The second half of the nineteenth century was the height of the American Industrial Revolution. The United States was looking to become one of the largest industrial powers in the world. This would eventually transform the lives of millions of working Americans, as many of the American industrial workers' lives were impacted by technological advancements and immigration in the time-period between 1865 and 1900.
The atmosphere and working conditions that these industrial workers worked in were constantly changing and were profoundly affected by technological advances. Technological advancements, like the train, linked states together far and wide. Managers could now ship across the nation with ease; this opportunity called for a more efficient production rate, as an assembly line would be put into place in many factories. As the growing demand for products increased, so did the number of workers. The only thing that was not increasing however was wages.
It wasn't uncommon for children to work in factories, though it was men who mainly compromised the field of blue-collar labor. With the invention of typewriters and telephone switchboards, millions of stenographers and "hello girls" discovered economic opportunity. The machines that were introduced to factories made work for the American industrial worker much easier, albeit tedious and tiring. Their lives practically revolved around the blow of their boss's whistle. Despite these technological advances, work days were long and tiresome, and the laborers felt they weren't being paid fairly. Thus labor unions were formed and many workers would go on strike, forcing factories to either comply to the blue-collars, or hire children and immigrants. For better or worse, technological changes impacted the life of the American industrial worker.
It was during the 1880's that a new type of immigrants flocked to America. The so-called New Immigrants came from Southern and Eastern...