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How did America Become Prosperous in the 1920(TM)s

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History Essay: How did America Become Prosperous in the 1920's Mass Production, the Car Industry and the Consumer Industry Mass production is one of the key factors that lead to the American boom. Mass production allowed industries to produce large quantities of produce such as cars and radios which meant a larger need for basic construction materials like steel, rubber and glass. The reason it was so important to America's prosperity is that it allowed businesses such as ford to make huge amounts of their product i.e. the Model T car in very little time, one car a minuet by 1929; and with very little cost, ford had the idea of making a car for the ordinary man and changed the price of his cars from $1200 in 1911 to $295 in 1920. Mass production was invented in the Ford Motor Company by Henry ford who came up with the idea of "Pulling the machine past the man, not man past the machine" meaning that the workers did not have to waste time moving between the machine and their work station, this was the idea of the conveyor belt, the machine would move past them as they put on their part. This also brought on the idea of repetitive jobs which meant that skilled workers weren't needed because anyone can learn to do a repetitive job; this meant that they didn't need to pay higher wages. ...read more.


Credit Facilities Credit facilities gave ordinary working class people the ability to buy on credit. Buying on credit was the same as buying a phone on contract; you would buy the product, paying for it on a standard rate every day/week/month depending on the product. This would allow more of the general public to buy consumer goods and so increased the cycle of prosperity. Credit facilities also allowed people to buy on "mail order" which meant that people who lived in remote towns could buy items that they would normally be unable to get. All of this had a knock on affect to every other business because it meant that they could advertise in media and it meant they had increased profits. Government Policy Throughout the 1920's the government had a policy of non-interference which meant that the government would interfere as little as possible. The president of the US from 1921 to 1929 was Calvin Coolidge, an adept businessman who did not run for president again because he was a millionaire. Coolidge believed that "The chief business of the American people is business". Throughout the 1920's businesses received substantial encouragement from the government in the form of construction loans and the lowering of tax. These loans allowed start up businesses such as that in the Florida land boom to get up and running quickly which created more jobs and so increasing the cycle of prosperity. ...read more.


In fact over 50% of America's population lost jobs and money due to the boom which helped people vary selectively. Probably those most directly affected by the car industry and the rise in technology where the industrial workers. These where the coal miners or the cotton and textiles industries that where made redundant by the new sources of energy such as oil and gas and electricity and the textiles by new synthetic materials like nylon. The textiles industries were also affected by the new shorter fashions which required fewer materials to make them. This caused a mass loss in jobs and a drop in pay. A same loss in jobs and pay was felt in the farming industry. New machines such as combine harvesters allowed farmers to produce more grain which in turn caused an excess, lowering the prices. Many farmers and farm workers lost their jobs as a result. This affected the black community as well as after the abolition of the slave trade many black Americans stayed on the plantations as workers who shared in a portion of the profit made. As the farms and plantations lost money many of the black workers lost their jobs and where forced to move north in search of work although they were usually the lowest paid in any job they found. The same can be said for many immigrants who worked on farms or industrial work. Alexander Achilleos A1 History Essay, 13/10/08 ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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