United States Governmental Issues During The Late 19th Century

1331 words - 5 pages

United States Governmental Issues During the Late 19th Century

Thesis: Although the American Government failed to take effective actions to solve the major concerns of the late 19th century, many attempts were taken to solve such controversal conflicts. The young divided nation that had just reconstructed itself from the debts of a civil war now stood as a whole to deal with even more domestic issues. Problems concerning civil service, regulation of railraods, Native Americans, expansion and overgrowing of big businesses, and immigration were the issues that grouped american individuals seperately according to their views on each issue.

Although the American Government failed to take effective actions to solve the major
concerns of the late 19th century, many attempts were taken to solve such controversal conflicts. The young divided nation that had just reconstructed itself from the debts of a civil war now stood as a whole to deal with even more domestic issues. Problems concerning civil service, regulation of railraods, Native Americans, expansion and overgrowing of big businesses, and immigration were the issues that grouped american individuals seperately according to their views on each issue.
In 1881, shortly after President Garfield's inauguration, a derange office seekser shot a fatal bullet in the President's back. This event once again shocked the americans, who were once horrified by the assasination of former President Lincoln in1865. Following this event, bitter americans coerced the federal government to reform its policy of hiring governmental officials. In respond to the public's outrage over the cause of this assasination, Congress was pushed to remove certain government jobs from the control of party patronage. They passed the new act known as the Pendleton Act of 1881, which set up the Civil Service Commission declaring that federal employees were to be hired on basis of merit. This new law was applied to 10% of federal employees at that time; presently it effected more than 90% of governmental employees. When Harrison was elected President a few years after the Pendelton Act, he followed Congress's earlier tradition of reforming the civil service system to earn his fellow citizens' support. On dealing with the issues of veterans, he passed the Pension Act of 1890, which provided that all widows of veterans, and veterans incapable of manual labor may receive a pension. This was a reformation of former President Cleveland's policy that only veterans directly wounded in battle may receive a pension. Although these new Acts granted more democracy towards part of the working class, it failed to submit to the majority of the working class. As the depression worsened and the number of jobless people grew, the nation feared class war between capital and labor. They were especially alarmed by Coxey's Army, a march to Washington by thousands of the unemployed led by Populist Joacod A. Coxey. Coxey demanded that the...

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