Tensions between Native americans and whites

1800's

Before anyone else came into North America, there were some 40-50 million Native Americans living their lives there. After people began settling in the Natives' land, they had an okay relationship, but as time went by, their relationship got worse because the settlers kept forcing the Natives out of their land no matter where they went.
For several years, the Nez Perce and the whites had a good relationship, and the Nez Perce never killed a white person. However, the American's greed ruined their relationship, because during the 1860's, the american miners invaded the Nez Perce's land.
Some Nez Perce signed treaties and agreed to give up their land, but others did not want to comply. Chief Joseph was apart of a "no-treaty group" however, not wanting war, he agreed to move. “I would give up everything rather than have the blood of white men upon the hands of my people.” Later that summer, blood was shed. The Nez Perce surrendered and fled to Canada. The Nez Perce never went back to their homeland.
Over the years, the Americans have slowly been pushing the Natives off their land from the time the first colonists arrived. But this was kickstarted when 2 laws were passed in 1862 that caused people to have more interest in the west. These acts were the Homestead Act and the Pacific Railway Act.
The Homestead Act was signed into law by Abe Lincoln on May 20, 1862 supplied western farmers with 160 acres of free public land. The only thing the homeowner had to do was clear the land, farm it and have continuous residence for 5 years, and they would get it for free. If they did the same thing for 6 months, they would get the land at a discounted price. This opened Native American reservations to white settlement.
The Pacific Railway Act made people have interest in the west because this act called for a transcontinental railroad to be built. This railroad would connect the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. Two companies, the Union Pacific and the Central Pacific, were given this task, each with a loan of more than more than $60 million. With this being build more and more people began flooding into the West and taking over the Natives' land.
Many people moved to the West in hopes of striking gold. However, few became rich; they settled, saw there was no gold, moved onto the next place, and repeated the process. Mining devastated the land and relocated several Native Americans. Rather than being helpful and making many people rich, it was much more destructive.
After the Indian Removal Act of 1830, American Indians were promised land in the west after giving up their homelands in the east. However, white people kept pushing more and more into their land by the middle of the 1800's. After that, the United States government kept trying to bribe the Native Americans off their land with food and schooling, but they refused. So the U.S. decided to use force by calling in the U.S. Army.
Later, in 1887, most of the Native Americans were relocated into reservations by the white people, and the Dawes Act was passed by congress. Through this act, whole tribes weren't allowed to own land as a group, but only as an individual. This act quickly pushed American Indians into white culture. However, the farmers did not like that the indians were getting the land that they could be owning.
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