Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. F. W. Gregory


The United States during the nineteenth century passed from its infancy toward its ultimate role as a world power. Delayed by the bitter Civil War, the nation regained its footing moving rapidly toward a goal blurred by the distant future. With the development of a strong industrial backbone, the country was destined to compete with the major powers, France, Great Britain, Germany and Russia. By 1890 the United States lead the world in the production of iron and steel and soon surpassed all nations in the mining of coal. With an increased demand for industrial products the need for better transportation became extremely important. Railroads improved to meet the necessary requirements for a more efficient transportation system and mileage rose by more than four hundred percent between 1869 and 1899. This industrial transformation raised the nation's total wealth tremendously. Both capital and population left the farms to share in this new wealth. This injured agricultural communities and hurt the South especially. The South did not have an equal share in the new prosperity with the North, for this area did not abandon its agricultural heritage.

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