Экономическое развитие США в начале ХХ века и Великая ДепрессияДисциплина: История
Тип работы: Доклад
Тема: Экономическое развитие США в начале ХХ века и Великая Депрессия
Secondary School № 8
The Ministry of Defence
Of the Russian Federation
The Economic Development of the USA in the First Half of the XX Century and the Great Depression.
Research paper by
Scientific adviser (teacher)
Chapter I: The rise of industry.
The rapid expansion of the railroads
The growth of big business and government’s control over it
People’s struggle for a better life
Chapter II: The wave of the immigration and its influence on the social and economic life in the country.
The growth of the cities
The great inventions and a new way of life in cities
Trade unions and the era of fight for rights
Chapter III: World war I and its consequences for the USA.
Racial unrest (ku-klux Klan, anti – immigration laws)
The new era (jazz age)
Chapter IV. The Great Depression and The New Deal.:
The beginning of the Great Depression and its reasons
F. D. Roosevelt and his New Deal
Government’s efforts to reduce the immigration
The opposition to the New Deal
The role of the New Deal in coping the depression
The modern USA represents an interesting object of researches for economists of the whole world. The country that has managed for a rather short period of time to become the
world’s economic leader should cause interest. Besides, nowadays America shows significant success in carrying out social programs: in supporting the poorest layers of the population,
in solving the problems of unemployment, racial discrimination, criminality, etc. Certainly, a number of problems still remains, but the general dynamics of development are
The 1920s were called the New Era in American life. This decade was the time of unprecedented social, economic and political change. It was the time when America was becoming a
modern nation. It was a period of almost uninterrupted prosperity and economic expansion. In 1928 Herbert Hoover, President of the country, proclaimed,” We in America are nearer to
the final triumph over poverty that ever before in the history of any land. The poorhouse is vanishing from among us”. Only fifteen months later, the nation plunged into the severest
and most prolonged economic depression in its history-a depression that continued in one form or another for a full decade. The Depression was a traumatic experience for individual
Americans, who faced unemployment, the loss of land and other property, and in some cases homelessness and starvation. But the country had been able to survive and recover.
There are a lot of problems in the national economy of Russia and Ukraine nowadays: the industrial production is decreasing, the prices are constantly rising, and the rate of
inflation is very high. People are losing their jobs because many factories and plants are being closed.
This process reminds the period of the Great Depression in the USA.
I got interested in this theme for my research because I would like to understand the processes taking place in my country better.
So, the main aim of this research paper is to understand how America being influenced so much by the Depression in the first half of the century was able to become a super power
again in the second half of the XX century. Also I want to understand why this depression began in the beginning of the XX century despite positive social and economic development in
the country at that period of time.
In my research I would like to find out:
how the life of
America changed after the Civil War
how America, being such a young country has become a super nation;
the processes in American life that preceded the Great Depression and how
if the Great Depression was an inevitable, or predictable
how the United States managed to cope with the Depression and its consequences.
The Rise of Big Business.
Life in America changed very much after the Civil war. Americans lost no time in industrializing their nation and in building trade relations with other countries.
As a result of new inventions, economic activity increased. By the time Americans celebrated their first hundred years of independence in 1876, the US was one of the world’s
leading industrialized powers. The American economy was booming and prosperity was spreading, though half of industrial workers lived in poverty.
The driving force behind the industrial growth of the United States was the booming railroad industry. As an example I can give the following statistics: in 1865 the nation had
about 48.000 km of track and by the 1900 320.000 km of tracks covered the nation like a giant spider web. It was the biggest railroad in the world.
Some railroaders were laying tracks in the West; others were making lines in the East and the Midwest. The south repaired lines which were wrecked during the Civil War and added
seven times more miles of tracks. As railroad crisscrossed the United States, they created a national market for the country’s raw materials and manufactured goods. Railroads carried
coal from mines, oil from wells, etc.
Also railroads made life better for different merchants who could now deliver goods across the country, shopping by the mail again. In 1872 Aaron Montgomery Ward, a young
salesman had an idea for giving farmers a greater selection of goods than they could find in local stores. That year he sent out one – page list of items for sale. By 1874 his single
sheet had grown to a 72 – page catalog.
Ward soon had a competitor which rushed after the pioneer into this new field of work - Sears, Roebuck and Company. Their catalog including more 1000 pages of items was called
“the Great Wish Book”.
Madame C. J. Walker created a national market for her hair – care products both by sending them through the mail and by hiring young women to sell these products door to door.
Starting her company in the early 1900s with $1.50, she was the first African American women in the nation to become the millionaire.
Of course, such a big system as the railroads of the United States needed very strict system of regulation. In the beginning of this system it was very difficult to
regulate it. People had to risk helping trains to go on rails without failures or disasters on railroads. John Westinghouse’s air brakes and George M. Pullman’s sleeping cars made
rail travels safer and more comfortable.
As the USA industrialized and broadened its trade links, a group of men emerged who would dominate the economic future of the country. These were the industrial giants. They had
a sense of vision to see opportunities for production and marketing where others had not. And they had the willingness to take risks. The industrial giants were able to use new
inventions and corporate systems to make production costs lower and provide products and services to growing numbers of consumers.
When America entered the 20
th century, industrial power bec...