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Unit Eleven: Manifest Destiny Westward Ho! Part I.

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1 Unit Eleven: Manifest Destiny Westward Ho! Part I

2 The Frontier One of the driving forces in American history was the thought of a frontier (an area on the outskirts of “civilized” society). The concept of the frontier has been seen to have given Americans their individualistic spirit, sense of self-reliance, determination, and adversity. Americans were from the start hungry for more land to either hunt on for the fur trade, cultivate for farming, ranch cattle, or as a place away from too many people. The biggest problem with this want for more land which drove people into the “wilderness” was the direct encroachment on Indians, which at the start of colonial times led to conflict between colonialists (Americans) and Natives.

3 Mobile Society The vast amounts of land in America made many colonials and later Americans a semi- nomadic society constantly moving usually West for more land. The constant movement of people developed Americans into a Mobile Society were people are free to go where they please, when they please, and as many times as they wish. The push to move West and conquer the whole of North America was called Manifest Destiny (the ability by and for God to own North America from Ocean to Ocean) by John Louis O’Sullivan in favor of the annexation of Texas.

4 The Frontier The whole of America has at one time or another been called a frontier to be settled and organized for the colonies or the states. The first barrier to colonial settlement was native Americas, due to the fact that settlers wanted the land Indians lived on and many did not care for living side by side with Indians. The colonials and later the states enacted policies to take the lands away from the Indians, even though at first relationships were good between whites and Indians, they slowly got worse because there was no more room for Indians on their own land forcing them constantly Southward or West of the Appalachians.

5 Trans-Appalachians The second great barrier of settlement was the Appalachian Mountain chain which keep whites on its Eastern side. The majority of people that crossed over the Appalachians were not settlers but fur trappers called Mountain Men. The Mountain Men were rugged individuals who usually had good relations with Indians, intermarried with the Natives, and used established Indian trade routes to hunt and setup outposts to send furs back East.

6 Trans-Appalachians The mass movement of settlers across the Appalachians did not happen until in 1775 when the Transylvania Company employed Daniel Boone and others to cut a Wilderness Road through the Cumberland Gap (a spot in the Appalachians) into what is Kentucky today. The Wilderness Road became the main corridor west of the Appalachians, also shortly after this people began to move southward toward Mississippi and Alabama. People pushed west into these regions because of increased population on Eastern seaboard due to immigration and internal births, vast amounts of land at cheap prices, and because of a young population (median age was 17)

7 Frontier Life Life on the frontier was hard for the early settlers west of the Appalachians, because unlike on the eastern seaboard where land had been cleared in some areas by the Natives it was not so there. The settlers had to clear the land of trees (mostly done by girdling, which is where a tree’s lower bark is removed to kill the tree), build a home (usually a log cabin called a dog trot) which had to be chinked (holes covered with clay), and plant a crops. Settlers were in the wilderness by themselves with few white neighbors, but plenty of Indians who were either friendly or hostile.

8 Frontier Life During this time settlers had many children, on average usually eight that led to high birth rates, but also high death rates due to infant mortality rates being so high (2 out of ten) and their hard life styles. The settlers also had to deal with the isolation, diseases (cholera, small pox), animals, weather, and parasites. (most common ringworm and tapeworms) Most settlers used Indian techniques to survive in these lands and Indian medicines to heal their sick.

9 Frontier Life Girdling Trees

10 New States The policies of the Nationalist Era and the Jacksonian era led to many new states to join the union East of the Mississippi, which included: Indiana (1816), Mississippi (1817), Illinois (1818), and Alabama (1819). During the early and mid 1800s people began to move in relative small numbers West of the Mississippi River known as the Trans-Mississippian Region.

11 Trans-Mississippian Region The Trans-Mississippian region was made up of Indian Territory (Great Plains), the Spanish (later Mexican) Southwest, Western parts of the Louisiana Purchase, and the Oregon Territory (co-owned by America and Britain. American movement into these areas was small at first, but during the 1840s and 1850s larger numbers of settlers began to move into the region. (It would not be until the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad after the Civil War that massive numbers of settlers moved into the areas populating them)

12 O Pioneers The first people into the Trans-Mississippian region were mountain men (fur traders and trappers), who learned the geography of the area and used Indian knowledge to direct later settlement into the area (trailblazers) by leading wagon trains or selling guide books. (most notable Kit Carson, Jim Bridger, Jedediah Strong Smith, and Jim Beckwourth) The people who moved into the Trans- Mississippian region to settle were called pioneers (people who settle an unsettled area) Most of these people chose to skip over the Great Plains region (Great American Desert) for the southwest (New Mexico and Texas), the Pacific Coast (Oregon, California), and Utah.

13 O Pioneers The pioneers went west by using three different methods of travel: –One route was to cross over land (overlanders) in Conestoga Wagon (prairie schooners) caravans (group wagon train). This route was called a trek (long journey) because it took many months through hard weather, isolated spots, and the fear of Indian attacks. (Most Indians were friendly to the settlers offering any assistance needed) –The other ways were to take a clipper ship all the way around the tip of South America to the Pacific Coast or to the isthmus of Panama cross over land and then take another ship to the Pacific Coast. (fastest, safest, but expensive route)

14 The Great American Desert Most settlers skipped over the Great Plains region because of the thought that it was a Great American Desert of grasslands not useful for farming, but fine for an Indian reserve/reservation. The land of the Great Plains did not become enticing to American settlement until the inventions of Jethro Wood (iron plow), John Deere (steel plow ), and Cyrus McCormick (mechanical reaper) allowing for the ability to plow up the grass lands and to easily collect wheat, barley, corn, and etc. (later called bread basket of nation)

15 Trans-Mississippian Indians As Americans moved into the regions west of the Mississippi they encroached on Native Americans who were already living in the area of the Plains and West Coast. The largest majority of Indians lived in the Plains region were either nomadic (wondering place to place) like the Blackfoot, Arapaho, Cheyenne, Comanche, Crow, Kiowa, Lakota, Kiowa Apache, Plains Cree, and Shoshone, or semi- sedentary (went on long hunts, but lived most of the time in villages) like the Iowa, Kaw (or Kansa), Mandan, Missouria, Nez Perce, Omaha, Pawnee, Ponca, and Santee.

16 Trans-Mississippian Indians When the Spanish introduced the horse to the region many of the Plains Indians became excellent horse riders, raised horses, and developed a new culture around the horse called the horse culture. (before they had to drag their supplies with a two pole sled called a travois) The horse gave the Plains Indians the ability to move quickly place to place following their dominate food source the buffalo. Every part of the buffalo had a purpose for the Indians including their houses made of buffalo skins and poles that could be quickly assembly or disassembled called teepees.

17 Trans-Mississippian Indians As many Native Americans tribes became more nomadic and developed into warrior societies and due to white encroachment many of the agricultural tribes declined or died off. Also forced into the area was the Eastern tribes who had been pushed into the Oklahoma territory by the U.S. Government, which also changed their and the Plains Indians cultures. To aid white settlement in the region the U.S. Government signed the Treaty of Fort Laramie in 1851 with the Cheyenne, Sioux, Arapaho, Navajo Crow, Shoshone, Assiniboine, Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara to allow for safe passage of American settlers and geographic boundaries.

18 Western Trails The American settlers that chose to go overland, chose from six different Western trials to get to their destination: Oregon Trail (most popular), Mormon Trail, California Trial, and Santa Fe Trail. The Pony Express Trail was used a quick line of communication between the East and West, it operated with young boys (14-21) on horseback carrying mail and messages. The Butterfield Overland Mail Trail was used as a stagecoach (large armored wagon) route to deliver mail, carry money, and as a trail for later settlement into Texas.

19 Western Trails


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