How did the Morrill act affect farming, ranching, manufacturing, and the movement west?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The Morrill Act was an important law which impacted the western growth of the United States.  The Morrill Act gave land to states which they could then sell to people.  The money from the land sales was often used to establish agricultural and technical colleges.  As people bought land, more people moved westward.  This allowed farming, cattle ranching, and manufacturing to grow.  Cattle ranching became more profitable because of the Civil War.  The demand for meat increased as did meat prices.  People also used the land to become farmers.  When people moved westward either as miners, ranchers, or farmers, industry followed to meet the demand for various products. In addition, the agricultural colleges provided knowledge and information which could help farmers.  Thus, this law, along with other laws, increased movement to the west.  More people began farming and raising cattle.  Industries followed and grew to meet the needs of those who moved west.

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