An Indiana journalist named John Soule (1815-1891) was the first to print the phrase, “Go west, young man” in 1851.
But New York newspaper editor Horace Greeley (1811-1872) popularized the expression until people came to think he invented it. The West, said Greeley, was the place to “build up a home and fortune.”
After the Civil War ended in 1865, many Anglo Americans heeded his call: farmers, ranchers, miners, railroad magnates, business people of every stripe.
Prosperity followed for most of them, but not for most of the region’s Mexican Americans.