Mining towns were set up in light of the discovery of gold in various places – they were where the gold rushes (California 1848-49, The Black Hills 1874) happened. They were set up quickly when gold was found, and then, when the gold ran out, they disappeared quickly, too.
So, you know that there was a lot going on on the Great Plains mid-1800’s. The Native Americans lived peacefully there, hunting buffalo, mountain men lived with the Native Americans and worked in the Rockies collecting beaver fur. But why exactly were the Great Plains so important to white people:? I mean, they described it as “the great American desert”, it’s not like there was much there for them – yet they felt it necessary to disrupt the Native Americans, and wished to control the plains themselves (roll on the homestead act of 1862!) – why?
Sometimes it can be helpful to put things in context, especially if you’re trying to support an argument your making. So it may be helpful to know a bit more about who The Native Americans were, so you can support any arguments you make better. Right now we know that The Native Americans lived in tribes on The Great Plains, and really – that’s about it!