H CS 10

Industrialization and Progressivism (1877-1920)

Ignited by post-Civil War demand and fueled by technological advancements, large-scale industrialization began in the United States during the late 1800s. Growing industries enticed foreign immigration, fostered urbanization, gave rise to the American labor movement and developed the infrastructure that facilitated the settling of the West. A period of progressive reform emerged in response to political corruption and practices of big business.

Content Statement

10. The rise of corporations, heavy industry, mechanized farming and technological innovations transformed the American economy from an agrarian to an increasingly urban industrial society.

Content Elaborations

Industrialization in the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was characterized by the rise of corporations and heavy industry, which transformed the American economy. It marked a shift from a predominance of agricultural workers to a predominance of factory workers. It marked a shift from rural living to urban living, with more people living in crowded and unsanitary conditions.

Mechanized farming also transformed the American economy. Production was made more efficient as machines replaced human labor.

New technologies (e.g., mechanized assembly line, electric motors) made factory production more efficient and allowed for larger industrial plants. Some of the technological innovations that transformed the American economy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries include the telephone, phonograph, incandescent light bulb, washing machine, skyscraper, automobile and airplane.

Expectations for Learning

Analyze how the rise of corporations, heavy industry, mechanized farming and technological innovations transformed the American economy from an agrarian to an increasingly urban industrial society.