Westward Expansion Essay

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The Westward Expansion all started when America made the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. There were many benefits from the purchase for the US that the French didn’t realize before they sold it. The purchase gave the US access to the Mississippi river which allowed for expansion of river trade to the North and South from the center of the US. The port city of New Orleans was bought by the US and its prosperity benefited the US greatly. The US sent Lewis and Clark west to investigate the land they purchased. After their exploration, many people started to take interest in moving West. There were many different reasons why people moved, including a search for a fresh start at life, a chance at starting an economic success through agriculture and …show more content…

People were drawn to the West because it was scene as the last resort to make a living when all else failed in the East. Communication with friends and family who had moved west led these pioneers to believe the journey would be easy and the reward for getting west would be best. And the greatly available land was the strongest pulling factor to people interested in adventuring west. Migration was a personal choice that depended on several key factors, “Age of the head of household; economic status; personal attitudes; and projected costs and benefits of the resettlement.” Most historians agree that the majority of the people who migrated west were middle class and mostly immigrants to the US. With the 1848 Gold Rush, traveling miners wanted temporary settlements while the settlers wanted permanent living. These mining camps were full of promiscuous behaviors and the miners moved out of the towns when the mines were emptied. The homes that were once occupied suddenly became vacant. These houses were sold for next to nothing and families moving west often find them as a safe haven. Most establishments at this time were without floors and if a building did have a floor it was most likely new and very

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