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The impact of westward expansion on Native Americans

Learn about how the expansion of the west affected the Native Americans.

Diane Tyner

on 4 December 2012

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Transcript of The impact of westward expansion on Native Americans

Westward Expansion
and the affects
on Native Americans and Settlers 5th Grade
Social Studies (Preview)
SS5H3 The student will describe how life changed in America at the turn of the century.
e. Describe the impact of westward expansion on Native Americans; include the Battle of the Little Bighorn and the relocation of Native Americans to reservations. Diane Tyner Why did people move west? After the Civil War, for a $10 fee, American citizens, 21 years or older, could purchase 160 acres of land. Because of the Homestead Act almost 85 million acres of land in Western United States became privately owned. Results of the Homestead Act Sadly, almost two-thirds of settlers failed to thrive, by 1900, which meant many returned to the East. The living conditions were very harsh on the prairies and plains. Temperatures in the summer were very hot and very cold in the winter. The settlers homes, made of sod, could not protect them from the elements. Water often contained disease and caused sickness and even death. How were the Native Americans affected by the settlers? Buffalo migration was also affected by the settlers. Settlers often killed buffalo for sport. This created food shortages for the Native Americans. Even though treaties were created to keep the peace between settlers and the Native Americans, they were not always kept. Battles often broke out because the Native Americans were treated unfairly and were being made to change their way of life. The Battle of Little Bighorn The Sioux Indians resisted the expansion of the "white man" and their transformation of the West with the building of railroads. In June of 1876, Sitting Bull attacked General George Custers' troops killing over 200 men. The Battle of Little Bighorn was a result of the Sioux being moved to a reservation just to have miners, searching for gold, encroach on their reservation. Conclusion A variety of people accepted the challenge and adventure of moving West. Farmers anticipated fertile lands perfect for crops and cattle.
Ranchers anticipated the open spaces in which to raise cattle and other animals.
Miners anticipated the riches of gems, ores, and minerals.
Blacks anticipated freedom from the reconstruction of the South.
Lumber companies anticipated the trees to be harvested for lumber to be used for buildings.
Railroad companies anticipated expansion of the railroad for easy access to the West and the riches found there. Some of the results of the Westward movement included the Native Americans having to give up their land, for the "white man," and their way of life. The whites insisted on "civilizing" the Native American savages. Many Native American tribes were wiped out or removed to reservations far away from their home land. The Westward movement changed the way of life for Native Americans and Americans. Those who moved West had to adapt to the land and climate. They had to become innovative and create organizations to safe guard their new way of life. While many people died while taming the West many others thrived and grew cities out of the once untamed territories. The Native Americans were forced to give up their way of life and their land. What do you think? Resources


Other images were obtained from Microsoft Office Clip Art Sitting Bull General George Custer How were Native Americans changed as a result of the American settlers moving West?

Do additional research on one of the following topics and present your findings to the class.
Homestead Act of 1862
Sitting Bull
Massacre at Wounded Knee of 1890
Dawes Act of 1887
Bonanza Farms
Women and their roles of the Westward movement
The Grange and the Farmers' Alliances
The impact of the railroad on the Native Americans Homestead Act of 1862 They had to commit to settling on the land which meant building a home and living on the land for six months during the year. After five years settlers were given ownership of their plot of land. As settlers moved West, Native American tribes were made to move from their lands to make way for homesteads and the railroad. Thank you!
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