Captain of Industry or Robber Baron

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US History – Unit 2 – Industrialization & Reform – Robber Barons or Captains of Industry
Unit 2 Lesson 4 Focus Question – Were the major industrialists Captains of Industry or Robber
Barons?
Key Content Terms: Gilded Age, Recession, Catalyst, Gross National Product (GNP), Dynamo,
Entrepreneurs
LEFT – THIS IS YOUR SIDE!
RIGHT – THIS IS MY SIDE!!
Captain of Industry: A term originally used to
describe a business leader whose means of
amassing a personal fortune contributes
positively to the country in some way. This
may have been through increased productivity,
expansion of markets, providing more jobs, or
acts of philanthropy.
Robber Baron: A disparaging term used to
describe a powerful 19th century businessman
or banker who used questionable or unethical
business practices to become powerful or
wealthy.
We will read the background
information together. Next,
complete individually the two
background worksheets to
demonstrate your understanding
of the time period and of the
difference between a Robber
Baron and a Captain of Industry.
Draw two pictures on this side of your
notebook to distinguish the two definitions.
US History – Unit 2 Lesson 4 - Industrialization & Reform - FOLDOUT (still page # )
LEFT – THIS IS YOUR SIDE!
Date
RIGHT – THIS IS MY SIDE!!
Now, underneath your pictures, hypothesize
the following question on the left side of your
notebook: Were the Industrialists of the late
19th and early 20th century Captains of Industry
or Robber Barons? As you are answering the
question, be sure to write down data and
warrants underneath your background
questions.
Use the background information and the
information included in the Captains of
Industry or Robber Barons Worksheet.
We will now assign you to six groups of six.
Now, you will have a few minutes to discuss
your answer with your group. Be sure to
explain WHY you chose one or the other.
US History – Unit 2 Lesson 4 - Industrialization & Reform - FOLDOUT (still page # )
LEFT – THIS IS YOUR SIDE!
Document A:
Document B:
Document C:
Date
RIGHT – THIS IS MY SIDE!!
I will assign each member of your group a
different document from the robber baron dbq
on the website. On a new page in your
notebook, you will use the left side to find at
least two claims to support either Robber
Baron or Captain of Industry. On the right side,
you will answer the questions at the bottom of
the document.
Be prepared to present your document to the
rest of your group.
Document D:
Document E:
Document F:
Underneath your claims on the left side of
your notebook, write what is on the left of this
slide. You will be responsible to write a
question for EACH document besides your
own. Ask your question after the person
presents their document and WRITE DOWN
THEIR ANSWER
US History – Unit 2 Lesson 4 - Industrialization & Reform - HOMEWORK – Due Monday
LEFT – THIS IS YOUR SIDE!
RIGHT – THIS IS MY SIDE!!
Worker Interview Assignment – Suppose you are
a worker in the year 1900. You have been asked
to be interviewed for an article in a national
newspaper. The journalist interviewing you has
brought up some questions about your role in
industrialism.
HOMEWORK –
Due Monday!!!
Question: What are some of the important
inventions of this time period? What role have
the workers like yourself played in their
development?
Q: What are the working conditions like in the
large factories?
Q: The government has remained largely
uninvolved in regulating the economy. Do you
support the government’s laissez-faire business
policies? Why or why not?
Q: Many people call the large industrialists
Captains of Industry. Do you agree? Why or
why not?

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