TOEFL Readings 8
In the United States in the early 1800's, individual state governments had more
effect on the economy than did the federal government. States chartered
manufacturing, banking, mining, and transportation firms and participated in the
Line construction of various internal improvements such as canals, turnpikes, and railroads.
(5) The states encouraged internal improvements in two distinct ways ; first, by actually establishing state companies to build such improvement ; second, by providing part of
the capital for mixed public-private companies setting out to make a profit.
In the early nineteenth century, state governments also engaged in a surprisingly
large amount of direct regulatory activity, including extensive licensing and inspection
(10) programs. Licensing targets reflected both similarities in and differences between the
economy of the nineteenth century and that of today : in the nineteenth century, state
regulation through licensing fell especially on peddlers, innkeepers, and retail
merchants of various kinds. The perishable commodities of trade generally came under
state inspection, and such important frontier staples as lumber and gunpowder were
(15) also subject to state control. Finally, state governments experimented with direct labor
and business regulation designed to help the individual laborer or consumer, including
setting maximum limits on hours of work and restrictions on price-fixing by businesses.
Although the states dominated economic activity during this period, the federal
government was not inactive. Its goals were the facilitation of western settlement and
(20) the development of native industries. Toward these ends the federal government
pursued several courses of action. It established a national bank to stabilize banking
activities in the country and, in part, to provide a supply of relatively easy money to the
frontier, where it was greatly needed for settlement. It permitted access to public
western lands on increasingly easy terms, culminating in the Homestead Act of 1862,
(25) by which title to land could be claimed on the basis of residence alone. Finally, it set up
a system of tariffs that was basically protectionist in effect, although maneuvering for
position by various regional interests produced frequent changes in tariff rates
throughout the nineteenth century.
18. What does the passage mainly discuss?
(A) States's rights versus federal rights
(B) The participation of state governments in railroad, canal, and
(C) The roles of state and federal governments in the economy
of the nineteenth century
(D) Regulatory activity by state governments
19. The word “effect” in line 2 is closest in meaning to
20. All of the following are mentioned in the passage as areas that involved state governments in the nineteenth century EXCEPT
(A) mining (B) banking
(C) manufacturing (D) higher education
21. The word “distinct” in line 5 is closest in meaning to
22. It can be inferred from the first paragraph that in the nineteenth century canals
and railroads were
(A) built with money that came from the federal government
(B) much more expensive to build than they had been previously
(C) built predominantly in the western part of the country
(D) sometimes built in part by state companies
23. The regulatory activities of state governments included all of the following EXCEPT
(A) licensing of retail merchants
(B) inspecting materials used in turnpike maintenance
(C) imposing limits on price-fixing
(D) control of lumber
24. The word “setting” in line 17 is closest in meaning to
25. The word “ends” in line 20 is closest in meaning to
26. According to the passage, which of the following is true of the Homestead
Act of 1862 ?
(A) It made it increasingly possible for settlers to obtain land in the West.
(B) It was a law first passed by state governments in the West.
(C) It increased the money supply in the West.
(D) It established tariffs in a number of regions.
27. Which of the following activities was the responsibility of the federal government
in the nineteenth century?
(A) Control of the manufacture of gunpowder
(B) Determining the conditions under which individuals worked
(C) Regulation of the supply of money
(D) Inspection of new homes built on western lands
18. C 19. C 20. D 21. A 22. D 23. B 24. C 25. D 26. A 27. C