The Urban America
By: Savannah, Michael, Olivia, Jayne
-Urbanization is the growth of city or towns in rural areas.
Urbanization Political Cartoon
This political cartoon shows a poor cow looking for grass because he is hungry. Why is he hungry? Urbanization is the development of cities/towns, which means deforestation. With all of this occurring things like grass pastures tend to disappear. Because of this animals find it hard to survive. That's why there is a cow running across a highway looking for food.
- Americans Migrate to the Cities
- After the Civil War, the urban population of the United States increased by around 20 million from 1870 to 1900.
- People were drawn to cities by modern amenities as well as entertainment such as museums, libraries, and theaters.
- Skyscrapers were built to accommodate large populations.
- Separation by Class
- High Society
- Wealthy upper class people in cities could pay to have houses built in a wide variety of styles and to hire servants such as cooks, maids, and butlers.
- Middle Class Gentility
- Most middle class households had at least 1 live-in servant, giving women more time for social activities.
- The Working Class
- The urban working class mostly lived in small, crowded apartments and often rented to boarders for additional money.
- The Family Economy
- In working class families, every member of the family worked, including children.
- A growing number of women began working outside the home.
- Many people worked very long hours in bad conditions for very little pay.
- There was no compensation for being hurt or even killed on the job.
- Urban Problems
- Crime and Pollution
- Minor criminals, such as pickpockets, thrived in crowded cities.
- Major crime also increased; from 1880 to 1900, the murder rate grew from 25 per million people to over 100 per million people.
- Alcohol was a major factor in the increase in crime.
- Disease and pollution also posed major threats to urban people.
- Machine Politics
- Graft and Fraud
- A political machine is an informal political group created to gain and keep power.
- The party bosses running the political machines controlled the cities finances.
- They got rich through fraud or graft, getting money through dishonest or questionable means.
- Party bosses also accepted bribes and sold permits to operate public utilities.
- Tammany Hall
- Tammany Hall, the NYC Democratic political machine, was the most famous of these organizations.
- It was led by William “Boss” Tweed whose corruption led to a prison sentence in 1974.
- The machines controlled all city services, including police.