The Industrial and Progressive Era

Essay by jaudreyeHigh School, 11th gradeA+, March 2006

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The state and federal legislation and judicial decisions affected the efforts of the farmers and the workers to improve their position in society between 1880 and 1920 by setting up laws to protect the rights of the farmers and to protect the working conditions of the workers. Farmers would have to suffer from a battle with the railroad companies as they attacked the farms with systems of long short hauls and frequent rate changes. To protect the farmers, government established laws and court decisions that helped improve the lives of the farmers. The factory owners treated the workers poorly with long hours, low wages, and poor working conditions. Unions, laws, and court decisions were created to protect the rights of the American worker, who served as the backbone of American society. The farmers, creating the Populist Party, and the workers, creating many unions, fought their way through the suffocation of the greed and power of the railroad owners and the factory owners to improve their position in society during the Industrial Revolution.

As the Progressive Era became a time of equal rights and better conditions, farmers and workers had already established their place in society and became protected by the government since they were two very important elements in the American economy.

The motto of the ancient world until the Industrial Era was land equals wealth equals power. When the American Dream was introduced to the minds of the Americans, this motto quickly changed. The American Dream was based on material wealth, and the more material wealth one had, the more powerful they were. As this idea spread through America like an infection, it seems as if everyone was dying just to get the disease. As a result of this, the social status of a farmer dropped quickly. Since land...