Date of Award

Fall 1985

Document Type

Restricted Thesis

Terms of Use

© 1985 Mitchell Stern. All rights reserved. Access to this work is restricted to users within the Swarthmore College network and may only be used for non-commercial, educational, and research purposes. Sharing with users outside of the Swarthmore College network is expressly prohibited. For all other uses, including reproduction and distribution, please contact the copyright holder.

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


History Department


In his thesis, Stern analyzes the resurgence and failure of the Progressive Movement in the United States, focusing particularly on the presidential candidacy of Robert LaFollette in 1924. By examining primary sources including manuscripts, newspapers and election statistics, along with contemporary and later periodicals, Stern highlights the lack of cohesiveness within the party as the cause of much of its problems. Coupled with changes in the American economy and flawed leadership, Stern concludes that this resulted in the Progressive Movement never fully gaining the ability to pose a threat to the Republicans and the Democrats.