The Progressive Era was a title placed on the period from 1890-1920. It created many responses to the increase of economic and social problems that industrialization introduced to American cities. What began as a social movement quickly turned into a political one. Many different groups of people were now pushing towards major changes in American life. There were many reforms that helped alleviate the problems that were occurring during this time of political, economic, and social disarray. At a time when government had been on the backburner for many years before, disregarding the multitude of economic problems, it would now step in hoping for improvement on this nation they had worked so hard to build.
Industrialization played a major role in shaping the Progressive Era. A migration of immigrants from foreign countries to America, between 1900-1910 there was nearly nine million immigrants entering America, looking for jobs and a better life wound up working in factories amongst horrible working conditions, long hours, and low pay.
These dirty little secrets about immigrant life were exposed by a muckraker, Upton Sinclair, in his novel " The Jungle", published in 1906. The book did have a powerful impact on the public, they were more concerned with the consumer questions the book raised rather then the exploitation of the lower-class, many of them children.
Child labor was a major concern for progressive reformers. In 1904 the National Child Labor Committee was formed to help regulate what was going on in the factories and fields that employed theses children. The jobs they were given were often the dangerous and unhealthy ones. Many of them worked in glass shops, button companies, even mines. Jobs safety was at the top o the reformers list, since many of these children were now being exposed to toxic fumes,