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PinkMonkey Online Study Guide-World History


14. 3 Republicanism at Home

While Isolationism was the main feature of the 1920s, it had grave consequences on the economy of the country. Afraid of foreign competition the nation adhered to a policy of protectionism. With support from farmers and businessmen, the Congress dominated by Republicans, passed the Emergency Tariff Act in May 1921. Later in 1922, the Congress passed the Fordney-McCumber Act which pushed the tariff rates up. Eight years later, Congress once again passed the Smoot-Hawley Tariff in 1930. Amidst protests from economists, President Hoover signed it. The Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act raised the tariffs to the highest in American economic history.

In response to the U.S. tariffs, European countries also raised their tariffs. The Tariff Acts in U.S. reflected the growing nationalism of the 1920s. Another symbol of this post-war nationalism was the countrywide demand to restrict immigration. After the war, a large number of foreigners came to America. To check the influx of immigrants, the Congress introduced the quota system in the Emergency Quota (1921).


Later in 1924, the Congress under President Coolidge passed the Immigration Act to tighten immigration laws. The 1924 Immigration Act fixed national quotas at 2% of the number of a nationality which had lived in the U.S. in 1890.

The Great Depression (1929 1939) is one of the most tragic events to have occurred in American history.

The crash of 1929 was not the first Depression in the U.S. In fact the period from the 1870s to the 1920 saw two major Depressions and several minor ones. The 1920s also began with a Depression in 1921. From 1923 onwards, business boomed. So much so that this period was called the Golden Twenties. Most people in the 20s could afford to buy automobiles, radios, build houses and even visit Europe. In the 20s, the U.S. appeared to be extremely prosperous. Real wages were one of the highest productivity per person increased by 30% and there was plenty of capital around for investment.

Exhibit 14.1
With the Depression the rate of Unemployment soared.

The Depression years set in with the stock market crash along with a slump in farm prices. Ten of thousands of people lost their jobs. Production came to a grinding halt, causing great agony and distress all over the country.


Index

14.0 - Introduction
14.1 Republican Ascendancy and World Politics
14.2 The Washington Conference
14.3 Republicanism at Home
14.4 Panic of 1929
14.5 Causes
14.6 Methods to alleviate the effects of Depression
14.7 The Effects of the New Deal
14.8 Impact of Great Depression
14.9 Dates & Events
14.10 Points to Remember

Chapter 15





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