The New South and the New West were home to many Germans, Danes, and Irish.
A quarter of Nebraska's 123,000 residents were foreign born in 1870.
45 percent of the residents in North Dakota in 1890 were immigrants.
China and Mexico were less significant than European immigrants.
Between 1876 and 1890, more than 200,000 Chinese came to California to build railroads and work in mining communities.
When there was an economic downturn, Chinese became scapegoats for being discriminated against and denied citizenship rights.
In 1879, as many as 20,000 black southerners arrived in Kansas, following the migration of thousands of African Americans after the rise of the Radical Republican rule in the South.
The African American colony became a prosperous town.
The First Baptist Church and general store are where the residents are photographed.
Benjamin "Pap" Singleton was the main promoter of black migration to the West.
He was a slave in Tennessee when he escaped and made his way to Michigan.
After the Civil War, he decided that African Americans could not get equal treatment if they stayed in the Confederacy.
When he found out that the land in Kansas was selling for less than an acre, he led a group of 200 people to the state in order to establish a community.
Many southern leaders were worried about the loss of black laborers after thousands of African Americans followed Singleton to Kansas.
In 1879, white southerners closed access to the Mississippi River and threatened to sink all boats carrying blacks to the West.
The exodus of black southerners had stopped by the early years of the 20th century.
Many were not aware of the harsh living conditions.
Most black farmers were forced to hire white ranchers to supplement their income because their Kansas homesteads were not large enough.
Crop failures and bankruptcies were caused by a number of factors.
The sudden influx of so many black people taxed their resources.
There weren't enough houses, stores, construction materials, or government services.
African American pioneers abandoned their land and moved to cities in Kansas.
520,000 African Americans lived west of the Mississippi River by 1890.
Many federal horse soldiers in the West and 25 percent of the cowboys who participated in the Texas cattle drives were African Americans.
The dream of finding gold or silver continued to be the most powerful lure to the West after the Civil War.
The nature of mining has changed.
Like much of western agriculture, mining has become a mass- production industry.
Large mining companies replaced individual pros pectors.
Large scale operations, massive machinery, and substantial capital investment are required for efficient mining once the placer deposits are exhausted.
Compa nies shifted from surface digging to hard rock mining.
Industrial miners used huge cannons to strip canyon wal s of rock and topsoil to find gold or silver.
The New South and the New West were unearthed by the water cannons and covered rich farmland and sandbars that killed fish.
12 billion tons of earth were blasted out of the Sierra Nevada and washed into local rivers.
California farmers protested the dam age done by the powerful industrial mining operations.
They formed the Anti- Debris Association in the 19th century, but their attempts to pass state legislation to restrict mining failed because of the votes of the mining companies.
The group went to the courts.
On January 7, 1884, Lorenzo Sawyer, a former miner, banned the dump ing of mining debris where it could reach farmland.
As a result of the ruling, abandoned equipment, ugly ravines, ditches, gullies, and moun tains of discarded rock and gravel were left.
In the 1870s, Tombstone was a major silver mining site.
It had a bowling alley, four churches, a school, two banks, three newspapers, and an ice cream parlor.
Virginia City in Nevada, Cripple Creek and Leadville in Col orado, and Deadwood in the Dakota Territory are some of the famous mining boomtowns.
The communities were dominated by men and had a lot of immigrants from China, Mexico, France, Germany, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, and England.
Violence in mining towns was as common as ethnic prejudice.
Before the Dakotas became states, Mexicans suffered the rush town.
Most boomtowns only lasted a few years.
The people moved on once the mines were out.
Virginia City, Nevada, was the richest city in America in 1870 with a population of 20,000.
It has less than 1,000 residents today.
There were new discoveries of gold and silver in the 19th century.
Henry Comstock, a Canadian born fur trapper, gave the discovery his name.
The most profitable mine in history was the Comstock Lode, which was more than fifty feet wide and thousands of feet deep.
Territorial govern ments and cries for statehood were spurred by the rapid growth of mining.
After Colorado's admission into the Union in 1876, Democrats refused to create states out of territories that were dominated by Republicans because of party differences in Congress.
Congress admitted North and South Dakota, Montana, and Washington as states in 1889 and 1890, respectively, after the Republican victory in the legislative races.
Utah entered the Union in 1896 after the Mormon church agreed to stop practicing polygamy.
In 1912, Arizona and New Mexico became forty- seventh and forty- eighth contiguous states.
The Native Americans, Chinese workers, and Hispanic cowboys were there first.
Americans claimed to have a special destiny to settle, develop, and domi nate the entire continent.
In order to encourage new settlers in the West, the federal government helped finance the construction of four transcontinental railroads, dispatched federal troops to conquer Indians, and sold government- owned land at low prices.
200 million acres of government land was given to the transcontinental railroads.
The railroads sold a lot of the land to create towns and ranches.
The western economy relied on the arrival of trains.
The romantic qualities depicted in novels, films, and television shows were displayed by the surge of western migration.
Courageous and tena cious were the people who braved harsh conditions and uncertain circumstances.
The plains were populated by cowboys and Indians, outlaws and vigilantes, farmers, ranchers, and herders, as well as miners and trappers.
These familiar yet often romanticized images only tell part of the story.
There was a lot ofudgery and tragedy.
Women, African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and European immigrants were included in the settlers.
Chronic instability was injected into the society and pol itics of the region due to the boom- and- bust economic cycle caused by the feverish quest for quick profits.
The abuse, displacement, and relocation of Native Americans and rapidly dwindling buffalo herds coincide with a burgeoning cattle industry in the West.
buffalo used to roam the grassland where cattle were herded.
For many years, buffalo and wild cattle were petted in the borderlands of Texas and Arizona.
The Texas long horn was bred with Anglo- American cattle.
The longhorn was noted more for its speed and endurance than for yielding steak.
Longhorns were wandering freely across Texas by the time the Confederacy rendered.
Until the railroads arrived, the largest urban markets for beef were so far away that they had marginal economic value.
At the end of the Civil War, Kansas Pacific Rail road crews began to lay rails in the buffalo country of the southern plains.
After the rail lines reached Kansas, Joseph G. McCoy, an Illinois livestock dealer, realized that he could drive herds of cattle from Texas northward to Kansas, where they would be loaded onto freight cars and sent to the rest of the nation.
The stockyard, barn, office building, livestock scales, hotel, and a bank were built by McCoy in 1867.
An agent was sent to Texas to convince the owners of herds bound for the north.
The cattle were loaded onto rail cars and shipped to Chicago stockyards, where they were slaughtered and then sent around the nation.
In 1871, an estimated 700,000 steers passed through the town.
The ability to ship large numbers of cattle by rail transformed ranching into a huge national industry and turned Kansas into a major economic crossroads.
Along the rail line, there were other cattle towns.
None lasted more than a few years.
People bought farms nearby to stop the Texas herds from entering their area.
New cow towns and rail hubs were developed in Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana.
The states had their own cattle ranches.
There were half a million cattle in eastern Mon tana by the year 1884.
Cattle ranchers had to come up with their own code of laws and ways to enforce them.
The New South and the New West cowboys would ride the line to keep animals out of the adjoining ranches.
In the spring, the cowboys would round up the herds and sort out ownership by identifying the distinctive ranch symbols " branded," or burned, into the cattle.
The first effective and inexpensive form of barbed wire fencing was developed in 1873 by Joseph Glidden.
Small ranchers fought to retain the open range after Barbed- wire fences were put up.
The widespread use of barbed wire denied Indians access to their ancestral lands.
Smaller scale cattle ranchers are out of business because of fencing.
Many former ranchers became cowboys.
Cattle raising evolved from a roman tic adventure into a business dominated by cattle barons.
Chicago was the fastest growing city in the nation because of the rise of the cattle industry.
Chicago was the gateway to the western economy and was located on Lake Michigan.
It was a crossroads where the city and frontier met.
Immigrants were attracted to its lumber yards, grain elevators, stockyards and slaughterhouses.
Much of the West's development took place in Chicago.
Pork could be preserved longer than beef in places like Cincinnati and Chicago, which is why the meatpacking industry started with hogs.
Pork packing has been one of the most important frontier industries.
Cattle are slower to reproduce than hogs, but they thrive on corn.
In 1850, Chicago butchered and packed 20,000 hogs.
Cincinnati processed 334,000 each year.
The federal government ordered a lot of pork.
Cincinnati was the world's largest pork-processing center by the year 1862.
The city processed more than 2 million hogs per year by the 1870s.
There was no ice in the summer.
Gustavus F. Swift began experimenting with ways to keep railcars cool.
Swift and Philip Armour developed refrigerated freight cars that allowed them to ship processed meat, rather than live hogs and cattle.
Chicago was able to add beef packing to its operations.
The economies of scale enjoyed by the four dominant Chicago meatpacking corporations drove most local butchers out of business by the end of the 19th century.
The two richest men in the world are Swift and Armour.
They became traders in wheat and corn.
They built packing plants in cattle towns such as Kansas City and Omaha, and soon were processing less meat than Chicago.
The weather of the Great Plains was brutal.
The region was described as a treeless desert that was "chill and piercing" at night by a New York newspaper publisher.
People made the dangerous trek, lured by inexpensive federal land and mis leading advertisements celebrating life on the plains.
Landless people were the first homesteaders in the Great Plains.
Many had never planted a seed.
A Montana homesteader said that he worked 48 hours a week for $1.25 while growing up in Chicago.
The federal government gave 270 million acres to 1.6 million people by 1900.
They faced a difficult struggle.
Horses, livestock, wagons, wel s, lumber, fencing, seed, machinery, andfertilizer were not free through the homestead act.
Interest rates and freight rates were high.
The combine machine, powered by more than a dozen horses and driven by two men, could cut, thresh, bag, and weigh wheat at the same time.
The virgin land was fertile but resisted planting; the heavy sod woven with tough grass roots broke a plow.
Buffalo chips were used for fuel by pioneer families because of the scarcity of wood and coal on the prairie.
Farm families had battles with tornadoes, hailstorms, windstorms, droughts, prairie fires, and hostile Indians.
Many homesteaders gave up in the late 1800s because of a long dry spell.
Two thirds of the people who gained land did not become self sustaining farmers.
As the railroads brought lum ber from the East, farmers could upgrade their houses built of sod into more comfortable wood framed dwellings.
New machinery and equipment for those who could afford it improved productivity.
It was easy to prepare the land for planting with the "sodbuster" plow.
Threshers, hay mowers, planters, manure spreaders, and other new equipment lightened the burden of farm labor, but often deepened the debts that farmers owed.
Small farmers did not keep up with the increased value of farmland and farm products.
Their numbers went up in size but went down in population at large.
Cotton in the South was an export crop that spurred economic growth.
By the 1890s, small farmers revolted against the corrupt system of bankers and railroaders who they believed were scheming against them.
The West was mostly male.
Domestic services were provided by most women in mining towns.
Many mining towns had a male- to- female ratio as high as 9 to 1.
Women were prized as spouses in both mining and farming communities because they needed help.
Many of the legal barriers and social prejudices prevalent in the East were still faced by women pioneers.
Women had to play so many roles in the prairie that it led to more equal marriages.
A wife couldn't sell property without her husband's approval.
Texas women were not allowed to act as lawyers, serve on juries, or witness a divorce.
The fight for survival west of the Mississippi made men and women more equal partners than in the East.
Many women who lost their mates to the toil of "sod busting" assumed responsibility for their farms.
Women on the prairie were more independent than women in the East.
The Kansas woman said that the environment could bring out and develop the dom inant qualities of individual character.
The new western territories and states were the first to allow women to vote and hold office in hopes of attracting more women settlers.
Wyoming was the first state to allow women to vote.
Soon thereafter, Utah, Colorado, and Idaho followed.
Many Native Americans from east of the Mississippi were forced into the Great Plains and mountain regions of the Far West as settlers spread across the continent.
The Fort Laramie Treaty allowed white pioneers to travel across the plains Indians accepted tribal boundaries.
The fighting resumed as the number of white settlers increased.
Although the U.S. government had signed numerous treaties with Indian nations giving them ownership of reservation lands for "as long as waters run and the grass grows," those commitments were repeatedly violated by buffalo hunters, miners, ranchers, farmers, rail road surveyors-- and horse soldiers.
The federal government evicted many tribes from lands they had been promised would be theirs forever.
Before the Civil War, the U.S. Army's central mission in the West was to protect pioneers.
During and after the war, the mission changed to ensure that Native Ameri cans stayed on the reservations.
The agreements were repeatedly violated by Emigrants.
The result was a lot of frustration and violence.
The Minnesota Valley uprising resulted in the deaths of 644 white traders, settlers, government officials, and soldiers.
It was the first clash between settlers and miners.
The influx of white miners caused a horrible incident in Colorado two years later.
Evans persuaded "friendly Indians" to gather at Fort Lyon in southeastern Colorado near the Kansas border, where they were promised protection.
While most of the Indian men were off hunting, Colonel John M. Chivington's 700 militiamen attacked a camp of Cheyennes and Arapahos along Sand Creek, about forty miles from Fort Lyon.
The soldiers paid no attention to Black Kettle waving an American flag and a white flag.
The Colo rado militiamen killed 165 peaceful Indians over seven hours.
Chivington claimed that he had defeated 1,000 entrenched Cheyenne warriors.
He was welcomed back in Denver as a hero.
The truth about Sand Creek began to come out.
The company of soldiers that Captain Soule had with him obeyed orders to join the attack.
I swore to my men that no one but a Coward would shoot women and children.
He predicted that there would be a lot of time with Indians this winter.
In January 1865, Captain Soule was called to testify before Congress and the army.
Chivington quit the militia to avoid a military trial.
He became the Denver sheriff.
On April 23, 1865, Soule was killed in Denver.
Chivington's soldiers were identified as one of the murderers.
Hundreds of white men were killed and many white women and children were kidnapped when war parties attacked ranches and stagecoach stations.
The recruitment of soldiers from military prisoners was authorized by the government.
Congress sent two cavalry units to the western frontier in the 19th century.
Civil War veterans from Louisiana and Kentucky were the majority of the buffalo soldiers.
They built forts, mapped vast areas of the Southwest, strung hundreds of miles of telegraph lines, subdued hostile Indians, and captured outlaws and thieves.
The buffalo soldiers won medals.
Evidence on the Indian wars was gathered by a congressional committee.
The Indian Peace Commission was created after the "Report on the Condition of the Indian Tribes" was published.
Congress decided that persuading nomadic Indians to move to out- of- the- way federal reservations where they could take up farming would be the best way to accomplish this.
They were going to give up their ancestral lands in exchange for peace.
In 1870, Native Americans outnumbered white people in the Dakota Ter ritory by 2 to 1, but whites would outnumber Indians by more than 6 to 1.
The U.S. government decided to gain control of the region by force if necessary.
The Kiowas, Comanches, Arapahos, and Cheyennes reluctantly agreed to move to western Oklahoma in 1867 after a conference at Medicine Lodge, Kansas.
The Treaty of Fort Laramie was signed in the spring of 1868.
They settled in the Black Hil's Reservation in southwestern Dakota Territory because they viewed the Black Hil's as sacred.
Grant's noble intentions, however, ran afoul of longstanding prejudices and the relentless efforts of miners, farmers, railroaders, and ranchers to get on Indian lands.
He said protecting the new transcontinental railroad was his top priority.
There were demands for military action.
Grant's peace policy was not agreed to by Sherman and Sheridan.
The president's naive outlook reflected the distance between the Great Plains and Washington, D.C., according to their view.
Some Native Americans refused to be moved.
In the southern plains of New Mexico, north Texas, Colorado, Kansas, and Oklahoma, Native Americans focused on hunting buffalo.
The Red River War of 1874-1875 was the last time armed clashes occurred.
The defeated tribes were forced onto reservations.
There was trouble in the northern plains.
The army promised that it would keep white prospectors out of the Dakota Territory, but soon they were there.
Some Indians made a last stand because of the gold rush.
The home of Red Cloud's people is to be taken from them because the white men have crowded the Indians for years.
A veteran Indian fighter driven by headstrong ambition and reckless courage led 1,000 soldiers into the Black Hils, where he announced the discovery of gold.
Within two years, the mining town of Deadwood was filled with 10,000 miners after the news of the gold rush.
The reckless area could not keep the miners from going after the lieutenant colonel of the U.S. Army.
With that news, Custer was sent back to the Black Hils, this time to find and force the warriors back onto the reser vations.
Among his horse soldiers, the colorful, curly-haired, golden haired, buckskin-clad Custer stood out.
At the age of twenty- three, Custer earned a battlefield promotion to brevet general and had played an important role in the Union victory at Gettysburg by leading a gal ant cavalry charge.
He was going to attack the groups of hunting parties that were wandering, even though he said that American miners had caused the renewal of warfare.