U.S. Technological, Economic, and SocialDevelopment for the 21st Century
municationstill further. By 1892,fifteenyearsafterBell patente thetelephone, thetelephonenetworkreachedfromtheAtl~tic coasto Chicago,andby 1900, almost2 million miles of telephon line interlacedtheentirecountry. Laterthis networkwould transmitnot only voice but writtenmessagesa,ndradio madeit possibleto addressthe whole nation at once.
Oxenandbuffalo will notdo for a moderneconomy.Massproductionrequires massive,routinely available,reliable, easyto stockpile, highly concentrated sourcesofenergy.Thesequalitiessuggesheavyandgrowingrelianceonextra- humanand extra-animalsources.
Early Americanfactoriesdependedprimarily on waterpower,availableat a limited numberof sites. After 1840,the useof steamincreasedrapidly, andby about 1860,steamhad surpassedwateras the chief sourceof power.
Throughthe l870s, electricitywasusedprimarily for communication-for the telegraph,for example, steamand waterpower continuedto be the dominant powersourcesfor industry. With the introductionof centralgeneratingstations in the l880s, electricity gainedimportancein transportationand industry. By 1902,productionof electricitywas6 billion kilowatt hours,andfrom thenon it roserapidly, reachingalmost57 billion kilowatt hoursin 1920(U.S. Bureauof the Census, 1975,SeriesS44).
TheNeed Eachof the elementsof industrializationexaminedso far is affectedby the
encompassinsocietywithin which it is nestled.As GustavRanis(1968),Yale's renowneddevelopmentaeconomist,put it, "In modifyingthesimplifiedviewof how the world operates,we musttakeinto accountnot only morerealisticno- tions of the role of labor, factor substitutionability,and technologicachange, but also of the heretoforeneglectedchangesin the institutionalmilieu within which an economyoperates." (p. 415).
Key amongthesefactorsarethe financial/legalinstitutions,suchasthosethat canamas largeamountsof capitalor regulatethe amountof moneyin circula-
tion; thosethat cancondone,promote, or retardthe developmenof corpora- tions, which are legalentitiescharteredby the state;and so on.