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Whocontributed most to the settling of the American West, Wagon train migrants or gold miners?

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Who contributed most to the settling of the American West, Wagon train migrants or gold miners? In this Essay, I will be discussing who contributed more to the settling of the American west, the Wagon train migrants or the gold miners. Before the Migrants and Miners went west, the only people to have been in the west were the Mountain men. These men hunted Beavers for there fur, and sold it to big companies such as the rocky fur company. They would meet once a year at a rendezvous and socialise and trade. Joseph Walker and Jeddah Smith were both originally Mountain men, when the fur trade collapsed they became adventurers and planned many trails for migrants so they reached there destination safely. No one new the west better than the mountain men, news soon travelled back to the east of the good land in the west was. Migrants flocked to the new land, between 1840 and 1860 the West changed dramatically, in 1840 the population was very low by 1860 the total population of California and Oregon was 432,000. Many families settled and lived there. San Francisco was a major city that was a finical centre rivalling New York. ...read more.


The journey through Panama could be dangerous as there were poisonous mosquitoes, and a hot humid climate. If traveller took along time travelling, and missed their boat up to California, they would be ripped off and forced to pay a lot for a boat. This was a quick way to get to California. Some people could think that this shows that the farmers where prepared to go through much more to get west. However, I that both groups went through equal amounts of hardship, but in different ways to get west. There was a belief, called manifest destiny, which was thought very strongly by politicians in the capital Washington. Manifest destiny was God, to be occupied and governed by White people, meant the opinion that whole of North American. The belief was first publicised publicly in 1845. I think politicians made up the idea of manifest destiny so the American empire could increase. They wanted to encourage migration settlers with a conscience to travel to the west and take land of the Indians. I feel they also used this belief to justify taking land such as California of Mexico. ...read more.


They made the settlement of the West quicker. The gold and silver had to be transported from the west to the East which meant roads and railways had to be built. This made it easier to people to travel from the two sides of the country. They made San Francisco one of the top finical centres in the world, rivalling New York. This impressed many people back in the east and pursued them to move over to California. Families started to settle in California, as it seemed like a place that was Ecomicly stable, unlike the East, which had suffered an ecomic depression. This might of happened quicker in areas where the wagon train migrants had settled, as the people there were already families who were not gambling and drinking, and it some ways were more concerned about living civilly In conclusion, I feel that Both California and Oregon contributed the settling of the American west in their own ways. California provided finical and manufactured development of the west, which was needed. But it is the type of people that maded the area. The miners were greedy, lazy and rough. Where as the farmers were community spirited hard working pleasant people in general. So I feel that the farmers contributed more socially and the miners more materially. Both equally imported factors to the development of the west. ...read more.

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