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Unit 2 Chapter 3 Lesson 2. Essential Question: How did the settlements of pioneers effect the environment of the West?

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Presentation on theme: "Unit 2 Chapter 3 Lesson 2. Essential Question: How did the settlements of pioneers effect the environment of the West?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Unit 2 Chapter 3 Lesson 2

2 Essential Question: How did the settlements of pioneers effect the environment of the West?

3 Pioneers on the Plains The Great Plains Great Plains = Great American Desert 1. A dry grassland in the middle of the country. 2. Few trees, harsh weather, low rainfall

4 The Great Plains Government wanted to encourage pioneers, or new settlers, to move to the Great Plains. Food and farm goods could be carried by rail back to the growing cities in the East.

5 Homestead Act Law offered free land (160 acres) to American citizens and immigrants who were willing to start new farms in the Great Plains.

6 Homestead Act A man over 21, or woman who was head of the house Small fee $10.00 Farm and live on the land for 5 years, then the land was yours Improve it by building a 12-by-14 dwelling and growing crops

7 Homesteaders Settlers who claimed land through the Homestead Act

8 Settling on the Plains Farmers who had to bust up the soil that had grass with thick roots were called “ sodbusters ”

9 Why was sod a useful building material for homesteaders?

10 Sodbusters The farmers would then use the sod to build their house. They were cool in the summer, warm in the winter, and fireproof Walls were often full of bugs, worms, snakes, and mice.

11 Houses were called “ Soddies ”

12 American Fever Families from Germany, Sweden Norway, Russia, and other European countries were coming to the Great Plains. They brought valuable farming skills

13 American Fever Russians brought a type of wheat that would survive the weather of the Great Plains. Great Plains become the World's most productive wheat growing region.

14 Exodusters African Americans who began moving into the Great Plains to escape unfair treatment. (Exodus from the Bible) Started new towns like Nicodemus, Kansas Nicodemus, Kansas

15 The town symbolizes the pioneering spirit of these ex-slaves who fled the war- torn South in search of “ real ” freedom and a chance to restart their lives.

16 Life of the Plains New technology helped to make farming easier. 1. Steel plows 2. Windmills 3. Barbed wire 4. Dry farming

17 New Technology Dry farming, disking deepBarbed wire Steel plow Windmills

18 Problems 1. Harsh weather: tornadoes, blizzards, bitter cold, hail, and flooding 2. Summer: blazing heat and little rain 3. Grasshoppers ate fences and axe handles after they ate crops

19 Problems

20 Growth in the West West shows growth Japanese immigrants settle in California and are successful farmers. New railroad lines bring settlers into Washington, Oregon, and California

21 Review Describe the purpose of the Homestead Act. What challenges did the homesteaders face? Why did the Exodusters come to the Plains? How did technology help the farmers turn the Great Plains into productive farmland?


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