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Section 19.1: Miners, Ranchers, and Cowhands

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Presentation on theme: "Section 19.1: Miners, Ranchers, and Cowhands"— Presentation transcript:

1 Section 19.1: Miners, Ranchers, and Cowhands
Today’s Essential Question: How did the geography and natural resources of the West determine how its people earned their living?

2 Vocabulary frontier – the boundary between civiliza-tion and wilderness boomtown – town that grows dramatic-ally in a short time vaquero – a Mexican cowboy prospector – person looking for valuable minerals, like gold or silver vigilante – unofficial crime fighter

3 Check for Understanding
What are we going to do today? How does a vaquero get to work? What does a prospector hope to find? Why is living on the frontier dangerous? Is Batman a vigilante? (Explain)

4 What We Already Know Americans had begun moving west across the Great Plains in large numbers since the 1830s.

5 What We Already Know The California gold rush attracted millions of people to the West Coast in 1849.

6 What We Already Know Americans had settled in Texas and had helped make it part of the United States in 1845.

7 One American’s Story Nat Love – born a slave in Tennessee in 1854; left the South and went west As a cowhand, he became well known for his expert horsemanship and rodeo skills. In his 1907 autobiography, Love offered a lively but exaggerated account of his life. Few cowhands led lives as exciting as that described by Nat Love, but they all helped to open a new chapter in the history of the American West.

8 Geography and Population of the West
Places such as St. Joseph and Independence, Missouri, were the last cities and towns before the frontier.

9 Geography and Population of the West
Most white people considered the Great Plains an empty desert. Few had been attracted to its rolling plains, dry plateaus, and harsh deserts.

10 By 1850, California had gained statehood. Oregon followed in 1859.
However, settlers had followed miners streaming into California after the 1849 gold rush. By 1850, California had gained statehood. Oregon followed in 1859.

11 The Great Plains had few trees, but its grasslands were home to about 300,000 Native Americans in the mid-1800s.

12 Most Plains Indian bands followed the buffalo herds that rumbled across the open plains.
Despite the presence of these peoples, the United States claimed ownership of the area.

13 Railroads played a key role in settling the western United States.
Trains carried minerals, timber, crops, and cattle to eastern markets, and brought miners, ranchers, and farmers to the West.

14 As the railroads opened new areas to white settlement, they also helped end the way of life of the West’s first settlers – the Native Americans.

15 Get your whiteboards and markers ready!

16 Why were few people been interested in settling on the Great Plains before the Civil War?
It was already the home of several powerful American Indian groups. The presence of so many buffalo made farming impossible. It was so dry and treeless that most people considered it a desert. The government had banned settle-ment west of the Mississippi River.

17 Where the end of civilization meets the beginning of wilderness
What is the frontier? Where the end of civilization meets the beginning of wilderness

18 76. How did the transcontinental railroad spur Western settlement?
Carrying natural resources of the West to the East Providing jobs for settlers in railroad construction Bringing new settlers from the East to the West transporting soldiers west to fight the Indians Choose all that are true!

19 Mining in the West In 1859, gold and silver strikes drew as many as 100,000 miners to the Rocky Mountains in Colorado.

20 Mining in the West The same year, Comstock Lode in western Nevada produced some $300 million in silver and gold.

21 Any settlement near an ore strike became a boomtown, a town that has a sudden burst of economic or population growth.

22 Mining in the West Gold fever also attracted miners from other parts of the world, including Europe, South America, Mexico, and China. Few prospectors became rich, and most left disappointed and broke.

23 Over time, large mining companies replaced individual prospectors.
Small-scale miners could not afford water cannons to blast away hillsides to expose gold deposits, or the equipment needed to sink shafts thousands of feet into the ground.

24 Results of Western Mining
Hillsides were stripped of vegetation and rivers were left polluted. Once-thriving communities became ghost towns. Nevada, Colorado, and South Dakota all grew so rapidly that they soon gained statehood.

25 Get your whiteboards and markers ready!

26 Why did large mining companies eventually replace individual prospectors?
Individual miners could not afford the equipment needed to make mining profitable. The mining companies bought up the smaller individual claims. The government would only send troops to protect the larger mining sites for Indian attacks, leaving prospectors defenseless. Prospectors couldn’t afford to pay the high taxes placed on mining income by the government.

27 77. Why did the mining boom end?
The costs of operating them had become too high. Too many miners left to work in the oil fields. The Indian threat frightened too many mine workers away. Ranching was easier and much more profitable.

28 Rise of the Cattle Industry
The cattle trade had existed in the Southwest since the 1500s, but cattle herds remained small until the Civil War.

29 Rise of the Cattle Industry
With no efficient way to get the beef to markets in the more heavily populated cities of the East, ranchers mostly sold their cattle locally.

30 Rise of the Cattle Industry
An Illinois livestock dealer named Joseph McCoy realized that railroads could bring cattle from Texas ranches to meat-hungry Eastern cities.

31 Rise of the Cattle Industry
By the 1860s, railroad lines were extended from Chicago and St. Louis into Kansas.

32 Rise of the Cattle Industry
Cowhands had only to drive cattle herds north from Texas to his stockyards in Abilene, Kansas. From there, the beef could be shipped to Chicago and points east by rail car.

33 Rise of the Cattle Industry
Cattle fed on the open range for a year or two and ranchers then hired cowhands to round up the cattle and take them to Abilene, where they were sold for as much as ten times their original price.

34 Rise of the Cattle Industry
The success of the Abilene stockyards spurred the growth of other Kansas cow towns, including Wichita and Dodge City.

35 Rise of the Cattle Industry
Cowhands followed specific trails across the plains, such as the Chisholm Trail, which stretched from San Antonio to Abilene. From 1867 to 1884, about four million cattle were driven to market on this trail. As cattle raising became more profitable, ranching spread north across the plains from Texas to Montana.

36 Rise of the Cattle Industry
The first cowhands were vaqueros, who had developed in Spanish Mexico in the 1500s. From the vaquero, the American cowhand learned to rope and ride. Cowhands also adapted the saddle, spurs, lariat, and chaps of the vaqueros.

37 Rise of the Cattle Industry
About one in three cowhands in the West was either Mexican or African American. Also among the cow-hands were a large number of former Civil War soldiers.

38 Get your whiteboards and markers ready!

39 Before the mid-1800s, why were beef cattle only sold locally in Texas?
Consumers in the East didn’t trust the quality of Texas beef. There was no way to ship the beef cattle from Texas to other markets. Before the mid-1800s, beef was not a popular meat on most tables. Government regulations didn’t permit meat and poultry to be sold across state lines.

40 How did Joseph McCoy change the history of the West?
He invented the repeating rifle, which helped bring about the defeat of the Indians. He invented barbed wire, which ended the open range and made farming possible on the plains. He came up with the idea of driving cattle from Texas ranches up to Kansas railroad towns for shipment to Eastern cities. He developed the idea of vigilante justice, which brought law and order to towns without official sheriffs or marshals.

41 78. What helped the cattle industry to grow?
The Plains Indians were all defeated and forced to move onto reservations. Railroad lines were built linking Kansas with Chicago and St. Louis. The mining boom ended in 1882. Barbed wire was invented in 1882.

42 Who were the first American cowhands?
Civil war veterans Former slaves European immigrants Mexican vaqueros

43 At first, cow towns had no local governments.
The “Wild West” At first, cow towns had no local governments.

44 The “Wild West” There were no law officers to handle the fights that broke out as cowhands drank and gambled after a long drive.

45 The “Wild West” J.R. “Soapy” Smith
A more serious threat to law and order came from con men, who saw the new towns as places to get rich quick by cheating others. J.R. “Soapy” Smith

46 The “Wild West” Outlaws like “Billy the Kid” and Jesse and Frank James made crime a way of life. Some women, such as Belle Starr, became outlaws, too.

47 The “Wild West” For protection, citizens formed vigilante groups, taking the law into their own hands.

48 The “Wild West” Vigilante justice often consisted of hanging suspects from the nearest tree or shooting them on the spot, so it was common for innocent people to be unjustly executed.

49 The “Wild West” As towns became more settled, vigilantes were replaced by elected sheriffs and federal marshals, who would arrest lawbreakers and hold them in jail until the time of trial.

50 Get your whiteboards and markers ready!

51 Why did Westerners form vigilante groups?
They didn’t want to become dependent on the government for protection. There were no authorized government officials in their vicinity for them to call on. Taking the law into their own hands made them feel self-reliant. The towns were to poor to be able to pay for real law enforcement officials.

52 What did vigilante justice look like?
Posse made up of private citizens Active participation by sheriffs or marshals Accused people locked up until trial Swift execution by hanging or shooting Great care exercised to protect the rights of the accused Innocent people unjustly punished Choose all that are true!

53 In 1886, the price of beef dropped sharply as the supply increased.
End of the Long Drives In 1886, the price of beef dropped sharply as the supply increased.

54 End of the Long Drives More farmers moved in to farm or raise sheep, fencing in their lands with barbed wire, and the open range disappeared.

55 End of the Long Drives In the harsh winter of 1886–1887, thousands of cattle froze to death and many ranchers were put out of business.

56 Meanwhile, as the mining and cattle industries were developing, the Native Americans of the Great Plains were being pushed off their land.

57 Get your whiteboards and markers ready!

58 Choose all that are true!
75. What economic activities drew large numbers of people to the West beginning in the 1860s? oil drilling mining ranching farming manufacturing Choose all that are true!

59 79. What factors led to the end of the cattle boom?
The price of beef dropped as the supply grew. Buffalo were competing with the cattle for food on the prairie. The use of barbed wire by farmers closed the open range. The severe winter of destroyed a large percentage of the cattle herds. Raids by vaqueros and vigilantes made ranching too dangerous. Choose all that are true!


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