AP American History P. 3
29 October 2014
Market Revolution Paper
The Market Revolution saw a lot of changes in the infrastructure of the United States. People in the United States were now able to travel much easier. With the inventions of steamboats and railroads, people were able to get around the country more often and goods were able to be shipped across the nation. The first steamboat was operated in 1787 by John Fitch, but they were not as common until the Market Revolution began. After the successes of Robert Fulton and Robert Livingston with their uses of the steamboats on the Hudson River during the 1800s, many steamboats became common on many major rivers. The use of steamboats resulted in mariners having not to rely on winds anymore and now goods could be shipped directly. For example, planters from Mississippi and Louisiana could send goods through the Mississippi River now instead of having to send it across the country. Also, railroads were put into use in 1804 by Richard Trevithick in the United Kingdom and eventually found its way to the United States in the 1830s, with the Baltimore and Ohio railroad being built, which linked the port of Baltimore with the Ohio River. Railroads became common during the Market Revolution and actually became a more reliable method for transportation than steamboats. Railroad use was much safer than traveling on a steamboat and functioned year round. Railroads and steamboats allowed people and goods to travel faster and safer which resulted in improving the economy in the United States. The United States improved with communications during the Market Revolution with the invention of the telegraph. The telegraph was invented in the 1830s by inventor Samuel Morse which revolutionized long distance communication. The way a telegraph worked was by transmitting electrical signals over a wire laid between stations. Before the telegraph the main use of communication was the printing press. For example, now a message between London and New York could take only minutes while a letter would typically take weeks or months to get transmitted. As a result, business could be done faster and announcements could made quicker. Railroad departures and arrivals would be announced using the telegraph. The financial markets in the United States were expanding in a time where infrastructure was changing, especially with the improvement of communication with the telegraph. The Market Revolution occurred with the inception of manufacturing. Modern factories were started in 1769 by Richard Arkwright with his diagram of the water frame. The water frame was a diagram of the Cromford Mill factory that he started in England. Factories did not become common in the United States until the Market Revolution in the 1820s. Factories started the use of machines to make products, instead of having craftsmen making them. Machines allowed for products to be produced at a faster rate. Cotton and wool started to become in higher demand with the inventions of the machines and they were made at a much faster rate. Other products that were made in factories were clocks and furnaces. Politics heading into the Market Revolution started favoring manufacturing companies. Many tariffs became enacted to help manufacturing companies grow. One concept that became really popular in factories was replacing interchangeable parts. Previously if something like the minute hand of a clock broke the customer would have to purchase a brand new one. With the new idea of replacing interchangeable parts, the customer with the broken minute hand of the clock could go to the clock manufacturer and get a new minute hand instead of a brand new clock. The use of interchangeable parts saved many a lot of money in the United States and also provided money for companies.
Politics during the Market Revolution were optimistic. The Market Revolution came off the heels of the Era of Good Feeling and the