The Politics of Reform

The essays in this section have been written by leading scholars of American history. They provide additional depth on events and ideas referred to in the introductory essay and, in some cases, different interpretations by historians looking at the same events. These essays are particularly useful as informational texts to introduce your students to one of the most exciting aspects of studying history—understanding the past from a variety of perspectives.

Jim Thorpe in New York, ca. 1913 (Library of Congress P&P)

Amateurism and Jim Thorpe at the Fifth Olympiad

Author: Kate Buford Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Assembly room for chassis and motors, Detroit, MI, 1929 (LOC, P&P)

Motor City: The Story of Detroit

Author: Thomas J. Sugrue Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Union Stock Yards, Chicago, 1903. (LC-USZ62-51793)

The Jungle and the Progressive Era

Author: Robert W. Cherny Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Sample ballot card for the 1912 Republican National Convention. (GLC01487)

The Spectacles of 1912

Author: Patricia O’Toole Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Panorama of Chicago, ca. 1906, Universale View Co., Philadelphia, PA (LOC)

The Transnational Nature of the Progressive Era

Author: Daniel T. Rodgers Curriculum Subjects: World History Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Teddy Roosevelt in the Rough Riders, ca. 1898. (GLC07002.39)

Theodore Roosevelt: The Making of a Progressive Reformer

Author: Kathleen Dalton Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Jane Addams,Twenty Years at Hull-House (New York, 1910). (Gilder Lehrman Coll.)

Women and the Progressive Movement

Author: Miriam Cohen Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

Essays from Other Sub-Eras

Reader in a cigar factory, Tampa, Fla., by Lewis Wickes Hines (LOC)

Bridging the Caribbean: Puerto Rican Roots in Nineteenth-Century America

Author: Virginia Sanchez Korrol Curriculum Subjects: World History Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Landing at Ellis Island, ca. 1902 (LC-USZ62-12595)

Coming to America: Ellis Island and New York City

Author: Vincent J. Cannato Curriculum Subjects: Economics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
The Empire Builders, by Bernarda Bryson, the Resettlement Administration (LOC)

Entrepreneurs and Bankers: The Evolution of Corporate Empires

Author: Robert W. Cherny Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:
Flapper on the cover of Puck magazine, 1916. (Library of Congress P&P)

F. Scott Fitzgerald and the Age of Excess

Author: Joshua Zeitz Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Literature Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Teenager operating machinery, 1913, by Lewis Hine. (LC-DIG-nclc-04898)

History Times: The Industrial Revolution

Author: Gilder Lehrman Institute Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Ford Local 600 of the CIO in the Labor Day parade in Detroit MI, 1942. (LOC P&P)

Labor Day: From Protest to Picnics

Author: Joshua B. Freeman Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Mary E. Lease in an illustration from Puck, 1896. (LC-DIG-ppmsca-28845)

Mary Elizabeth Lease: Populist Reformer

Author: Kelly A. Woestman Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:
Official US Bulletin, January 29, 1919. (GLC01668)

Prohibition and Its Effects

Author: Lisa Andersen Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

The Supreme Court Then and Now

Author: A. E. Dick Howard Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Note of 1 shilling, 6 pence, printed in the colony of New Jersey, 1776. (GLC)

The US Banking System: Origin, Development, and Regulation

Author: Richard Sylla Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Detail from a World War I poster. (GLC09522)

Why Immigration Matters

Author: Thomas Kessner Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Detail of a broadside promoting women’s suffrage. (GLC08963)

Why We the People? Citizens as Agents of Constitutional Change

Author: Linda R. Monk Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
The County Election, based on a painting by George C. Bingham, 1854. (Gilder Leh

Winning the Vote: A History of Voting Rights

Author: Steven Mintz Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Conference of Republican National Committee Women, 1927. (LOC, P&P)

Women in American Politics in the Twentieth Century

Author: Sara Evans Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Justice of the Plains: The Movement Westward, John S. Curry (LC-DIG-highsm-02850

Women of the West

Author: Virginia Scharff Curriculum Subjects: Geography, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Langston Hughes, 1942 (Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division)

“I, Too”: Langston Hughes’s Afro-Whitmanian Affirmation

Author: Steven Tracy Curriculum Subjects: Literature Grade Levels: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
World War I poster, published by the US Food Administration, ca. 1917 (GLC09522)

“The New Colossus”: Emma Lazarus and the Immigrant Experience

Author: Julie Des Jardins Curriculum Subjects: Literature Grade Levels: