As visitors walk from the parking lot to the Heritage Center they pass the "Living Wall," a visual representaiton of the percentage of land in each state that was successfully homesteaded. Homesteaders claimed land from the "public domain." When the Homestead Act was passed in 1862 there were many states where most of the public land or "public domain" had already been sold to settlers. In 1862 most of the "public domain" was in states west of the Mississippi, but there was some public land in some of the states east of the Mississippi. Therefore, eventually there were successful homesteaders in 30 states. Each of these 30 states is represented in the "Living Wall." In the photo album below the "cut out" in each state represents the percentage of land in the state that was successfully homesteaded. Go here for more information.