The Progressive Era was one of the most significant periods in U.S. history. The country was transformed from a relatively laissez-faire economy with a minimal government into a heavily regulated economy governed by an interventionist state. Correspondently, the ideology of public intellectuals, business, the citizenry, and political parties drastically changed. For most historians, this was the period when the country was growing up. For Rothbard, it was the turning point when it abandoned its strengths for the welfare-warfare state, and thereby plunged headfirst into all its destructive consequences in the 20th Century.