Post-Civil War Industrialization

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After the Civil War, the United States experienced a time of great social and economic change. Americans encountered an onslaught of innovations in technology and science and the rampant rise of big business. Rapid urbanization and industrialisation enveloped much of the north and eventually consumed the frontier. The United States renovated its former rural republic into an urban state as the once barren frontier disappeared and was replaced with steel mills, large factories, transcontinental railroad lines, capacious agricultural acreage, and prosperous cities. However, the accelerated progression of the country’s economy and affluence wrought consequential effects. Businesses monopolised entire industries through vertical and horizontal integration, the increase in industry attracted workers to already densely populated cities, and working conditions for the lower-to-middle class were often poor. With the unprecedented increases in population, cities were ill-equipped to support the sanitary and safety needs of the occupants. Post-Civil War demands triggered manufacturing expansion. Soon the new economic process was largely controlled by the utilisation of iron, as well as electric and steam power. Advancements in science and technology proved to result in a new level of productivity within many fields. The execution of electric telegraphy, telephones, typewriters, adding machines and cash registers, paper folding machines, the rotary press, the phonograph, and incandescent lamps spanned the nation. The austere industry of steel and iron continued to function, despite the progression of technology. Yet, the growth of independent industrial enterprises concerned businessmen. Swift competition would eventually lead to overproduction and a decline in prices. Thus, the United States Steel Corporation resulted and merged competing firms into a profitable

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