Ancient Civilizations. USA expansion

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Ever wonder about what helped contribute to the expansion of the United States? Never would I have thought those things which were beyond our control helped shape the way United States became this huge country that everyone migrated too. My thoughts are the two most significant physical geographic factors that helped shape and expand the U.S are The California Gold Rush and The Irish Potato Famine.

The significance of the California Gold Rush is that it was not the first gold rush in America, but it is the one that made a drastic impact in our history. First off the Gold that was found in San Francisco was found by accident by a worker named James Marshall. He was building a mill and while he was digging, he stumbled upon gold that he thought was fool’s gold. Once word spread about this discovery of gold over 300,000 people came to discover gold from all over the world. They travelled by foot, boat, crossing the ocean, and anyway they could to get there. This brought on new thought process on transportation on how to get there. Also it brought new cities due to those that were traveling from far off States. This gold provided hard capitol that was needed to fuel this economy. You see at the time California was an ungoverned state (Edwards, Gallucci, 1999). When thousands of people came it changed the way the government looked at California. They started to see how people from around the world were finding a way to get there and how San Francisco was becoming over populated with all the gold diggers. In 1850, California became a state (Edwards, Gallucci, 1999). It was one of the first states in the West. They took a census on how many people were in California due to this Gold Rush and they found that it had swelled up to 9x its population from before the Gold Rush. With that said, San Francisco opened up a ton of opportunities for the United States because it used the Pacific Ocean as a port for World Trade. With this accessible to the U.S. we were able to trade with other countries for food, clothing, and we were taught different ways of doing things to live a better life.

The Irish Potato famine brought on our first wave of refugees to America. In 1847 Irish Catholics first arrived in Boston, the home of the Anglo-Saxons. It was the first big year of famine and the ships brought 37,000 Irish Catholics ashore (Gavin, 2000). Boston became anti- Irish because they were afraid of not having any work because the Irish would work for less money which would hurt the natives of Boston who needed work. Jobs became unavailable if you were Irish. Throughout the famine, 75% of Irish people started to migrate to New York instead of Boston. New York was 3 times bigger than Boston so they could offer more jobs and space for living. In grand total 650,000 Irish arrived to New York during the famine (Gavin, 2000). The Irish main religion was Irish Catholics and because so many had arrived, Catholicism was on the rise. The Irish helped us win the Civil War by enlisting 140,000 of their men in the Union Army. The all Irish 69th New Regiment fought in battles at Bull Run, Antietam, and Gettysburg (Gavin, 2000). After the Civil War, the Irish helped America expand and industrialize by doing a lot of the brunt work. They worked in factories, built railroads, built boats, and worked in mines. The Irish were the First to organize a trade union to help them get fair wages, time off, and so that they worked in a safe environment .Not only did the Irish have an effect on America in the 1800’s, it also helped pave the way for our future 35th President, John F. Kennedy, an Irish famine descendant which made programs to help our dying economy get back on their feet since World War II (Friedel and Sidey, 2006).

In Ancient times if you wanted your society to develop and grow, then where you lived mattered. For the Egyptians, they were truly blessed with “The Gift of the Nile”. The Nile River was a never ending supply of blessings and hard...
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