Nevada History Term Paper

Pages: 5 (1429 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 4  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Native Americans


These were the first white men to venture into the hostile territory, along with roving mountain men who worked for fur trading companies back in the east. But these men's scattered influence on the region could hardly be considered big business. They were explorers, and as their stories filtered back to the settlements along the Mississippi river, and in the Missouri territory, they stirred the interests of hardy souls who would become a new wave of explorers. The territory was left to the Indians until the early 1820's.

Period of Explorers

Settling parties soon began to form Jedediah Smith came from pioneer stock. His father's people, the Smiths, settled in the Plymouth Colony, and his mother's people arrived from England in 1630. Jedediah was born January 16, 1799 in Jericho New York.

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In 1826 Jedediah Smith and his partners traveled down stream for several days, entering present day Nevada at the 114 (degree) west longitude, where present day Mesquite is. He was followed by an expedition to cross Nevada going to California, which was put together by John Bidwell, a twenty-year-old young man with adventure calling him to the west, hence the Bidwell Party. Over the next few years there were few willing to make the daring trip, despite the success of the Bidwell Party? One group in 1843 was successful in bringing their wagons along the Humboldt and into California. The Walker-Chiles Party was organized by Joseph Chiles who had previously been a member of the Bidwell Party. It was led by Joseph Walker, an experienced fur trapper. Walker had led a fur-trapping expedition along the Humboldt and was now familiar with a more practical route which would bring the wagons to the head waters. This party was followed by the Stephens-Murphy-Townsend Party, and finally the Donner Party. (Hulse, 1991)

All these groups of people endured hardship, difficult weather and at times violent encounters with the Indians, but their persistence created the reasons for the areas to be settled. Their determination and will to overcome the elements paved the entrance for the next settlement wave, which is the period of big business.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Nevada History the History of Assignment

Big Business moves in Without a base of settlers, and people living in the territory who know the land, business interests in the state could not obtain a solid foot hold. The gold rush of the 1840 and 50's created settler traffic through the state. Some of the settlers continued onto California, but some of them remained in Nevada. Prior to the civil war, the country minted many of it's coins out of silver, and the discovery of silver mines in Nevada created a reason for business to invest in the area, bringing additional settlers, monies and development.

At this point, those who argue with Turners principles find most of their ideas. The railroad, (big business) brought settlers and commerce, and new towns (settlements) grew up around the railroads. Big business was drawn to the area by the mountain men's fur and trapping success. So did the mountain men represent big business, or did they effectively create and administer the exploration process? It could be argues either way, but the process of expansion would not begin unless there were present small groups of settlers which made expansion necessary. The settlers could not have come to the land without the trail blazing guidance of the explorers.

The railroad not only brought settlers, but money, commerce, transport of commercial goods out of the area, and family crews who ran the rails. Railroaders tended to cloister themselves. They were firsts committed to their trains, and only secondarily interested in the communities which they served. (Earl, 1986) But the iron horse brought people, money, society, which ultimately lead to the end of Turners settlement cycle. Once the rails had conquered the west all the way to the Pacific, the land was no longer a frontier to be settled, but a settlement to be organized and parceled by those who held power

Works Cited

Earl, Phillip. This was Nevada. Reno, Nevada: Reno Historical Society. 1986

Lexalt, Robert. Nevada: a Bicentennial History. New York: WW Norton and Company. 1921

Bowers, Michael. The Sagebrush State. Reno:… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Nevada History" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Nevada History.  (2003, October 17).  Retrieved August 1, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Nevada History."  17 October 2003.  Web.  1 August 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Nevada History."  October 17, 2003.  Accessed August 1, 2021.