Chapter 14: Farging The National Economy 1790-1860

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The Westward Movement
• West filled with disease and loneliness.
• Frontier people= individualistic, superstitious and uninformed of current matters.
Shaping the Western Landscape
• Tobacco overuse forced settlers to new land but “Kentucky bluegrass” thrived.
• Settlers hunted beavers, sea otters, and bison for fur to trade back east.
• Artist George Catlin wanted national parks and later est. Yellowstone (1872). Nationalism led to an appreciation of American wilderness
The March of the Millions
• Mid-1800s, population doubled every 25 years. 1860- 33 states U.S. 4th populous country in the western world. (brought about disease and decreased living standards)
• 1840/50s, Eur. immigrants came to Americas b/c Europe was running out of room.
• U.S. appeal- land, freedom from church, no aristocracy, 3 meat meals a day.
• Transoceanic steamships travel time dropped to 12 days and it was safer.
The Emerald Island Moves West
• Irish potato famine (mid-1840) killed 2 million and saw many flee to the U.S.
 “Black Forties”— came to cities like Boston and New York (biggest Irish city).
 Illiterate, discriminated by older Americans. Low-pay jobs (railroad-building).
 Hated by Protestants because they’re Catholic.
 Ancient Order of Hibernians was established to aid the Irish.
 Irish were attracted to politics, and often filled police departments as officers.
 Politicians appealed to Irish by yelling at London (“Twisting the Lion’s Tail”).
The German Forty-Eighters
• 1830-1860, Germans came to America because of crop failures and other hardships.
• Unlike Irish, Germans had good amount of material goods.
• Germans more educated than Americans and were opposed to slavery.
Flare-ups of Antiforeignism
• “nativists” – older prejudice Americans against newcomers in jobs, politics, and religion
• Immigrants were Catholics. 1840/ 50s; they set out to build Catholic schools
• Nativists feared Catholicism challenged Protestantism (Popish idols) and formed “Order of Star-Spangled Banner” AKA, “The Know-Nothings.”
 they met in secrecy - “I Know-Nothing” was their response to any inquiries
 fought for immigration restrictions, naturalization & deportation of alien paupers
 mass violence, Philadelphia 1844, churches and schools burnt, & people killed
 America a pluralistic society with diversity
Creeping Mechanization
• Industrial rev. spread to U.S. because-
 land was cheap, money for investment plentiful, raw materials were plentiful
 Britain lacked consumers for factory-scale manufacturing
 Brits kept textile industry secrets as a monopoly (forbade travel of craftsmen & export of machines)
• U.S. stayed very rural and was mostly a farming nation

Whitney Ends the Fiber Famine
• Samuel Slater- “Factory System"; escaped Britain with plans for textile machinery; put into operation, first spinning cotton thread in 1791.
• Eli Whitney- built first cotton gin in 1793.
• The cotton gin was much more effective at separating the cotton seed from the cotton
 Production and demand of cotton increased and required slavery.
• New England was the industrial center because it had poor soil for farming
Marvels in Manufacturing
• Embargo Act of War of 1812 encouraged home manufacturing
• Congress then passed Tariff of 1816 to protect U.S. economy from Brit. goods
• Eli Whitney created machine-made inter-changeable parts (on muskets) - 1850
• Elias Howe & Issac Singer (1846) made the sewing machine (beg. of clothing industry)
• 1860 had 28,000 patents while 1800 only had 306
• Limited liability in a corporation (can’t lose more than invested) stimulated the economy
• Samuel Morse created the telegraph
Workers and Wage Slaves
• Factory workers forbidden to form labor unions to raise wages. 1820s, children used in factories. Jacksonian democracy gave rights of working men to vote.
• President Van Buren