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What was the importance of Gilded Age? Can you briefly explain about Gilded Age?

=> asked by Jae Lee

Categories: social study  


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Gilded Age (1878 - 1889) The growth of industry and a wave of immigrants marked this period in American history. The production of iron and steel rose dramatically and western resources like lumber, gold, and silver increased the demand for improved transportation.

Railroad development boomed as trains moved goods from the resource-rich West to the East. Steel and oil were in great demand. All this industry produced a lot of wealth for a number of businessmen like John D. Rockefeller (in oil) and Andrew Carnegie (in steel), known as robber barons (people who got rich through ruthless business deals). The Gilded Age gets its name from the many great fortunes created during this period and the way of life this wealth supported.

The term was coined by writers Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner in The Gilded Age: A Tale of Today (1873).

The Gilded Age was an era of economic growth, especially in the North and West. This attracted millions of immigrants from Europe. American wages, especially for skilled workers, were much higher than in Europe. The increase of industrialization meant, despite the increasing labor force, real wages in the US grew 60% from 1860 to 1890, and continued to rise after that. However, the Gilded Age was also an era of poverty as very poor European immigrants poured in. Railroads were the major industry, but the factory system, mining, and labor unions also increased in importance.

about 4 years ago, by Jae Lee

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