Determined Homesteaders tend to have a lot of kids. In the real American West, they'd have several more than is typically depicted in the movies (because child actors are so trying). So, in a realistic game, it's gonna pretty common for a homesteader family to have 4 or 5 kids. Sometimes more.
There's several reasons they have so many kids:
- More kids means more people to carry on the family name and work the family farm.
- When they get old enough, the Homestead Act of 1862 will let them claim the empty plot right next door. Look, the size of the family farm just doubled!
- A lot of people die in the Wild West, so you may end up adopting your deceased cousin's children.
- There ain't no TV, and nothing much fer you and the misses to do at night (after your existing kids have gone to sleep).
Game and Story Use
- Similar statements can be made about peasants in the dark ages - the more kids the merrier.
- Gaggles of children make nicely flavorful NPC Extras to fill the backdrop.
- It's perfectly in-genre for one of the local kids to become the Kid Sidekick of a PC hero.