Turner Response

Turner likened the expansion to the West to expansion into the New World.  The first Europeans saw the Atlantic coast as their chance at something better.  Similarly, the men and women of the Atlantic coast could move west with their families and try to make a better life for themselves.

When Europeans moved to the New World, they left the relative comfort and ways of life as they knew them while turning to face the hardships that awaited them here.  Likewise, settlers heading west faced this same unknown.

The individuals heading west were also vastly different from European expansionists.  The two were from different walks of life with different cultures – miners, farmers, even slaves.  Settlers to a new land would have to use everything at their disposal to survive.

I really liked the the way Turner described the “intellectual traits” of the frontiersmen.  I think what he was trying to say still rings true to this day.  The frontiersmen had to have both intelligence and common sense.  Being able to able to think on their feet and being able to adapt to new situations were imperative for their survival.


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