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With its rugged mountains, vast desert areas, and hostile Native American tribes the Great Plains region was once viewed as nothing more than an obstacle to those wishing to travel to the West Coast in the early 1800s. However, by 1860 this same region became synonymous with opportunity. To date, few phrases in American History have produced greater feelings of excitement and wonder than “The American Frontier.” With gold to be found and land to be had settlers, miners, railroaders, and outlaws flocked to the region in droves looking to stake their claim. As we explore the years from 1860 to 1890 our students will learn the stories behind the people that transformed the region into what it is today.