The 19th century saw the birth and expansion of the Progressive movement, a social quest in attempting to get solutions for the numerous problems facing the America, because of the great revolution, urbanization and population changes in the century. The books explains the history of America I the first chapter, and faults the existing data for not presenting the exact picture of the society. It also tries to explain the history of the American nation. In addition, he tries to answer the vexing questions about the nature and origin of the progressive movement, which remain unanswered. The book also aims at revealing the story behind evolution of the reform movement through the Taft administration until the end of the republican phase.
George attempts to give an evaluation of the multi-character Theodore Roosevelt, whose actions, deeds and personality dominated the American landscape until 1912.
Review of the book
In his book, The Era of Theodore Roosevelt, George E. Mowry, talks of Theodore Roosevelt and his role in shaping America into what it is today. He starts by introducing Theodore as a man born and raised in luxury by a wealthy family. He studied at Groton and later at Harvard, and his life seemed destined for privilege. He, however, acknowledges that despite, the privileges, Theodore sensed the disparity between the unfortunate and the fortunate people in the society. He also understood the difference between the American reality and the American dream. As a result, history recognizes his role in trying to make a difference in the lives of the American people (Mowry, 122).
George explains that Theodore promised to keep the policies of his predecessor, McKinley, but he failed because during his tenure, there was the industrial revolution. He was more of an innovator than a successor. He understood the relation between the economy and the government in view of agriculture, labor and capital. This revolution started to shape America and continues to shape it today, though with a number of challenges. This book explains that the first few years of the 19th Century were the most influential in development of the American society.
George is particularly articulate on the changes that America went through during the industrial revolution. There were many inventions during this period, among them the telephones, motors, lifts, electric bells and automobile instruments. He explains that this change was not just limited to technology, but to the entire lives of the American people. He looks at both sides of the changes, the positives and negatives. He explains the impact of the recession, which saw many people staying outside and being unemployed. These problems saw the emergence of new political arrangements, which sought to solve the existing problems (Mowry, 5). During this time, William McKinley was the president of the United States and the increasing problems led to his shooting. The vice president had to take over, and Roosevelt took presidency. The conservative men and women were silently opposing his succession to power, despite his assurance that he would carry on the policies of his predecessor. They felt he was interested in strange things like literature, birds and art, and he had written book not related to politics. He was only 43 years old, and certainly too young to handle the issues facing the nation. Roosevelt brought in new leadership; he fought graft in New York and had a respectable record of party loyalty. He became popular and held both the urge to excel and a profound social consciousness. Through his qualities, he was able to relate with the poor people in America and helped in advocating for their rights(Ricard, 25).
George makes use of bibliographies with the history of America and the role of Theodore in shaping America. These references are relevant in the sense that they assisted in enriching the content of the book.