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Grade Level(s): Middle School

Age Levels(s): 11-14

Subject Area: Visual Art, Social Studies, Language Arts, Art History

Goals: Students will apply the basic principles of historical thinking by researching primary source information, forming their own conclusions  from sources to interpret bird’s eye view maps,  and paintings  and sketches and portraits as sources of the immigration movement westward. Students shall also draw conclusions about “The impact  the work the artists and mapmakers  had on Immigrants choosing to come to the US or choosing to join the Westward Expansion”

Curriculum Standards:

USI 23 - Analyze the rising levels of political participation and the expansion of America.

Curriculum Standards  Mass.Art Frameworks; An effective arts curriculum promotes knowledge and understanding of the historical and cultural contexts of the arts. An effective arts curriculum providesopportunities for students to make connections among the arts, with other disciplines within the core curriculum and with arts resources in the community. The standards for the connection strands are;

6. Purposes and Meanings in the Arts. Students will describe the purposes for which works of dance, music, theatre, visual arts, and architecture were and are created, and, when appropriate, interpret their meanings.

7.    Roles of Artists in Communities. Students will describe the roles of artists, patrons, cultural organizations, and arts institutions in societies of the past and present.

History and Social Science curriculum

1. Chronology and Cause- Students will understand the chronological order of historical events and recognize the complexity of historical cause and effect, including the interaction of forces from different spheres of human activity, the importance of ideas, and of individual choices, actions and character.

2. Historical Understanding- Students will understand the meaning, implications, and import of historical events, while recognizing the contingency and unpredictability of history — how events could have taken other directions — by studying past ideas as they were thought, and past events as they were thought and past events as they were lived by people of the time.

3. Research, Evidence and point of view- Students will acquire the ability to frame questions that can be answered by historical study and research; to collect, evaluate, and employ information from primary and secondary sources, and to apply it in oral and written presentations. They will understand many kinds and uses of evidence; and by comparing historical narratives, they will differentiate historical fact from historical interpretation and from fiction.

1. Organizing Art History chronologically to align with history and social science. Students will;

6.3 Interpret the meanings of artistic works by explaining how the subject matter and/or form reflect the events, ideas, religions, and customs of people living at a particular time in history

6.4 Describe how artistic production can shape and be influenced by the aesthetic preferences of a society

7.8 Analyze how the arts and artists were portrayed in the past by analyzing primary sources from historical periods

7.9 Identify artists who have been involved in social and political movements, and describe the significance of selected works

7.10 Describe the roles of government, philanthropy, arts institutions, critics, and the publishing, recording, and tourism industries in supporting the arts and historic preservation, and in creating markets for the arts.

Materials/Resources:

o Primary source 1-Bird’s eye view maps

o Primary source 2- “Kaaterskill Falls”, Thomas Cole

o Primary source 3- “ Across the Continent”, Frances Flora Palmer

o Primary Source 4- Thomas Cole’s Poetry
o Primary Source 5- “ Maps of the Pacific Railway”, Gustav Oshon
o Primary Source 6 - “Mt. Rainier”, John Mix Stanley
o Primary Source 7- Journals of Demas Barnes, Wyeth Nathaniel,
o Primary Source 8- Pacific Railway Act , July 1.

Timeframe: 6-8 , 45 minute periods

Student Foundational Skills:Student Foundational Skills:
Skill 1
Students shall be able to Explain, through the use of maps, paintings and journals how westward expansion, immigration and advances in transportation and communication changed geographic patterns in the United States.
Skill 2
Students will be able to Research, evaluate, and synthesize information about the westward movement from varied primary sources.
Skill 3
Students will be able to Highlight their understanding of the Westward Movement through the research, analysis, discussion and creation of a paintings and bird's eye view maps
Skill 4
Students will be able to Highlight connections across varied disciplines (i.e., art, history, and poetry)
Skill 5
Students will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the effects of the Westward Movement on Immigrants, through their writings, drawings and maps.
Skill 6
Students will be able to see the use of maps & paintings as primary sources.
Conclusion
In conclusion, you will be able to discuss and answer the essential question “How did Immigration affect the American conceptions of ‘We the people’ ?” After completing the activities and the worksheets, you will see the importance of the artists and cartographers of the time and how their works influenced migration westward.
You will be able to assess the usefulness of bird’s eye view maps in relation to travel brochures and migration. You will be familiar with the works of American landscape artists and will be able to pick out geographical locations from looking at landscapes. You will be able to assess the type of location and whether or not the painting or bird’s eye view maps are primary sources or not.

Finally, you will want to think about the importance of bird’s eye view maps for migration/immigration and whether or not they would be a viable source of information today or not.
You may want to try and find some post 1920’s bird’s eye view maps of your town or state and decide if they are primary sources or not. You should begin to question the use of google maps as a source of bird’s eye view maps. What is seen, what is not seen.

Learning Activities and Organizational Notes:

Activity:
1. Students shall research artists, their paintings and /or poems or journals and how they were used as travel brochures; Cole, John Mix Stanley, Palmer, Caitlin and Oshon shall be studied .
2. Why did they paint these landscapes, portraits or bird’s eye view maps? How could these serve as brochures for travelling and incoming immigrants? What would be changed or added to make the areas seem more inviting?
3. Study bird’s eye view maps; What is included? Why is it included? Who may have commissioned the birds eye view map? What is not included? Why? What would be included to push the westward movement.
4. In reading the collected poems and verses of Thomas Cole, students shall determine if these are a primary source .

Activity
Bird’s Eye View Maps and Paintings of John Mix Stanley
1. Show Bird’s eye view maps,
1. San Francisco,
2. Catskills,
3. Larchmont,
4. Hicksville,
5. Chatham,
6. Mt. Rainier and Puget Sound
Give one map to each group
Activity
Students shall do the worksheets for map analysis, critical map reading, reading historic maps and map discussion prompts and then present findings to class as a group. Have one student do a compare and contrast on the board as groups do presentations. Discuss the compare and contrast chart made.
• Introduce students to bird's eye view maps and watercolor paintings of John Mix Stanley and Gustav Oshon as related to the Pacific RailRoad. Discuss
• Discuss the primary source document Pacific Railway Act, July 1, 1862
• Explore the circumstance of why certain locations were altered or omitted on bird's eye view maps and in paintings.
o Note the positive 'distortions' in bird's eye view maps
• Introduce Bird's Eye View maps and paintings as a form of advertising.
• Discuss how these maps might have helped or hindered the migration to the west
• What questions do the students still have regarding Bird’s eye view maps and the paintings of John Mix Stanley in terms of the Pacific Railroad
Activity
Show the Painting by Thomas Cole, “Kaaterskill Falls”

Research the painting and discuss how this painting could be used as a travel brochure for people wishing to come to New York.
Read the primary source poems by Thomas Cole .
How did these poems get people to see other images for the land?
Use the written document analysis worksheet, and the painting analysis ws.
• Discuss the inherent bias in all primary sources and the specific omission on maps and paintings. ( i.e. bird’s eye view maps, Thomas Cole painting “Kaaterskill Falls”). What was omitted from the Bird’s eye view map of the Catskills? What did Cole omit from his painting “Kaaterskill Falls”? Why?
Activity
Westward Movement Painting
“Across the Continent- Westward the Course of the Empire
Takes Its Way”
Frances Flora Bond Palmer( for Currier and Ives)
Lithograph hand colored, 1868

Currier and Ives – started a lithography shop in NY in 1834. They specialized in art reproductions, producing color prints of their house staff and also some by commissioned artists. Discuss how these were mass produced.

Art Appreciation Lesson/History Lesson
1. What does this painting say? What story does it tell?
2. Is it an accurate account? Would you consider it a primary source of a secondary source? Why or why not? How could you be sure?
3. What is the mood of the painting?
4. Do you see movement in the painting? Describe.
5. Describe the composition of this painting. Why did the artist choose to do it this way?
6. Where is the viewer standing? Describe why the artist put the viewer here.
Discussion
1.Why would families choose to leave this peaceful looking settlement and move even farther west?
2. How did settling the towns and moving farther west change the land?
3. Look at the settlement in the painting, what important community places are included? Why? What is their significance?
4. How would a new railroad going through a settlement change people’s lives?
How did the railroad help the movement west?
5. Compare the left and right sides of the painting, what divides them in the center? Is this accurate for a settlement town, why or why not?
7. Do you think this is typical for the settlements moving westward? Why or Why not?
8. Why would people have chosen to settle in this town? What town do you think this is?
9. Do you think this painting was used as an advertisement for moving west? Explain.
10. Compare this painting with the one by E. Leutze, “Westward the Course of the Empire” ( Manifest destiny”). How are they alike? How do they differ.
11. Could this lithograph be used as a bird’s eye view map?
Activity:
Begin to look again at bird’s eye view maps(i.e. Lake Chautauqua, sarasota,NY)
Bird's eye view maps were designed to show towns and cities in a positive way. Use the map you are assigned as the centerpiece in a commercial for the town it represents.
Decide which portions of the map to emphasize in your advertisement and then answer the following questions:
• Describe your commercial.
• How did you 'sell' your town?
• How did you sell the idea of moving west?
• How did this map help you 'sell' your town?
• How did this map lead people to decide to move west
• Were there any parts of the map that you did not include because you thought they would create a negative impression of your town?
• Is there anything you wanted to add to your map that would have helped 'sell' your town?

• What can you put on your bird’s eye view map that would entice people to come to your town in the west rather than any other town.
Project : Using the map your teacher assigns you, please find the places where residents of the town: ( BIRD’S EYE VIEW MAPS OF LAKE CHAUTAUQUA, POUGHKEEPSIE, NY, SARATOGA, NY)
• Went to school
• Went to church
• enjoyed their free time
• helped those less fortunate
• Do you think all residents of the town participated equally in each of these activities?
• What led to these differences?

Immigrants comprised a large portion of the residents of many cities and towns in New England. What evidence do you see of their leisure activities in your map? How do you explain your findings?
• Compare and contrast your town with another town in the west.
• How does your town adhere to the concept of Manifest destiny?(discuss Manifest destiny if not familiar with it)
• Have students work in small groups and assign each group one of the maps listed in the Special Resources for this Activity section

.Assessments: Students will be assessed using the rubric.

Becoming America

Beginning
1 Developing
2 Accomplished
3 Examplary
4 Score
Bird’s eye view maps Students cannot identify the bird’s eye view maps and cannot state the purpose of the map. Students identified a 1-2 aspects of the bird’s eye view maps but cannot state the purpose of the map. Students identified most aspects ( 3 or more) of the bird’s eye view maps and can state the purpose of the maps most times Students identified all aspects of the bird’s eye view maps and can state the purpose of the map.
Artworks Students identified no aspects of the painting as related to an area or a primary
source.. Students identified a few ( 1-2 ) aspects of the painting as related to an area or a primary source.. Students identified aspects ( 3 or more) of the painting as related to an area or a primary source... Students identified all aspects of the painting as related to an area or a primary source..
Projects

Students were not able to complete the projects in the unit with creativity and originality. Students were able to complete the projects in the unit but lacked creativity and originality. Students were able to complete part of the projects in the unit with creativity and originality. Students were able to complete the projects in the unit with creativity and originality.

TEACHER NOTES (lesson tips)

Introduction

Discuss what were the reasons for the Westward Expansion. Use the RESOURCES at the end.
• Begin the lesson with a question about why westward expansion occurred.
• Explain that new opportunities and technological advances led to westward migration following the Civil War.
• Introduce the reasons for westward expansion which included:
o Opportunities for land ownership
o Technological advances, including the Transcontinental Railroad
o Possibility of wealth created by the discovery of gold and silver
o Adventure
o A new beginning for former slaves

reasons for westward expansion
• Explain that in 1862, Congress passed the Homestead Act that gave 160 acres of public land to the head of families or individuals over 21. Non-citizens could also acquire the land if they intended to become a citizen.
• Discuss that in 1860, there were no railroads west of the Missouri River. Building a transcontinental railroad would allow people to travel from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. To reach this goal, Congress passed the Pacific Railway Act in 1862. Thousands of immigrants and African Americans were hired to build the railroads.
• Explain that the 1849 California gold rush was the first of many gold rushes in the West. Throughout Colorado, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, and the Dakotas, the search for gold, silver, and other metals continued.
• Discuss that many people were attracted the West and its adventure as exhibited through the life of the cowboys.
• Explain that many African Americans were attracted to the West and the idea of a new beginning. Many African Americans went into farming and ranching.

Reasons for Westward Expansion

New opportunities and technological advances led to westward migration following the Civil War.The reasons for westward expansion included:

    1. Opportunities for land ownership
    2. Technological advances, including the Transcontinental Railroad
    3. Possibility of wealth created by the discovery of gold and silver
    4. Adventure
    5. A new beginning for former slaves
  1. In 1862, Congress passed the Homestead Act that gave 160 acres of public land to the head of families or individuals over 21. Non-citizens could also acquire the land if they intended to become a citizen.
  2. In 1860, there were no railroads west of the Missouri River. Building a transcontinental railroad would allow people to travel from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. To reach this goal, Congress passed the Pacific Railway Act in 1862. Thousands of immigrants and African Americans were hired to build the railroads.
  3. The 1849 California gold rush was the first of many gold rushes in the West. Throughout Colorado, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, and the Dakotas, the search for gold, silver, and other metals continued.
  4. Many people were attracted the West and its adventure as exhibited through the life of the cowboys.

Many African Americans were attracted to the West and the idea of a new beginning. Many African Americans went into farming and ranching.

New opportunities and technological advances led to westward
migration following the Civil War.

Opportunities for landownership

Technological advances,including theTranscontinental Railroad

Possibility of wealth created by the discovery of gold and silver

Adventure  A new beginning for  former slaves

The following is from sparknotes.
In 1840, California and New Mexico remained basically untouched by American settlers. Only a few hundred Americans lived in either territory, and most were scattered among the Mexican settlers. However, due to the constant stream of favorable reports sent back east, the 1840s saw a dramatic increase in white American settlers in the Far West. Most California settlers headed for the Sacramento Valley, where they lived apart from the Mexicans. Oregon drew many settlers from the Mississippi Valley with the promise of fertile farmland. During the 1830s missionaries had moved into Oregon's Willamette Valley, and by 1840, there were about 500 Americans there. To some, Oregon was even more attractive a destination than California and New Mexico, and the 1840s saw rapid settlement there as well. 
Settlers of the Far West faced a four-month journey across little-known territory in harsh conditions. They prepared for the rigors of travel in jump- off towns like St. Joseph and Independence, Missouri, which prospered from the growth of the outfitting industry. There, settlers purchased Conestoga wagons for the journey and stocked up on supplies like food, weapons, and ammunition. Due to fictional stories about the savage Indians that travelers would face along their way, travelers on the overland trails often overstocked guns and ammunition at the expense of other more necessary items. Once they embarked, settlers faced numerous challenges: oxen dying of thirst, overloaded wagons, and dysentery, among others. Trails were poorly marked and hard to follow, and travelers often lost their way. Guidebooks attempted to advise travelers, but they were often unreliable. In 1846, the Donner Party set out from Illinois armed with one such guidebook, which gave them such poor advice that the party found itself snowbound in the High Sierra. The group finally reached its destination in California only after turning to cannibalism in order to survive.
There were many trails leading to the Far West. Southwestern travelers more often than not used the Santa Fe Trail to move westward. Routes to the Northwest varied, but the Oregon Trail became the best known and most often followed pathway to the northwest. Though it was commonly traveled, settlers still faced difficult journeys westward. Travelers along these overland trails survived by cooperating with each other in wagon trains. Though many brought a liberal spirit to the West, firmly entrenched traditions dictated the operations of the wagon trains. Women packed and unpacked the wagons, cooked, milked cows, tended to children, and aided in childbirth. Men were responsible for yoking and unyoking the oxen, driving the wagons, and making up hunting parties. Between 1840 and 1848, an estimated 11,500 followed the overland trails to Oregon, and nearly 3,000 reached California.

Summary
Settlers flocked to the Far West for many reasons. They sought adventure, farmland, an escape from the constraints of civilization, and new starts. California was attractive because of its climate and the fact that the Spanish and Mexicans had begun to organize the territory through the mission system. However, Oregon proved far more attractive to many settlers. Discovered and explored by the British, Oregon was jointly occupied by the British and Americans, who, though they had not yet settled the territory, had set the stage for settlement by sending white missionaries and drawing maps. Oregon seemed more likely than California to be annexed by the United States, thus settlers who desired stability and wanted to maintain a close link with their home country chose Oregon over California, leading to its more rapid development. The Willamette Valley offered fertile farmland and the assured company of other American settlers, whereas the Sacramento Valley was less well known and put the white settlers in geographic proximity to the Mexican settlers, who many Americans found distasteful.
It was not purely the uncertain promise of fertile land that provoked Americans to make the long journey from the Midwest across the Rocky Mountains. Constant news sent east fueled the fire of expansion to a great extent. Many of these reports simply stated the facts, that there was a vast amount of unclaimed land in the far west, and that with a lot of hard work and a little luck, an American settler could be successful in farming. However, the effect on the American psyche of elaborate fictions about the West cannot be underestimated. During the 1840s the legend of the West began to unfold itself in earnest. One story told of a 250 year-old man who lived in California who had to leave the bounteous region when he wanted to die. Other stories told of feats of great daring and bravery on the part of western settlers, and advanced notions of geographical wonders and trees that grew higher than the eye could see. These stories produced the desired effect of stimulating interest in the West, and on top of the factual promise of open land and a new beginning, convinced many to undertake the perilous journey. Throughout the long process of settling the American West, the legend of the West would grow and become a symbol of the rugged adventurousness of western settlers.
Despite the many reasons to migrate westward, the numbers that amassed in Oregon and California were modest, and migration was concentrated between 1844 and 1848. Even so, small numbers had a large effect on the Pacific coast. The British were unable to settle Oregon, and thus the concentration of Americans in the Willamette Valley boded well for the prospect of American annexation. In California, the Mexican population was small and scattered. They had gradually lost their allegiance to the Mexican government as it had gradually lost touch with them. This created a situation in which American settlers carried great clout in the development of the settled regions, and in effect the American government many fiercely loyal agents throughout the Southwest.

 


Maps
Maps are highly selective documents, and their content is greatly influenced by the reasons they are drawn. In the second half of the 19th century, business leaders hired commercial artists to draw bird's eye view maps of their towns. The intention was to present these geographic entities in a positive light. The result was often omission and/or distortion of the actual landscape. ( see also paintings by Thomas Cole )
Use one of the maps provided by your teacher and consult various historic records to construct the factual locations in the town.
You may want to start with the local historical society or public library. They should have town directories from the time the map was drawn. They might also have maps from the time period.