AMH Chapter 10 Section 3

Chapter 10
Section 3
Disillusionment & Intolerance
• In the early 1920s, an
economic recession, an
influx of immigrants, and
cultural tensions created
an atmosphere of
(disappointment) and
intolerance (prejudice).
• Nativism, the belief that
one’s native land needs to
be protected against
immigrants, also grew.
Sacco & Vanzetti
• In 1920 two Italian immigrants
named Nicola Sacco and
Bortolomeo Vanzetti were
arrested for armed robbery
and murder.
• It was widely reported that
they were anarchists, people
who oppose all forms of
• Despite thin evidence, Sacco
and Vanzetti were found guilty
and later executed.
• The Sacco and Vanzetti case
reflected fear and prejudice
against immigrants.
1920s and KKK
• One of the biggest efforts
to restrict immigration
came from the Ku Klux
• It targeted groups it felt
did not represent
traditional American
• The Ku Klux Klan claimed
it was fighting for
Americanism and had
nearly four million
members by 1924.
Restricting Immigration
• In 1921 Congress passed the
Emergency Quota Act to limit
– According to the Emergency
Quota Act, only three per cent
of the total number of people
in any ethnic group already
living in the United States could
be admitted in a single year.
• The National Origins Act of
1924 made the quotas stricter
and permanent.
– The National Origins Act of
1924 deliberately used data
from the 1890 Census to favor
immigrant groups from
northwestern Europe.
Mexican Immigrants
• The reduction in
immigration caused a
shortage of workers for
agriculture, mining, and
railroad work; Mexican
immigrants filled these
• Large numbers arrived
after the Newlands
Reclamation Act of 1902
funded projects in the
New Morality
• During the 1920s, a “new
morality” took over the
• The new morality
challenged traditional
ways of thinking.
• Many groups that wanted
to restrict immigration
also feared the “new
morality” that glorified
youth and personal
freedom which changed
American Society.
Changing Roles
• In 1920, women won the
right to vote.
• Many women in the
1920s wanted to break
free from traditional roles
and expected behaviors.
• Thus, attitudes toward
marriage changed.
– The ideas of romance,
pleasure, and friendship
became linked to
successful marriages.
Women of the 1920s
• Single women began working
for their own financial
independence as employment
opportunities increased during
the 1920s.
• Women’s colleges encouraged
students to pursue careers.
• Many professional women
made contributions in fields
such as science, medicine, law,
and literature.
• A flapper was a woman who
personified the fashion and
social changes of the 1920s.
• Many Americans embraced the
new morality, while others feared
the loss of traditional values.
• Evangelist Aimee Semple
McPherson conducted revivals
and faith healings in a flamboyant
theatrical style.
• A religious movement called
Fundamentalism stressed the
teachings of the Bible as literally
true history.
• Fundamentalists rejected the
theory of evolution, which argued
that human beings had
developed from lower forms of
life over the course of millions of
Scope Trial
• Fundamentalists believed in
creationism, which says that God
created the world as described in
the Bible.
• In 1925 Tennessee outlawed the
teaching of evolution.
• A high school biology teacher
named John T. Scopes was tried
and convicted of breaking this
• The Scopes Trial was about the
teaching of evolution in schools,
which helped illustrate the
struggle between the new
morality and traditional beliefs.
18th Amendment
• In January of 1920 the
Eighteenth Amendment went
into effect.
• The Eighteenth Amendment
specifically granted federal
and state governments the
power to enforce Prohibition.
• This amendment prohibited,
or banned, the sale of alcohol.
• Many people felt prohibition
would reduce unemployment,
violence, and poverty.
Organized Crime
• Congress passed the Volstead
Act to enforce the law, but
many Americans violated it.
• As the Treasury Department
struggled to enforce
Prohibition, organized crime
thrived on the illegal trade in
• Organized crime supplied
illegal alcohol to secret bars
called speakeasies.
• Prohibition ended in 1933 with
the ratification of the Twentyfirst Amendment.

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