Plains, Trains & Buffalo Chips or "Get Your Caboose On The Right Track"
An Integrated, Interdisciplinary Middle School Unit on Manifest Destiny With Emphasis on the Railroads. The period of railroad expansion dramatically changed the course of American history both before and after the Civil War. It was a factor leading to the Civil War, was a major factor in the North's victory, and opened territory west of the Mississippi to rapid settlement by white Americans. The concept of Manifest Destiny led to the push west and was justified by the results of railroad expansion. Therefore, American Indians were adversely affected, large immigrant groups were affected by the railroad and affected American culture, American claims on lands in the far west were realized, the environment was permanently changed and new economic classes emerged.