Rise of the New West, 1819-1829

By Frederick Jackson Turner | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VII
WESTERN COMMERCE AND IDEALS (1820-1830)

BY 1820 the west had developed the beginnings of many of the cities which have since ruled over the region. Buffalo and Detroit were hardly more than villages until the close of this period. They waited for the rise of steam navigation on the Great Lakes and for the opening of the prairies. Cleveland, also, was but a hamlet during most of the decade; but by 1830 the construction of the canal connecting the Cuyahoga with the Scioto increased its prosperity, and its harbor began to profit by its natural advantages.1 Chicago and Milwaukee were mere fur-trading stations in the Indian country. Pittsburg, at the head of the Ohio, was losing its old pre-eminence as the gateway to the west, but was finding recompense in the development of its manufactures. By 1830 its population was about twelve thousand.2 Foundries, rolling-mills, nail-factories, steam-engine shops, and distilleries were busily at

____________________
1
Whittlesey, Early Hist. of Cleveland, 456; Kennedy, Hist. of Cleveland, chap. viii.
2
Thurston, Pittsburg and Allegheny in the Centennial Year, 61.

-96-

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