The Wild West and Urban East

The 19th century saw the development of the Wild West and the Urban East. They were both tenets of the American frontier, determined by different American expansion attributes. These included history, geography, cultural expression, and folklore. As such, the Wild West and Urban East helped in promoting the nationality perspective of Americans. The Wild West started between the 1860s and 1890s. It was an era characterized by the collaboration of outlaws, cowboys, pioneers, gunslingers, and Indians to ensure that they defended expansion, reinvention, and greed. On the other hand, the Urban East presents a situation where cities played a pivotal role in developing the American frontier. It was more of a change in communication, transportation, finance, entertainment, service provision, and selling of merchandise. Essentially, both the Wild West and Urban East were pivotal in shaping the American frontier, but the Wild West was wilder than the Urban East.

The Wild West frontier comprised the region in the Western part of the United States, beyond the Mississippi River. As such, there was a change in mythology that started in the 19th century. Numerous untamed spirits were critical in defining the new frontier, and it also helped shape individualism in the region. The Wild West was wilder because of the vast geographical area and a need for individuals to protect their liberty. Different individuals worked towards fighting to defend themselves, and they did anything to deal with those who were thought to be affecting the independence of the region (Wright, 2001). Both men and women were involved in the Wild West, and they worked towards protecting themselves and the lands. The diversity that was apparent in the Wild West was an illustration of the unpredictability of outcomes, which also meant they could use different strategies to achieve their wishes. Also, it was affected by the lack of civilization.

The Urban East was less wild because it was more focused on urban development. As the railroad expanded, it became more accessible for the frontier to grow because of individuals’ diversity and the apparent interactions therein. Individuals, including train crews, passengers, and construction crews, played a pivotal role in all the evident activities therein. There was an eventual development of a pattern that characterized the diverse needs of the people. These people also tried new ways of interacting, especially with developments in manufacturing, agriculture, trade, ranching, and food processing (Fabian, 2008). It shows that the Urban East attracted different individuals, but it was also difficult for it to develop numerous ways of interactions. An example is how there was poverty and crime in the frontier, while at the same time, there was a crop of successful businessmen who ended up becoming millionaires. It was also a center of civilization.

Conclusively, the Wild West and Urban East were pivotal in America’s overall development in the 19th century. They helped in the formulation of numerous interactions that were pivotal in shaping individuals’ ideals and creating a situation of eventual growth and development. The differences in the Wild West and Urban East were also essential in obligating the federal government to develop strategies aimed at improving governance. It was evident that the modernization process would become problematic if it were not for the two. The nature of the Wild West and Urban East helped form some exciting ideas that are still apparent in the modern-day and age.


Fabian, A. (2008). The West. A Companion to American Cultural History, 125-38.

Wright, W. (2001). The Wild West: the mythical cowboy and social theory. Sage.

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