The Industrialization Of The Northern United States

1542 words - 6 pages

A Connecticut minister, Horace Bushnell, once said that the industrialization of the United States north produced a “complete revolution” in Americans’ “life and manners.” The complete revolution that Bushnell speaks of was an era of industrialization triggered by a population growth, an increase in literacy rates, and the development of labor-saving technologies in the northern region of the United States. This dramatic economic and social transformation instigated a series of outcomes, both positive and negative, for the United States during the early to mid nineteenth century. Many aspects of life for United States citizens were changing, such as the growing population in the north. In addition, women and people of color were finding new reasons to fight for equality. Accordingly, the growth of cities and urban life, the role of women in the industrial workplace and their subsequent call for equality, as well as the strengthened societal boundary between whites and people of color are three main effects that were brought about because of the industrialization in the United States north between 1800 and 1855.
Urban areas in the north witnessed extraordinary changes in population size because of industrialization. Due to the handiness of new railroads and steamboats, people were able to conveniently visit or permanently move to northern cities. In addition, many farmers were attracted to the north’s capitalist economy of business and banking. Commercial farmers, as they came to be known, focused more on cultivating crops and livestock for sale, while purchasing goods from stores instead of producing them, traditionally, at home. Merchants, bankers, and artisans flocked to urban areas in order to take advantage of the economic opportunities created by the expanding market among commercial farmers. Simultaneously, the demand for manufactured goods led to the massive increase in large factories and workshops. Factories enabled a large number of people to be supervised together and replaced hand tools with power-driven machinery. The availability of factory jobs in the north caused a great influx of workers to the region during this era. One group of people, immigrants, particularly met the demand for labor in the north. Between 1840 and 1860, over 4 million people entered the United States. About 90 percent of these immigrants headed for the northern states where job opportunities were abundant. The new advancements in railroads and steamboats, the increase in commercial farming, and the development of large factories triggered the relocation of multitudes to northern cities. Each one building upon another, the events that took place in the north during the 1800s instigated an extreme growth of cities and urban societies, proving population growth to be a key effect of the industrialization in the United States north.
With the center of production moving from households to mass-production, women in America had to alter their way of life. A...

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