By the middle of the 19th century, the benefits brought by the host of advances of the industrial age were gradually beginning to reach America, which soon developed a spectacular achievement of its own – the Transcontinental Railway, reaching right across the continent. They battled against hostile terrain, hostile inhabitants, civil war and the Wild West. With two teams, one building from the east and the other from California in the west, they battled against hostile terrain, hostile inhabitants, civil war and the Wild West. Yet in 1869, the two teams’ tracks were joined, shrinking the whole American continent, as the journey from New York to San Francisco was reduced from months to days.
While touching on a century of railroad expansion and development in the vast southwest territory between Kansas City and the West Coast, this latest book from Borneman focuses on a relatively brief period from the 1860s to the 1880s during which a network of thousands of miles of railroad was built westward from Chicago and Kansas City to the west coast, with the dramatic accompanying population shifts and development of agricultural, mining, and other resources of these vast new western lands. Through these rail connections, Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and California were rapidly incorporated into the commercial, social, and political sphere of the greater United States. The arrival of the railroads dramatically transformed the West Coast. Once connected with Chicago, Los Angeles rapidly grew from a sleepy coastal town into one of America’s great cities. Click to Buy Rival Rails: The Race to Build America’s Greatest Transcontinental Railroad