Manifest Destiny

Manifest Destiny

Manifest Destiny






Manifest Destiny

Manifest Destiny

America Head West

Multiplying millions

As of 1840, the United States population had increased to about six times during the American Revolution.

The country’s protectorate had vastly expanded to approximately twice its initial size.

Reason for westward migration

Mountain men migrated westward to trap and trade

Missionaries went to spread Christianity

Lumber-jacks and miners migrated to capitalize on the natural resources in the region.

Major Western Trails

California Trail

The Santa Fe Trail

Led from Independence


To the Santa Fe town, the capital of New Mexico

Oregon Trail



Willamette Valley

The Mormon Trail



The Gold Rush

Gold Fever

A carpenter discovered gold in the American River at John Sutter’s sawmill in northern California in 1848.

People came from far away following the new from American sailors and dreamt of striking it rich.

Rush to California

Mass migration to California of miners and business people who made money off the miners

A massive 80,000 people migrants left for California

Booming Cities

San Francisco

Stockton town

Significant effects of Westward Migration

The western trails declined significantly after 1869 when railroad tracks finally ran unbroken from the east to the West Coast.

The Oregon Treaty

Polk was pledging war with Great Britain to refuse to surrender all of Oregon to the United States.

Following his presidency victory, Polk concluded a treaty with Britain that set the boundary between the United States and British Canada at the 49th parallel.

Communication Links

Butterfield Trail

Pony Express

Page 301 Section Review

What is Manifest destiny? Americans believe that they had the right or rather the duty to expand across the westward part of the North American Continent from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean.

Many farmers and entrepreneurs headed west in the 1840s and 1850s trade and farmed the vast, rich land of which earlier migrants spoke. There were higher chances of reaping tremendous benefits in moving to the West than staying at home.

The Oregon Trail became so heavily traveled that many travelers were inspired by golds, rich farmlands, difficult economic times in the east, among others.

How might migrants’ attitudes on the Mormon Trail have been like and unlike those of other travelers West? Those moving to the West intended to make money, while the Mormons went for religious purposes, although all went for a given purpose.

How did the gold rush affect the US, California, and the people of both places? People became wealthy as a result of excessive amounts of gold in California and improved the economies of both the US and California.

How many migrants followed the overland trails to the West? Approximately 350,000 migrants.

What effects do you think the migration that began in the 1840s would have on Native Americans? The American travelers crossed the Native American protectorate causing the natives to fight along with the Americans.