Migration to the West

The homestead act encouraged migration to the west by offering 160 acres of land.

United States had acquired Mexico, California and several other states under the Manifest Destiny act.  In exchange for a small filing fee the settlers were given 160 acres of land to migrate to the west.  The settlers were given a five years grace period before they permanently owned the land.  However, after 6 months of residing in the given land they had the option to purchase the land from the government at a cost of $1.25 per acre.  By 1900 the United States government had given out 80 million acres of land.

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