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The Significance of the Frontier in American History

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Essay title: The Significance of the Frontier in American History

The Significance of the Frontier in American History

American History, up to our own day, has been in a large degree the history of the colonization of the Great West. The existence of an area of free land, its continuous recession, and the advance of American settlement westward, explain American development. Behind establishment, lie the vital forces that call these organs into life and shape them to meet changing conditions. The peculiarity of American institutions I, that they have been compelled to adapt themselves to the changes of an expanding world and people. The American frontier can be easily distinguished from the European frontier or the African frontier. The most significant aspect of the American frontier, some people argue, is that the fact that the American frontier lies at the hither edge of free land. As America was being settled by the Europeans, it is apparent that European cultures took an impact on the continent as a whole. As this was happening America was forced to modify and develop a lifestyle which existed and reacted with the European’s lifestyle. During the seventeenth century, the frontier was advanced up the Atlantic river courses and deeper into the “heart” of America. Inventions such as the steam engine allowed navigation of the western waters, opening up the Erie Canal for travel, along with the Mississippi River. In the successive frontiers, natural boundary lines are found, which serve to mark and to affect the characteristics of the frontiers, called “fall lines.” The Atlantic frontier was compounded of fisherman, fur trader, miner, cattle-raiser, and famer. The effect of the Indian frontier as a consolidating agent in our history is important because over the course of the seventeenth century, various inter-colonial congresses have been called to treat with Indians

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