Gilded Age and Progressive Era

The Rise of Reform Politics

Clock 120 minutes

This lesson explores state and national politics, and constitutional principles, during the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.  Students will explore the issues that dominated politics and the various reform movements that took shape during this period through a historical narrative, primary sources, and student activities.  Students will better understand the role of government in American society and the economy in history and today.

Founding Principles

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Federalism

The people delegate certain powers to the national government, while the states retain other powers; and the people, who authorize the states and national government, retain all freedoms not delegated to the governing bodies.

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Limited Government

Citizens are best able to pursue happiness when government is confined to those powers which protect their life, liberty, and property.

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Property Rights

The natural right of all individuals to create, obtain, and control their possessions, beliefs, faculties, and opinions, as well as the fruits of their labor.

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Separation of Powers

A system of distinct powers built into the Constitution to prevent an accumulation of power in one branch.

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