Objective 4 01
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Objective 4.01. Compare and contrast the different groups of peoples who migrated to the West and describe the problems they experienced. People Migrating to the West.

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Objective 4.01

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Objective 4 01

Objective 4.01

Compare and contrast the different groups of peoples who migrated to the West and describe the problems they experienced.


People migrating to the west

People Migrating to the West

  • Joseph Smith: founder of Church of Christ of Latter-Day Saints in N.Y. in 1830. Moved Mormons to Illinois where they were persecuted for their belief in polygamy. Smith beaten to death while in jail.

  • Brigham Young: successor of Joseph Smith who decided to move the Mormons to Utah.

  • Mormons: members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Believed in polygamy and communal ownership of water and timberland. Smith, Young, and the Mormons all moved West for more religious freedom.


People migrating to the west1

People Migrating to the West

  • Women: enjoyed more freedom/equality in West b/c forced to work beside men in many cases. Suffrage first gained by Western women b/c states needed their population to count toward statehood. (And they still did the housework!)

  • African-Americans: moved West to escape the South, search for gold, be a cowboy, work on railroad, or farm. Many became Buffalo Soldiers (fought Native Americans) or Exodusters (free blacks who farmed in Kansas).


People migrating to the west2

People Migrating to the West

  • Chinese: moved to West in search of gold, markets, and employment by the railroad laying track. Created what is known as “Chinatowns”, which provided cooking and laundry services in cities and mining camps.

  • Irish: came to West for railroad employment, religious freedom, to avoid nativism, for free land, and to search for gold.

  • The Chinese and Irish formed a new wave of immigration.


Motivation for westward movement

Motivation for Westward Movement

  • Homestead Act: U.S. fed. law that gave 160 acres of undeveloped land in American West to people who were at least 21 years of age, built a house at least 12x14 ft., and have lived there for 5 yrs. Signed into law by Pres. Lincoln (May 20, 1862).

  • Comstock Lode: first major U.S. deposit of silver ore, discovered under what is now Virginia City, Nev. 1859-1878, it yielded $400 million in silver and gold, = to approx. $500-600 billion in 2005.


Motivation for westward movement1

Motivation for Westward Movement

  • Morrill Land Grant Act (1862): each eligible state received 30,000 acres of fed. land for each rep. of Congress the state had in 1860. This land, or the proceeds from its sale, was to be used toward establishing and funding edu. institutions. (ex: NCSU, NCA&T)

  • Oklahoma Land Rush: first land rush into the Unassigned Lands of Oklahoma. The land rush started at high noon on April 22, 1889 with an estimated 50,000 people lined up for their piece of the available two million acres.


Challenges of westward movement

Challenges of Westward Movement

  • Sod houses: involved cutting patches of sod in rectangles (2'×1'×6" long) and piling them into walls. Could accommodate normal doors and windows. Structure was well-insulated, damp, and very inexpensive. Required frequent maintenance and were vulnerable to rain damage.

  • Other challenges: remoteness, Native Americans, weather, terrain, technology, etc.


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