VAST 298

The Rise of Industrial America

Instructor: James Tiernan

 Office: Ramer History House

 Office Phone: (610) 330-5167


Course Description: This seminar will explore the rise of modern America through the study of its major industries. A major focus of the course will be the entrepreneurs who employed new technologies to build the first powerful industrial corporations in the country and in doing so changed the course of world history. Businessmen such as Carnegie, Armour, Rockefeller and Ford will be central to the discussions. The everyday lives of the consumers, workers and immigrants impacted by industrial capitalism and the roles of urbanism, trade unions and socialist political organizations will be closely examined. The course will begin with the transformation in manufacturing brought about by the rise of the "American System" in Lowell, which employed women almost exclusively, continue through the age of steam and steel (with emphasis the central role of the Lehigh Valley region) and conclude with building of a new form of corporate capitalism as the driving force of the American economy.