Transcontinental Railroad
Transcontinental, Railroad, Golden Spike, Promontory Summit, Railway Act

Transcontinental Railroad

      As early as 1832 the nation had realized a need to tie California to the rest of the states through the means of a transcontinental railroad system.    In 1849 and 1850, Howard Stansbury surveyed a route for a transcontinental railroad through the Black Hills and south of Salt Lake City

      In March of 1853, Congress approved measures for the war department to survey various transcontinental railroad routes.   As early as 1858, the visionary George Pullman began building sleeping cars that would one day be used on the transcontinental railroad

      Finally in 1862 after years of hostile debate, Congress gave its blessing with the passage of the Pacific Railway Act which authorized the building of the transcontinental railroad with the Union Pacific Railroad building west from Omaha, Nebraska and the Central Pacific Railroad building east from Sacramento, California

      Pacific Railway Act ensured the transcontinental railroad 's loans of either $16,000 on the plains, $32,000 in the Great Basin and $48,000 through the mountainous terrain for each mile of track laid.   In addition the Pacific Railway Act  gave the Transcontinental Railroad 's alternate sections of public land on each side of the track for each mile of tracks built 

      In 1864 the Pacific Railway Act was changed to 20 alternate sections.   In the end the Transcontinental Railroad Companies acquired 33 million free acres of land

     The Transcontinental Railroad 's got off to a slow start due to the Civil War and lack of investors but from year 1866 the race was on.   The Transcontinental Railroad 's Overcome granite, bad winters, heat of the desert, lack of supplies and Indians, the Transcontinental Railroad 's plowed forward

     The Transcontinental Railroad 's for two hundred miles in Utah Territory overlapped their surveying and grading crews with blasting crews to close for comfort.  The Union Pacific Railroad and Central Pacific Railroad lost many China men to accidents

      Finally the government in January of 1869 sent a commission of civil engineers to decide where the two Transcontinental Railroad 's should meet.   The final decision was for Promontory Summit

      Promontory Summit is 56 miles west of Ogden Utah territory.     May 10, 1869, at Promontory Summit in Utah territory, the first  of five transcontinental railroad 's were completed

      The golden spike was driven in the last tie plat to commemorate the Union Pacific Railroad and the Central Pacific Railroad at Promontory Summit as the completed first Transcontinental Railroad as directed by the Pacific Railway Act

      The striking of the golden spike at Promontory Summit symbolized the nation was now joined with 3500 miles of  Transcontinental Railroad.     In all a Railroad from New York to California

      The Union Pacific Railroad and the Central Pacific Railroad contributed 2000 miles which had been laid from Omaha to Sacramento

      Transcontinental Railroad passenger train service began five days later from Omaha with the trip costing $111 plush, first class and scheduled to take 4 days, 4 hours and 40 minutes, second class was $80 with a few lesser defined amenities and the raw immigrant class of $40 with no amenities. Transcontinental Railroad trips were lengthened due to washouts, buffaloes, train robberies and Indians

      On June 4, 1876 in celebration of the nation's centennial, a train called the Transcontinental Express from New York arrived in San Francisco with a record breaking time of 83 hours and 39 minutes 

      Transcontinental Railroad travel times that fast would not be heard of again until 50 years later when trains started running on a daily basis holding that speed

      On March 8, 1881 the second transcontinental railroad was completed linking the Southern Pacific Railroad with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad at Deming in New Mexico Territory

     Five Transcontinental Railroad 's were once a dream.  The completion of the Great Northern Railway in January 6, 1893, made completion of five sprawling transcontinental railroad 's basically following the original surveys commissioned in 1853 by the government Transcontinental, Railroad, Golden Spike, Promontory Summit, Railway Act

     Our countries Railway Act 's made it possible for Five Transcontinental Railroad 's drive the Golden Spike of completion tying this young country together so it could grow in to the expectations of Our Founding Fathers Transcontinental, Railroad, Golden Spike, Promontory Summit, Railway Act

Back to American Western History Museums
Wagon, Carriage Plans Book Shop   Transcontinental, Railroad, Golden Spike, Promontory Summit, Railway Act   Bronze Stagecoach Gallery Transcontinental, Railroad, Golden Spike, Promontory Summit, Railway Act Friends of the United States Freedom Documents
Rocky Mountain Book ExchangeTranscontinental, Railroad, Golden Spike, Promontory Summit, Railway Act   Gold and Silver Exchange  we trade our goods and services for your gold and silver coin at very good prices unless noted otherwise.  Bulletin board Service For Sale or Trade Surplus Goods and Equipment
Back to the camp-fire            American Western Trading Post       

Legal, 1999 American Western History Museum, Policy page

xxxIII.090706