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"Without the new automobile industry the prosperity of the 1920s would scarcely have been possible"

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"Without the new automobile industry the prosperity of the 1920s would scarcely have been possible" I believe that the comment: "Without the new automobile industry the prosperity of the 1920s would scarcely have been possible" is exaggerated and not true. In my opinion the Motor Industry- one of the new industries, revolutionizing industries with new methods- was not the most important reason for the economic boom. I believe World War 1 was the most important reason for the economic boom. Whilst France, Britain and Germany were too busy fighting a war to focus on trade and growth, America was able to continue growing and exceeded the European powers. As a result of the war, Germany's chemical industry ceased to advance any further, but before it was one of the world's most successful chemical industries. During the war the US chemical industry continued to advance and exceeded the German chemical industry. It now supplied chemical products such as fertilizers and dyes, which had previously come from Germany. While the European powers were too busy to trade, America took over their places trading with the European powers' colonies. Explosives and weapons during the war stimulated a range of by-products, which became new industries. Plastics and other new materials were also being produced too. ...read more.


In 1929 4.8million cars were made. By the end of the 1920s the motor industry was the largest industry in the USA. As well as employing hundreds of thousands of workers directly, it also provided many job opportunities in other industries as glass, leather, steel and rubber were all needed to build the new cars, Petrol was needed to run them and roads were needed for the cars to drive on! Owning a car was not exclusive to the rich only. There was 1 car to every 5 people in the USA compared with 1 to 43 in Britain and 1 to 7000 in Russia. The car made it possible for people to buy a house in suburbs, which boosted house building! It also boosted the growth of many other small firms from hot dog stands and advertising billboards to petrol stations and holiday resorts. It also made trading between states and local businesses easier! Republican policies were the next most important factor contributing to the boom. The Republican Policy of "Laissez-faire" - Leave it alone - was basically staying out of the ordinary people's affairs and allowing businesses to develop and grow naturally. The Isolationism policy that the republican government had was basically - "Stay out of international affairs (that do not concern or involve the USA)". ...read more.


Overall, the comment: "Without the new automobile industry the prosperity of the 1920s would scarcely have been possible" Is not true. It is exaggerated but the car industry did play a vital role in helping American industry and stimulating growth in other areas. Without the motorcar industry there would not have been as many people employed. Suburbs would not have grown so rapidly as without the car being easily available and affordable to quite a lot of people (1 car to every 5 people), they would not have been able to live away from the city as there would be no easy access/transportation. Not that many roads would have been built as there would have been not that much of a need if there weren't that many cars around. Also, if the motorcar industry did not exist, there would not have been the world's first moving production line in America at the time and therefore production would not have been revolutionized and would still be quite slow and expensive. Overall, the boom would have been possible without the new automobile industry however it would not have been as prosperous. Other Industries would not have prospered that much. Trading would not have been made that much easier. The car industry was the most important new industry! It played one of the major roles in the boom, but was not the backbone, meaning, without it the boom could have taken place. Humayun Ahmad 4APJ History ...read more.

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