Changes on the Western Frontier

Changes on the Western Frontier
Chapter 5
Cultures Clash on the Prairie
• Great Plains – grasslands extending beyond
the central part of the US.
• Horse – changed way of life for N.A –
travel, hunt, and war between tribes
• Buffalo – everything – page 207.
• Family
• Spirits
2,000 pounds, six feet tall at the humped shoulders - the Buffalo-"Bison"...
Its spirit was praised before every hunt with a tribal ritual dance. The buffalo supplied virtually everything that
the Plain Indians needed to stay alive; food, clothing, tools, and housing.
A. Brains - hide, preparation
B. Skull - ceremonies, sun dance, prayer
C. Horns - cups, fire carrier, powderhorn, spoons, ladles, headdresses, signals, toys
D. Tongue - best part of meat
E. Rawhide - containers, clothing, headdresses, food, medicine bags, shields, buckets, moccasin soles,
rattles, drums, drumsticks, splints, cinches, ropes, thongs, saddles, stirrups, knife cases, bull boats, quirts,
armbands, lance cases, horse masks, horse forehead ornaments, bullet pouches, belts
F. Buckskin - moccasin tops, cradles, winter robes, bedding, breechclouts, shirts, leggings, belts, dresses,
pipe bags, pouches, paint bags, quivers, tipi covers, gun cases, lance covers, coup flag covers, dolls
G. Hoof & Feet - glue, rattles
H. Meat - (every part eaten) pemmican (converted), hump ribs - immed., jerky (converted), inner parts eaten
on the spot
I. Four Chambered Stomach - first stomach content: frostbite & skin diseases, liner: container for carrying
and storing water, cooking vessel
J. Bladder - sinew pouches, quill pouches, small medicine bags
K. Skin of hind leg - moccasins or boots
L. Buffalo Chips - fuel, signals, ceremonial smoking
M. Tail - medicine switch, fly brush, lodge exterior decorations, whips
N. Bones - knives, arrowheads (ribs) , shovels, splints, winter sleds, arrow straighteners, saddle trees, war
clubs, scrapers (ribs), quirts, awls, paint brushes (hipbones), game dice
O. Muscles - sinew: bows, thread, arrows, cinches, glue
P. Hair - headdresses, saddle pad filler, pillows, ropes, ornaments, halters, medicine balls
Q. Whole Animal - totem, clan symbol, white buffalo sacred, adult yellow rare-prized
Akta Lakota Museum
Chamberlain, South Dakota
Settlers Pushed Westward –
• b/c of silver and gold
• Railroad (RR)
• RR influenced government policy dealing
with the N.A. –pushed on to reservations –
– Sent the army to force them on to these
• Sand Creek Massacre – 1864 – Cheyenne safe on their reservation in CO.
– John Chivington, his men killed over
150 of them in a surprise attack.
• Fetterman Massacre
• Treaty of Fort Laramie - The government
did agree to close the Bozeman trail if the
Sioux agreed to
live on a reservation
• Sitting Bull
• Search for gold in the Black Hills
• Custer’s Last Stand
– Custer and his men, some 200, defeated. They
were very outnumbered by about 2,000 Sioux.
The Sioux were eventually captured, Sitting
Bull surrendered and they moved on to
The Battle of Wounded Knee
• Ghost Dance movement
– Preserve way of life
– Alarmed the military
• Wounded Knee - 1890
– 300 unarmed Sioux killed in minutes, including
• This officially brought an
end to the Indian wars.
The Destruction of the Buffalo
Buffalo numbers began to drop rapidly
Fur traders – killed many for robes
Tourists killed them for sport
RR killed to feed workers
Indians main source of food, clothing,
shelter, and fuel.
The Government Supports
• Helen Hunt Jackson wrote - A Century
of Dishonor (1881).
• Many supported assimilation - become
a part of white culture by not
practicing their beliefs and way of life.
• Dawes Act – 1887 – did away with
reservations and gave NA individual plots
of land, 160 acres
– This forced NA to own land, something
they did not believe in.
– Rest of reservation would be sold to
whites and money was to be given to the
NA, but it was not. If the Indians
behaved like “good white citizens”, they
would get full title to their land and
receive citizenship after 25 years.
• When Civil War ended TX had several million
cattle, used only for their hides b/c no way to get
meat to market.
• Transcontinental railroad facilitated
transportation of meat to cities
• Beef tycoons like the Swifts
and Armours emerged
• Refrigerator cars
An early refrigerator car design, circa 1870. Hatches in
the roof provided access to the ice tanks at each end of
the car.
"Long Drive"
• Mexican ranchers taught the Americans how to be
ranchers. Longhorns – the cattle in TX brought
from Spain.
• Cowboys were in high demand when RR’s
increased in the west because the cattle had to get
to the market towns.
herd cattle
on a ranch
Growing Demand for Beef
Growing cities led to demand for more beef.
The Cow Town
Joseph McCoy – convinced Abilene, KS to
become the “cow town.” Used the
Chisholm Trail– major trail from TX to KS
– look at map page 209 – know this trail!!!!
The End of the Open Range
• Overgrazing of the land
• Bad Weather - 1885 – 1886 winter was harsh,
followed by a summer of drought that destroyed
the grass. 1886 – 1887 – another harsh winter that
wiped out the cattle.
• Barbed Wire– invented by Joseph Glidden. This
kept cows out of farmers land, causing an end to
the open range. This helped end the cow boom.
Led to fence wars between farmers and ranchers.
Settling on the Great Plains
• RR brought many to the plains.
• Land - cheap and fertile , but there were a lot
of hardships
• Hardships
Cost a lot of money
No farming experience
Climate was wide ranging
Water was scarce
Men had to leave to earn cash while waiting for
crops to come in
Settlers Move West
• How get land??? RAILROADS AND
• RR received land grants from the government
– 170 million acres.
• Union Pacific and Central Pacific –
transcontinental RR. Met in Promontory
Point, UT.
– RR sold land not used to farmers
• 1862 – Homestead Act – 160 acres of land
– 160,000 families. Most abandoned their
land because it was too hard to farm.
• Exodusters – Af-Am who left the South
and went to Kansas to become farmers.
• Only 10% of land settled by families.
• 1889 – Oklahoma territory opened up to
– Boomers
– Sooners
The starting line for the first
Land Rush, April 22, 1889.
Guthrie, Oklahoma Territory, five days after
the Oklahoma land rush of April 22, 1889.
Perhaps as many as 20,000 prospective
landowners surged into what was formerly
Indian Territory
The Closing of the Frontier
• 1890 – Census Bureau declared frontier no
longer existed.
• Frederick Jackson Turner – Frontier Thesis
– America’s social development has always
been based on the idea of moving west and
starting over.
Settlers Meet the Challenges of
the Plains
• droughts, floods, fires, blizzard, locust plagues,
raids by outlaws, and NA.
• Homes made of turf, or sod – called soddies.
• Families - self-sufficient
• Technical support for Farmers – made farming
– John Deere’s steel plow
– Cyrus McCormick – reaping machine
– harrow to break the ground
Agricultural Education
• Morrill Land Grant Act –land given to
states to sell – money used to start
agricultural colleges.
• Research for new machinery to increase
productivity. Scientific and mechanical
methods of farming were taught.
Farmers in Debt
• New machinery - expensive. Borrow to buy
• Price of crop good, could repay loan, price of crop
bad, couldn’t repay and had to borrow more for
next crop.
• Bonanza Farms – specialized in one crop. Usually
started by a business or RR and hurt the farmers
because they had the money to buy the equipment.
• drought could wipe out a farmer
• RR hurt farmers also by charging high rates
Farmers and the Populist
• cycle of debt - mortgaged farms to buy
more land to grow more crops to make
money to pay off debt
• RR taking advantage of farmers - high rates
to move crops East, high rates to store
Economic Distress
• Monetary Policy –federal govt plan for the makeup and quantity of the nation’s money supply.
• taking Greenbacks (Civil War $) out of circulation
• 1873 – Congress put the nation’s currency on a
gold standard - reduced the amount of money in
circulation because the money in circulation had to
be backed by gold
• “Gold bugs” – favored this. “Silverites” did not.
• Farmers - want more money back in to
circulation - PAY OFF DEBTS!!!
• Bland-Allison Act – 1878 – more silver ($24 million/month), increasing the money
supply. Treasury bought only what it had to
and did not circulate much of it.
• Sherman Silver Purchase Act – 1890 –
increased the amount of silver the
government had to purchase.
The Farmer’s Alliance
• 1867 – Oliver Hudson Kelly – started the
Grange – provide a social outlet and
educational forum for isolated farmers.
• Led to Farmer’s Alliances – led lectures on
lower interest rates, attacked
monopolies like the RR – wanted
federal regulation of RR and more
money in circulation.
The Rise and Fall of Populism
• Populism – People’s Party. They wanted reforms for farmers and
other workers.
• The Populist Party Platform
– Increase in circulation of money – MORE SILVER
– Progressive Income Tax – percentage of taxes owed increases
as income increases.
– Government ownership of communication and transportation
– U.S. Senators elected by the people
– 1 term for President and Vice President (remember corruption
in government – tied to big business for contributions!!)
– Secret ballots
– 8 hour work day and restrictions on immigration – WHY???
The Panic of 1893
• Farmers way in debt.
• More RR than markets
• 1893 – Philadelphia and Reading RR – bankrupt,
others followed.
• People began to trade paper money for gold. Stock
market crashed, price of silver decreased sharply.
• 15,000 businesses, 500 banks closed. 300,000
people lost jobs.
Silver or Gold
• 2 political parties divided by regions and money.
• Republicans – NE, business owners, RR – wanted
gold standard, less money in circulation.
• Democrats – S and W, farmers and laborers –
wanted gold and silver (bimetallism) in circulation
– more money in circulation
• Election of 1896 – focused on currency – which
metal would be the basis for the nation.
• Dem/Pop – William Jennings Bryan
• Rep – William McKinley
• Bryan and the “Cross of Gold” speech page 223
• Bryan could not carry the urban and
industrial centers. McKinley wins the
election. During his administration,
Congress returned the nation to a
gold standard, the silver
movement died, and Populism
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