Progressivism, far from monolithic, embraced and represented a wide variety of ideologies, including womens suffrage, advocacy for prohibition, and the rejection of child labor. Progressivism served as an umbrella term for all these things.
Early investigative journalists, pejoratively termed “muckrakers” by then-president Roosevelt, were integral to Progressivism by exposing social ills to the American middle-class, who until that time had lived fairly sheltered lives, unaware of the corruption in big business. While not federally supported under Roosevelts presidency, they nevertheless greatly impacted Progressive-era reform— many of these muckrakers were critical of the US senate and railroad practices, the latter of which would eventually prompt President Roosevelt to pass railroad cost regulations.
The creation of settlement houses, which was perhaps one of the earliest progressive movements. Aimed at helping immigrating poor settle into life in major American cities, the first settlement house —called the Hull House— was established in 1889 by Jane Addams and Ellen Starr. Addams was very supportive of Roosevelts campaign for presidency and of the larger progressive movement in general.
Beginning with his presidency in 1901, Theodore Roosevelt quickly became a figurehead for the progressive movement. He questioned the monopolies of the select few financiers and industrialists who held power in America, supported conservationism in America, and advocated strongly for railroad regulation throughout his presidency. While Roosevelt also supported reform in social issues like womens rights and disenfranchisement, his focus was primarily on economic issues.
During his administration, Roosevelt and his cabinet investigated the misconduct and anti-democratic tendencies of the wealthy industrialists that maintained a hold on the power and commerce in America. By using government intervention