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Unfinished Nation By Alan Brinkely Essay

1048 words - 5 pages

Unfinished Nation by Alan BrinkelyThe Unfinished Nation written by Alan Brinkely introduced all aspects of American history, including how economic development was shaped and changed over the years. The book also discusses how the economic development affected lives of the American people.It began in 1776 when 13 small colonial economies joined together to make up the United States of America. During the 16th century an influx or European settlers took over the land Columbus had found. Before their arrival Native Americans lived primitive lives, disconnected from the rest of the world. They economy was based on the animals that they hunted, and agriculture. The European settlers brought with ...view middle of the document...

It was only after the 1812 war that the Second Bank of the United States was setup. During Andrew Jacksons time as president, the National bank once again came under attack. Andrew believed that trade should be done in silver and gold and not paper money. All prosperity and growth came to a halt for three years with the advent of the panic of 1837. However, the panics did not manage to stop the growth in the economy during the 19th century.Railroads were another factor which greatly affected the U.S. economy by pushing it to become an urban industrial nation. The railroads formed the basis of most large-scale businesses, many of which run today, by opening new territory up. They were also the first ones to deal with labor laws and issues. Throughout the 19th century great investment led to the creation of new industries and new inventions which resulted from capital investment. This was also the time when the steamboat made its entry making river transport cheaper and faster.It was the civil wars during the late 1800s that eventually disrupted the fast paced economic growth. The war led to the abolishment of slave labor, world prices of cotton dropped which hit the southern cotton plantations hardest by taking their profitability away. It was after the south lost not just the war but also its slave labor that great poverty poured into the region. But overall the country still moved forward overtaking UK as the world's most powerful economy. An array of inventions came forth which included the typewriter and telephone. Along with this oil and coal was abundantly found in the country along with enormous iron mines through which steel mills then thrived.During the early 1900s the concept of mass production gained popularity as each factory introduced electricity instead of...

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