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Lasting Heritage of the Homestead Act

One hundred-fifty years ago this year, President Abraham Lincoln signed a law that is responsible for most of us being here in the Midwest. Whether you live in the city or the country, you and your family can probably be traced back to the Homestead Act of 1863. Peggy Lowe of Harvest Public Media looks back at a law that Lincoln said offered “a fair chance in the race of life.”

To see the Hodgsons' Homestead Act claim – signed by President Ulysses S. Grant – go to You can also find a link there to My Farm Roots -- a project devoted to showcasing Americans’ stories and memories of rural life in their own words.


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