Age of Reform.

Essay by twinkiepinkHigh School, 11th gradeA-, April 2003

download word file, 3 pages 3.0

NOTE: could use a stronger thesis

In the 19th century America began to develop and expand complexly. At the same time more and more people were becoming aware of the state of their environment and the need to reform these entities. They saw the hypocritical and harsh conditions that lay within their country. They saw it in education, mental health, women's rights and so much more. These people fought to reform these institutions and fulfill the promise that lay within the Declaration of Independence. Reform movements were to change the horrible conditions and assert the rights of the people given by the founding fathers.

Conditions within public schools were horrible. Teachers, work, short school year, and insufficient school funding hindered students. Most teachers were unskilled and not dedicated to their job. They would often leave for another high paying job. Free education was needed for everyone. It would give people more knowledge and allow them to gain skills that would allow them the same chances at the same opportunities as other educated people.

A free education also allows the individual to exercise their voting power with more understanding. People who noticed the need for reform within this system were those like Horace Mann, who went around gathering recognition for schools. Their success in attracting funds caused many improvements, such as incentives for teachers to stay because of higher pay and children gaining more knowledge.

The Declaration of Independence states, "that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." However this is a lie because women were not equal nor given the same rights or treatment as men back, and beyond, the 19th century. Back then, women were seen as second class...