The USA

HideShow resource information
View mindmap
  • After WW1= Economic Boom
    • Government Policies
      • Laissez faire: very pro business (French term for 'leave it alone')
        • -Don't weigh business down with laws -Don't tell business how much to pay people -Let business decide how to treat works -Let business decide what prices to charge
      • Tariffs: boosted US home sales
    • Impact of the War
      • -Huge demand in Europe for US products and grain -New export markets now open to USA -Europe depending on USA for loans
    • Innovation
      • New industries (e.g. radios, fridges) -New technology and processes: e.g. mass production
    • The USA 1918-1941
      • Problem Areas (where there was no economic boom)
        • Older industries such as coal mining, ship building and railways
          • These industries are linked, hence when one declined so did the others
          • People switched to electricity, so less coal was needed
          • Couldn't use mass production
          • No more demand for ships as war was over, sudden decline
          • People bought cars, so less rail travel
        • Farming
          • US farmers took out loans to expand production- bigger farms, more machinery -> European farming recovered and demand for US food declined -> Other countries started to increase their exports too    -> demand for cotton fell as new materials developed for making clothes e.g. nylon -> US farms OVERPRODUCED, meaning farm prices fell
          • Rural poverty due to a fall in wages
          • Prohibition
            • Reduced demand for grape and barley
            • When making, transporting and selling alcohol became illegal. It started in January 1920 and ended in December 1933
              • Made law by the 18th amendment to the constitution
              • Law introduced as a lot of influential church groups said alcohol made people behave badly. Rural America thought new immigrants in cities were dangerous drunks. Some American states had been 'dry' for years already.
                • Anti Saloon League: coalition of church
              • Illegal goods could still be brought in from Mexico or Canda
            • Gangster Crime
              • Made money through illegal activities such as making/smuggling/selling alcohol. This meant...
                • Gang wars to protect profits
                • Plenty of money to bribe police and courts
                  • Corruption increased
                • Reduced respect for the law
                  • Many ordinary Americans also began to disrespect the law as they wanted to drink- hence breaking the Prohibition law
                • Gangs occupied whole areas and forced businesses to pay 'protection money'
                • Al Capone made $105 million from organised crime in 1927 ($60 million of it came from speakeasies!)
                  • Speakeasies were places where people could go to illegally buy alcohol
                    • Flappers were found here
                  • Only got arrested for Tax Evasion- nothing else
                • Numbers in gangsters increased as selling alcohol was very profitable
                • Cars were used as quick getaways
            • Increased health risks of alcohol as alcohol was being produced illegally as 'moonshine'
              • This could be poisonous
            • People didn't want German brewers to send money back home and help develop Germany
              • E.g. Pabst and Leiber (German brewers)
        • 'Laissez Faire' meant that the government did not interfere and try to stop the problems
        • South v North: bigger industries were in the northern states so wages were often lower in the south
          • Racism and Intolerance
            • North & South
              • NORTH: many south Americans moved north for jobs as there was no segregation, although there was discrimination. Black people usually had low paid jobs or were unemployed and lived in poor areas- white and black people didn't really mix.
              • SOUTH: The 'Jim Crow' laws enforced segregation- separating schools and facilities. There were facilities/jobs/pay for black people. Although  black people could vote (by law) they were often stopped by force or tricks such as the literacy test. The KKK wanted a white-only America and beat up/murdered black people.
            • Sacco and Vanzetti were Italian immigrants. In April 1920, the police thought them guilty of murder and robbery- because they were carrying guns when arrested. As Vanzetti had previously committed armed robbery, some eyewitnesses said they did it. However, a larger number said they saw them elsewhere. The judge still found them guilty. There was a lot of protest about intolerance but they were executed in 1927.
              • Anarchists
            • Scopes Monkey Trial: state of Tennessee banned the teaching of evolution, only the teaching of the Bible. John Scopes deliberately taught evolution to test the law. There was massive media interest and Scopes was found guilty and fined $100.
            • Because they weren't WASP's (White Anglo Saxon Protestant's)
        • Black v White: black Americans often had the lowest paid work
          • Racism and Intolerance
            • North & South
              • NORTH: many south Americans moved north for jobs as there was no segregation, although there was discrimination. Black people usually had low paid jobs or were unemployed and lived in poor areas- white and black people didn't really mix.
              • SOUTH: The 'Jim Crow' laws enforced segregation- separating schools and facilities. There were facilities/jobs/pay for black people. Although  black people could vote (by law) they were often stopped by force or tricks such as the literacy test. The KKK wanted a white-only America and beat up/murdered black people.
            • Sacco and Vanzetti were Italian immigrants. In April 1920, the police thought them guilty of murder and robbery- because they were carrying guns when arrested. As Vanzetti had previously committed armed robbery, some eyewitnesses said they did it. However, a larger number said they saw them elsewhere. The judge still found them guilty. There was a lot of protest about intolerance but they were executed in 1927.
              • Anarchists
            • Scopes Monkey Trial: state of Tennessee banned the teaching of evolution, only the teaching of the Bible. John Scopes deliberately taught evolution to test the law. There was massive media interest and Scopes was found guilty and fined $100.
            • Because they weren't WASP's (White Anglo Saxon Protestant's)
        • Wall Street Crash
          • Problems in the US economy
            • 1. Overconfidence that the boom would never stop 2. Almost anyone could get a loan so there was not enough credit control 3. Too many people used loans to buy shares 4. No real control of businesses 5. Unemployment rising 6. Tariffs abroad reducing US exports 7. Overproduction in farming and in business 8. Inequality meant some people were very rich whilst most were not 9. Mechanisation replaced workers so there was more unemployment 10. Big businesses kept wages low
          • LOOK AT TIMELINE FOR WALL STREET CRASH
          • Impacts of the crash
            • 5000 banks went bankrupt and people lost their money
            • Banks needed money so they called in loans (many massive foreign loans)
            • US businesses had to pay  back loans and couldn't get credit
            • European countries relied on these US loans, so the export markets collapsed
            • Businesses had to shut down and lay off workers- large job losses
            • People lost their savings and couldn't afford their mortgages or hire purchase repayments, so hey lost their homes and possessions.
            • The Great Depression
              • The Dust Bowl: reckless overproduction meant the land was farmed intensively and when a drought came in 1931 the soil dried out and the wind blew it away. This created a Dust Bowl in middle America, becoming a symbol of the depression. It meant farmers had to leave their farm and look for work elsewhere
                • Farmers and families travelled to California to look for work- but thousands were already unemployed in the city.
                  • Volunteer groups could only help the poorest, this meant people were humiliated as they were inspected and questions were asked
                  • People scavenged for food on garbage heaps and families split up to look for work.
              • Impact on the countryside and city
                • City
                • Countryside
                  • -Bank foreclosures meant families lost their farms -Overproduction meant prices for farm products fell -Dust Bowl meant farmland was ruined -Families left rural areas to look for work
          • Hoover believed people suffering the depression should be helped too but he wanted this help to come from voluntary groups, not from the government
            • When people lost their homes they would put up a shack somewhere. This shantytown was called a 'Hooverville'
            • War veterans campaigned for early payment of a bonus for fighting the war. In May 1932 15,000 bonus marchers marched to washington D.C. Troops drove them away in July 1932. This upset many people.
              • 'Bonus army'
            • Eventually Hoover took action... REFER TO HOOVER POLICIES AND EFFECTS TABLE
            • There was a lot of resentment against Hoover
              • Tax cuts and RFC help looked like they just helped rich people/businesses
              • Voluntary charities felt they were failing: they needed government help
              • The unemployed wanted work from the government
              • Hoover lost greatly to Roosevelt in the 1932 election
        • Around 60% of Americans lived below the poverty line during the 1920's (those earning $2000 and below)
      • Entertainment in the 1920's
        • 1930 Hays Code- aimed to stop movies showing anything that would 'lower morals'
        • REFER TO CAUSES AND FEATURES OF THE TWENTIES TABLE!!
        • E.g. theatre, movies, music, dance, radio and sports
          • Especially cinema- sold 100 million tickets a week
            • This created more jobs: movie directors, actors, set designers, camera men, sound crew etc
      • Women
        • They had taken up men's jobs and helped to win the war and when the men returned from war more women worked with higher wages especially because housework was less time consuming (due to new machinery such as washing machines).
        • Businesses targeted women for products and advertised a freer lifestyle.
        • Flappers
          • Women who didn't care what other thought of them; often wore revealing clothes and makeup who smoked and drank. They also had a bob cut
      • The New Deal: LOOK AT SEPARATE MIND MAP!!!
    • Isolationism of the USA
      • The USA did not want to get into any more European wars. It refused to join the League of Nations and wanted to look after itself
      • The USA set up 'walls' to protect its businesses from foreign competition
        • May 1921: Emergency Tariff Act
          • These tariff 'walls' meant imports from outside the USA cost more than home-produced goods
        • September 1922: Fordney and Mccumber Tarif Act
          • -Americans bought US goods instead --> Foreign countries put tariffs on US exports --> USA sold less abroad
          • Stopped imports
      • Immigration Restrictions
        • 1921= Emergency Quota Act
          • Worked out how many people from each country were already in the USA then only allowed 3% of that number in from that country as new immigants
          • 1924= Emergency Quota Act
            • Changed to 2%
        • Many in the USA were prejudiced against Italians and Eastern Europeans
    • Consumerism: New ways of selling goods.
      • Advertising made people buy things they didn't know they needed
      • Higher wages and more leisure time meant people could buy more things
      • Hire purchase made it possible to buy expensive products in instalments
        • 'Buy now, pay later'
    • Mass Production: developed by the Ford company
      • This divided up the production process so each worker took only one step in the process using standard parts. This is called an assembly line.
        • Although it was tedious for the worker they were paid highly so they were happy
        • Decreased the price of a car from $950 to $350
      • T-Model
        • Opened up other industries such as: petrol, road and mechanics
          • Created 4 million jobs
    • The Consumer Boom
      • more workers employed= more wages spent= more goods bought= more goods made= more workers employed and so on...
    • The Stock Market Boom
      • People could buy shares in successful businesses-> if businesses got more successful shares would be worth more -> so people brought shares hoping to sell them again to make money -> the USA was growing so fast that most business were worth more each year -> people borrowed money to spend on shares so they were so profitable.
        • People no longer ashamed to be in debt
        • Businesses doing so well
        • Americans wanted to keep economic success for themselves- isolationism
        • Millions invested their money in shares
        • This was called the Bull Market
    • Wages rose by 15%

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar History resources:

See all History resources »See all The USA - twentieth century change resources »