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Choose Store. Or, get it for Kobo Super Points! Or grab a flashlight and read Shmoop under the covers. Shmoop eBooks are like having a trusted, fun, chatty, expert history-tour-guide always by your side, no matter where you are or how late it is at night. Shmoop US History Guides offer fresh analysis, timelines of important events, brief bios of key movers and shakers, jaw-dropping trivia, memorable quotes, a glossary of terms, and more.
Best of all, Shmoop's analysis aims to look at a topic from multiple points of view to give you the fullest understanding. After all, "there is no history, only histories" Karl Popper. Experts and educators from top universities, including Stanford, UC Berkeley, and Harvard, have written guides designed to engage you and to get your brain bubbling. History: Present course has been granted a-g certification , which means it has met the rigorous iNACOL Standards for Quality Online Courses and will now be honored as part of the requirements for admission into the University of California system.
This course has also been certified by Quality Matters , a trusted quality assurance organization that provides course review services to certify the quality of online and blended courses. You know your Jamestowns from your Plymouths, you've got the Bill of Rights down pat, and you're a regular participant in your town's Civil War reenactments. But when it comes to those foggy years between Reconstruction and the Roaring Twenties you draw a blank. Who was even president then? If this sounds familiar, boy have we got the course for you.
And hey, even if you don't remember the earlier stuff so well, this is still the course for you.
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This 11th grade U. It turns out that actually a lot was going on around the turn of the 20th century—industrialization, urbanization, immigration—and a bunch of other words ending in —tion. History: Present is a two semester course. The second semester can be found here. What was that whole Constitution thing again? This unit gives a much-needed refresher on early American history, from the independence movement all the way through the Civil War.
Oh, and it also stocks up your historian's toolbox with info on digital research, evaluating primary and secondary sources, and citing sources correctly. No, "Jim Crow" is not an affectionate name for a member of the Night's Watch. It was actually a really racist minstrel character, and it came to represent the oppressive laws placed on the black population of the South after the Civil War. This unit traces the positive and negative impacts of Reconstruction, and its abrupt end. All that glitters is not gold, and the Gilded Age is no exception.
This period of our history meant unprecedented glitz and glamor for a select few, and a rather dumpy time for most everyone else. It was an era of technological innovation, explosive industrial growth, and political corruption. We also like to think that it was the era when the monocle was popularized. This unit overlaps chronologically with unit 3, but tackles a different set of Gilded events—urbanization, immigration, and the beginning of the American labor movement.
Our landscape was changing fast, both the land oh wow, everything's hideous now and the population. Immigration had always been a defining feature of the country, but during this period immigrants came in greater numbers and from different countries, leading to—you guessed it—anti-immigrant sentiment. A man, a plan, a canal—imperialism! Okay, so it ruins the palindrome , but it's probably more accurate. This unit is two-pronged: first we'll delve into the wacky world of progressive movements and their more significant social campaigns, including women's rights, temperance, and trust-busting.
Then we jump over to America's early forays into foreign imperialism—which is exactly as bad as it sounds. They don't call it "the Great War" for nothin'—WWI wasn't great as in "awesome" it was the opposite, really , but it was great as in "hugely impactful. America didn't get involved until the tail end of the war, but it still felt the consequences. The economy in the Gilded Age reached new heights—what with the millionaires roaming around—and new lows, like the fact that the millionaires wielded a crazy amount of power and the lack of regulation made the economy prone to booms and busts.
It turns out you could say pretty much the same thing about politics in the Gilded Age: it had its ups, like record-breaking voter turn out, and its downs, like unprecedented corruption.
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In this lesson, we're going to talk about politics and corruption on two levels: the tippity top, with presidents and more plot twists than Scandal , and the lower rungs of local governments, where bosses and political machines ruled. But we're gonna talk about them in reverse order, 'cause we're unpredictable like that.
Here's the two-second version: in many urban areas in the eastern U. People who had influence and power in the political scene, called bosses, "sold" government jobs and services to the highest bidders, often in exchange for votes. That's obviously corrupt and not at all how democracy is supposed to work, but it was also one of the ways people dealt with governments that just weren't doing their jobs.
Bosses and their machines were providing essential services for folks. Like, putting out fires.
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And fixing roads. And stuff. When it comes to Gilded Age presidential politics, bububaby you just ain't seen nothin' yet , corruption-wise. Grant had so many scandals in his government that the "S" in his name probably stood for "scandal. Heard of Garfield not the lazy orange cat, the president? Maybe that's because Garfield was only the Prez for days before he was shot. And you thought politics were a mess in the 21st century.
But this is more than a chance to marvel at the crazy hijinks of the past okay, you can marvel a little bit —all this corruption and scandal stuff will directly cause a whole lot of political movements down the road. Like reformism, and the Progressive Era, and the Populist movement.
Think of all this stuff as the foundation of a building, except instead of a building it's American socio-political history. Tragically, political machines involved no giant human-robot hybrids that controlled the city. Instead, they were just formal organizations that dominated urban politics at the end of the 19th century. They distributed city jobs to loyal supporters regardless of ability, and they awarded city contracts for construction and services to those offering the largest bribes.
As cities swelled with migrants moving from rural areas and immigrants arriving from Europe, roads had to be built, sewer and gas lines had to be laid, and police and fire departments had to be staffed. Political insiders grew rich meeting the needs of the rapidly expanding cities. While you read, jot down some stuff about:. Remember how George Washington told us not to create political parties because it would just lead to angry shouting and corruption?
Remember how we didn't listen? Well, he might have been thinking about a specific organization when he gave that warning: Tammany Hall. Tammany Hall was a political organization founded in in New York City.