Historical Roots of Populism

1 January 2018

The tariff on manufactured goods, the domestic marketing system, and the shortage of credit were all contributing actors to the devastating downward swing in the business cycle. The debt Of postmortem farmers in the south occurred because of the credit exploitation of northern merchant stores and high freight rates charged by the Railroads.

This triggered a new outburst of farm radicalism. The Farmers Alliance was established in Lamps, Texas in 1877 to try and improve their economic situation.The alliance was designed to promote higher commodity prices through collective action by groups of farmers. The farmers developed co- ops to help each other out. The Farmers Alliance spread throughout the Midwest and South. Despite their efforts to market crops cooperatively at fair prices they discovered problems in the American financial and monetary system. They became aware that the furnishing man was holding them down.

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They wanted a sub treasury in order to get loans from the government instead of the furnishing man.They also had a plan that would permit farmers to keep nonperishable crops when the prices were low and receive a loan from the government in which they would repay when the market prices rose and they sold the crops they had in storage. The Farmers Alliance held their first formal convention in Celebrate, Texas in 886 and made the Celebrate demands. They demanded that the government regulate commerce and create a bureau of labor statistics. They also urged the election on U. S. Senators by popular vote.

Soon after in 1892 the People’s Party was organized in SST. Louis by farm leaders, representative of the Knights of Labor, and various professional reformers. It flourished particularly among western farmers, based largely on its opposition to the gold standard. In the election of 1892 this new party elected numbers of local officials in western states and cast over a million votes for General Weaver as the third party. In 1896, the party joined together and supported Bryan but they lost again and populism began to evaporate over the next few years.The Populist Party was a short-lived political party in the U. S.

And was not a success at the time of its movement However, it was eventually successful over the years to come. Many of its positions have become adopted over the course of the following decades. For example, currency was regulated, the government began to tax, schools became more developed and regulated, and the direct election of Senators was amended to the Constitution. I think that indicates success!

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