Origins of Sayings - Go West, Young Man

About the history and origins behind the famous saying go west young man!

Stories behind Famous Sayings


Who Said It: John Babsone Lane Soule

When: 1851

The Story behind It: Horace Greeley, New York newspaper publisher and U.S. presidential candidate, is usually credited with giving this piece of advice. Actually, Greeley did not originate it. In 1851 John Babsone Lane Soule first published these words in the Terre Haute, Ind., Express. Horace Greeley then picked them up and used them on the editorial page of his powerful New York Tribune. Incidentally, when Greeley repeated, "Go west, young man, and grow up with the country," he meant no further west than Erie County, Pa.

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