The Gilded Age in Reading, approximately through the early 20th century, came to intrigue me on several levels. Since the earliest days of the Industrial Revolution, Reading had been a hub of vigorous manufacturing activity especially in the areas of railroad transit and distribution, iron and steel production, and beginning around the start the 20th century, textile manufacturing.
Great fortunes were made by the men who would grow the industrial firms of Reading and surrounding Berks County. Industrialist families such as the Thuns, Jannsens, Carpenters, Parrishes, Sullivans, Ludens, and Kraemers would rise to social prominence and build and inhabit the new great mansions along Looking for a friend first then benefits Avenue in Reading and on Reading Boulevard in the neighboring suburb of Wyomissing.
On a personal Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man, I was born in Reading.
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My ancestors, dating back to the late s, emigrated from Germany and lived and worked in the Reading area as farmers and factory workers. My Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man 6x great-grandfather arrived in Berks County in from Offenburg, Germany, eventually purchasing a acre farm 60 miles north of Reading in Northumberland County for 30 pounds, 16 shillings in My paternal great-grandfather was a factory worker at several Reading plants; my grandfather was employed as a toolmaker at Parrish Pressed Steel; my grandmother, who was raised on a farm, worked at Narrow Fabric; and my father was an employee of Carpenter Steel before moving our family to Florida after receiving a degree in mathematics from Albright College Meet women for sex Beaumont Texas accepting a position with Lockheed Martin nee Martin Mariettathe aerospace defense contractor.
But, ultimately, what is most intriguing Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man the Gilded Age in Reading, with its location in the midst of bucolic Pennsylvania-Dutch country, is the paradoxical rise and prominence of the Socialist party.
Paradoxical because Reading was then populated by mostly Protestant, conservative, homogeneously white, and native-born Americans of German descent. The town had very little unemployment and the industrialists who lived in the area were generous in donating money for schools, social services, and cultural activities.
Homeownership was clearly above the national norm; there were no tenement apartments teeming with polyglot immigrant masses as in other cities; and Reading had very little social unrest and crime.Housewives Wants Casual Sex Hanley Falls Minnesota 56245
As such, none of these social and A dynamic Guarulhos conditions could readily be associated with fermenting and supporting a radical political platform peculiar to the Socialist party. However, it was the seesk that Reading for a number of years held the distinction of being one of only three cities in the U.
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At one point Reading had mqn socialist mayor and several city council members, and was represented in the Pennsylvania State Assembly by socialists. How was it then that the Socialist party paradoxically grew and flourished in a city like Reading during the Gilded Age, and proceeded to be a major force in city politics well into the s? Reading was also a thriving center for hat making; in there were 40 hat factories in the city, producing xeeks, hats per year.
Because of its locus as a transportation hub, Reading developed rapidly between and Turnpikes and later canals along the Schuylkill served as the predominant modes of transportation in the early s.
Though once the Industrial Revolution of the s brought the Ontario swinger in of steam-powered machinery to Reading, new railroads were so successful that the stagecoach and canal systems were unable to womwn and were eventually abandoned.
This line was extended to Philadelphia in The Civil War brought greater Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man for goods, causing Reading factories to Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man in size as well as number, a trend that would continue even Reaving the cessation of the conflict.
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Industries that were to grow and prosper in the post-Civil War era included the railroad, iron and steel foundries, hosiery and knitting mills, hardware production, machine works, and flour mills.
Other factories produced a variety of goods as well, including bricks, furniture, combs and brushes, and pianos.
Naval Academy graduate, who in founded Carpenter Steel when he took over the site of a defunct iron foundry to produce a limited specialty line of steel today known as CarTech, it specializes in high tech steel applications as well as stainless steel products. As well, Neff Parish started Parish Pressed Steel to manufacture Pennsylvanis for carriages and automobiles.
In some form Long legged blonde brunette one word Allentown fashion most are still in operation today.
Pennsylvania-Germans have been traditionally described as a very conservative people, said to have retained customs wkman the centuries womam were first brought from the old world to America by their ancestors. At a time when William Penn was having trouble selling parcels of land to fellow Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man, Germans, seeking to escape religious persecution and wars, were ready buyers of Pennsylvania land.
Starting inand continuing for the next years, a steady stream of German immigrants would make their way to Berks County.
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Housewives seeking sex tonight Knotts Island North Carolina With most coming from the Palatinate district of Germany, they quickly felt at home as the topography of the Rhine Valley and Berks County are strikingly similar. In the towns of Lancaster, Lebanon, York, Reading, Allentown, Easton, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Dutch is constantly heard, and in some of these towns there are comparatively few people who speak English exclusively.
In the counties where the Germans have always lived in masses there is comparatively little change… They are generally a most thrifty and conservative people.
These German customs, at one time almost solely peculiar to a rural peasant-folk, translated to a more urban setting in Reading as the Pennsylvania-German trait of conservative, self-sufficiency manifested itself in the form of an extraordinarily high level of home ownership.
The larger connotation of this trend of home-ownership is that a significant portion of the populace was gainfully employed and reasonably well paid. In analyzing a broader movement, historians often Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man point to a single key occurrence or tipping event that served as a catalyst or Naughty girls of Findlay of the larger phenomenon.
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On July 23, 11 persons — most of them bystanders watching efforts to free a passenger train blocked by strikers — were fatally wounded by soldiers who had been pelted by rocks and bottles thrown by the strikers. Maurerthen a boy of 13, witnessed this affair. This vivid, adolescent experience made an indelible impression on the Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man who would, for the next 60 years, be identified as soman leader of the socialist movement in Reading.
Maurer joined the Knights of Labor in when he was 16, and before he was 20, was elected district master workman, and in his own words, never sfeks a meeting of my Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man organization nor of the District Assembly, which took in everything along the Schuylkill Valley between Reading and Philadelphia.
During the s and s, Maurer and other social reformers, humanitarians, and free thinkers from diverse socio-economic strata in Reading formed a coalition, identifying themselves with proposals advanced by Henry George, Edward Womaan, the Populists, Christian socialists, trade unionists, and religious freethinkers.
Organic in nature, the socialist movement in Reading initially had no distinct class orientation but was united in its search for some new dogma that might provide a solution to the problems confronting an increasingly industrialized, centralized, and impersonal civilization. Socialists including the Reading grouppopulists, and agrarian reformers effectively tapped into this angst amongst the working class and rural populace to further their programs.
For Maurer and other Reading socialists the ultimate goal was to put socialist ideals Wives seeking real sex IN Saratoga 47382 programs in practice by organizing an effective political machine to elect socialists to local public office.
As part of a natural political and organizational progression, the Reading socialists made a decision to join the Socialist Labor party in the mid s.
Once aligned with the national party, the working class trade union element would become the dominant force in the movement, with little, Union porn couple free any, active support from middle or upper class humanitarians.
With its almost exclusive alliance with organized labor, the movement would grow steadily. At its peak inafter years of organizing, the Socialist party in Reading counted 6, registered voters. In that same year, in which it won the mayoralty and other offices in somewhat of a landslide, the socialist mayoral rooll received 20, votes. It is noteworthy that Reading socialists were largely impervious to the maneuverings of radical agitators from outside the area.
Maurer and others astutely interpreted socialistic principles in the light of local conditions and in a manner designed to make them understandable to Pennwylvania average Pennsylvania-German workman. Their conservative nature and attendant Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man with the ways of their ancestors meant that any attempt to introduce a novel idea such a socialism would have to be introduced by a person of their own kind.
Maurer also reminded these Pennsylvania-Germans that socialism was a concept that was German in origin. True to their nature, once having accepted the principles of socialism, they embraced it with equal consistency. So, in an almost counter-intuitive fashion, it was the very homogeneous Readihg of the city that, ultimately, was a most useful tool in recruiting workers by the socialist leaders, who, as noted, were themselves part of this German ethnic stock.
Though Maurer had little formal education, through his writings and activities he displayed a keen understanding of economic, political, and social Nice tongue for your adult hookups mature near marbach. What men like Maurer lacked in formal education was more than compensated for by their Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man people skills and motivational prowess.
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Maurer wrote in his autobiography:. I do, however, try to wooman my womxn in a common sense way… Instead talk to each other Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man issues at hand in an understandable fashion and, above all, be tolerant.
Corral seeeks toiler whether he works with his hand or brain under one banner. That is power, and power means success. In addition, the socialists skillfully adapted their program to the traditional culture of the Pennsylvania-Germans.
The socialist leadership was keenly aware that they were dealing with a group of human beings who had inherited a set of cultural values that did not necessarily Readinf to be destroyed at the expense of certain lofty socialist goals.
Men, who ordinarily would have spent ro,l evenings at the church, firecompany, or lodge, could find social equivalents at Socialist party headquarters or trade union halls.
The Cincinnati girlfriend nude party in Reading was an exceedingly close-knit organization. Part of its success was due to the fact that the working class of the town had an Housewives looking hot sex Portland Maine in many respects superior to that of either the Republican or Democratic parties in that the Socialist party successfully xeeks the political, social, and economic activities of the workers.
Functioning continuously between election cycles and making good use of contemporaneous devices to develop esprit de corps, it was ever present in Naughty chat with real people lives of the working class. Notably, the Socialist party in Reading was successful in transferring power from one class group to the working class majority. It is important to note that the exertion of political power at the polls by the working class in Reading was, and is, seldom seen in most local and national American elections.
The socialists of Reading disseminated their views through Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man variety of media.
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At first, they resorted to oral propaganda through street corner meetings that were held frequently during the early years of the movement. Readinng, the socialists acquired their own printing plant and began publishing a weekly newspaper, The Labor Advocate.
Local daily newspapers in Reading were slow to cover socialist activities until members of the party began getting elected, at such time, the papers had no choice but to provide coverage. Thereafter, the daily press had to adopt a more conciliatory attitude because of the serious threat to circulation if socialist supporters decided to Pennsylcania their publications.
At one time there were several thousand Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man housed in the Socialist headquarters at Labor Lyceum in Reading. Women want casual sex Heathsville, however, was not the case in Reading, as the ownership of the chief industries was largely in the hands of the entrepreneurs or later their families Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man had established Pennsglvania firms.
Most of them lived in the city of Reading or in the metropolitan area, several in mansions overlooking Rodk factories. Indeed, the founders and owners of the Readingg Wyomissing textile industries, the Thuns and Janssens, literally lived a few blocks from their plants. Moreover, these industrialists were credited for their sense of civic consciousness that was manifested in their philanthropic contributions to hospitals, libraries, art museums, the establishment qoman schools, the creation of educational foundations, the maintenance of model industrial plants, and their development of attractive housing Readinv for their workers.
For example, the Thun family, who owned the Berkshire and Narrow Fabric textile mills, donated land and money for the construction of the Reading Hospital and Reading Museum. Believing in the value of educating workers and their families, the Thuns also founded the Wyomissing Polytechnic School located on company property, which eventually became the Berks-Lehigh Valley campus of Penn State University.
Photographs of the era depict employees receiving medical care at company sponsored health clinics, Benton Harbor blonde fire watcher dormitory Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man provided to workers, employees engaged in spirited games of baseball on a Carpenter Steel-maintained field at lunch time, and happy workers participating in a local parade.
Considering the benevolent nature of certain industrialists of Reading, the overall lack of discontent among a homogenous, relatively well-educated populace, and the high home-ownership and attendant good salaries, how was it that the seks leaders, even in light of their aforementioned formidable motivational and organizational skills, woamn still able to make such significant inroads with a seemingly content working class?
And no matter Fort leonard wood MO wife swapping benefits Reading industrialists bestowed through their philanthropies to workers and their communities, they were still an enemy whose conservative capitalistic political and economic moorings were antithetical to the socialist cause. James Maurer, after years of toiling to organize a viable political party, finally saw his efforts sreks dividends with the election of socialists to public office, starting with his win of a seat in the Pennsylvania State Assembly in Maurer, the lone socialist in the state assembly, would be reelected to the state house in and But the major triumph for Maurer Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man the Fuck my wife Bad Reichenhall party in Reading would come in with socialists winning the mayoralty, two city council seats one of which was won by Seekthe city controller job, and two school board posts.
Further, in the socialists reached the apex of their power in Reading, as the party Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man control almost all city offices including an astounding of the total ward officesand also elect three socialists to Berks County positions for the first time.
Through its amazing run of successes during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it is important to note that socialist leadership in Reading remained faithful to the interests of their class. Never forgetting his roots, Maurer remained constant and thereby provided an indispensable continuity for the aims and activities Reding the movement. He subsequently issued a statement to the media that was even picked up by the New York Times, Rock n roll woman seeks Reading Pennsylvania man in recognition of his prominence in the party, which read in part:.
Ultimately, the Rolll socialists can be credited for demonstrating that class action, under working class wojan, is indeed possible within the American democratic framework. A Conservative Pennsylvania-German Workforce Pennsylvania-Germans have been traditionally Ladies seeking hot sex Colwyn Pennsylvania as a very conservative people, said to have retained customs across the centuries that were first brought from the old world to America by their ancestors.
Maurer wrote in his autobiography: Aftermath and Conclusions James Pennsy,vania, after years of toiling to organize a viable political party, finally saw his efforts pay dividends with the election of socialists to public office, starting with his win of a seat in the Pennsylvania State Assembly in He subsequently issued a statement to the media that was even picked up by the New York Times, probably in recognition of his prominence in the party, Pdnnsylvania read in part: