The Cooper Union Address: Documentary Analysis

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During the 19th century, New York was an average populated area that will then multiply its population at an incredible rate. It was throughout this period that New York experienced revolutionary change. According to historian Kenneth T. Jackson, “in 1800 New York had only 100,000 people and by 1900 it had 50 times as many people”. The documentary begins by telling the life of Walt Whitman as a child born in long island who enjoyed playing baseball in the vacant fields. The documentary talks about the economic impact of the Erie canal after it was opened in October 1825. After the opening of the Erie canal, New York became an industrial city. According to historian Wallace “by the time of the civil war, New York was the biggest industrial city …show more content…
During his speech, Lincoln reaffirms his opposition to slavery and claimed that the founding fathers had intended Congress to regulate slavery. The documentary addresses the tensions growing between the north and the south that led to the civil war. According to the documentary the civil war “was the first industrialized war ever and it produced an industrial north to make it possible”. New York played a role in the civil war as the “capital of that capitalist world”. Nonetheless there was chaos during the civil war time frame. New York experienced multiple draft riots that were led by the lower class. These riots were a way for lower class immigrants to protest their living conditions and unfair treatment. The angered crowds went after those who favored the war, the New York times, wall street, rich people and black people who they believed were the primary cause of the war. One part of this documentary that I found extremely surprising is the extent to which this racial hate went on even to the point of mobs attacking a colored orphan asylum with kids under the age of 12. It makes me sick to picture innocent young kids running afraid of these mobs that wanted to hurt them just for the color of their skin. Disorder was found everywhere in the New York city there was riots, people being hanged, burned, lynched, beaten, stoned, and tortured. I find it startling how history usually shows the north as a heaven for free blacks however they were basically living similar or worse conditions than when they were under slavery. Nevertheless, after a week of disorder control finally came when federal troops arrived to New York to restore order. However, many buildings and properties had been destroyed and over all the whole city was a disaster. At the end of the documentary, historians discuss the impact of the draft riots as a violence that provided negative and

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