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In the sass choosing to be a farmer had its opportunity and a lot more difficulties. Many families chose to head west, despite all the bad that could possibly happen. I would be one of those families. Moving west provides a grand opportunity to start over. With so many people moving west the government established the Homestead Act, which gave people over the age of 21 to file a claim for up to 160 acres of land. The best area to end up in was next to the railroads. If you where in that general area then it was much easier to get your merchandise to the market.

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Eventually their was new inventions like the mechanical harrows, updated plows, mowing and harvesting machines, threshers, and binders. These new tools halved the workers hours. Speculators where then buying huge pieces of land from the government and then would offer that land for 10 times the original price. Farmers where stuck hosing between expensive land near the railroads or settling in free land far away from anything. When choices where made as to where their farm was going to be the whole family living on the farm had to work, usually around 14 hours a day.

Another faculty that would run into farmers and their land was cowboys and their cows. The cows would march right into the farms and eat anything green, but the cowboys wouldn’t stop them and make them head another direction because where ever they went was then their land. But farmers fixed that by putting barb wire all the way around their property. I chose to be a farmer because despite all the difficulties that came along, there was usually a fix to that problem. I didn’t chose a miner because that seems to be the most dangerous of the three.

Having to worry about the ground above me caving in ND breathing dust and specks of rock all day, is something I would not be able to take on. As for being a cowboy that Job eventually faded away and had no meaning for a long time. Running into all these challenges of being a farmer seems like the biggest loss if you don’t look at both sides of the situation. But in reality if you where in the right spot and worked hard this was a big opportunity. All information in this essay is from the text book “The American Odyssey: A History of the United States” pages 460-485. Farmer in the sass’s By Christy

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