Many institutions emerged at the time such as Madison Avenue’ s advertising centre, Times Square and Broadway’ s theatre district (Riis, 1997, 56). Immigration in the nineteenth and twentieth century came in two phases. Old immigration composed of Irish and Germans and new ones from central and Eastern Europe. Two immigration centres were established: Castle Garden and Ellis Island. The United States began levying tax for all new immigrants, 50 cents per head. Inspection processes also began for third class passengers. First and second class passengers were not scanned for physical diseases and did not undergo a lot of questioning.
The great potato famine in Ireland increased the number of immigrants entering the US through the port of New York City. Other immigrants were from Italy and Ireland (Foner, 2000, 80 & Dolan, 2010, 354). Initially, political parties did not exist. Leadership fell on the hands of local elites and leading families. Voting procedures were undemocratic because only white adult males were allowed to possess the voters’ card. Appeals for election candidates were not seriously taken. Voting was done by voice, citizens had little say in presidential elections and only few voted.
Election participation was generally low since women did not vote. The eighteenth century saw a revolution in American politics; policies for voting procedures were established. Voice voting was abolished and participation in voting increased. Electoral candidates could then appealing using speeches, newspapers, parades, rallies, and barbecues to quest for political support. Property qualifications for voting and leadership were abolished under the new constitution, all adult males were allowed to vote, whether rich or poor. Later, the taxpaying and military serving qualifications were abolished and universal white manhood suffrage was established.
More polling stations were opened and secret ballot was instituted. Women including African Americans were allowed to vote (Keith, 1990, 96).
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