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The Gilded Age 1866-1901
Reconstruction to the Spanish-American War


Selected Books

Beatty, Jack
Age of Betrayal: The Triumph of Money in America, 1865-1900
E661.B37 2007
Beatty claims that in the Gilded Age, corporations, not the people, ruled America.
Beatty, Jack
Colossus: How the Corporation Changed America
HD2356.U5 C65 2001
Beatty, a senior editor of The Atlantic Monthly, has gathered a wide array of documents with which he creates a history of the American corporation, from its beginnings in the 17th century to today.
Bellesiles, Michael A.
1877: America's Year of Living Violently
E671.B47 2010
1877 was one of the most violent in United States history, characterized by a crippling economic depression, class warfare (industrial strife in Pittsburgh and St. Louis), a national railroad strike, struggles with Native American tribes in the Great Plains region, and racial violence in the South.
Edwards, Rebecca
New Spirits: Americans in the Gilded Age, 1865-1905
E661.E27 2006
Opening with the legacies of the Civil War, Part I focuses on the era's political and economic transformations. Part II explores upheavals in family life, scientific thought,and religious faith. Part III follows the depression of the 1890s and its aftermath. The book reveals a world of hopeful immigrants and striving professionals; generations in conflict with one another; a new West and South; and religious, political, intellectual, and sexual experimentation.
Husband, Julie; O'Loughlin, Jim
Daily Life in the Industrial United States, 1870-1900
E168.H965 2004
First-hand accounts, photographs and newspaper cartoons add to the immediacy of this depiction of life in the industrial age.
Klein, Maury
The Power Makers: Steam, Electricity, and the Men Who Invented Modern America
T20.K585 2008
Klein tells the story of the "power revolution" that turned America from an agrarian society into a technological superpower.
Lears, T. J. Jackson
Rebirth of a Nation: The Making of Modern America, 1877-1920
E661.L43 2009x
Historian Jackson Lears chronicles the period after the Civil War when America reunited and began to form the world power of the twentieth century. Read more about the book in this Pittsburgh Post-Gazette review.
Livesay, Harold C.
Andrew Carnegie and the Rise of Big Business
PENNA HD9520.C3 L58 2007
This newly revised biography portrays of one of the twentieth century's most successful businessmen, while placing his life in the larger landscape of industrialism, capitalism, and the rise of big business.
Morris, Charles R.
The Tycoons: How Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Jay Gould, and J. P. Morgan Invented the American Supereconomy
HD70.U5 M67 2005
The modern American economy was the creation of four men: Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Jay Gould, and J. P. Morgan. They were the giants of the Gilded Age, a moment of riotous growth that established America as the richest, most inventive, and most productive country on the planet.
Nasaw, David
Andrew Carnegie
CT275.C3 N37 2006
Historian David Nasaw tells the rags-to-riches story of Andrew Carnegie, America's first modern titan. From his first job as a bobbin boy at age thirteen to his status as the richest man in the world upon retirement, Carnegie was the embodiment of the American dream and the prototype of today's billionaire.
Rayner, Richard, 1955-
The Associates: Four Capitalists Who Created California
HE2752.R39 2008
Covers the lives of the Big Four: Collis Huntington, Leland Stanford, Mark Hopkins and Charles Crocker. See also the 1938 book by Oscar Lewis: The Big Four; the story of Huntington, Stanford, Hopkins, and Crocker, and of the building of the Central Pacific.
Rauchway, Eric
Murdering McKinley: The Making of Theodore Roosevelt's America
E711.9.R38 2003
Rauchway's book begins with the 1901 assassination of President William McKinley by anarchist Leon Czolgosz at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. He explores turn of the century social conditions and whether Czolgosz was driven by his psychological state or by his anarchist ideology.
Richardson, Heather Cox
West from Appomattox: The Reconstruction of America after the Civil War
E661.R53 2007
This history of the United States from Lincoln to Theodore Roosevelt includes stories of everyday people along with those of the famous.
Werth, Barry
Banquet at Delmonico's : Great Minds, the Gilded Age, and the Triumph of Evolution in America
In Banquet at Delmonico’s, Barry Werth, the acclaimed author of The Scarlet Professor, draws readers inside the circle of philosophers, scientists, politicians, businessmen, clergymen, and scholars who brought Charles Darwin’s controversial ideas to America in the crucial years after the Civil War. The United States in the 1870s and ’80s was deep in turmoil–a brash young nation torn by a great depression, mired in scandal and corruption, rocked by crises in government, violently conflicted over science and race, and fired up by spiritual and sexual upheavals.

Videos and DVDs

Around the World in 72 Days
(DVD) PN4874.C59 A85 2006x
Biographical documentary exploring the life of journalist Nellie Bly (who began her career in Pittsburgh), through her own words as well as through interviews with journalists, biographers, and historians. Special attention is paid to her ground-breaking investigative style, her exploits, and her highly publicized journey around the world in 1888.
Emma Goldman
(DVD) HX84.G64 E46 2004x
Covers the life of anarchist Emma Goldman (1869 – 1940), a Russian Jewish immigrant who was a champion of free thought, free speech, and free love and founded the anarchist journal Mother Earth.
Not for Ourselves Alone
(DVD) HQ1412.N668 2004bx
Documentary examining the friendship and working relationship between Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906) and lesser-known purveyor of women's rights, Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902). Traces their efforts in the struggle for equality for women under the law and provides the story of a crucial era in the women's movement.
One Woman, One Vote
Documents the 72-year struggle for women's suffrage which culminated in the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920.
The Orphan Trains
(DVD) HV985.O7759 2006x
Examines the efforts of the Children's Aid Society in New York, organized by minister Charles Loring Brace, which from 1853 to 1929 sent over 100,000 unwanted and orphaned children from the city to homes in rural America.
Transcontinental Railroad
(DVD) TF25.P23 T7325 2005x
This PBS American Experience video explores the travails of the entrepreneurs and engineers behind the building of the transcontinental railroad, discusses its effects on Native American and Chinese immigrant populations and describes how the railroad transformed the landscape of the American West.

Web Sites