I'm not sure about the Ulrys (I'm one, by the way), but other lines of my family followed land grants given for war service and lands opened up for settlement. I wish I knew more about their motivations, but at least one forebear was granted land for Rev. War service, travelled to Ohio, and was never heard from again, supposedly killed by native folk already living there.
Another of my lines had one or two family members follow the land grant offerings in WI, and then gradually sent for more and more relatives to join them.
I'm descended from Emanuel Ulry and Malinda Frazell, who were married c. 1840 in Knox County, Ohio. Their daughter, Lucetta Ulry, married in Adams County, Illinois.