By the early 1800s, a century and a half of European settlement and land use had transformed the landscape of the eastern seaboard. In New England, town commons took on a park-like appearance and their public role expanded. Agriculture remained the major occupation throughout the nation but more farmers had more equipment and some experimented with new agricultural methods. The deforestation of much of southern New England altered the landscape and caused a wood shortage there by the early 1800s. Americans pushed the frontier farther and farther west, lured by the prospect of cheap, limitless land and economic prosperity. American enthusiasm and optimism about the seemingly-limitless potential of the new nation abounded. Industry flourished and canals, turnpikes and other infrastructure projects captured the imagination of the new nation. In the home, change arrived in the form of neo-classical architecture and floor plans emphasized a new interest in separating public from domestic life.
Plan of Deerfield, Town Plans, 1794, Vol. 14 p.25, #1118
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