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Georgia and the American Experience Chapter 10: The Progressive Era © 2005 Clairmont Press
Georgia and the American Experience Section 1: The Progressive Movement Section 2: Southern Politics in Action Section 3: The Continuing Fight for Civil Rights Section 4: Business in Georgia Section 5: World War I © 2005 Clairmont Press
Section 1: The Progressive Movement ESSENTIAL QUESTION: What changes were goals of the progressive movement?
The Progressive Movement • Progressive believed that government (local, state, and national) was best equipped to correct ills of society. • The Progressive Movement worked to improve society in three ways. 1. Help Citizens 2. Regulate Business 3. Increase Voter Participation in Government • Progressives justified the disfranchisement of African Americans on the grounds that the black vote could be bought
The Progressive Movement Goal: Progress! Society • fight poverty • improve working conditions • votes for women • prison reform • outlaw alcohol Business Government • break up large corporations • regulate businesses • decrease corporate power in government • greater voice of “the people” • more voters • did not seek to increase participation of blacks in elections
Prison Reform 1908: end of convict lease system Work camps and chain gangs replaced the lease system Black-and-white uniforms Chained together Poor food & housing No preparation for life after prison Progressive legislators created the Juvenile Court System
Labor Reforms Meatpacking Jungle Low wages in factories (10¢ per hour) 12 hour work days Many workers were children Factory Conditions Unsafe Job related accidents and deaths were common in factories and mines People who tried to form labor unions were punished or fired
Labor Unions Low wages in factories (10¢ per hour) Labor Unions organized workers Strikes could halt work in the factory AFL – American Federation of Labor Georgians didn’t support unions – factories were often in small communities where people knew each other Mill towns: factory owner owned the workers’ houses – workers feared losing their homes
Child Labor Laws (video) Progressives increased regulation to protect child laborers in the following ways: Minimum wage Compulsory school attendance laws Laws protecting children against work in dangerous places and using dangerous equipment (for example: mines) In Georgia, most child workers in cotton fields or textile factories In the North, child workers were in “sweatshops”
Section 2: Southern Politics in Action ESSENTIAL QUESTION What were the goals of the populists in Georgia?
The People’s Party Silent Clip-Populist Party Populism: political idea that supported the rights of the “common” people in their struggle with the wealthy people Supported: eight hour work day, income tax, restrictions on immigration, and government ownership of railroads, telephone and telegraph services. Poor farmers and low wage workers were followers of the Populists Grange and Farmer’s Alliance worked to protect farmers’ rights – joined with unions to create People’s Party Wanted “Australian ballot” – printed by the government, not local political parties, then collected and locked in ballot boxes
Tom Watson Famous Georgia populist, worked for Rural Free Delivery bill to deliver mail to rural areas for free
Georgia’s Progressive Era Governors Hoke Smith: worked to concentrate political power in the rural counties instead of larger counties and cities white supremacist led passage of law requiring land ownership before a person could vote – excluded many blacks better funding of public schools child labor laws passed Smith-Lever Act (1914): created Agricultural Extension Service to teach improved farming methods Smith-Hughes Act: helped establish vocational schools for youth
The County Unit System 1917: Neil Primary Act created “county unit system” Plan designed to give small counties more power in state government Smaller counties had more county unit “votes” even though they had fewer voters The 8 most populated got 6 CU votes each = 48 total Next 30 counties got 4 CU votes each = 120 total The 121 counties left got 2 CU votes each = 242 total The 30 largest counties had 2/3 of the states voters, but the smaller counties could decide a state election.
The County Unit System People could be elected to office without getting a majority of votes Declared unconstitutional in 1962 Click to return to Table of Contents.
Questions What reform supported by the Populist party was eventually implemented and is still in use today? The Australian ballot What were the reasons people opposed the county unit system? Urban citizens—because political power was in the hands of rural counties even though population growth was in cities and urban areas. People elected without majority vote. What were reasons people supported the county unit system? Supporters claimed it was fair because it allowed the smaller and less populated counties to have same power and influence as larger ones.
Section 3: The Continuing Fight for Civil Rights ESSENTIAL QUESTION In what ways did Georgians fight for civil rights during the progressive era?
Separate But Equal Civil Rights: rights a person has simply because he/she is a citizen “Jim Crow” laws passed to separate blacks and whites Plessy v. Ferguson: Supreme Court decision which approved Jim Crow laws – decision in place until 1954 Cummings V. Richmond County Board of Education: Supreme Court decision supporting segregated schools in Georgia
Booker T. Washington Outstanding civil rights leader of the era President of Tuskegee Institute in Alabama Supported good relations between blacks and whites Worked to improve the lives of African Americans through economic independence Believed social and political equality would come with improved economic conditions and education Famous “Atlanta Compromise” speech (1895)
Define the following quotes: a. “It is important and right that all privileges of the law be ours” b. “it is vastly more important that we be prepared for the exercise of those privileges” c. “The opportunity to earn a dollar in a factory just now is worth infinitely more than the opportunity to spend a dollar in an opera house. ”
W. E. B. Du. Bois Professor at Atlanta University Believed in “action” if African Americans and whites were to understand accept each other Thought Booker T. Washington was too accepting of social in equality.
John & Lugenia Burns Hope Civil rights leader from Augusta, GA President of Atlanta University Like Du. Bois, believed that African Americans should actively work for equality Part of group that organized NAACP Hope’s wife, Lugenia, worked to improve sanitation, roads, healthcare and education for African Americans
A Loss of Voting Rights (Disenfranchisement) Laws created to keep African Americans in Georgia from voting Grandfather clause: only those men whose fathers or grandfathers were eligible to vote in 1867 could vote Poll tax: a tax paid to vote Voters had to own property Voters had to pass a literacy test (which was determined by the poll worker and could be different for different people) Gerrymandering: election districts drawn up to divide the African American voters
Race Riots in Atlanta 1906: various leaders and newspapers created a climate of anger and fear Two-day riot began with over 5, 000 people Martial law: military forces used to control civilians 21 people killed; hundreds wounded Lots of property damage
African Americans Organize NAACP (1909): worked for the rights of African Americans W. E. B. Du. Bois left Atlanta to work for the NAACP in New York National Urban League formed in 1910 Worked to solve social problems of African Americans in cities Assisted people moving from rural South to urban North
The Trial of Leo Frank 1913: man accused of killing a 14 -year-old employee, Mary Phagan in Atlanta Mr. Frank was a Jewish man from New York Little evidence against Mr. Frank, but he was convicted and sentenced to death Governor Slaton changed death sentence to life imprisonment Armed men, also known as a mob, took Frank from the prison, and he was lynched White supremacist Ku Klux Klan reborn as a Click to return to Table of Contents. result
Section 4: Business in Georgia ESSENTIAL QUESTION How did Georgia businesses grow during the progressive era?
Business in Georgia 1895: Cotton States and International Exposition 800, 000 visitors in three months designed to show economic recovery in the South encouraged investments in southern businesses
Atlanta Mutual Insurance Company Alonzo Herndon started barber business 1905: Purchased small insurance company and managed it well Now one of the largest African American businesses in the US Worth over $200 million and operates in 17 states Click to return to Table of Contents.
Section 5: World War I ESSENTIAL QUESTION How did Georgians contribute to World War I?
Causes of WWI
World War I 1914 -1918 Allied Powers Central Powers Leading Countries France Germany Great Britain Austria-Hungary Russia (United States joined in 1917) President Woodrow Wilson declared the US would be a neutral country.
The United States Enters the War President Wilson worked to keep the US out of the war = neutral 1915: German submarine sank passenger ship Lusitania; killing 128 Americans Lusitania 1917: sub attacks resumed sinking American ships Zimmerman telegram: Germany tried to get Mexico to attack the US Wilson finally joined the Allied powers
Georgia and World War I ± 100, 000 Georgians volunteered to join the US armed forces Training in Georgia at Camp Benning Fort Mc. Pherson Camp Gordon Camp Hancock 3, 000 young Georgians killed in the war Ended November 11, 1918
Contributions: Textile Mills: made fabric for uniforms Railroads: carried arms, ammunition, and soldiers to ports where ships waited to sail for Europe Farms: grew more food crops and raised livestock Victory Gardens: small gardens raised by town residents to save food Red Cross: women volunteered to help Click to return to Table of Contents.