Gilded Age in Industrial America


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Between 1877 and 1900, industrial America was on a rise as development of trade increased and politics was centralized, but many aspects of religion and gender roles remained unchanged. Reconstruction came to an end and in the years that followed, the changes took place in Arkansas constructed parallel trends within other places in the nation. Mass marking and significant growth in the Economic culture is what gave the era its basic qualities. In particularly the rise of the industry allowed great prosperity to surface in regard to certain spending habits crowned this time period the, “Gilded age”. These developments promoted a movement, causing a significant amount of people from the city all the way to country side to engage in creating a cultural as well as social change. However, all this transformation faced a cost.

Changes disrupted the traditional way of society and routine economics. Many people, specifically men, women, and children working in the factory’s harsh conditions and inland farmers, neglected to be a part of the New World’s bounty. An agricultural state continuing to have an economic static meant that many residing mired poverty, yet those choosing to live within the older patterns of life, mountain isolation, seemed to prevail. Moreover, Arkansas conditions inevitably demonstrated national change while the state’s conditions colored the way it affected those living in it. Transportation and Markets rapidly changed without hesitation. For example, the railroads rapidly expanded following the civil war. This was the most powerful force for change in the entire nation and Arkansas.

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During the Gilded Age, the states pro-railroad movement and its Republican Government was the major role in the railroad construction. When the civil war ended, there was only a couple miles worth of railroad track in service moving between Little Rock and Devalls bluff (Pulaski country – Prairie country).

However in the year or 1875 when reconstruction ended, railroads were connected all over. They were able to connect cities like the capital city to Memphis and Little Rock to St.Louis and Texarkana to Van Burn on the Fort Smith and Little Rock. And it didn’t stop there, the years that continued to follow showed tremendous desire for growth and innovation. Expansion lead to areas like the St. Louis and southwestern, St. Louis-San Fransisco, and Kansas City to be the major crossings that linked most populated areas and agricultural districts. Being a part of the rail network was a huge contribution that opened doors for the transport of goods and other products. This also invited a vast amount of isolated areas in the state into the light of the bounted system. Shortly twenty years later, in 1895, the railroad companies had expanded to 2,373 miles of track completed.

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