P1: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, baking, mining, and transportation firms and participated in the construction of various internal improvements such as canals, turnpikes, and railroads. The states encouraged internal improvements in two distinct ways: first, by actually establishing state companies to build such improvements; second, by providing part of the capital for mixed public-private companies setting out to make a profit.
- Reading Practice Test 62 from The Collection of TOEFL Reading Comprehension
- TOEFL IBT Reading Practice Test 48 from The Official Guide to the TOEFL Test
- Reading Practice Test 69 from The Collection of TOEFL Reading Comprehension
- Reading Practice Test 67 from The Collection of TOEFL Reading Comprehension
- Reading Practice Test 66 from The Collection of TOEFL Reading Comprehension
P2: In the early nineteenth century, state governments also engaged in a surprisingly large amount of direct regulatory activity, including extensive licensing and inspection 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 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.
P3: Although the states dominated economic activity during this period, the federal government was not inactive. Its goals were the facilitation of western settlement and the development of native industries. Toward these ends the federal government pursued several courses of action. It established a national bank to stabilized 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, by which title to land could be claimed on the basis of residence alone. Finally, it set upa 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.
10. What does the passage mainly discuss?
(A) States’ rights versus federal rights
(B) The participation of state governments in railroad, canal, and turnpike construction
(C) The roles of state and federal governments in the economy of the nineteenth century
(D) Regulatory activity by state governments
11. The word “effect” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
(A) value (B) argument (C) influence (D) restraint
12. 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
13. The word “distinct” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
(A) separate (B) innovative (C) alarming (D) provocative
14.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
15. 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
16. The word “setting” in paragraph 2 is closest in meaning to
(A) discussing (B) analyzing (C) establishing (D) avoiding
17. The word “ends” in paragraph 3 is closest in meaning to
(A) Benefits (B) decisions (C) services (D) goals
18. 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
19. 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