Advanced Reading Exercise

New York History - Heading Gap Fill

In the following text, the headings of six sections have been removed. Choose the best heading (A-G) for the six sections (1-6). There is one extra heading you do not need to use. You only need to write the letter in the box.

Use these headings to fill the spaces below. There is one extra you do not need to use.

  1. Changing Economy
  2. Political Colors
  3. Cool Again
  4. Crime Hits Hard
  5. Hard Times
  6. Shifting Populations
  7. Homecoming Heroes

As the largest state, New York again supplied the most resources during World War II and suffered 31,215 casualties. The war affected the state both socially and economically. For example, to overcome discriminatory labor practices, Governor Herbert H. Lehman created the Committee on Discrimination in Employment in 1941 and Governor Thomas E. Dewey signed the Ives-Quinn bill in 1945, banning employment discrimination.


The G.I. Bill of 1944, which offered returning soldiers the opportunity of affordable higher education, forced New York to create a public university system since its private universities could not handle the influx; the State University of New York was created by Governor Dewey in 1948.


World War II constituted New York's last great industrial era. At its conclusion, the defense industry shrank and the economy shifted towards producing services rather than goods. Returning soldiers disproportionately displaced female and minority workers who had entered the industrial workforce only when the war left employers no other choice. Companies moved to the south and west, seeking lower taxes and a less costly, non-union workforce.


Many workers followed the jobs. The middle class expanded and created suburbs such as the one on Long Island. The automobile accelerated this decentralization; planned communities like Levittown offered affordable middle-class housing. Larger cities stopped growing around 1950. Growth resumed only in New York City, in the 1980s. Buffalo's population fell by half between 1950 and 2000. Reduced immigration and worker migration led New York State's population to decline for the first time between 1970 and 1980. California and Texas both surpassed it in population.

New York entered its third era of massive transportation projects by building highways, notably the New York State Thruway. The project was unpopular with New York City Democrats, who referred to it as "Dewey's ditch" and the "enemy of schools", because the Thruway disproportionately benefited upstate. The highway was based on the German Autobahn and was unlike anything seen at that point in the United States. It was within 30 miles (48 km) of 90% of the population at its conception. Costing $600 million, the full 427-mile (687 km) project opened in 1956.


Nelson Rockefeller was governor from 1959-1973 and changed New York politics. He began as a liberal, but grew more conservative: he responded aggressively to the Attica Prison riot, and promulgated the uniquely severe Rockefeller Drug Laws. The World Trade Center and other profligate projects nearly drove New York City into bankruptcy in 1975. The state took substantial budgetary control, which eventually led to improved fiscal prudence.


The Executive Mansion was retaken by Democrats in 1974 and remained under Democratic control for 20 years under Hugh Carey and Mario Cuomo. Late-century Democrats became more centrist, including US Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1977-2001) and New York City Mayor Ed Koch (1978-1989), while state Republicans began to align themselves with the more conservative national party. They gained power through the elections of Senator Alfonse D'Amato in 1980, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani in 1993, and Governor George Pataki in 1994. New York remained one of the most liberal states. In 1984, Ronald Reagan was the last Republican to carry the state, although Republican Michael Bloomberg served as New York City mayor in the early 21st century.


In the late 20th century, there was a surge in culture. New York City became, once again, "the center for all things chic and trendy". Hip-hop and rap music, led by New York City, became the most popular pop genre. Immigration to both the city and state rose. New York City, with a large gay and lesbian community, suffered many deaths from AIDS.

New York City increased its already large share of television programming, home to the network news broadcasts as well as two of the three major cable news networks. The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times became two of the three "national" newspapers, read throughout the country. New York also increased its dominance of the financial services industry centered on Wall Street, led by banking expansion, a rising stock market, innovations in investment banking, including junk bond trading and accelerated by the savings and loan crisis that decimated competitors elsewhere in New York.

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