Transportation Revolution In America

Good Essays
The Transportation Revolution in the U.S. was a time of economic and social growth because it encouraged Americans to look beyond their local communities. The Revolution increased the economic benefits one could reap from producing goods by providing a more efficient way to move goods from one area to another by using canals or railroads. The Revolution in the mid 19th century also connected the East to the West, allowing for faster movement of goods from point A to point B. Before the 1820’s, many farmers produced what they needed to in order to be self-sustaining, meaning trade was minimal and there was little interaction between different areas of the U.S. The Transportation Revolution changed this, providing a commercial economy people…show more content…
Irish immigrants, who were needed to build new transportation methods, soon began to labor for cheap prices and were favored over American laborers. This led to unmonitored working conditions, as those financing these projects had no one interested in how they were treating their workers. The Irish laborers were an important precedent in immigrant labor for the future. The Revolution brought a widening gap between the rich and the poor, since the rich could afford to build transportation systems that earned them more money, and the poor had available jobs taken by immigrants resulting in their immobility. In Boston, the top 4% of the population owned over 65% of the wealth, and the top 1% of the population owned over 50% in Philadelphia showing an increase in the difference of social classes. Lastly, the Transportation Revolution empowered a newly innovative America resulting in the number of patents going from 41 to 4,357 in only 60 years. This willingness to try anything led Americans to invent highly useful machines to create a sort of mechanical revolution that aided in the furthering of…show more content…
These changes have carried on throughout time and are still affecting these factors today. Without the Revolution, America would have remained divided, had little contact between east and west, and trade and shipping would have remained inconvenient. By 1870 Britain had also experienced a transportation revolution. Acting just as America’s, the revolution in Britain increased travel speeds, reduced freight charges, and incorporated roads and canals. The freight charges for the Atlantic were also majorly reduced, and with the invention of the steamboat there was improvement to speed. Just as in America, the revolution was driven by competition and was generally laissez faire making private ownership
Get Access