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Rise of the Labor Movement - Essay Example

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The Industrial Revolution was a key to America's economic development. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, America was a largely agrarian economy centered on crop harvests and plantations. Wealth was largely measured by land ownership; and the American economy was relatively self-contained, without influencing economies of other countries a great deal…
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Rise of the Labor Movement
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Download file to see previous pages The Industrial Revolution marked a fundamental transition of American economic life from rural to urban (http://americanhistory.about.com/od/industrialrev/a/indrevoverview.htm). It fueled the growth of America's cities, as factories sprang up in key navigational areas such as port towns and river junctures in order to have ready access to the raw materials needed to manufacture products. These factories were made possible by innovative American inventors, such as Eli Whitney, who devised machines that facilitated mass production of goods for the first time in the history of the world. Thus, the Industrial Revolution not only started a shift of the American economy from agriculture to manufacturing and rural to urban centered, but it also heavily influenced a similar fundamental transition in other nations that would come to be known as the "industrialized world."
The America of today would never have existed had the Industrial Revolution not occurred. While America most certainly would have become more industrialized over time, the birth of industry that occurred in the United States positioned America to assume the leadership of the economically developed world. Today, American life reflects that reality, as Americans enjoy a high standard of living and a suburban lifestyle whose roots can be traced directly back to the Industrial Revolution.
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