GCSE American West Full Revision Notes

Revision notes for GCSE History, these notes are for the WJEC board but they should work for any other board if your studying the American West.Hope they help

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The American West-1865-95

The Plains:
-Lack of Water and Trees
-Extreme Weather

-Crucial to survival of the Indians
-Made of Buffalo Skin and held together with pegs
-Owned by the women in the tribe (even after divorce)
-Took 10 minutes to take down
-Had flaps which open up…

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-Important decisions were made in council meetings, the men smoked to inform spirits of their
-Warrior Societies organised hunts, travelling and protection for bands

The Buffalo:
-Crucial for Indians survival
-Indians performed The Buffalo Dance before hunting Buffalo, they believed this would make the
buffalo come closer

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-Dances and ceremonies used to contact spirits and to pray
-The Sun Dance was used to determine is a man was warrior material

The Medicine Man:
-Used the power of the spirits to cure the sick
-Used herbal remedies too
-Made charms
-Were a part of every tribal decision

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-Advanced machinery allowed more land to be ploughed
-Sod Busters could plough through dense grass roots

Female Homesteaders:
-Had many responsibilities
-Planted crops
-Collected cattle chips
-Taught and brought up children
-Protected crops from cattle
-Made soap, candles and clothes
-Killed snakes

The Cattle Industry:
-Cattle were brought to…

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Open Range Ranching:
-Was problematic because of cattle theft and it was hard to find out who owned which cattle
-Ended in the winter of 1886-87 because the winter was severe and killed thousands of cattle,
demand for beef fell plus there was pressure on grass stock due to lots…

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Friction between economic groups (Cattle Barons,
Homesteaders, Ranchers, Miners)

Types of Crimes

Ex-soldiers turned to robbery after the American
Bank Robbery
Civil War.

Young Cattle were often stolen before branding
and brands could also be altered. Sometimes
Cattle Rustling
cowboys would steal cattle and start their own


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Corruption Some Sheriffs were often corrupt.

Pay The pay was very poor so many men were not too willing to become a lawman.

Were people who took law enforcement into their own hands. They caused a
Vigilantes lot of trouble because they would lynch people they though guilty, a lot…

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The Little Big Horn with their people.
2.However the Sioux and Cheyenne that did agree to the US Armies confinement soon began to
realise they were only being repaid by broken treaties (as gold miners persisted to mine in The Black
Hills) so they left their reservations and joined Crazy…

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hunted by bone pickers to make fertilisers and glue and were hunted for
leather. Without them the Indians were slowly starving to death.

The US Army The Army has superior firepower, more soldiers, strong forts, better
artillery and rifles than the Indians. Their Total War (wiping out all Indians)

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Miss E


A very good set of revision notes covering most aspects of the topic already summarised into bullet points for you.



amazing help!!






Thanks for the revision cards! :D!!!! !! ! !! !! ! !!!!!!!!!! !! !!! ! !!!!!!



alfie u dont study dumb***

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