Social Studies - 2018-19

VUS.8a - Westward Movement

The student will apply social science skills to understand how the nation grew and changed from the end of Reconstruction through the early twentieth century by

a) explaining the westward movement of the population in the United States, with emphasis on the role of the railroads, communication systems, admission of new states to the Union, and the impact on American Indians;


Adopted: 2015

BIG IDEAS

Unit Themes

Unit Essential Questions

Equality

Is there one American Experience?

Economic Systems 

To what extent does the American economy shape the American experience? 

Reform Movements 

How do people affect change in their society?


UNDERSTANDING THE STANDARD

New technologies, innovations, and government policies led to a new wave of internal and international migration and growth.

This growth, while positive for some, resulted in more displacement for American Indians.


ESSENTIALS

Westward movement 

 Following the Civil War, the westward movement of settlers intensified in the vast region between the Mississippi River and the Pacific Ocean. 

 The years immediately before and after the Civil War were the era of the American cowboy, marked by long cattle drives for hundreds of miles over unfenced open land in the West, which was the only way to get cattle to market. 

 Many Americans had to rebuild their lives after the Civil War. They responded to the incentive of free public land and moved west to take advantage of the Homestead Act of 1862, which gave free public land in the western territories to settlers who would live on and farm the land. 

 Southerners, including African Americans in particular, moved west to seek new opportunities after the Civil War. 

 New technologies such as the railroads, telegraph, telephone, and mechanical reaper opened new lands in the West for settlement and made farming profitable by increasing the efficiency of production and linking resources and markets. By the turn of the century, the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains regions of the American West were no longer a mostly unsettled frontier, but were fast becoming regions of farms, ranches, and towns. 

 The forcible removal of the American Indians from their lands continued throughout the remainder of the nineteenth century as settlers continued to move west following the Civil War.

KEY VOCABULARY

Terms & Events

Transcontinental Railroad

Immigration

Cowboy Era

Cattle drive

Homestead Act of 1862

Mechanical Reaper

Industrialization

Old (pre-1871) and New Immigration (1871-1921)

Textile Industry

Clothing Industry

Steel Mills

Statue of Liberty

Assimilation

Melting Pot

Ethnic neighborhoods

Resentment

Chinese Exclusion Act (1882)

Immigration Restriction Act (1921)

Public services

Trolleys

Streetcars

Corporation

Bessemer steel process

Light bulb

Electricity

Telephone

Airplane

Assembly line

Steel

Finance

Oil

Railroads

Laissez-faire capitalism

Big business

People

Cowboys

Poles, Slavs and Italians

Immigrants

Chinese

Alexander Graham Bell

Wright Brothers

Henry Ford

Andrew Carnegie

J.P. Morgan

John D. Rockefeller

Cornelius Vanderbilt

Thomas Edison

Places

Great Plains

Rocky Mountains

Coal Mines

New York City

Ellis Island

Industrial Cities: Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, New York

Tenements

Slums

Updated: May 18, 2018