Westward Expansion after the Civil War (1865-1890)

 

Students analyze the social, political, and economic transformation of America as a result of westward expansion.

American Indian Map
American Indian Map

An impressive image of linguistic stocks of American Indians. It was made in the 1850's. From: Annual report of Bureau of Ethnology, v. 7, by J.W. Powell. Indians of North America.

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Continental Railroad Map
Continental Railroad Map

A one-of-a-kind map of the route of the Continental Railway and its connecting lines. It was taken in 1873. Map of the northeastern United States showing cities and towns, county borders, and the railroad system.

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Colton's Railroad & Military
Colton's Railroad & Military

a vital image of Colton's rail-road and military map of the United States, Mexico, the West Indies, &c. It was taken in 1862. Map of North America showing rivers, international and state borders, cities, military installations, railroads in operation, and proposed lines.Includes census information for 1860.

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American Indian Map
American Indian Map

An impressive image of linguistic stocks of American Indians. It was made in the 1850's. From: Annual report of Bureau of Ethnology, v. 7, by J.W. Powell. Indians of North America.

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ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS

REFLECTION

 

  • Has the West been romanticized?

  • Can the “white man’s conquest” of Native Americans be justified?

  • Have Native Americans been treated fairly by the United States government?

  • Why did people migrate West?

  • How did the idea of Manifest Destiny influence the settlement of the West?

  • What was the effect of our westward expansion on the indigenous populations?

  • How did groups of Americans work together to ensure survival during westward expansion?  

QUOTATION

 

"Go West, young man, and grow up with the country." ~Horace Greeley, 1811-1872

 

 

"The only good Indian is a dead Indian."

~Philip Henry Sheridan 1831 - 1888

January 1869 - At Fort Cobb 

ENDURING UNDERSTANDINGS STUDENTS WILL UNDERSTAND:

 

  • Students will understand the demographic, economic, and political forces that led to continental expansion and the consequences of that expansion. 

  • Students will understand how the innovations and inventions in industry, technology, and transportation impacted life in the United States. 

  • Americans felt that it was their God-given right to settle western land

  • Americans began to settle in the Mexican borderlands, leading to conflict with the Mexican government, the Mexican-American War, and ultimately the acquisition of new land which allowed the United States to stretch from coast to coast

KEY LINKS ON THE WESTWARD EXPANSION

 

An eight-part documentary series which premiered on PBS stations in September 1996. This multimedia guided tour proceeds chapter-by-chapter through each episode in the series, offering selected documentary materials, archival images and commentary, as well as links to background information and other resources of the web site.

Westward Expansion:  Crash course...

In which John Green teaches you about the Wild, Wild, West, which as it turns out, wasn't as wild as it seemed in the movies. When we think of the western expansion of the United States in the 19th century, we're conditioned to imagine the loner.

 

The self-reliant, unattached cowpoke roaming the prairie in search of wandering calves, or the half-addled prospector who has broken from reality thanks to the solitude of his single-minded quest for gold dust. While there may be a grain of truth to these classic Hollywood stereotypes, it isn't a very big grain of truth. Many of the pioneers who settled the west were family groups. Many were immigrants. Many were major corporations. The big losers in the westward migration were Native Americans, who were killed or moved onto reservations. Not cool, American pioneers. 

8.91 Explain patterns of agricultural and industrial development after the Civil War as they relate to climate, use of natural resources, markets and trade and the location of such development on a map.

 

Crazy Horse Documentary...

Crazy Horse (Lakota: Tȟašúŋke Witkó in Standard Lakota Orthography,[2] IPA:tχaʃʊ̃kɛ witkɔ), literally "His-Horse-Is-Crazy";[3] ca. 1840 -- September 5, 1877) was a Native American war leader of the Oglala Lakota. He took up arms against the U.S. Federal government to fight against encroachments on the territories and way of life of the Lakota people, including leading a war party to victory at the Battle of the Little Bighorn in June 1876.

 

Four months after surrendering to U.S. troops under General Crook in May 1877, Crazy Horse was fatally wounded by a military guard, using his bayonet, while allegedly[4][5] resisting imprisonment at Camp Robinson in present-day Nebraska. He ranks among the most notable and iconic of Native American tribal members and has been honored by the U.S. Postal Service with a 13¢ Great Americans series postage stamp.

Told from the perspective of contemporary Lakota people, the film explores the life of Crazy Horse (Tasunke Witko). Viewers see the natural world of the Dakotas, Nebraska, Wyoming, and Montana that Crazy Horse knew. His spiritual nature is discussed, as are his unique qualities as a leader. The final portion of the film examines his role at the Battle of Little Bighorn, his resistance against reservation life, and his violent death at Fort Robinson in 1877. Lakota people share what Crazy Horse means in their world today. The film features original music created for this story. Sharing their insights are Lakota historians Jace DeCory, Donovin Sprague, Wilmer Mesteth and Whitney Recountre.

VOCABULARY

VOCABULARY:

  • transcontinental

    spanning or crossing or on the farther side of a continent

    NOTES:

    connecting the newly settled western states to the industrial, populated east through railroad building

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    The first transcontinental railroad connected Sacramento, California to Omaha, Nebraska.

  • technological

    of or relating to a practical subject that is organized according to scientific principles

    NOTES:

    technological advances in the 19th century could include things like the steel plow, the windmill, or ranching and farming practices never before used in America.

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    The sod house was cool in the summer and warm in the winter despite being a home to small mammals and insects (as well as homesteaders).

  • expansion

    the act of increasing (something) in size or volume or quantity or scope

    NOTES:

    the Railroad Act and the Homestead Act made settlement of the Great Plains and Great Basin more likely

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    Many Americans from crowded Eastern cities and Europeans without land participated in the westward expansion of the United States after the Civil War.

  • relocation

    the act of changing your residence or place of business

    NOTES:

    As white populations grew, conflict with Native Americans led to relocation of the Indians from their traditional homelands

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    The forced relocation of the Nez Perce Indians led Chief Joseph and his followers on a harrowing flight from the United States Cavalry.

  • assimilation

    the social process of absorbing one cultural group into harmony with another

    NOTES:

    The problem of Native American resistance to white settlement led many white leaders to require that Indian children be sent to boarding schools to learn non-Indian customs and lifestyles

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    The assimilation of the Native American was aided by the passage of the Dawes Act which broke down tribal relationships.

  • reservation

    the act of keeping back or setting aside for some future occasion

    NOTES:

    the least desirable lands were those that whites could not farm or ranch upon or which were not sites of gold, silver, or other mining ores

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    Sitting Bull resisted the order to go to a reservation prior to participating in the Battle of Little Bighorn.

  • treaty

    a written agreement between two states or sovereigns

    NOTES:

    agreements made with Native Americans to decrease attacks on railroad builders or white settlers which were often broken when promises made to Indians about sacred or traditional lands were not honored

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    At the Treaty of Fort Laramie, the Sioux were promised that the Black Hills would not be settled by white Americans.

  • disease

    an impairment of health or a condition of abnormal functioning

    NOTES:

    smallpox killed large numbers of Native Americans after they had contact with white Americans

    EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

    Disease and warfare were two important factors in the decline of Indian populations in the 19th Century.

 

 

ONLINE LESSONs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Native Americans:  Conflict, Conquest, and Assimilation During the Gilded Age...

8.92 Trace the evolution of federal policies toward American Indians, including movement to reservations; assimilation, boarding schools, wars with Indians (Little Big Horn and Wounded Knee), and the impact of the railroad and settlement patterns of pioneers, Buffalo Soldiers (George Jordan), and the Dawes Act.

 

 

RESEARCH LINKS

 

 

 

 

 

 

Impact of Homestead Act...

This video describes the impacts of the Homestead Act of 1862.

Westward Expansion Rap...

8.93 Explain the significance of various American Indian leaders, including:
Bio. Crazy Horse
Bio. Geronimo
Bio. Sitting Bull
Bio. Chief Joseph
 

 

 

8.94 Explain the impact of the Homestead Act.

 

 

Brush your history with a quick overview of the 1862 Homestead Act, one of Abraham Lincoln's crowning legislative achievements.

 

American Indian Rap - Smart Songs

Great Native Indian Chiefs and Native Indians of North America...

Photographs of great Native Indian Chiefs and Native Indians from North America including, Chief Dan George (British Columbia, Canada), Geronimo (United States), Sitting Bull (United States), Crowfoot (Alberta, Canada) Peenamin McKenzie (Sheshashiu, Canada), Rain in the Face (United States), John Grass Pezi, Little Wound, Looking Glass. Labrador Innu paintings by Sheilagh Harvey. Song "Akua Tuta" by Innu band Kashtin.

A History of 19th Century Inventions...

Every one of these common-day items were invented throughout the years of 1814-1915.  Song - The Scientist by Coldplay

8.95 Analyze how significant inventors and their inventions, including barbed wire, the six shooter, windmills, sod housing, and the steel plow changed life in the West.

 

 

Expanding the Transcontinental Railroad:  History and Impact...

8.96 Trace the expansion and development of the Transcontinental Railroad, including the Golden Spike event (1869), and the role that Chinese immigrant laborers (Central Pacific track) and Irish immigrant laborers (Union Pacific track) played in its construction.
 

 

 

READINGS

BUFFALO BILL ENTERTAINS A RUSSIAN GRAND DUKE, 1872 A.D.

 

Buffalo Bill kept a diary of his experience. Read of his account as the Grand Duke's special train pulls into the train station.

SHOOT OUT WITH "WILD BILL" HICKOK, 1869 A.D.

 

The exploits of Wild Bill Hickok - spread by word-of-mouth and embellished by dime novels - would shape the popular image of America's frontier. Tall, lean, muscular, long blond hair falling to his shoulders, two pistols shoved into his belt, wearing a law man's badge on his chest: he personified the image of the Western hero for both his and later generations.

RIDING THE OVERLAND STAGE, 1861 A.D.

 

In 1861, Mark Twain's (real name Samuel Clemens) brother Orion was named Secretary of Nevada Territory. Read of Twain's adventure as he joins his brother for the trip west.

ACTIVITIES

HISTORY MYSTERY NATIVE AMERICAN CULTURE

 

Try your hand at solving this mystery!

THE ANCESTRAL PUEBLO PEOPLE OF NEW MEXICO

 

Experience the history of this Native American Tribe.

IDENTIFY THE TRIBE

See how familiar you are with the major Indian tribes of North America and the regions where they lived.

THE RAILROAD CONNECTION

 

Help solve the mystery of a disappearing railroad town.

VIRTUAL FIELDTRIPS

VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP TO ELLIS ISLAND

 

Explore Ellis Island and meet young Immigrants.

 

HumorousMoment

BBC HORRIBLE HISTORIES Pioneers of Transportation

 

The American Cowboy
8.97 Examine the development and life of the iconic American cowboy, including his skills, clothes and daily life and work.
 
8.98 Explain the concepts of the Open Range, Long Drive and cow towns in the development of the American ranching industry.

 

 

  

Primary Documents and Supporting Texts to Read: A Century of Dishonor, Helen Hunt Jackson.