Westward Migration In The 1800's

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With new land comes new hope, and a new beginning, is what many Americans thought in the early 1800’s due to the overly populated Eastern Coastal cities which is where most of America’s population was still living. This made finding work troublesome for many due to the fact that the competition was so fierce. Their dreams were about to become reality when President Jefferson purchased the Louisiana Territory from France in 1803; and in doing so doubled the size of the nation overnight. By 1850 these lands would be thriving with new businesses, farms, and communities, and would eventually unite the nation through travel, trade, and commerce. There were a few key technological advances that led to the success of the Westward migration of these…show more content…
The barges were useful in traveling downstream but their major drawback was that they could not navigate back upstream and would usually be torn apart at the end of their journeys due to this fact alone. American’s knew they needed a more efficient way to travel and by the 1820’s steamboats were becoming the main transportation source by water, and developed significant passenger traffic. Companies built lavish vessels to compete for this lucrative trade of transporting people from North to South, and East to West. The invention of the steam engine lead to another technological breakthrough with the development of trains and rail roads in the early 1800’s, and by the 1850 there were over 9,000 miles of track spread throughout the country. Passenger cars became more stable, comfortable and larger which meant more people could now travel throughout the country and experience the vast countryside of the West, or anywhere for that matter whether they wanted to settle there of just take a vacation. These new inventions helped Americans in settling west and experience their country and united the North, South, East, and West by giving them a means of traveling to pretty much any part of the country that they wanted…show more content…
With the vast new lands to the West, thanks to the Louisiana Purchase, thousands of farmers and businessman were able to find rich new farm lands and produce vast amounts of crops that would be sold, and traded to the North, East, and South. Many Americans traveled west to find new opportunity and make a better life for themselves and their family because the East was getting so overpopulated; and many of these settlers turned out to be right. The completion of the Erie Canal in October 1825 was a major factor in uniting the trade community and the nation to access the western lands more easily and efficiently. The canal gave New York direct access to Chicago and the growing markets of the West and the trade industry was booming. Railroads and canals were soon competing bitterly for the right to transport goods throughout the country, but when railroads were able to compete freely with other forms of transportation they almost always prevailed because of the amount of merchandise they were able to sustain. With the new lands to the west the amount of traded goods throughout the country was at an all-time high and this united the nation once again and helped in building the growing economy of the

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