American West

A collection of articles related to the events of the American West.

American West – The Cattle Industry

The cattle industry in the United States in the nineteenth century due to the young nation’s abundant land, wide-open spaces, and rapid development of railroad lines to transport the beef from western ranches to population centers in the Midwest and the East...

Mountain Men in the American West

The lives of mountain men in the American West were ones of scarcity, poverty, and bare sustenance. Living in the wild, he was in constant danger from starvation, dehydration, freezing cold, burning heat, wild animals and Indians. The fashion for wearing fur hats in...

American West – The California Gold Rush

  In the early 1840s, California was a distant outpost that few Americans had seen. John Sutter (left) was a Swiss emigrant who had come to California in 1839 with the idea of building a vast empire. At the end of 1847, Sutter sent a group of men, including James...

American West – White Man’s Opinion of the Plains Indians

As the population of America grew, so people began to move away from the cities and towns onto the Plains. At first the Indians welcomed the settlers; it was their belief that the land should be shared. However, problems soon began.    The whites killed...
American West – Manifest Destiny

American West – Manifest Destiny

“(It is) ..our manifest destiny to over spread and to possess the whole of the continent which Providence has given us for the development of the great experiment of liberty”  In 1845 these words were written by John O’Sullivan, a democrat...

American West – The Great American Desert

The Great American Desert was the name given, in the first half of the nineteenth century, to the area west of the Mississippi river. At the time, the area was only inhabited by tribes of native American Indians. White Americans considered it to be unfit for...

American West – Timeline

Date Summary Event 6th April  1830 Mormons founded Joseph Smith founded the Mormon religion. Smith claimed that, after seeing a vision of an angel called Moroni, he discovered some hidden gold plates bearing inscriptions. The translation of the inscriptions was...