The Roaring 20s


  • USH.4.1 Understand the significance of the pro-business policies of President’s Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover and the effect these policies had on the economy of the 1920s. (Economics, Government)
  • USH.4.2 Identify new cultural movements of the 1920s and analyze how these movements reflected and changed American society. (Individuals, Society, and Culture)
  • USH.4.3 Identify areas of social tension such as the Red Scare, Prohibition, Religious Fundamentalism, the KKK, New Morality, and the New Woman and explain their consequences in the post-WWI era. (Individuals, Society, and Culture)
  • USH.4.4 Describe technological developments during the 1920s and explain their impact on rural and urban America. (Economics; Geography; Individuals, Society, and Culture)
  • USH.4.5 Analyze the causes of the Great Depression and explain how they affected American society. (Economics; Individuals, Society, and Culture)

Important Questions:

  1. What led to the booming economy of the 1920s?
  2. How the 1920s provided the roots for modern popular culture?
  3. What was prohibition, and how did it affect the nation?
  4. What advancements did women, African Americans, and other minorities make in the 1920s?
  5. What was the Consumer Revolution and why was it important?
  6. What contributions did Henry Ford make to change America?


The 1920's remains one of the most fascinating decades for America. Coming off of a victory in World War I, the United States' economy took a brief hit with the end of the Great War, only to explode into one of the biggest economic booms in American History.

The car would change the look and feel of America forever. As Henry Ford's Model T dropped in price, the average American took to the newly paved roads. Ford's innovations, such as the 5 day work week and 8 hour work days would create a new life for workers, while his assembly lines made cars more affordable than ever. Diners, service stations, and motels now dotted the landscape, while the car caused an explosion in the demand for steel, glass, rubber, asphalt, oil, and other industries. Suburbs grew as workers gained the ability to drive to work, and America's infatuation with the car would only grow by leaps and bounds over the next century.

Prohibition had just taken effect, and the debate over alcohol consumed the nation, and helped give rise to the culture of the 1920's we all know. The 1920s gave us the speakeasy, bootleggers, gangsters, and organized crime. It also gave us Earnest Hemingway and A Farewell to Arms, F. Scott Fitzgerald and The Great Gatsby, as well as innovations such as the radio and film. The jazz styling of Louis Armstrong caught fire, while the tale of Charles Lindbergh's solo flight of the Spirit of St. Louis from New York to Paris captured the nation's imagination. Jack Dempsey became a boxing legend, while a man they called "Babe" Ruth kept America enthralled with its national past time, baseball.

Women's rights took a major step as they voted in their first Presidential election, helping elect Warren G. Harding in the 1920 Presidential election. Women had proven during the Great War that they had the ability to do jobs that had previously been only for men, and they continued to work for rights in the 1920's.

Harding would oversee a corrupt administration, which would be rocked by the Teapot Dome scandal. Harding, himself, would not see the outcome of his Presidency, as he died of a heart attack in 1923, leading to his Vice President Calvin Coolidge taking office. Coolidge would go on to oversee a huge economic boom, with a consumer culture taking over America.

Pre-Unit Assignment:

Assignment One: Video

The first assignment will be to watch a video on The video below is embedded, but you must go to and sign in for the quiz. Be sure to click the link to your class period.

Day 1: The 1920's Economy

Assignment 2: Below is the reading assignment on Actively Learn. Please click on the appropriate class period, and be sure you are signed in to Actively Learn.

Day 2: Government in the 1920s

Day 3: Social and Cultural Tensions

Assignment 3: Below is the reading assignment on Actively Learn. Please click on the appropriate class period, and be sure you are signed in to Actively Learn.

Day 4: Women, Pop Culture and the Harlem Renaissance

But first, a review quiz: Click below for link to Review Quiz on Google Drive

Assignment 4: Below is the reading assignment on Actively Learn. Please click on the appropriate class period, and be sure you are signed in to Actively Learn.

Day 5: Exam Review - In Class

Review notes will be put here after class

Day 6: Exam - In Class

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