The really strange thing about the settlers reaching the plains
was that when they looked at the tall grass prairie, they couldn't
comprehend it. Furthermore they didn't have the technology to
break the sod -- the root structure of the grasses was over a
foot deep! A special plow had to be invented for that purpose.
So they went back into the forest, and proceeded with the arduous
work of cutting down the trees, removing stumps and making houses
and fields out of the forest with the prairie right next door.
Faith Ingulsrud (my sister) 6/13/98