In the late 1800’s, J.P Morgan, John Rockefeller, and Andrew Carnegie had a negative impact on society because they were Robber Barons. They treated their workers very poorly in a way that should not have happened. J.P Morgan forced his workers to labor under harsh conditions for long hours and low pay. This is coming from a guy who has made millions of dollars and who has started a 60 million dollar business. Knowing how much money he has and how very little he pays his workers shows how ruthless he is as a business owner.
In order to make a profit off of a product a company must make more than they are spending. So when it comes to spending on wages companies cannot be paying them more than their income. If companies were forced to raise the minimum wage many of them would find themselves laying off workers, especially those of the lower skilled employees. As much as a 3% reduction of low skilled workers can be projected with an increase of 10% in the minimum wage (Negative Effects). An American Apparel store in Los Angeles had to lay off 500 workers because of the recent city increase to $15 an hour (Sherk).
During the Gilded age billionaires like Carnegie, Vanderbilt, and Rockefeller were earning massive profits off of the backs of cheap, underpaid labor. Working conditions in the late nineteenth century were terrible and the pay was even worse.Workers would work for 12 hour days in harsh dangerous conditions with no job security and no safety standards These employees would earn a bare minimum wage of one dollar a day for six days a week. Outraged workers wanted better conditions and better pay, so they formed unions like the Knights of Labor (KoL) and the American Federation of Labor (AFL). These unions fought for eight hour work days, better conditions, and better pay along with other topics. The Knights of Labor included black and female members unlike the American Federation of Labor.
Although the Gilded Age may seem like a clean cut time period on the outside, it was actually very destroyed underneath. There was in fact a great load of manufacturing going on, but the work put into that production was unimaginable. Workers worked long, vigorous hours, with low pay, children worked, and little health safety. These terrible work conditions were endured as long as possible by desperate people who
America was industrializing in the late eighteenth century, which was a movement of industry and factories, and an influx of workers going to the factories to earn money for their everyday lives, which led to many people getting new jobs and fewer people having zero money at all. To the east of America were two other big countries who were trying to industrialize as well. Japan and Russia specifically were industrializing between 1850 and 1914, which affected the industry of both countries. This included factories being converted to automated machinery, however, as a result of the industrialization, Russia was treating its workers much worse than how Japan treated theirs. An example of this is how Russia paid its workers a lot less that what
There were cultural and economic motives for imperialism. First economic, Many countries were industrialized in 1900s, and they needed a lot of materials that they did not have. In order not to depend on others, which nobody wanted, many strong countries started conquering territories and had the necessary materials. Also, followed by the industrialization, population grew as quickly as never before. New jobs were needed and people who were unemployed, left to other countries to find jobs.As a result, Europeans left their home countries in record numbers in the 1880s.
Right after the Civil war, America was rebuilding itself. Arising along the rebuilding was unemployment. Thousands of people were jobless and had families to feed. Once big, industrialist-led companies starting employing, people scrambled to get a job at these companies. Although many people were being employed and paid, working conditions were very hazardous and payment was unfair.
Businesses could not afford to slow downproduction during the Panic, so they continued to keep their prices high, but the people didn’thave access to the scarce money. Not only were businesses charging high prices, but also thePhiladelphia and Reading Railroad went bankrupt, causing less modes of transportation for work-ers and farmers. In total, over 15,000 companies went bankrupt during the Panic and the unem-ployment was the highest in history.Labor Unions were also created during the Gilded Age, which added to the idea of theGilded Age being truly “gilded”. The American Federation of Labor was one of the first laborunions created in the United States. The AF of L wanted “unionism” and opposed socialism.
The Progressive Era lasted from the 1890’s to the early 1920’s. It was centralized around socialism and political reform. One of the major changes that took place during this era, was the labor legislation. Many workers were working long shifts, for several days straight, making their work life just about unbearable, and unworkable conditions. The job environment had become to where it was unsafe, unsanitary, and unregulated conditions for very low wages.
The industrial revolution was a time of immense progress. It marked an era of technological advancements and a changing society, yet also a period smeared with unfair and unsafe working conditions. The history is filled with stories of people suffering, being injured, and even dying, all in the process of creating goods for the changing consumer culture. Thousands looked past the suffering, condoled themselves with the goods they purchased at economical prices all at the expense of the working class, a class that had no other choice than to work in the dark, dangerous factories to feed their family. While the consumer culture in this time could look past the anguish of those in the working class, progressives could not.