Westward Expansion Essay

850 Words4 Pages
The late 19th century was a time of exploration, innovation, and continued westward expansion. The West, however, was not as glorified as people today like to think it was. Westward expansion had many benefits, the main being lots of new land for both the Americans and immigrants, but many ideas of the West have been altered throughout the years. The West was romanticized in many ways, people moved to the West in the pursuit of happiness, but today many hardships of westward expansion have been ignored. Cowboys and homesteads are two major concepts that have been romanticized today about the West. Cowboys have been romanticized all over America, from Halloween costumes to movies. The original job of a cowboy was to herd cattle of over 3,500 animals on a jsouthourney from southern Texas to as north as Wyoming. The cowboys had to…show more content…
Their priority was to keep track of all cattle, ensuring that not one was lost or killed as that would cause their payment to lower, and they would lose the trust of their employer. The job of the cowboy was very dangerous as they often encountered problems such as hazards on the trail which included rivers or rough terrain and could have easily led an animal to run. The cowboys also could have encountered a stampede, an Indian attack, or bad weather. Few cowboys carried guns which they used in case they encountered angry homesteaders or Indians. However, a cowboy was still an appealing job to many, there were mostly white cowboys, but also many blacks and other immigrants. A cowboy was appealing as it gave the men freedom to be out in the open range. This idea of freedom and being out in the open range is what caused the glorification of the cowboy and the romanticized West. Today the modern cowboy is seen in many books movies and even Halloween costumes. The cowboy has been romanticized in many ways, as people like to think of the cowboys as men who rode horses, carried guns and
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