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The Effects of Industrialization on U.S. Economy and Society Essay

The rise of industrialization during the 1900s brought many changes to the American economy and society. Urbanization (mainly due to immigration), new technologies, the rise of big business through industrial trusts, and the rise of laissez-faire capitalism are among the most significant of these changes. The rise of industrialization brought many significant changes to the American Economy and society during the 1900s. Some of these changes included urbanization, the rise of big businesses, and the rise of laissez faire capitalism. Industrialization had both a positive and negative effect on the U.S. economy and society.

It allowed the United States to surpass many of its leading competitors including Germany and Great Britain but it also led to sharper Economic and class divisions among the rich, middle class, and the poor. Immigrants came to the United States during the industrial era for the main purposes of finding jobs. This led to a shift from rural areas to the urbanization of cities. Slums were also built as housing for immigrant families. Cities provided a supply of labor for factories and a principle market for factory made goods. Millions of young Americans from rural areas decided to seek new economic opportunities in the cities therefore they left their farms for industrial and commercial jobs.

Cities underwent changes in size and internal structure. Skyscrapers were built with a steel skeleton to allow buildings to be constructed taller and taller. The rise of big businesses like the Standard Oil Trust was a benefit of industrialization. Rockefeller applied the Latest Technology and efficient practices to his company. He extorted rebates from railroad companies and temporarily cut prices for Standard Oil kerosene to force rival companies to sell out. Standard Oil made a fortune because Rockefeller was able to control the supply and prices of oil products by using horizontal integration. This was where all the former competitors were brought under a single corporate umbrella.

Rockefeller created the first of many trusts and was able to keep prices low for consumers by eliminating waste in the production of kerosene. Laissez faire capitalism is the idea of government regulation of business . This was when the law of supply and demand was from the owner to the consumer and not by the government. The theory of laissez faire was invoked in legislative halls and lobbies to ward off any threat of government regulation. American industrialists appealed to the laissez faire theory in order to justify their methods of doing business even though they accepted the protection of high tariffs and federal subsidies. Monopolistic trusts that arose in the 1880s undercut the competition needed for natural regulation.

The laissez faire theory was run by the concept that if government kept their hands off than businesses would be motivated by their own self interest to offer improved goods and services at lower prices. Industrialization was the primary reason that the U.S. economy and society flourished during the1900s. The invention of new technologies and the growth of industries were the primary things that contributed to the rise of industrial America. Although industrialization had both positive and negative effects, its impact was beneficial to American society. In the late 19th century, industrial warfare occurred where workers went on strike and various Unions, were formed to protect workers rights. This allowed for the types of labor unions that we have today. Industrialization impacted the American society and economy greatly. Without it, there would not be as advanced technologies and architectures that there is present today.

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