American politics after the Civil War


America is among the most influential nations in the world that have shown an ability to adapt and overcome challenges. During the period between after the Civil War and 1940, the country experienced political developments that transformed the lives of its citizens immensely. At the end of the period, the state became more sensitive to the needs of its citizens and focused on improving the living standards of the American lives. Political changes and transformations can be described through three significant eras namely; the Reconstruction Era, the Gilded Age, and the Progressive Era. This work focuses on addressing the political state of America during these eras with the aim of identifying whether the nation’s politics towards the end of the period, served to improve the conditions of Americans.

The Reconstruction Era

The period lasted between 1865 and 1877, and it has been remembered in history for bringing an end to slavery in America. Slavery was gaining popularity within the country especially in the southern states. The captives were forcefully required to work on the American white farms and experienced terrible living conditions. Campaigns were launched within the country to bring an end to the practice with influential politicians such as Abraham Lincoln sensitizing the society on the importance of eradicating slavery within the nation. President Lincoln signed into action the emancipation program in 1863 which was the beginning of the freedom of over three million African slaves after the civil war. Gradually, the implications of the political decision eventually illegalized slavery within all parts of America.

The Gilded Age

The period followed the reconstruction era and lasted from around 1870 to about 1900. During this time, research identifies that America received great economic achievements that drew more immigrants from other countries such as from Europe. However, corruption and favoritism were highly present amongst politicians at all levels of the government. The dominant parties used unfair methods to get rid of the weak political associations such as through paying off opponents. During this period, Americans were poorly treated and represented in the government. Inflation rates remained high during the time, and the living conditions in the country substantially declined. Presidents during this period have been described to have failed by various political analysts.

The Progressive Era

The era marks the end of the period under research. Research identifies that the period came to rectify the past challenges within the American society. The period lasted from the 1890s to almost the 1940s. Issues such as corruption in the government, employment conditions, immigration, urbanization, etc. were keenly assessed during the period. Corrupt individuals were removed from public offices hence facilitating efficient resource allocation amongst citizens. Additionally, women suffrage succeeded further enhancing the democracy of the Americans. Infrastructure was improved, and individuals had better access to the various parts of the country. Besides, racism was also campaigned against as well as other reforms in local governments, the health sector, education, insurance, and finance were facilitated. The period made the society a better place for American citizens, and it showed a better and an improved government’s involvement in solving societal challenges.

In conclusion, politics played an important role in ensuring that the challenges facing the Americans were reduced and countered during the Progressive Era. The era marked positive improvements that facilitated reforms in the organization of the society. Issues revolving around corruption, racism, leadership and the government services were keenly addressed. The Progressive Era shows an improvement in the American government’s response to challenges facing its people at that time.

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