1. Writing to Narrate. Create a fictional narrative describing the experience of a homestead family on the Great Plains. Include data and facts that you have learned. (50)
My name is Jebadiah Smith. I used to live in the state of Virginia with my mother, father, and my sister. This is my story. I hope that when I am dead and gone, that this story about my family's life will forever influence history.
One day while I was at the shipyard to beg the passengers for money, a man came up to me with a paper. On it, it said, "LAND". He explained the rest to me, this stranger, and told me that there was free land being given away in the West for free. "Free?!" I questioned excitedly, "how can land be given away for free?" All I can remember is that he said, "go west, young man, go west, and you will find your riches".
I ran home to my parents, shouting and running wildly about. When I gave them the paper, they were questionable at first, but then they started hugging each other. They were sick of living the life of the poor and decided to go for the riches. "Pack up kids, we're going to California!" They exclaimed joyfully.
We sold all of our valuable possessions, inherited heirlooms, our house, and everything except for what we were bringing with us to California. We bought our first horse and wagon, supplies for building a house, food, and some mining tools. Then we left, in search of a new home and more money.
As we were riding looking for a new home, we found some fellow homesteaders. They were in very short supply of food and were near starving. We gave them what food we could spare because we knew how it felt to be hungry. Little did we know that we would become close friends.
We decided to travel together. We finally got to a small range of Mountains. The other family decided to live directly on the other side of the stream beside us. We helped each other from that day foreword, building a soddie, sodbusting, and anything else the other side needed help with. Without each other, we probably wouldn't have made it throughout the tough life of a homesteader.
About a week after building the soddie houses, my sister and me discovered gold in the stream one day while we were doing the laundry. We ran back to the house with a small sac of little fragments of gold. My parents were so excited and my father was very glad that he had bought the mining equipment. The other family went with us to the small town that had sprung up nearby to fill out a mining claim. We agreed to mine together and split the profits 50-50.
Our parents sold the gold we had found in the stream and bought some more mining supplies for the other family and us. The mining was an instant success. We just kept finding more and more gold, and soon there was a huge town all around us mining the side of the mountain and other places we had not made claim to.
The more gold we found the better supplies we bought. We even managed to hire a bunch of people to work for us. We had found our pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and it was ours. We were generous with our money and we made many friends. Our prayers have been answered.