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Urban Masses and Moral Order in America

Chapter 5: Heightened Concern, Varied Responses

In the thirty years before the American Civil War, the urban population in the coastal cities grew massively, bolstered by foreign immigration, particularly from Ireland, and this meant these cities were torn down and rebuilt for the expansion. In the Midwest, along with the Great Lakes and rivers, urbanization was occurring at the same time. The urban centers began to be seen as “sinister” and “crime-ridden”, and indeed there was higher crime rates and population turnover. There were “notorious” districts in the coastal cities, where there were riots and street brawls, indicative of the disorder and uproar among the urban poor from the 1830s to 1850s that not even the Midwestern cities were immune to. While modern American social historians say that the disorder was rational and “goal-oriented”, those living in that time period did not see this. During these years, there was uniform dismay and concern in the commentary on these urban places. (pg. 67-70). -Francesca Maisano

Urban centers were seen as “sinister and menacing” especially if they had immigrant populations. They were branded as crime-ridden, but they were also places of great poverty. The people lived in subhuman conditions such as decaying tenements and damp basements. -gianna

Sunday schools became a popular method of urban reform and social control for the youth in the early nineteenth century. They were intended to cultivate morality in children through discipline and order. Respect for authority was essential to this and the school followed a strict hierarchy. The rigid structure of the Sunday school was a response to the perceived chaos and disorder of the city.

Immigration was on the rise by the decade in the 1800s. 540,000 immigrants arrived in the 1830s, which was quadruple the amount in the decade previous. The potato famine led to 1.2 Irish immigrants coming into the use to seek economic opportunity, which led to a rise in crime in many urban cities, as well as an Irish community being built.

The 1830s-50s was a time of disorder and turbulence among the urban poor causing riots, gang wars, and mobs. In NYC, the 1834-44s had more than 200 gang wars and by the 1850s police were helpless in fighting against the mobs that controlled the city— such as in Philadelphia, NYC, and Baltimore. —Gianna

As industrialization and immigration took hold in the United States, the population of major cities would drastically increase. With this increase would come a level of de-personalization as Reverend John Todd would write about. He writes about the differences in country and city life at the time, speaking to death in the countryside, the dead would “live in the memory of all the generations that knew him.” As opposed to death in the city, “Tomorrow he drops to the grave, -the crowd pauses for a moment, then the tide rolls on as if he had never lived.” It is not only the vice and crime of the city that is corrupt but the moral ideas of the traditional family moral structure. –Justin Binns

One of the major concerns with the cities expanding, was crime. Boyer writes that as the populations were growing, especially of those living in tenement communities, the crime rate continued to rise. This became a concern of the middle class, and they began to try and reform those communities and to help lower the crime rate. -Mariah Morton

The fastening pace of urbanization was a source of intense concern in the nineteenth century because it brought problems like poverty, vice, crime, and disorder. Especially because it was spreading to the “virgin interior” of the nation— the west— because it was too creating cities. Therefore bringing all of these problems along with it. -Gianna

Chapter 6: Narrowing the Problem

In chapter 6, Boyer introduces a new form of moral reform: organizations like the Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor, the Children's Aid Society, and the Young Men's Christian Association. Differing from the earlier Sunday school programs, these organizations were created in order to organize and define morality in cities. The only thing these three organizations were concerned with was uplifting morality in American urban centers, while Sunday school programs were focused on multiple different facets of reforming. Also, as the names of these organizations hint at, the programs became more specific. Instead of broad programs based on introducing evangelicalism and the church's definitions of morality, these new programs offered a more specific and secular approach. By focusing on smaller portions of the urban population (e.g. young Christian men, children, lower classes), organizations could interpret and help urban society without fighting it. -K.Eastridge

When tasked with attempting to reform the new problems of the “wicked city” numerous movements would emerge to do this. The Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor and the Children’s Aid Society would all emerge as moral arbiters during this time. The AICP believed that with lower social standing came a higher chance to fall into a life of depravity and vice. Thus their goal was not to simply remove and uplift people from poverty but to reform the character of these individuals. The Children’s Aid Society would take another approach as they believed that removing children from the city and placing them into more rural, country, family structured environments that were the opposite of the city social structure. –Justin Binns

The Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor helped urban societies by providing relief to the lower classes and through the guise of relief could observe the behaviors and reasoning behind poverty so that they could legally address the problems in the slums of cities. The AICP was not the first of its kind. The morality debate was greater forced by the middle class as they feared the slums of the cities and assumed that the poor were prone to violence and poverty because of social defects. AICP's earlier years focused on this misconception and attempted to make the lower classes aware of their social defects. However, their tactics of approaching the lower class' morality differed from the Sunday school programs: instead of instituting a form of morality through Pavlovian techniques, they attempted to enforce their morality standards through persistence and involvement of the lower classes in their own morality reform. -K.Eastridge

The Children's Aid Society was created by Charles Loring Brace and differed from the AICP in its execution of moral reform. While the AICP simultaneously victimized and vilified the lower classes, the CAS did not see poverty as an innate characteristic and instead sought to remove individuals who might be prone to poverty from their physical location. The asylum movement, which occurred prior to the creation of CAS, held many of the same principles of Sunday school reform: obedience was rewarded, the deterrent of “bad behavior” was a shame, and repetition of the enforced moral standards meant that the person was saved. Brace had agreed with one part of the asylum movement, that children are the key to urban immorality. but disagreed with the implementation of reform. Brace focused on immigrant children as he saw them as the potential collective destruction. This idea greatly differed from other members of moral reform, as they focused on the individual and Brace feared the conglomeration of immigrant children. -K.Eastridge

The CAS’s method of intervention was to send poor urban children westwards to farming families. The countryside was widely considered to be a more moral environment, and Brace aimed to place children in middle-class families where they could learn to channel their street smarts into moral, socially acceptable pastimes and careers. However, criticism of this system hinged on the fact that, while the children were voluntary participants, the CAS did not make much effort to consult their parents, and kids could be sent off without the parents’ knowledge or permission.

The Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor, established in 1843 as an offshoot of the New York City Mission Society. The founders believed that the poor were not “poor” because of economic conditions but because of personal choice. The association stressed character building as a way to end poverty, taking steps to ensure that only the “deserving” poor received charity: idlers, malingerers, and vagrants were sent to workhouses to do hard labor, while the depraved debased were to be locked up in penitentiaries warning other not to following their path. ~Deboorah Hunnel

Some of the groups created to help in assisting and reforming the poorer neighborhoods, included the bible society, the tract society, and local Sunday school unions. There were also organizations such as the Children's Aid Society, and the Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor. The Young Men's Christian Association was another group, but this group was aimed at men of the middle class, and helping them not to fall into certain vices or trouble. All of these organizations were part of a bigger goal of helping to make the city safer and more morally upright.“ -Mariah Morton

Brace, the head of the CAS believed that the key to combating the bad behaviors in the urban poor layer with the children of the poor. He believed in discipline, conformity and hierarchical authority (96). Brace liked watching the street children and seeing the traits they all had picked up to stay alive, or get things they needed. He was impressed by these children who were usually younger than 10.

Chapter 7: Young Men and the City

The decades of the mid-century abounded with middle-class anxiety over the potential moral degradation of the rootless young men which populated the lowest rungs of the urban middle-classes: the clerks, bookkeepers, and so on. Reform-minded individuals feared that the lack of social control mechanisms that resulted from the conditions the young men lived in, isolated from family and the scrutiny of their social superiors, would lead these starry-eyed youths into the maw of vice. One of the earliest ideas from the moralist camp was the introduction of family structures into the lives of young, well-to-do urbanites. They encouraged established and pious-minded, urban families to take young men under their wing or for the merchant employers of these precariously moral workers to take an active involvement in the off-time of their employees. A second idea to encourage morality among young men was the encouragement of the young men’s associations which catered to the desire for a community and often focused on self-education through member libraries. -Jason Elms

Instead of focusing on those who were already in poverty, the YMCA sought to prevent young middle-class men from falling into the immoral traps of vice the city had to offer. It did so by providing access to healthier activities like lectures, athletics, and reading rooms as well as offering young men a way to form social networks instead of becoming isolated. The YMCA became popular in cities across the nation, and branches tailored their programs to appeal to various interests among the youth of that area.

The YMCA targeted young middle-class men who really did not have a solid moral social group in the city. Often young men who had just left their rural lives to move to the city to gain more financial stability and for upward mobility. Since they were the most vulnerable to getting involved with different vices, the YMCA offered a good safe opportunity for men to socialize and get to know other people who would keep them on the “right moral path.” Unlike the other groups that were mention in the book, the YMCA did not encourage their members to participate in a specific uplift activity and they did not just focus on one goal which helped them cater to a larger group of people. – Ellora Larsen

The Young Men’s Christian Association or YMCA was a group created to help young men who were in need of making moral improvements in their life. The organization focused on teaching the boys techniques to live better lives. Many of the boys who came to the program lacked a good family structure, which lead the children to fall into vice.

The YMCA taught many life lessons. Boys who participated in the organization were given opportunities to improve social networks. They were encouraged to play different activities, attend lectures, tutoring, and other mentoring programs. -Sherronda Robinson

YMCA chapters encouraged young men, who many would perceive as trouble, to get off the streets and join a strong, helpful, faithful group. The YMCA's would later introduce sports and various services for those who need help. These chapters provided emotional warmth and brotherhood that many young men took over the cities vices.

YMCA was brought to America in 1851 by George M. Van Derlip, and Geroge H. Petrie. The movement spread rapidly to every major urban center for the Atlantic to the Mississippi, by 1860 over 200 local YMCA's served more than 25,000 members. The Y started as reading rooms for the fellowship of young men trying to keep them for the depravities and vice of city life. The used athletics and education to draw its members. THey used carrots instead of sticks to entice membership. ~Deborah Hunnel

Launched in the midpoint of the 19th century the Young Men’s Christian Association would focus on young men in this era. With an increased number of working-class men, came an increase in men with no family structure or social standing. Believing this would lead these young men to make poor ethical decisions and associating with the morally corrupt. The YMCA attempted to thwart this by giving these men a place to engage in fellowship that would create a buffer from the dark underbelly of the city. –Justin Binns

The YMCA was a group that was aimed at creating a place for young men to have fellowship, and spend time doing activities that were proper and positive. It allowed them to be sociable and have enjoyable times together, without falling victim to the vices that the city offered. -Mariah Morton

The YMCA was a group created to help young men from out of town, that moved to the city for a job, or just a new beginning. It was aimed at young men who were usually teens or in their 20's. It was a place for them to get together for fellowship and have a family atmosphere since their families did not live in the city with them. This group helped them stay away from vice, and becoming unmoral like the urban poor.

Chapter 8: The Ragged Edge of Anarchy

Boyer starts off this section by stating that the Gilded Age brought huge amounts of urban growth from immigrants as well as migrants from outside of cities, further separating the upper and middle classes in the suburbs from the poor in crowded downtown areas. With the increasing tensions and violence within the industrial structure, Protestants attempted to find new ways to enforce their moral ideology, however, it was charity organizations (1870s-1890s) and the “friendly visitors” that had the most influence over the lower-class population.

As more foreign immigrants moved to the inner city, upper and middle-class residents continued to move out to the suburbs, leaving the lower class isolated in downtown areas and divided by language and religious barriers. Because of this oppressive and unequal structure, the boss system flourished, and slums continued to crowd and deteriorate. With overcrowding came violence (Protestants and Catholics, gangs, police, and political corruption), and during the Gilded Age, violence became a direct product of labor unrest in cities throughout the country.

Instances of violence (ex. Haymarket Square) and fear-driven journalism had the middle class in a state of panic and hysteria over urban unrest, and the Depression of the 1890s worsened poverty and increased tensions. The emergence of crime magazines, dime novels, and flash-photography, along with journalism, offered the middle-class coverage of the violence and vice-ridden cities that made them even more mysterious and menacing to those on the outside. This distance between the suburbs/country and the inner city fed the idea that the poor were immoral and non-religious, and their vices caused their poverty and unrest.

The belief now turned to that in cities that it was not just the moral fate of the individuals involved that was at stake but that the entire survival of the social order depended on if people could still continue to be moral in the “wicked city.” – Ellora Larsen

As the Gilded age started to unravel into urban cities, Many workers, including the majority as immigrants, were sought after as cheap labor for hire for big industries. More diverse immigrants such as Ashkenazi Jews from eastern Europe and Catholic Italians began to settle down in old urban centers, divided by language.

Chapter 9: American Protestantism and the Moral Challenge of the Industrial City

While there was an increase in Protestant church membership from 1860 to 1890, the failure in urban America was only highlighted by the success. The heavily increasing Catholic and Jewish population in the cities were seen in alarm, and though now the faiths seen as stabilizing the immigrant communities, the 19th century Protestants saw them as different from the what they considered the foundation stone of American society-Protestantism. To combat this, they had tract societies issue updated tracts and the Sunday school movement increased. In addition, there was also revival as a form of Protestant technique, where there were evangelization tours and city missions, often nondenominational. Major railroads donated land to these missions for the construction of churches in places they anticipated cities would grow along with their rail lines, as well as much business support from other businesses. -Francesca Maisano

The city mission movement had substantial achievements, but the city was growing too fast, the masses were too unresponsive, and the middle-class, not the poor, were the ones reached. The Jewish and Catholic immigrants were not being reached. Some tried to downplay the doctrinal differences, forming the institutional church movement with secular activities and programs. This movement faced its own criticism, as it was seen as compromising the theology and morals. Some tried to combine the movement with the theology and moralism, seen with the Salvation Army, whose flexibility allowed it to become secure and successful. However, still only reached a small part of the immigrant population. The wealthier, native-born Protestants and poor, Jewish or Catholic immigrants and were becoming increasingly separate, and even among these groups were more separations between special classes, ethnicity, and culture. Protestantism would continue to be a force in moral-control, but not institutionally. -Francesca Maisano

The Methodist church made the Made the Methodist mission homes for prostitutes in the city. “Mission family” which was the prostitutes who had joined the mission homes (134). The wealthy people contributed to missions by giving money. For example, the Armour Mission in Chicago and the City Missionary Society (135). Salvation Army was also another big mission. Salvation Army provided soup kitchens, nurses, second-hand stores and provided nurseries (141). Salvation Army is also known to be different than the other organizations because they were known to do more than any other religious groups (141). – Jasmine Williams

How to reach the masses was a question that the Protestants had about society (138). The churches had different programs, for example, literary and sports in order to reach the masses. Some of the churches also had tides to universities one of them was the University of Minnesota (139). – Jasmine Williams The Methodist church made the Made the Methodist mission homes for prostitutes in the city. “Mission family” which was the prostitutes who had joined the mission homes (134). The wealthy people contributed to missions by giving money. For example, the Armour Mission in Chicago and the City Missionary Society (135). Salvation Army was also another big mission. Salvation Army provided soup kitchens, nurses, second-hand stores and provided nurseries (141). Salvation Army is also known to be different than the other organizations because they were known to do more than any other religious groups (141). – Jasmine Williams

How to reach the masses was a question that the Protestants had about society (138). The churches had different programs, for example, literary and sports in order to reach the masses. Some of the churches also had tides to universities one of them was the University of Minnesota (139). – Jasmine Williams

Chapter 10: Building Character Among the Urban Poor

Bosses made sure their workers lived a moral life and this can be reflected by George Pullman who was the builder of the railroad sleeping carts (144). In 1880 Pullman founded a town called Pullman on the outskirts of Chicago in which he housed the workers and families (144). The town had to reflect moral standards meaning that Pullman did not allow any brothels, dance halls alcohol, and gambling (144). George Pullman shows how the workforce also played a part in monitoring the life of people in the city.- Jasmine Williams

Chapter 11: The Urban Moral awakening of the 1890s

In the 1890s middle-class urbanites began to grow heavily focused on morality, specifically morality based on Christianity. This desire and push for morality within the immoral city spurred on activism and reform that carried on past the 1890s and into later decades. At the beginning of the chapter, Boyer talks specifically about the Vooram brothers, Walter, Frank, and Hiram, and their chief supporter Benjamin Flower and how the brothers all developed and led different reform movements and organizations within the cities they inhabited. - e.m.

Chapter 12: The Two Faces of Moral Reform in the 1890s

In this chapter Boyer describes two different directions moral reformists took in order to institute the most effective reforms within the city. The first type of reform movement is the “coercive,” in which people who sided with this code took a more direct and rigid route to remove vice and corruption from the cities and replace them with civic morality. The second type is much less rigid and stiff, “environmentalists” focused on ways to rebuild the urban environment in a way that fostered morality and ‘goodness.’ These methods were used throughout the late nineteenth century and were more fluid ideas than rigid guidelines and beliefs, but both played a part in the development of cities during this time period. -e.m.

Positive environmentalists focused on the communal responsibility of the inhabitants within the cities. They wanted to enforce the idea that everyone was responsible for each other, and in order to purify and cleanse the cities, everyone needed to come up with different ways to make the cities more hygienic and pure, which included constructing parks and newer, better, safer buildings. The coercive approach was very negative and claimed that the people in cities needed to be controlled. There is a comparison to “picking up after and fighting the devil” (p. 177) which refers to urban citizens who are seen as impurifying the cities. Moral surveillance, anti-prostitution, and anti-gambling campaigns were commonly seen in the coercive approach methods to “clean up” the city. - Devin Wright

Chapter 13: Battling the Saloon and the Brothel

President William Taft signed the Mann Act into law in June 1910. This made it illegal to transport women across state lines for “immoral purposes,” which lowered the number of brothels and the rate of prostitution in the government’s eyes. The 18th Amendment was signed into law on December 22, 1917, although actual reinforcement wouldn’t begin until a year later. These were the crowning achievements in the Progressive Era crusades against the “liquor evil” and “prostitution evil” (Boyer 191). The 1890s became the age of temperance conventions and anti-prostitution efforts. The Anti-Saloon League was founded in 1895 along with the American Purity Alliance, both of which were organizations that represented the overall mindset of the American people during this time period. The focus of this belief was focused in cities as many believed that cities were naturally immoral. New York City created the Committee of Fifteen in which investigators worked to stop prostitution within the city. -Morgan Gilbert

Intemperance and sexual deviation were first thought of as personal failings, but that idea shifted into being viewed as being products of environmental factors that needed to be rid of in order to cleanse the cities. This switch from social purity to social hygiene was important because it shifted the focus and blame on the individual to focusing on public health within the cities. - Devin Wright

Organizations like the Woman's Christian Temeprance Union (1874), the Anti-Saloon League (1895), the American Purity Alliance and others continued their antialcohol and antiprostitution efforts. By 1900 the vices were still deeply entrenched in cities, and every city had a red-light district. Many of these organizations also published articles, books, and magazines as vice reports in cities. -Francisco

Chapter 14: One Last, Decisive Struggle

Unfortunately for urban reformists, moral control was impossible to maintain in cities. Cities were too large and growing too fast for there to be any sort of gauge or control on how moral and upright cities were. There were no social checks like there might have been back in the days of the village, like Jane Addams says, meaning there was no way for the people in the cities to check each other morally and force each other to maintain a higher moral order. This meant that for urban reformists, cities would forever be immoral and sinful no matter what they did to try and correct it. -e.m.

These moralists were not interested in giant communities as a whole, instead, they were interested in trying to cut out the moral corruption at its heart: the city. They focused their efforts on showing the largest cities in America as these dens of iniquity. As they described these cities, they appear more as fronts for a shadowy government attempting to control the moral fabric of the nation than the multitude of stores and businesses that they were. (Daniel Noel)

Reformers believed there was a link between the saloon and prostitution. This ended up being a result of Raines Law on 1896 in New York. Raines Law prohibited liquor sales on Sunday unless it was served with a meal in a hotel (defined as an establishment with at least ten bedrooms). Saloons began adding tiny, shabby bedrooms. Saloon owners tolerated prostitution as it brought in clientele. - Francisco

Chapter 15: Positive Enviromentalism

The goal of positive environmentalism was trying to get rid of urban vice by creating conditions where you can remove the patterns that people fall into it so that there are fewer people who get involved in vice and who will endorse those behaviors to other people. It is not legal repression or just attacking those specific behaviors, it is attacking the causes that lead to people making bad moral choices. They also work to create more options for healthier and more moral behaviors to be substituted instead.– Ellora L.

Simply by invoking a new phrase, “bad physical environment means bad moral environment,” the immense weight was taken straight from the poor and in need. In an effort to accentuate this, new “moral alternatives” were introduced to replace the old. Clubs to replace gangs, parks, and playgrounds instead of wild dance halls, and ice cream parlors not saloons were one of the early movement to try and assist the unfortunate and young, instead of admonishing them. (Daniel Noel)

Edward A. Ross wanted to implement “Social Religion” in cities to establish more moral control that would hold everyone responsible for their actions and establish a stronger sense of community between the people living in the cities. The role of religion had decreased and Ross wanted to revitalize morality by enforcing a communal religion. With immigrant populations rising, immigrants were bringing their religions with them, posing a threat to traditional Protestantism in cities. - Devin Wright

Chapter 16: Housing, Parks, and Playgrounds

Jacob Riis’ How the Other Half Lives, in 1890, described what life was like for people living in the slums of New York City. The tenements located on Mulberry Bend in New York was one of the places specifically mentioned in the book, and most likely because of this was chosen to be demolished. In its place, a park was built in 1897 in order to attract more moral people to the area by giving them a place to be outside. Similar transformations were taking place all over the city during this time period, as it was believed that by removing the places of vice in a city, the morals of the people around it would improve. In 1894, the New York State Tenement House Committee decided the living conditions permitted by tenements were a major contributor to the low morals of the people living in the lower income neighborhoods. To solve this, people thought stricter housing codes, privatized housing, and the growth of suburbs was the solution. The main idea is that the environment in which people live impacts their morality. -Morgan Gilbert

The playground movement began as an answer to the industrial revolutions realities of crowded cities and long work days. It aimed to save the poor, immigrant, and homeless children from unhealthy crowded tenement neighborhoods. Its supporters believed that play could improve the mental, moral, and physical well-being of children. They felt that recreation would transform a nation of downtrodden, unhealthy factory workers, into healthy citizens working for a common good. ~Deborah Hunnel

Park advocates saw an important dimension for their efforts with their counterparts in tenement reform. Thus, New York, would want a park appropriation in 1851, letting people go out in “places that are more objectionable” (Pg. 237). One of the main people Henry Beecher was very pleased with the Brooklyn’s Prospect Park with its distinct asset to the city that it was given. {Hunter Dykhuis}

By building parks in poorer neighborhoods, the residents would have a reason to go somewhere other than a saloon or brothel. There would be something else to do and it would start them on the path to making better decisions. Adding attractions to these parks would keep bringing people back. Playgrounds would keep children off the streets and would aid in social education and development. Plays would be put on in the evenings, carousels, exercise classes. By giving poor people choices and other things to do they would stay away from their vices. -Francisco

During the Progressive Era, reformers wanted to create positive environments for the urban poor. So came the playground and park movements. Building playgrounds in the poor neighborhoods, would get rid of the old tenements that no one used anymore and were not up to code. It would also give the poor children a safe place to play, and run around. It would keep them out of trouble, and they could play outside, and get fresh air.

Chapter 17: The Civic Ideal and the Urban Moral Order

Some Progressive urban reformers used the strategy of “civic loyalty” for a close-knit, homogeneous moral order, shrouding cities in a spiritualized, mystical conception with a spiritual potential through which humans would find their divine potential. There was the idea that cities weren’t just a gathering of individual humans but a unit, social organism more than the individuals that it consists of, that deserves loyalty from all. Progressives hoped that by convincing the populace that cities were to become social units, then all city dwellers would base their actions and values on their civic roles. Instead of traditional, physical institutions and people having the moral authority, it would be a collective standard sustained by manipulating the ideas and images of urbanization. To achieve greater civic loyalty from the masses, Progressives made “civic idealism” tangible through allegorical expression, hosting pageants symbolically about cities’ histories and aspiration, encouraging solidarity and community spirit. One such pageant was the Saint Louis Pageant and Masque. In Saint Louis and other cities, these events interested urban reform circles, as it went along with the idea of loyalty to the city and a civic ideal. -Francesca Maisano

Those events that were held in St. Louis were very successful. With 4 separate events going on and about 100,000 people would be thrown into the natural amphitheater in Forest Park for the event that included over 1,500 cast members and a chorus that had 750 voices in it as well. With the first pageant by Thomas Wood Stevens that would include scenes from St. Louis’ past. Another event held by Percy MacKaye would treat people with same history but in a very ambitious masque. With that in mind, St. Louis was having a lot of good things happening to it. {Hunter Dykhuis}

Chapter 18: The Civic Ideal Made Real

Woodrow Wilson was the rising star in national politics, as he said that civic loyalty was key in improving social and moral climates within cities in America. However, the central issue for many people was how he was going to complete this task, as this was a highly debated topic. Wilson supported the idea that in order to get people to follow along and assimilate into a new and improved spatial order, it must appear to be better than the current state. It must also be visible in many aspects of their lives in order to grab their attention and gain their support. Immigrants were coming to America by boat-loads in every day, and the American currently living with the cities,m especially the upper class and morally sound people, must serve as an example to these people. The problem with this vision is that many civic symbols, traditions, and landmarks were not supporting the idealized version of urban American social order.-Morgan Gilbert

The Capitalists that were not getting the appeal of the cities beauty because it was no deeper than what was in their pocketbooks. There was dirt, disorder, and ugliness that they viewed as bad for business causing them to want a more attractive and orderly city that was going to bring in more customers. There was a transit workers’ strike that happened in Cleveland and it was believed that a local businessman would call for accelerated work on a civic center that would counter the city’s image that was being perceived as a place of “rioting, bloodshed, and anarchy” (Pg. 264). {Hunter Dykhuis}

From the City Beautiful to City Planning: The Moral Dimension Remains Central

In the early 20th century the City Beautiful gained significant traction, thanks to a commission from Congress. Not just in an attempt to make certain parts of cities look nicer, but the flow and work smoother as well. This change flowed into the city planning movement, along with the new positive movement to make intentional moral changes to cities helped draw many people in. (Daniel Noel)

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