The Homestead Act of 1862 was one of the most significant and enduring events in the westward expansion of the United States. By granting 160 acres of free land to claimants, it allowed nearly any man or woman a "fair chance."
Learn why the Homestead Act of 1862 has been called one of the most important pieces of Legislation in the history of the United States.
Learn about the history of Homestead National Historical Park from 1936 to today.
Research is conducted by Homestead National Historical Park to better understand and share stories of the homesteading experience.
Nearly 4 million homesteaders settled our country over 123 years, across 30 states. Learn a bit about their stories.
Learn about places to visit within the park and about the history of homesteads around the country.
The museum collection includes historical items, archaeological artifacts, biological specimens, and archival records.
Millions of People, Millions of Stories
Discover homesteading stories of migration, risk taking, labor, sacrifice, hardship, and courage in the face of daunting odds.
The Homestead Act & Its Impacts
Last updated: April 30, 2022