Women In Westward Expansion
From the early 1840?s to the late 1860?s, an era of westward expansion took place. Over this period of time, pioneers from all across the ?Old World? decided to embark on a journey to the ?New Country?, a land of unending farmland, furs, and rivers in the newly acquired California and Oregon Territories (Schlissel, 19). After the United States annexed the Republic of Texas and the British were out of Oregon, the pioneers wanted to explore their ?manifest destiny?, or their belief that they had rights to expand across North America (Faragher & Stansell, 310).
Most of the men who decided to expand westward did so because they were farmers looking for new land to cultivate. With reports of lush, fertile lands to the west and the looming depression in 1837, farmers searched for a way to improve their quality of life. One farmer said his reason for leaving was because he felt ?people were settling right under his nose (Schlissel, 20),? even though his neighbor was over 10 miles away. So, like most men, he packed up and got ready for the grueling journey, whether his family liked it or not.
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