Coming Over, Spreading Out, and Rushing for Gold The countrys population in 1860 was 31.4 million,
nearly four times more than it had been at the start of the 1800s. Of the worlds predominantly white nations, only France, Russia, and Austria
had larger populations Many of the new Americans were immigrants
Immigrant a person who leaves one country to settle permanently in another. The number of immigrants in
1830 was about 25,000 The number of immigrants in 1855 was close to 450,000 The immigrants came from close as Mexico and
Canada and as far away as China and Japan When the immigrants first arrived, they tended to stay with their fellow expatriates,
where the language, food, and culture were more familiar, creating mini-nations. Immigrants also increasingly stayed in cities, even in they had come from a farm
background In 1840, there were 10 Americans living on farms to every one that lived in a town By 1850, the number was 5 to 1, and many of the new city dwellers were immigrants
Urbanization The Germans, the Irish, and the Know-Nothings who opposed them
The immigrants lived in parts of the city that were dark, smelly, filthy, and violent Many were so appalled that reality did not match their vision of land of opportunity and went back home
Since immigrants wanted any type of job when they first arrived, wages in the larges cities were pitifully low
In New York City, for example, it was estimated it took a minimum of $10.37 a week to support a family of five (that did not include money for medical needs or recreation) The average factory worker, laboring six days a week or 10 or 11
hours a day might make $5 a week Because they were newcomers and because most native-born Americans still lived in smaller towns or farms, there was little demand for reforms or
cleaning up the cities And still the immigrants came! From 600,000 in the 1830s to 1.7 million in the 1840s to 2.6 million in the 1850s.
70 More than percent of the immigrants between 1840 and 1860 were from just two areas in Europe:
Ireland & the German states For the Irish, it was come or starve. A fungus all but wiped out Irelands potato crop in 1845, and there was widespread
famine. More than 1.5 million Irish scraped up the $10 or $12 one-way fare and piled into America-bound ships for an often hellish two-week trip in a cargo hold
Many of the ships had brought Southern cotton to Britain, and in a way they were bringing back the Norths cash crop cheap labor to work in factories and build railroads
What is this land, America, so many travel there? What is this land America, so many travel there
I'm going now while I'm still young, my darling meet me there Wish me luck my lovely, I'll send for you when I can And we'll make our home in the American land Over there the women wear silk and satin to their knees And children, dear, the sweets, I hear, are growing on the trees
Gold comes rushing out the river straight into your hands When you make your home in the American land There's diamonds in the sidewalk, the gutters lined in song Dear, I hear that beer flows through the faucets all night long There's treasure for the taking, for any hard working man
Who'll make his home in the American land I docked at Ellis Island in the city of light and spire I wandered to the valley of red-hot steel and fire We made the steel that built the cities with the sweat of our two hands
We made our home in the American land There's diamonds in the sidewalk, the gutters lined in song Dear, I hear that beer flows through the faucets all night long There's treasure for the taking, for any hard working man Who'll make his home in the American land
The McNicholas, the Posalskis, the Smiths, Zerillis too The Blacks, the Irish, Italians, the Germans and the Jews They come across the water a thousand miles from home With nothing in their bellies but the fire down below
They died building the railroads, they worked to bones and skin They died in the fields and factories, names scattered in the wind They died to get here a hundred years ago, they're still dying now Their hands that built the country we're always trying to keep down
There's diamonds in the sidewalk, the gutters lined in song Dear, I hear that beer flows through the faucets all night long There's treasure for the taking, for any hard working man Who'll make his home in the American land Who'll make his home in the American land
Who'll make his home in the American land Many of the Irish settled in New York City or Boston. They were harshly discriminated against in many places, and N.I.N.A. signs hung in many
employers windows. It stood for No Irish Need Apply Almost as many Germans as Irish came during this period, although they were more likely to spread out
The Germans also came because of food shortages or other tough economic conditions The Germans were generally better off financially and better educated than other immigrant groups (they brought the idea of kindergarten or childrens
garden with them). Many Germans pushed away from the Eastern cities to the Midwest, especially Wisconsin The rise in immigration also increased anti-immigrant feeling,
especially in areas where immigrants were competing with people born in America for jobs In 1849, an organization surfaced called the Nativists
Nativism the policy of protecting the interests of native inhabitants against those of immigrants They were better known as the KnowNothing Party, because members supposedly replied,
I know nothing when asked by outsiders what was going on at their meetings I know nothing but my country, my whole
country, and nothing but my country. The Know-Nothings demanded an end to immigration, a prohibition on nonnatives voting or holding office, and restrictions on Roman Catholics
The Know-Nothings made a lot of noise for a while. Renamed the American Party, they attracted more than 1 million members. By 1855, they managed to elect several
governors and scores of congressmen. Their 1856 presidential candidate was Millard Fillmore. Fillmore was previously a Whig and had been vice president under Pres. Taylor and served as president from 1850 to 1853 after Taylor died in office.
Fillmore did carry one state, Maryland, as a Know-Nothing candidate in the 1856 election But the Know-Nothings faded away as the Civil War approached, torn apart by the differences between
Northern and Southern members over the dividing issue of slavery Making waves: The Mormons
Americans in the mid-1800s were generally tolerant when it came to religion About were regular churchgoers, and there were so many denominations that no one church dominated By 1860, almost every state had repealed laws against Jews or Catholics holding public office
The question What can you do? was more prevalent than How do you worship? The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter
Day Saints began in 1830 with the publication of the Book of Mormon by a New York man named Joseph Smith To escape persecutions, Smith moved his headquarters to Ohio, and then Missouri and
then to Nauvoo, Illinois, on the banks of the Mississippi Nauvoo became one of the most thriving cities in the state But the Mormons habits of working hard, sticking to themselves, and having more than one wife at a time troubled outsiders, and the persecutions began again.
This Smith and his brother were killed by a mob, and Mormon leaders decided they needed some distance between themselves and the rest of America Led by a strong and capable lieutenant of Smiths, Brigham Young, the Mormons moved
west, many of them pushing two-wheeled carts for hundreds of miles Finally, the Mormons settled in the Great Salt Lake Basin, a forbidding region in Utah that most
other people thought of as uninhabitable Establishing a strictly run society and economic system, the Mormons thrived By 1848, there were 5,000 living in the
area, many of the Europeans who had been converted by Mormon missionaries Many of the Mormons fought in the Mexican War as a way of earning what had been Mexican territory In 1850, Utah became a territory.
Its statehood was delayed for almost 50 years, partly because of the Mormons refusal until then to drop their practice of multiple wives (polygamy) Wagons ho!
Although it is often attributed to Horace Greeley, it was actually Indiana journalist John B. Soule who advised in 1850, Go west, young man, go west. Even before the Gold Rush, Americans in ever-increasing
numbers were moving west. Despite the awesome dangers and hardships, settlers piled their belonging into a fortified farm wagon and started out, mostly from St. Joseph or Independence in Missouri Some of them stopped on the Great Plains of Kansas and
Nebraska, while others pushed on to the West Coast. By 1846, 5,000 Americans had settled in the Willamette Valley in the Oregon Territory, and by 1859, the territory had become a state. Americas Manifest Destiny was being achieved!
THE GOLD RUSH On the chilly morning of January 24, 1848 James Marshall, a carpenter from New Jersey, saw a pea-shaped yellow metal glinting in the
gravel of the American River (40 miles east of Sacramento, California) Marshall and his laborers were helping build a sawmill... Boys, by God, I believe I have found a gold mine.
What he found was the ignition switch for one of the most massive migrations in human history: The California Gold Rush It was quite literally a rush, as soon as the news
got out. President Polk announced in December 1848 that there looked to be enough gold in California to pay for the costs of the Mexican War many times over. That made people sit up and take notice!
Risking life and limb to strike gold More than 90,000 people made their way to California in the two years following the
first discovery and more than 300,000 by 1854 One of about every 90 people then living in the United States! An 1850 census showed that 25%
of those counted in California were from countries as far away as Australia and China It wasnt easy getting there From the East Coast, one could take a 15,000 mile, fivemonth voyage around the tip of South America
More than 500 ships made the voyage in 1849 alone! You could cut across the Isthmus of Panama and take two months off the trip (if you were willing to risk cholera & malaria)
By land, the 2,200-mile journey from the trailheads in Missouri or Iowa might take three or four months with a lot of luck!
Some who came were already famous: John C. Fremont and Phillip Armour
History recalls them as the 49ers, because the first big year of the Gold Rush was 1849. They called themselves Argonauts, after the mythical Greek heroes who sailed in the Argo with Jason to search for the Golden Fleece
Most of the 49ers found nothing but disappointment, and many found death With few women and no government, it was a pretty rough place
The town of Marysville had 17 murders in one week San Francisco averaged two murders a day A miner making $8 a day (about $205 in 2007 dollars) was doing eight times better than his
coal-mining counterpart in the East Prices were outrageous A loaf of bread that cost 4 cents in New York cost 75 cents in the goldfields All in all,
most gold seekers were not any better off than laborers in the rest of the country There was gold, and plenty of it During the Civil War alone, California
produced more than $170 million worth of bullion, which helped prop up wartime Union currency The Gold Rush had other impacts as well **non-Indian population of 18,000 in January 1848
**three years later 165,000 **San Francisco became a booming U. S. port and doorway to the Pacific **the growth and importance of the state help spur Congressional approval of the proposed transcontinental railroad
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