Wall Street and the Fruited Plain delves deep into the parody known today as the "Gilded Age". The last decades of the 19th century saw both industrial and agricultural explosions in the United States. However, the base metal beneath this glittering facade was comprised of sweat-soaked, underpaid laborers, many of whom had just splashed ashore from Europe's seething cauldrons. In the early years of the period, the nation underwent the wrenching challenge of Reconstruction, nominally resolved in the compromise of 1877. In the Gilded Age, America expanded both internally and externally. The frontier moved from Kansas to California. Trappers, miners, cattlemen, and-finally-homesteaders, with the help of a burgeoning railroad network, fanned out across the central plains and the western plateaus. Wall Street dominated not only the economic and social life of the country, but the politics as well. A series of lackluster presidents between Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt facilitated this dominion and by the end of Roosevelt's first Administration, America had become an adolescent headliner on the world stage.
Now Professor Emeritus, James T. Wall, is an American history veteran having taught at the University of Tennessee, Georgetown University, West Point, Edinburgh University in Scotland, and National University of Costa Rica.
Part 1 SECTION I: RECONSTRUCTION, 1865-18771 Chapter 2 Chapter 1: Death of a President Chapter 3 Chapter 2: Andrew Johnson on Stage Chapter 4 Chapter 3: Grant Takes Command Once Again Part 5 SECTION II: THE BROWN DECADES, 1877-1892 Chapter 6 Chapter 1: Politics as Usual Chapter 7 Chapter 2: The Cleveland Era Part 8 SECTION III: CLOSING THE FRONTIER, 1865-1890 Chapter 9 Chapter 1: What the Frontier Was Chapter 10 Chapter 2: The Indian Frontier Chapter 11 Chapter 3: The Trappers' Frontier Chapter 12 Chapter 4: The Miners' Frontier Chapter 13 Chapter 5: The Cattlemen's Frontier Chapter 14 Chapter 6: The Farmer's Frontier Part 15 SECTION IV: INDUSTRY, WEALTH, AND THE CITY, 1865-1901 Chapter 16 Chapter 1: Industry Grows the City Chapter 17 Chapter 2: The Men Who Made the Era Chapter 18 Chapter 3: The City Part 19 SECTION V: THE POPULIST ERA, 1890-1896 Chapter 20 Chapter 1: The Vicious Cycle Chapter 21 Chapter 2: The Farmers Fight Back Chapter 22 Chapter 3: Populists Unite Chapter 23 Chapter 4: Cleveland Makes a Comeback Part 24 SECTION VI: THE AGE OF IMPERIALISM, 1898-1904 Chapter 25 Chapter 1: The 1896 Election Chapter 26 Chapter 2: McKinley's Road to War Chapter 27 Chapter 3: America in Transition: Progressivism Chapter 28 Chapter 4: Theodore Roosevelt's World Chapter 29 Chapter 5: The World Seeks a Canal Chapter 30 Chapter 6: The United States Digs a Canal