socialist Party was represented by Eugene Debs. Taft easily won.
Mark Hanna: Hanna was a successful American politician and businessman. He helped manage several campaigns including the Republican presidential nomination of McKinley. Hanna was later selected chairman of the Republican National Committee, an organization he used to collect a large war chest to assist in McKinleys election.
Scientific management, Frederick W. Taylor: Taylor was an engineer who first integrated scientific management with business. He became foreman of the Midvale Steel Company in 1878 and used mathematics to determine maximum industrial productivity, using time and motion studies to find what each worker should for the highest efficiency.
Wisconsin, "laboratory of democracy": La Follette enacted sweeping changes during his governorship of Wisconsin in 1900. He adopted a direct primary system, began to regulate the railroads in his state, increased corporate taxes, and passed other progressive reform legislation. He also created a legislative reference library for lawyers.
· Robert M. La Follette: La Follette, initially a Republican in Congress, broke from this party in 1924 when he realized big business was dangerously out of control. The populace agreed with this opinion by electing him governor as an independent. He took the reform movement, previously only found at the municipal level, to new heights, the state. The new state level of regulation had some inherit problems, but as the progressive movement entered the national government, these problems were solved.
Regulatory commissions: As the Progressive Era advanced, regulatory commissions became more prevalent and numerable. The excesses of the monopolistic railroad companies became known to all. In an effort to end the abuses of the rich capitalists regulatory commissions were created to divide the concentrated wealth.
Jane Addams, Hull House: Addams was a prominent social reformer in the US and Europe. In 1889 she created Hull House in Chicago, a settlement home designed as a welfare agency for needy families. It also tried to teach immigrants English customs. Addams also played an important role in the National Progressive party.
Florence Kelley, consumerism: Kelley was largely responsible for the regulation of child labor. She saw its evils as a resident in Hull House for several years. In 1899 she was selected general secretary of the National Consumers League, which used organized consumer boycotts and strikes to force improved factory conditions.
home rule for cities: Home rule was a new form of city government other than the mayor-council form that emerged in the Progressive Era. Under this form of government the city was run by a committee of three elected commissioners. They locally ran the county rather than allowing the state to handle affairs.
· Municipal Reform: The beginning of the Progressive Era is marked by a great increase in municipal reform. Nearly all elements of the urban population participated in these reform efforts. The middle class began the movement and was the core of urban beautification. Businessmen pushed for citywide elections and for the city-manager system of government. In reforms concerning the commoners, even the political bosses assisted. This municipal level reform soon moved to the state level.
Tom Johnson, Sam (Golden Rule) Jones, Brand Whitlock, Hazen Pingree: These were all progressives who reformed the political process. Johnson reformed public ownership of utilities in Chicago. San Jones reformed profit sharing and education in Toledo, Ohio. Pingree reformed taxes, the honesty in government, and beautified his city.
City manager plan, commission plan: This form of government replaced the traditional mayor/council version in several cities. It began in Texas when progressives removed the corrupt mayor and council, replacing them with five elected commissioners. They were experts in rebuilding the ruined city, which is what they were elected to do.
Daniel Hudson Burnham, 1909 Chicago Plan: Burnham, in conjunction with John Root, built the first steel-frame buildings that later developed into modern skyscrapers. Burnham was the designer of the famous Chicago Plan, a plan in which many beautiful pre-skyscraper buildings were designed in Chicago.
William Howard Taft: As president, Taft focused primarily on a continuation of trust-busting and reuniting the old conservatives and young progressives of the Republican Party. Taft also strongly supported a national budgetary system. He was unable to reunite the two parties and, as a result, the Democratic party swept the 1912 elections.
Department of Labor (from 1903 Department of Commerce and Labor, Bureau of Corporations also in 1903): This department was created in 1913 with the intention of assisting the welfare and working conditions of the general worker. It was empowered to investigate and report illegal corporative activities.
Payne-Aldrich Tariff, 1909: This tariff was initially intended to lower several other tariffs, but after numerous compromises in the Senate it became a protective measure. Many Progressive reformers considered this a sign that the companies and various special interests were preventing consumer prices from reaching reasonable levels.
Ballinger-Pinchot controversy: Pinchot charged that Ballinger was giving the nation's natural resources to private corporate interests. Under investigation it was found that Ballinger did nothing illegal though he did bend the government's environmental policies. Since Taft have given him support, Taft lost standing with the progressive Republicans.
Insurgents: Insurgents was a nickname for a small group of reformist Republicans. This group, including La Follette and Norris, turned against Taft after his passage of the 1909 tariff and completely separated after he supported the Payne-Aldrich Tariff. The separation between progressive and conservative republicans was caused by this group.
Uncle Joe Cannon (Old Guard): Cannon was a Republican who served as Speaker of the House from 1903 to 1911. He strongly opposed many progressive reforms and was thus not very popular in the house. Progressives and Democrats joined to remove much of his power in 1910, allowing the Republican-Democratic coalition to run the Senate.
Senator George Norris: Norris was a reformist senator who favored federal regulation of public utilities. Through a change in House rules he ended the rule of the Speaker of the House Joseph Cannon. He also created the Tennessee Valley Authority, a dam building company. As he ignored the limitations of party politics he slowly lost support.
Rule of reason: Standard Oil case, American Tobacco case: In 1911 a progressive interpretation of the Sherman Act was enacted by the Supreme Court. According to this "rule of reason" principle, only "unreasonable" combinations restraining trade were illegal. This interpretation emerged when the court broke these two companies into smaller firms.
· "dollar diplomacy": In an effort to avoid Roosevelts "big stick" economic policy, President Taft sought to avoid military confrontation by using money to increase foreign interest in the US. He planned to donate large sums of money to generate economic, social, and political stability in Latin America rather than sending the military to force stability. His efforts were largely a failure as most of the money never reached the actual people of Latin America. Most of the money was stolen by corrupt government officials.
Secretary of State Knox: Knox was responsible for the creation of the Latin American Division of the State Department. He planned to promote better relation, but the US kept a portion of the military in the Dominican Republic. This was planned to quiet revolutionary thoughts and to prevent foreign financial problems.
Manchurian railroad scheme: In an attempt to force Japan and Russia to sell their land in Manchuria for railroad investment, President Taft moved to construct his own competing rail system. China refused to approve Tafts plan and Japan and Russia began to grow suspicious of the USs motives.
Roosevelts Osawatomie, Kansas speech: The differences between Taft and Roosevelt were revealed in Roosevelts 1910 Osawatomie "New Nationalism" speech. Roosevelt unveiled a plan in which he called for a protection of welfare over property, opposing Tafts support of numerous tariffs as well as the Old Guard in Congress.
Taft-Roosevelt split: In 1912 the Democrats finally regained control of the presidency due to the Taft-Roosevelt split. Tafts inability to associate with the progressive elements of his party convinced Roosevelt to return. Roosevelt formed the Progressive Party and thus siphoned enough votes to cause the Republicans to lose the election.
Bull Moose Party: This party, formally known as the Progressive Party, was created by Theodore Roosevelt after his split with Taft. It was created in his anger of Taft being nominated in the Republican Party. They advocated primary elections, woman suffrage, and prohibition of child labor. They outpolled the Republicans but lost to the Democrats.
Progressivism to Wilson
In 1912, the divided Republicans were no match for the united Democrats. Woodrow Wilson easily glided to victory as the Democrats also took both houses of Congress. Except on the issue of race, the election identified the party firmly with reform for the rest of the century. Wilsons agenda included tariff reform, banking and currency reform, corporate regulation, and labor legislation. Four amendments to the Constitution within the span of eight years demonstrated the efficiency of the progressive impulse.
· Woodrow Wilson, New Freedom: The Democratic Party, to which Wilson belonged, had a past history of 45 ballots without a nomination. To overcome this stumbling block the Democrats united with the Progressives, running under a compromise platform. Wilsons "New Freedom" campaign was concerned with progressive programs similar to both parties. He did not, however, support trustbusting in the same way that Roosevelt did. To him, all big business was morally evil and should be broken up.
· Theodore Roosevelt, New Nationalism: In the election of 1912 Roosevelt was nominated under a platform nicknamed "The New Nationalism." This platform followed the previous trustbusting and regulation trend as well as alleviating many common progressive concerns such as child labor, womans suffrage, and minimum wages. A Federal Trade Commission was also planned to regulate the economy. This platform was essentially identical with many of the progressive reforms later passed under Wilson.
Herbert Croly, The Promise of American Life: Croly best captured the nature of progressivism in this book. He dreamed of an activist government which would serve all citizens. Specifically, he suggested a redefinition of government, democracy, and individualism. Roosevelt copied many of his ideas for his New Nationalism platform.
· Election of 1912: Wilson, Roosevelt, Taft, Debs - issues: The election of 1912 was very interesting for most Americans since there were 4 active political parties. Roosevelt tried to run with the Republican Party, but Taft was chosen. He left and created the Progressive Party. Wilson ran with the Democratic Party. Debs continued to run on the Socialist platform. All of the platforms dealt primarily with economic reform, indicating the change that Americans wanted. Debs even received 900,000 votes.
Eugene V. Debs, Socialist Party: Eugene V. Debs was an American Socialist leader and five time presidential candidate. In 1897 he created the Social Democratic Party of America. He received nearly one million votes for president while he was imprisoned in jail. His Socialist party was quite popular until it splintered apart along internal divisions.
Daniel DeLeon, IWW, Wobblies, "Big Bill" Haywood: The Industrial Workers of the World, nicknamed the "Wobblies," was a radical labor group formed by "Big Bill" Haywood. They were never large, but they captured many peoples imaginations as they preached revolution. Though they won several strikes, they were more rhetoric than action.
National Monetary Commission: The National Monetary Commission examined monetary data collected by the Pujo Committee and recommended a new form of banking. This advice, suggesting a secure Treasury reserve and branch banks, later became the Federal Reserve System, used to adjust the value of money to keep the economy stable.
Edgar Lee Masters, Spoon River Anthology: Edgar Lee Masters poems are unique in that they are presented as the voices of a towns graveyard talking about their lives. His works realism and irony contrast with the romantic and sentimental trends in progressive literature, demonstrating the revolt against conventional social standards that was beginning.
D. W. Griffith, The Birth of a Nation: D. W. Griffith revolutionized the field of motion pictures after his production of The Birth of a Nation in 1915. This story demonstrated the power of film propaganda and the racist effects it had on people. It also began a trend towards hour-long, dramatic, well-acted films.
Edwin Porter, The Great Train Robbery: The Great Train Robbery, produced by Edwin Porter in 1903, was the first major American film. It used new innovations such as the intercutting of scenes shot in different settings. These scenes were later unified to form a coherent narrative ending in a scene of suspense.
Nickelodeons: Nickelodeons, movies costing a nickel each, became extremely popular in the Progressive Era due to the freedom they offered children from parents. Immigrant children could easily imagine away their restrictive home conditions. Noticing the lack of moral oversight, many progressives moved to create censorship boards for these films.
Scott Joplin, Ragtime: Scott Joplin was a pianist and one of the most important developers of ragtime music. He believed that ragtime should evolve into an indigenous black American opera style. His 1899 release of "Maple Leaf Rag" was the beginning of popular ragtime music.
Eugenics movement: The Eugenics movement is one of the best examples of progressive ideas contradicting science. Some Americans believed that the society could be improved by controlled breeding. They accomplished this by sterilizing many criminals and sex offenders. The right to do so was upheld in the court case Buck v. Bell.
Mary Ritter Beard, Charles A. Beard, Historical revisionism: Mary and Charles were two historians that pioneered a new perspective on history. They each believed that history must be reexamined from a modern perspective and that the economic, political, and social threads of present time must be followed back to generate a clearer picture.
Madison Grant, The Passing of the Great Race: This book, published in 1916, is a preview to the ideas later espoused by Adolf Hitler. Written in the Progressive Era, this book calls for absolute racial segregation, immigrant restriction, and a forced eugenics movement by crime and by race type.
Billy Sunday: Billy Sunday was an American Fundamentalist preacher and professional baseball player. He conducted regular revivals throughout the nation, in which he used broadcasting to strengthen peoples bond with Christianity. The broadcasts of his revivals are considered among the most effective ever.
Margaret Sanger: Sanger was a leader among birth-control advocates. She attacked the Comstock Law, a law which prevented the distribution of birth control. In 1916 she opened the first American birth-control facility. She was convicted for this "public nuisance," won an appeal, and eventually gained the right for birth-control.
Sixteenth Amendment: The Sixteenth Amendment, ratified in 1913, is an obvious indicator to the Progressive era in which it was passed. It authorized the income tax thereby allowing the Underwood-Simmons Tariff of 1913 to lower many tariffs. This amendment invalidated an earlier Supreme Court decision calling the income tax was unconstitutional.
Seventeenth Amendment: The Seventeenth Amendment, ratified in 1913, moved the election of senators from the state legislatures to the general populace. It followed the ideas already laid down by the Australian secret ballot and the direct primary. This law was intended to create a more democratic, fair society in the eyes of progressives.
Eighteenth Amendment: The Eighteenth Amendment, ratified in 1919, prohibited the non-medical sale of alcohol. This amendment resulted from intense efforts among various womens movements, proving to the nation that women could effect political changes. This amendment is the midpoint of a growing drive towards womens rights.
Nineteenth Amendment: The Nineteenth Amendment, granting women the vote in 1920, is a logical progression from the prohibition movement. As women felt their power in politics increasing, they began to demand the ability to vote from their male peers. In the spirit of progressivism they were granted the vote in 1920.
Charles Evans Hughes: Charles Evans Hughes was an American jurist and statesmen. As governor of New York he eliminated much of the corruption in government, passing many progressive reform measures. He served as the chief justice of the Supreme Court in the depression years of the 1930s and supported many aspects of Roosevelts liberal New Deal.
Pujo Committee: The Pujo Committee researched and later reported on the concentration of money and credit over the general populace. They found that the money and credit of the US is localized inside a small group of rich capitalists. This committees findings later led to the creation of the Federal Reserve Banking system.
Federal Reserve Act: The Federal Reserve Act was a compromise designed to stabilize the currency in the US. It split the US into 12 regions with one Federal bank in each region. Commercial banks bought stock from this bank. The discount rate at which the federal bank lent the money determined the interest rate.
Underwood-Simmons Tariff: The Underwood-Simmons Tariff reduced the tariffs from the Payne-Aldrich Tariff to about 29%. It included a graduated income tax, made legal by the sixteenth amendment to the Constitution, to correct for this monetary loss. Wilson, noticing that it followed his principle of "New Freedom," heavily advocated it.
Income tax: The income tax, originally declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, was later ratified as the Sixteenth Amendment. This new power was first used in the Tariff Act of 1913 which set the tax of corporate income at 1%. It also levied a 1% tax on all rich families. Income tax has been greatly increased as tariffs have been lowered.
Federal Trade Commission, cease and desist orders: The Federal Trade Commission, created by the Federal Trade Commission Act, promoted free and fair trade competition. It investigated economically unfair business practices and regulated these. The commission also regularly generated statistics of economic and business conditions to the public.
· Clayton Antitrust Act, labors Magna Carta (?): The Clayton Act was designed to clarify the Sherman Antitrust Act in terms of new economic issues that had arisen. Practices such as local price-cutting and price discrimination were made illegal. The right of unions to strike, boycott, and picket was also confirmed. This act would have been labors Magna Carta had it been followed, but unfavorable court interpretations rendered many of its pro-labor sections powerless without further legislation.
Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan: From 1913-1915, Bryan served as Secretary of State to Wilson. The USs stubbornness on the issue of neutrality rights led Bryan to resign his position in 1915. He felt that instead of insisting on passengers rights, the United States should keep Americans off belligerent ships, a differing view on neutrality.
arbitration treaties: The arbitration treaties were negotiated by Secretary of State Root with 25 other nations. International disputes could be deferred to the Hague Tribunal as stipulated by the arbitration treaties. An example of such a treaty is the Anglo-Japanese Alliance. The treaties were undermined by disputes of individual national interests.
Panama Tolls dispute: In 1912, the United States passed a bill that would exempt the United States from payment in the use of the Panama Canal. Great Britain opposed the move saying it violated the 1901 Hay-Pauncefote Treaty. After some dispute the United States eliminated the exemption clause and the president signed the bill in 1914.
Colonel House: Colonel Edward M House was part of the Wilson administration and served as an advisor to the president. He later was part of the Roosevelt administration and was involved in New Deal legislation taking his traditional Wilsonian democracy to the New Deal era and its actions.
Louis Brandeis, "Brandeis brief": In 1916, Woodrow Wilson appointed Louis Brandeis, a Jew, to the Supreme Court, which was briefly opposed because of anti-Semitism. In 1908 in Muller v. Oregon, his Brandeis brief provided evidence as to why women need limited work hours. This represented the Courts adapting to the new, changing industrial society.
La Follette Seamans Act: Passed in 1915, the La Follette Seamans Act improved working and living conditions as well as making ships safer. It applied to US ships as well as any ship docked in a US port. Included provisions regulating work hours, as well as pay and food quality. The act was designed to attract Americans to ocean occupations.
Keating-Owen Act: The Keating-Owen Act, passed in 1915, attempted to prevent the problem of child labor. It forbade interstate shipment of products whose production was due to the labor of children under fourteen or sixteen. This law was particularly important because it was the first attempt by Congress to regulate interstate commerce.
Workmens Compensation Act: The Workmens Compensation Act heightened the rights of employees to bring legal action against their employers for injuries. Prior to this act, the employee had to prove they were not at fault and that it was not a normal risk. This act created scales of compensation for any injury, regardless to the party responsible.
Federal Warehouse Act: Wilson heavily supported the Federal Warehouse Act, which allowed farmers to more easily secure long-term, low-interest credit, using land or crops as the loan security, from regional Farm Loan Banks. Prior to the passage of this act, farmers had to use actual money or property as security, making loans harder to obtain.
Federal Highways Act, 1916: The Federal Highways Act of 1916 was pushed by Wilson and supported by the Democratic congress. It stated that federal funds would match appropriations made by states funds for highway construction. This aided the automobile industry and allowed for the existence of more cars.
Adamson Act, 1916: The Adamson Act of 1916 was a compromise that avoided a railroad strike. It set an eight hour day for interstate railroad workers with a salary of one and a half for overtime work. The act signaled a major victory for railroad workers. An example of Wilsons sympathy to labor and was one of his important worker protection laws.
Smith-Lever Act: The Smith-Lever Act, enacted in 1914, created a system of agricultural extension work funded by federal grants. Students not in college benefited because they were taught agricultural skills by county agents. It was part of the governments plan to encourage a growth in American agriculture.
Smith- Hughes Act: The Smith-Hughes Act of 1917 created the Federal Board for Vocational Education to encourage agricultural growth. Furthermore, it gave the federal government greater control over education because it required that states submit proposals for education to a federal board.
First World War
When war burst upon Europe in August 1914, most Americans wanted no part. Wilson immediately proclaimed American neutrality and called on the nation to be neutral "in thought and in action." Yet the United States and Britain were linked by extensive economic ties and many Americans felt close emotionally with the British. Fearing a world dominated by imperial Germany, and seething over violation of neutral rights on the seas, Wilson declared war in 1917.
"Sick man of Europe," Ottoman Empire, Balkan Wars: The ancient Ottoman empire had lost its grip throughout the late 1800s. In the Balkan Wars, Balkan States gained their independence from the Ottoman Empire, called the "sick man of Europe." From it, the newly independent nations of Romania, Bulgaria, and Serbia were created.
Triple Entente: Allies: Beginning in the early 1900s, Britain, France and Russia had signed treaties with each other. After Austria declared war on Serbia, Germany declared war on the allies (Russia and France), in turn drawing Great Britain into the war. This system of alliances had escalated what was once a localized incident.
Triple Alliance: Central Powers: The Triple Alliance consisted of Germany, Austria- Hungary, as well as Italy. Germany, with its blank check provision to Austria- Hungary, had in encouraged the war declaration on Serbia. Afterwards, Germany declared war on Russia and France, Serbias allies by treaties.
loans to the Allies: In total, the United States lent the Allies over $10 billion. Great Britain owed the United States over $4.2 billion by the end of the war. This great indebtedness led to conflict later when the United States attempted to collect. Also, it led to increased reparations for Germany because of allied indebtedness.
British blockade: In an attempt to win the war of attrition that was World War I, Great Britain utilized its sizable navy to blockade all trade going in and out of Germany. Germany responded with its U-boats, eventually going on the offensive in 1917 by itself blockading Britain at the cost of American involvement.
Lusitania, Arabic pledge, Sussex pledge: In 1915, the British Lusitania was sunk bringing protests from Wilson. The Arabic was sunk in the same year and Germans followed with the Arabic pledge promising to stop attacks on passenger vessels. In 1916, Germans sunk the Sussex and made the Sussex pledge to promise a stoppage of attacks.
election of 1916: Hughes, Wilson, issues: Wilson ran for reelection for the Democrats on the call that he had kept the United States out of the war. Charles Evans Hughes was the Republican candidate who attacked the inefficiency of the Democratic Party. Wilson won the election, so was able to continue his idealistic policies.
unrestricted submarine warfare: On January 31, 1917, Germany announced it would resume unrestricted submarine warfare, a repudiation of the Sussex pledge, and sink all ships without warning whatsoever. This action was backed by the German belief that this would lead it to victory before the Americans could become involved in the war.
· Zimmerman Note: Also known as the Zimmerman Telegram, the Zimmerman note was a message intercepted by British intelligence from Germany to Mexico in 1917 proposing that in the event of a German war with the United states, Mexico should attack the US. It would be a Mexican opportunity to retake the Mexican Cession. This was one of a few events which led to widespread public support for the Allies and eventual United States involvement in the World War.
Russian Revolutions, 1917, March and Bolshevik: In March 1917 a revolution overthrew Russias tsarist regime. The second Revolution, commonly called the October Revolution, was an armed coup organized by the Bolshevik party. These revolutions were caused by and led to Russia pulling out of World War I.
war declared, April 1917: On March 2, 1917, President Wilson called a special Congressional session for April 2, in which he proposed the declaration of war against Germany. The declaration was passed by the Senate by a vote of 82 to 6 and in the House by a vote of 373 to 50 before it was then signed by Wilson.
Wilsons "Peace without victory": In 1916 President Wilson called for a "peace without victory." His words were a call to the European nations to stop the conflict based on a balance of power and to form a peace in which nations together would keep the peace. Wilson foresaw the vengeful atmosphere that would follow a prolonged war.
"Make the world safe for democracy": "Make the world safe for democracy" was Wilsons famous line justifying United States involvement in the World War. It was based on the belief that from this international power struggle, a democratic revolution could arise. In other words, a new democratic world order led by the United States would follow.
· Creel Committee: The Committee on Public Information, formed in 1917, was headed by journalist George Creel. At the beginning of the first World War, Americans sided with neutrality. The CPI was a propaganda committee that built support for the war effort in Europe among Americans. It depicted Germans and other enemies on bad terms, and served to censor the press. Anything German was frowned upon. The Creel Committee, or CPI, was successful in raising widespread American support for the war effort.
bond drives: Treasury Secretary William Gibbs McAdoo organized the raising of funds, or Liberty Loans, necessary for the war with five campaigns between 1917 and 1919 with much excitement. People felt obliged to buy bonds because they were afraid of being seen as unpatriotic. Eventually, they raised over $21 billion for the war.
War Industries Board: Created in July 1917, the War Industries Board controlled raw materials, production, prices, and labor relations. It also encouraged production by allocating raw materials, standardizing manufactured products, instituting strict production and purchasing controls, and paying high prices to businesses.
Bernard Baruch: Bernard Baruch was a Wall Street broker before being chosen by President Wilson in 1918 to head the War Industries Board. He was aided by a coalition of 100 businessman who advised him on fiscal policy. This was part of Wilsons effort to take stronger action in the war effort.
Herbert Hoover, Food Administration: The Food Administration was created in 1917 as part of the war effort, and a response to the poor harvests of 1916 and 1917. Headed by Herbert Hoover, it set prices for agricultural goods high to encourage the production of agricultural products. It encouraged conservation with such days as "meatless Tuesdays."
Espionage Act, 1917; Sedition Act, 1918: The Espionage Act of 1917 enacted fines and imprisonment for false statements, inciting rebellion, or obstructing recruitment or the draft. Also papers which opposed the government could be banned from the U.S. postal service. The Sedition Act of 1918 made illegal any criticism of the government. It was poorly applied and used to trample civil liberties during the war hysteria as in the example of the imprisonment of Eugene Debs.
Eugene V. Debs imprisoned: Eugene Debs was questionably imprisoned and was given a 10 year prison term for giving a speech at a Socialists convention. The speech criticized American policy, involvement in the war and for warning of the dangers of war and militarism. His imprisonment was an example of the reactionism and hysteria of the period.
AEF: From 1917-1918, the AEF, or American Expeditionary Force, sent 2 million men to France under General John J. Pershing. Most enlisted in search of action and adventure. The United States insisted the AEF be independent of French and English armies because it was believed the U.S. would have a stronger bargaining voice with a separate army.
selective service: As part of US mobilization for war, on May 18, 1917, the Selective Service Act was passed. Men from 21-30 were to register for the military. At the time, the United States military was in poor disarray and men were desperately needed. Made into a party-like atmosphere, 24 million registered, and 3 million were actually drafted.
Eddie Rickenbacker: Rickenbacker was an American Aviator during World War I. During the war, he served in the US Air Service as commander of the 94th Aero Pursuit Squadron. Shooting down 22 planes, he was Americas leading pilot. He received the Distinguished Service Cross as well as the Congressional Medal of Honor.
During the war, Wilson believed that United States involvement would translate into a new democratic world order. In a fourteen-point speech to Congress, Wilson summed up United States war aims and its noble objectives. November 1918 saw the war grind to a halt. The peace conference, held at Versailles in 1919, was dominated by conflict among the "Big Four," and the resulting treaty proved a disaster. Ultimately, Wilson failed in his most cherished objective, American membership in the League of Nations.
aims of Allies and US at peace conference: The main goal of Wilson and the American delegation was to secure an international peacekeeping organization; a peace based on Wilsons Fourteen Points. The aims of the other allies were not as liberal as that of the US. The enormous reparations settled on was representative of this atmosphere.
· Fourteen Points: The Fourteen Points were Wilsons proposals and beliefs for a post-war world order. They dealt with the things that led to the first World War. For example, the first points called for open treaties, freedom of the seas, arms reduction and free trade. The other points dealt with self determination and finally a general association of nations, the League of Nations. During the conference of Versailles, Wilson pushed the Fourteen points and was partly successful.
· Versailles Conference and Treaty: The Big Four dominated the conference in 1919 that determined the postwar world order. Wilson promoted his Fourteen Points while other Allies sought vengeance. The treaty found Germany liable for the war and established new nations based on self determination. It also made German colonies mandates under the League of Nations and included the controversial article X that kept the US out of the League. These provisions set the stage for World War II.
US Versailles delegation: The delegation was headed by President Wilson himself, and included Secretary of State Robert Lansing, General Tasker Bliss, Colonel Edward M. House, and attorney Henry White. Blatantly missing from the delegation were any Republican leaders, so the conference became not an American but a Democratic affair.
Big Four: Wilson, George, Clemenceau, Orlando: The Big Four were the dominating four at the Versailles conference after World War I. President Woodrow Wilson represented the United States, Lloyd George for Britain, Clemenceau for France, and Vittorio Orlando represented Italy. Each had a different prerogative and differing interests.
· League of Nations: The organization promoted by Wilson in his Fourteen Points was the League of Nations. The US never joined because of controversy over Article X of the League Covenant that took away the United Statess freedom of determination in world affairs. Implemented at the Versailles conference, it existed from 1920 to 1946, meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, until it was taken over by the United Nations. After WWI, it divided German colonies into mandates of various League members.
· collective security: Collective security was the dogma behind Article X of the League of Nations covenant of the Versailles Treaty. It stated that every nation would serve to protect the territorial integrity and existing governments of all other League nations. Hence, it was felt that this would ensure peace in the postwar world order. The belief manifested inself in the international world court that was established and later in the establishment of the United Nations after the demise of the League.
new nations, self determination: The idea of new nations and self determination was behind some of the aspects of the Treaty of Versailles. Self determination meant every nationality getting their own country, so new nations were created to allow this. Yugoslavia, Austria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, and Finland were new nations which filled this definition. Even with the doctrine of self determination, boundaries for new countries still left many misrepresented and under others control.
reparations: Reparations were implemented by European powers wanting vengeance against Germany. Germany was forced to pay a huge sum, some $33 billion to the Allies for civilian and veterans costs. This huge amount led to Germanys economic downfall, allowing for the rise of Hitler and World War II
mandate system: As a provision of the Versailles Treaty, Germanys colonies became mandates of the League of Nations and delegated to France, Japan and Britain. The colonies became in actuality, those of the respective countries, which was one of their purposes in fighting the war.
Article 10 of the Versailles Treaty: The most controversial of the League of Nations covenants, Article 10 said that all nations must protect the territorial and political integrity of other League members. The article meant that if one nation was engaged in war, all others must become involved. This article was a large part of why the US rejected the League.
Article 231 of the Versailles Treaty: By Article 231, Germany accepted total responsibility for her and her allies for starting the First World War. Reparations payments were based on this claim. It led to hatred among Germans and inadvertently contributed to conditions precipitating World War II.
Senate rejection, Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, reservations: Senate reservationists did not fully oppose the League except for mainly one Article. They did not want the United States going to war defending another League member without Congresss permission, as was stipulated by Article X. They wanted that article removed before ratification.
· "irreconcileables": Borah, Johnson, La Follette: The irreconcileables were those in Congress who felt the United States should not be a member of the League under any circumstances. They opposed nearly all of the provisions of the League of Nations and felt that the League obstructed the United States freedom of self determination. Wilson attempted to overcome them and get ratification for the League but was unsuccessful in his campaign. The United States never joined the League of Nations.
Impact of the War
The war affected the lives of millions of industrial workers, farmers, women, and blacks in important ways. For all its horrors, World War I brought prosperity to the American economy. The wartime mood also gave a boost to moral-reform movements. Still, the wartime spirit saw new racial violence and fresh antiradical hysteria. The antiradical panic crested in the Red Scare of 1919-1920. Americans, tired of idealism, revealed their feelings in the election of 1920 leaving Republican Warren Harding in the office.
Womens Roles in World War I: Prominent womens leaders like Carrie Chapman Catt and Anna Howard Shaw saw war as an opportunity for womens rights. Thousands of American Women took vacated jobs and became involved in industrial production as well as volunteer agencies at home and abroad. Supplied Americas labor needs.
Harriet Stanton Blatch: A prominent womens leader who during the war offered a view on why women should play a role in the wartime effort. In a variant of Wilsons theme of determining the postwar peace, women should play a role so that after the war, they will have an opportunity to gain power and rights.
black migration to Northern cities: During the war, blacks left their traditional homes in the South and migrated North for job opportunities in the war industries. About 500,000 blacks migrated North during the war. Led to racial tension and violence in the North. This growing concentration of blacks led to the Harlem Renaissance.
wartime manpower losses: During World War I, military casualties alone accounted for just over 8.5 million deaths on both sides. Russia and Germany by far lost the most men at 1.7 million killed each. In comparison, the United States lost only 126,000 men. In all, over 21 million men were injured during the war.
Congressional elections of 1918: In 1918, the Republicans gained an advantage in both the House of Representatives as well as the Senate. Republicans no who had traditionally supported Wilsons plans in Europe no longer supported him because of his cry to voters for a Democratic Congress.
Red Scare, Palmer raids: In 1919, there was a string of bombings. Among the victims was Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer. In November 1919, Palmer led raids and arrested around 700 suspected communists and anarchists. Some were deported under the Alien Act. The Red Scare in the United States followed Communist revolutions in Russia.
strikes: 1919, coal, steel, police: Post-war strikes occurred because of an increase in prices. The most famous strike was in a Seattle shipyard. The government responded with troops to break up the strike. Chicago police struck and were all fired. The United Mine Workers of America under John L. Lewis struck as well, fueling the Red Scare.
inflation during the First World War: As Americans were sent to Europe to fight in World War I, a labor shortage was created. With the shortage came higher wages which led to more purchases and in turn, inflation. The rise in prices was regulated by the WIB which set prices.
election of 1920: candidates, issues: Senator Warren G. Harding was the Republican dark horse with running mate Calvin Coolidge. They advocated a "return to normalcy" from the war environment. James Cox, and Franklin D. Roosevelt were the Democratic nominees. They ran on a platform endorsing the League with reservations.
brief depression, 1920-1921: A brief depression occurred from mid-1920 to the end of 1921. It was due to decreased European purchases from American industries after the war. Prices fell and unemployment was over 12% at its height. It was followed by the improved economy of the 1920s until the Great Depression struck.