To encourage people to move to the Great Plains, Abraham
Lincoln passed the . Settlers were given 160
acres that, for a small fee, they could live on and farm for five
years. The claimed land in Kansas, Nebraska,
and the Dakota Territory.
The Settlers Arrive
Even though the climate was and land was
difficult to farm, the new settlers were determined. They used
the grass roots above the soil, or , to build their houses.
New inventions, like the chilled-steel plow, , the
windmill, and a new kind of wheat that could survive the
Plains, helped to make life easier.
Many African Americans in the South went to the Great Plains
to escape and unfair treatment. Twenty thousand
African Americans from the South went to Kansas in 1879, and
they became known as . Other parts of California,
Oregon, and were also settled by African