Some hardships faced by frontier farmers were a lack of rainfall and dense earth that was difficult to plow, owing to the tough grasses of the Great Plains. They were therefore heavily reliant upon agricultural technologies such as wind-powered pumps, to raise water from underground, and plows that were reinforced with steel tips.
Because of these hardships, frontier farmers were given large tracts of land by the government in return for nominal fees, providing they could successfully improve them. This was the Homestead Act of 1862.
However, frontier farmers on this land were also subject to attacks by Native Americans, who objected to being displaced from their ancestral land and confined to reservations.