This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

To What Extent Did The Railroad Affect Westward Expansion In 19th Century America?

2053 words - 9 pages

A: Plan of the Investigation
This investigation evaluated: To what extent does the railroad affect westward expansion in 19th century America? In order to assess its contribution, the investigation focused on the construction and expansion of the railroads westward; evaluating how and to what extent the western frontier used the railroads. This is done by assessing who the first settlers were, what the trains were transporting between the East and West, and how it affected the people of the 19th century.
B. Summary of Evidence.
The steam railroad, making its first appearance around 1930, soon became a form of transportation that could rival sea vessels. This land vessel could cross ridges, mountains, and could even run in the winter (Fehrenbacher 62). In 1831, the first railroad tunnel was built, allowing people to go through the land instead of around it, saving a lot of time for transporters (Bruno 507). In 1856, a railroad bridge was built that spanned the Mississippi river, the first of its kind (Stover 38). In 1856, the railroad extended to Illinois. Illinois in turn, started to sell thousands of acres of land, drawing in hundreds of settlers westward (Stover 45). Thanks to the railroad, wheat imports increased 900% and corn quadrupled between 1852 and 1856 in Chicago (Stover 51). In the 1870’s, the railroad system expanded past the frontier, bringing millions of Americans west (Stover 64). The expansion of the railroads west brought settlers to present day Wyoming, Utah, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Arizona (Stover 65). The west had very few rivers for ships to navigate on, however, the railroad was able to span across the land, bringing many settlers west and allowing for eastern markets to have access to western agricultural goods (Stover 67). Discovery of Gold in Pike’s Peak caused a hundred thousand miners to cross the Plains in 1849 (Billington 656). It is estimated that 80% of railroad production was directly caused by the gold rush in 1849 (Ripley 4). Between 1860 and 1900, crop production shifted westward, and the only way to transport those crops is by train (Stover 98). In 1862, Lincoln called for the trans-continental railroad, a railroad that would span the entire width of the United States of America (Stover 67). In 1867, the need for railroad workers greatly increased bringing Irish and Chinese immigrants westward for work (Billington 646). Even though the supplies were there, the railroad companies still needed workers to lay down the tracks, which they then fixed the problem by importing boat after boat of Chinese workers (Miller 104). Around 1868, the first rudimentary settlements in the west were created by the workers. These ramshackle towns held saloons, bars, workers quarters, and prostitution houses (Billington 647). Towns started sprouting up around the railroads, soon becoming large centers of trade and prosperity. Branching off of the main rails were Caravan Trains, trains that would stretch north and south, bringing...

Find Another Essay On To What Extent Did the Railroad Affect Westward Expansion in 19th Century America?

India in the late 19th century. To what extent could India be considered a 'nation' in the late 19th to early 20th centuries?

698 words - 3 pages Late nineteenth to early twentieth century India, was directly controlled by Great Britain, and therefore, in name, it was a colony of the British Empire and not a nation of its own. However, India could be described as a nation, as the result of India's ability to be self-governing and self-sufficient and the Indian peoples' desire for self-government, as well as various aspects of Indian culture, such as religion, language, customs, and

19th Century American Expansion Essay

1350 words - 5 pages economic growth, in the 19th century, would have contributed by improvements of transportation of material. Between the years of 1814 and 1834, steamboats travels increased from 20 to 1200 a year. Robert Fulton's invention of the steamboat stimulated the growth of the agriculture economy by transporting agriculture and industrial supplies faster and cheaper, (Bellis, 2007). The manifestation of the large railroad system, better roads, the Erie

Opium In America During The 19th Century

1101 words - 4 pages Opium in Nineteenth Century America Opiate is a term used to include narcotic drugs derived from opium. Drugs such as morphine, heroin, and codeine are all drugs that come from opium. Opium smoking began only after the early Europeans in North America discovered the Indian practice of smoking tobacco in pipes. Some smokers began to mix opium with tobacco in their pipes, and smoking gradually became the preferred method of taking opium. Opium was

To what extent did America "roar" for all Americans in the 1920's?

5729 words - 23 pages stirring up hatred and prejudice against anyone who did not fit their ideals. After the American civil war, in the mid-19th century, a terrorist organisation was started in the southern states, to try to maintain white supremacy over the newly freed black slaves. The Klan did it best to terrorise blacks who tried to take part in local politics. There name comes from the Greek word Kuklos meaning circle. The members of the group wore white robes


1154 words - 5 pages the company name. Lastly, aiming the text directly at the “Smokers of America” shows patriotism also being used to suggest that smoking Tipalet expresses the love for your country, followed by “do yourself a flavor” which plays on the words ‘favor’ and ‘flavor’ creating comedy through the use of a pun. Over time, tobacco advertising changed in the United States due to laws and awareness about smoking hazards and changes in society. In 1997, the


1015 words - 5 pages change. Advertising research and marketing research works to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of advertising and the most common advertising techniques focus on appealing to their targeted audience through appropriate persuasive language and visual elements. This paper will explore the evolution of cigarette advertisements from America by the use of language and images in advertisements, and find out how it links to consumer behavior and

Diseases In 19th Century America

994 words - 4 pages Greeks in the fourth centuryB.C. Blood was withdrawn from the general circulation by deep cuts (usually to the feet), and from local tissues by leeches.In conclusion, the 19th century gave rise to devastating epidemics of infectious disease in America, and the world, but it also gave rise to a pathological enlightenment. With the germ theory, and discoveries put forth by scientists such as Robert Koch, Carlos Finlay, Charles Alphonse Laveran, and Edward Trudeau the endemic and epidemic diseases of the world could now be better understood and prevented.

'To what extent are the female characters represented in 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles ' stereotypical to women living in rural England in the mid 19th century?'

4617 words - 18 pages In the famous Thomas Hardy novel 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles' I will explore the representation of female charactors and to what extent they are perceived as stereotypes. Thomas Hardy lived during the Victorian period his experience in Victorian England shaped the novel. Tess, which was first serialised in magazines was highly successful due to the fact that it criticised practices at the time and focused on important and topical issues of the

To What Extent did Native American Participation in World War I Affect their Attainment of Status

2031 words - 8 pages Native Americans. In the latter half of the 19th century, the United States shifted from passing policies which focused on relocation to those which focused on the assimilation of Native American tribes. This, however, did not greatly increase the quality of life of Native Americans or there status because this only effected a shift from the government destruction of Native American lads, to a more direct destruction of Native American culture. This

To What Extent Did Nationalism Affect Music of the Romantic Period?

3728 words - 15 pages imperialist, imposed their culture, language, and history onto their empire. An example of this is Austria’s rule over Bohemia, with the official language in Prague being German, not Czech . In order to regain identity and preserve their culture, countries under imperial rule promoted speaking in the native language and teaching history of the country in schools . Nationalism had a profound affect on the music of the Romantic period due to the

To What Extent did the Values of the Enlightenment Fuel an 'Industrial Revolution' in Britain in the Late Eighteenth Century and Early Nineteenth Century?

1751 words - 7 pages had improved in the Renaissance period, the general public were gaining political and economic consciousness. Contact with alien cultures and wealth brought back from Asia and the Americas catapulted a new class of merchants who became major agents of change, in the arts, in government and in the economy.As to what was most instrumental in fuelling the industrial revolution in Britain is highly debatable and economic historians might argue that

Similar Essays

The Transcontinental Railroad And Westward Expansion

2439 words - 10 pages The Transcontinental Railroad and Westward Expansion Thesis: The transcontinental railroad greatly increased Westward expansion in the United States of America during the latter half of the nineteenth century. The history of the United States has been influenced by England in many ways. In the second half of the 1800's, the railroad, which was invented in England, had a major effect on Western expansion in the United States. "Railroads

How Did The Transcontinental Railroad Affect Western Expansion In The United States?

2392 words - 10 pages earlier years, thefarmers did not dream of getting rich quickly. They wanted to beself-sufficient, and they felt that the land on the Prairie couldhelp them do it. The railroad was an incredible catalyst in thepopulation of the Mid-West and without it the area might still besparsely populated. The transcontinental railroad proved it'sworth and had a tremendous impact on westward expansion. 'Inless than thirty years after the Civil War, all

Views On Overseas Expansion In 19th Century America

943 words - 4 pages America to expand its frontiers and help the less fortune. But there were some who disagreed with overseas expansion because they looked at it as a hypocrisy act among Americans, or as a way of subjugating other nations just for America’s benefits. Some others were concerned that making contact with under-developed nations would eventually dilute their racial stock and the strength of America. At the end of the 19th century the growth in population

What Impact Did Slavery Have On 19th Century America?

1702 words - 7 pages had to rejoin the Confederates and the Unions. Soon, four million free black people had to establish their new roles in American society. This period was called the Reconstruction.Over time, people have been affected by the impact slavery did to 19th Century America, causing many deaths, loss of loved ones, and war. After, social and economic weakness was conferred upon the blacks. Also, after many years of peace and settlement, cultural racism was