The Homestead Act of 1862 allowed Americans to claim undeveloped land by living on and farming it for five years. Also in the 1860s ,the Transcontinental Railroad was built across North America, linking rail networks between the East and West coasts. The development of the railroads accelerated the spread of homesteaders colonizing the West and led to the rapid cultivation of new land.
In Homesteaders, players are settlers in the Old West, claiming land to develop into a town. The player who contributes the most to building that town into a city will have the city named after him and declared the winner.
Source: back of the box.