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After the Civil War

The North after the Civil War

The North after the Civil War
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 7 to 9
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.15

     challenging words:    Factory-produced, mob-like, post-Civil, trans-Atlantic, corruption, sector, investors, telegraph, bankrupt, earners, spike, senate, hayes, striking, withdraw, wounded
     content words:    American North, Industrial Revolution, Civil War, Union Army, Cyrus Fields, Christopher Sholes, Alexander Bell, Thomas Edison, Transcontinental Railroad, New York

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The North after the Civil War
By Toni Lee Robinson

1     In the mid-1800s, the American North bustled along like a steam engine, huffing and puffing and full of energy. The Industrial Revolution was well underway. Factory-produced goods replaced handmade items. Factory jobs took the place of farming or cottage crafts for many families. The pace of life quickened.
2     Along with the bustle came unrest and a search for better ways of doing things. Labor problems often boiled over into public protests. Abolitionists and suffragettes marched in support of their causes. The North was simmering with new ideas and constant change.
3     The Civil War produced quite different results in the North than in the South. Away from the ravages of battle, there was little rebuilding to do. Besides that, the Northern economy actually benefited from the conflict. There were new markets for products used by the Union Army. Northern factories were producing more than ever before. Booming factories meant that bankers and investors were making profits. This money supported new inventions and better ways to produce goods.
4     New technologies sprouted from this period of growth. While the Civil War was in progress, Cyrus Fields of Massachusetts developed the first trans-Atlantic telegraph cable. The cable was laid on the ocean floor in 1866. At this same time, Christopher Sholes invented the typewriter. Alexander Bell developed the telephone, testing it successfully in 1876. Thomas Edison was experimenting with the phonograph and the light bulb. Both these inventions were made public in the 1870s as well.
5     During the war, the need for weapons and other metal products had caused a boost in steel production. Raw materials were plentiful. Now, mining and refining of metals became the backbone of Northern industry.

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After the Civil War

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