Progressive Era Dbq

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Largely in reaction to the Industrial Revolution, the middle and upper class citizens of the United States saw a need of immediate reform with the hope of getting rid of monopolies and political corruption. Determined to make the nation more democratic while taking advantage of the Capital System based on competition between companies, the Progressive Era came into play, highlighted by rust-busting, political reform and social improvements. Although success was limited, the progressive movement had changed the whole nation’s landscape: with the effort of the tireless reformers and the federal government, the nation saw an economy with more competitions, a better working and living condition provided for the workers; with people more involved …show more content…

Working condition of the meatpacking industry in the early 1900s was described in the book The Jungle written by Upton Sinclair. The text revealed the real daily life of the works which was so terrible that Roosevelt sent agents to check whether it was a true depiction. The Neill-Reynolds report came later, confirming what the book said was all true, and the workers were “ in utter ignorance of cleanliness or danger to health” (Doc. B). Roosevelt responded to this by creating the Meat Inspection Act of 1906, which required federal inspection of meat. Not only the meat packing industry, the overall factory environment in the early 1900s was depressing. Child labor was common. As Jame Adams observed in 1909, “thousands of the city youth will enter factory life at an early age as early as the state law will permit” (Doc. C). Implying her dissatisfaction toward the state action, she had pointed out one national issue for people to consider―child labor. As Adams noticed, in order to gain enough income to support their families, children at a young age were often forced to work full day as adults under terrible working conditions, operating unguarded machines. Although former acts banning or restricting child labor had been passed, they were usually not enforced or simply ignored until 7 years later, when Keating-Owen Child Labor Bill was passed. The act banned any products from companies that employed children under the age of 14. Although this first child labor bill was short-living, it did alert the people and drew attention to the national issue of child labor. The demand of women’s suffrage caused yet another major movement during the era. President Wilson, with his disbelief in social justice within his administration, had provoked many attacks. As the World War I dragged on, Wilson was once compared to the

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