Primary Source Document

The Federal-Aid Road Act of 1916

[39 Stat. 355]

An Act To provide that the United States shall aid the States in the construction of rural post roads, and for other purposes

Primary Source Typed Document

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to cooperate with the States, through their respective State highway departments, in the construction of rural post roads; but no money apportioned under this act to any State shall be expended therein until its legislature shall have assented to the provisions of this act, except that, until the final adjournment of the first regular session of the legislature held. after the passage of this act, the assent of the governor of the State shall he sufficient. The Secretary of Agriculture and the State highway department of each State shall agree upon the roads to be constructed therein and the character and method of construction : Provided, That all roads constructed under the provisions of this act shall be free from tolls of all kinds.

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The Jazz Age Great Depression New Deal Era and World War 2 America

The Perils of Prosperity, 1914-1932 by William E. Leuchtenburg :: Chapter 9: The Revolution in Morals

Response / Thought Quotes

  • “The right of women to vote should have required no special justification, but to overcome resistance to approval of the Nineteenth Amendment suffragists, accepting the traditional view of woman’s nature, had argued that giving women the ballot would purify politics and initiate a new era of universal peace and benevolence.” 
  • “Give me a dozen healthy infants, well-formed, and my own specified world to bring them up in and I’ll guarantee to take anyone at random and train him to become any specialist I might select— doctor, lawyer, artist, merchant-chief, and yes, even beggarman and thief, regardless of his talents, tendencies, abilities, vocations and race of his ancestor.”
  • “The hedonism of the period was less a remedy than a symptom of what Walter Lippmann called a “vast dissolution of ancient habits,” and rarely did it prove as satisfying as people hoped.” 

Thought Questions

  • Describe the progress towards female suffrage? How did World War I impact the campaign?
  • How did moral norms and boundaries change in the post World War I era?
  • What role did the decline in religion play in changing values?
  • React and Respond: “The “new woman” revolted against masculine possessiveness, against “over-evaluation” of women “as love objects,” against being treated, at worst, as a species of property. The new woman wanted the same freedom of movement that men had and the same economic and political rights.” 
  • Describe the evolution in the attitudes of women in the post war period?
  • Describe the evolution in the attitudes towards women in the post war period?
  • Compare and Contrast the struggle for women’s suffrage in the North, South and West
  • Compare and Contrast the role Evangelical Christianity and Progressive Christianity played in the struggle for women’s rights in general and suffrage specifically
  • What was the Sheppard-Towner Act? 
  • How did female suffrage impact the economics of family and single life for women?
  • In what ways did men react to the change in the roles of women in society and the home? 
  • How were children and children’s rights impacted by the women’s rights movement?
  • In what ways did the field of psychology impact women and the family in the progressive era?
  • How was Eugene O’Neill significant in the social development of the United States?
  • Expand and Explain: “In the attempt to work out a new standard of relations between men and women, Americans in the 1920s became obsessed with the subject of sex.” 
  • Who were the “Flappers” and what impact did they have on urban American culture?
  • In what ways was the new status and circumstances of women reflected in the arts and how did the arts impact the role of women?
  • “None of the Victorian mothers had any idea how casually their daughters were accustomed to be kissed.”
  • Explain and Expand “The Gibson girl was the embodiment of stability. The flapper’s aesthetic ideal was motion, her characteristics were intensity, energy, volatility. While the Gibson girl seems incapable of an immodest thought or deed, the flapper strikes us as brazen and at least capable of sin if not actually guilty of it. She refused to recognize the traditional moral code of American civilization, while the Gibson girl had been its guardian.” 
  • React and Respond: “Instead of youth emulating age, age imitated youth. Scott Fitzgerald, looking back on the years of which he was the chief chronicler, recalled: “May one offer in exhibit the year 1922! That was the peak of the younger generation, for though the Jazz Age continued, it became less and less an affair of youth. The sequel was a children’s party taken over by elders.” “Oh, yes, we are collegiate” 
  • React and Respond: “Abandoning the notion of saving income or goods or capital over time, the country insisted on immediate gratification … The preoccupation with living in the present had problematic consequences.”

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