Why did so many people move west to California and Oregon?

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  • Why did so many people move west to California and Oregon?
    • Pull Factor
      • Pre-emption Bill - 1842
        • Farmers could squat on a piece of land, clear the trees and build a house on it  and only have to pay a small sum to buy the land.
      • The Mountain Men
        • They reported that, in Oregon, the land was perfect for farming and the rivers were full of fish.
        • They described California as a place where the sun always shone and fruit grew everywhere.
      • Starting a new life in California
        • California  was ideal for growing grapes and cotton
        • Wine and brandy could be produced there in great quantities
        • Cotton could be sold to the British to be turned into cloth in the cotton mills of Northern England
      • There were huge quantities of empty land in the West
    • Push Factor
      • Economic depression - 1837
        • People lost their savings
        • Wages were cut by 40%
      • Massive unemployment in the East
        • 20,000 unemployed people demonstrated in Philadelphia - 1838
      • Farmers in the Mississippi Valley wanted  to leave.
        • The price of wheat and corn that they grew collapsed
          • The farmers faced ruin


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