The Economic Foundations of East-West Migration During the Nineteenth Century
This paper argues that latitude-specific investments in seeds and human capital provided an incentive for farmers to move along east-west lines. The incentives were greatest during the early and mid 1800s. Towards the end of the century migration patterns changed as farmers learned about farming in different environments, as settlement reached the Great Plains and beyond, and as farming declined in importance. Census manuscript schedules and Mormon family-group records form the basis for empirical work.