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The 19th Century "Railroad Boom" Essay

515 words - 3 pages

The "Railroad Boom"Starting roughly around 1854 and continuing through the 20th century, North America experienced major changes in transportation. This time could best be described as the "Railroad Boom" due to the enormous amount of time and money spent to unite America's west coast through the use of railroads.The connection of the Union Pacific and the Central Pacific could very well be described as the highpoint in this early time of the railroad industry. The Central Pacific, lead by Leland Stanford, began construction on the west coast, in Sacramento, California. Simultaneously, the Union Pacific was to begin construction in Omaha, Nebraska. The two railroads were to connect at the ...view middle of the document...

He served as the Governor of Calfornia from 1861-63 and from 1885 he has served as a US Senator. However, he was most successful in the railroad industry. He was one of the founders of the Central Pacific Railroad, and became its president two years later in 1856. He also later became active in the construction of the Southern Pacific Railroad, serving as its president from 1885-90. After his son's death, he and his wife built Leland Stanford Junior College, now known as Stanford University, as a memorial.Another well-known name in the railroad industry is that of Collis P. Huntington. Huntington first moved to California during the California Gold Rush. He formed Huntington & Hopkins with his partner Mark Hopkins in 1854, and soon became founding partners with Leland Stanford and Charles Crocker in the Central Pacific Railroad. In 1884, 'Huntington's Group' formed the Southern Pacific Railroad under Leland's leadership, who Huntington succeeded in 1890. Huntington was also involved in transportation on the east coast as well, working on the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway and a steamship business.Originating near the Canadian border, the St. Paul and Pacific RR also became major railways of the time. These two railways were bought by a Canadian by the name of James Jerome Hill. Hill envisioned the expansion of farming, trade, and industry from Minnesota to the Rockies and farther, and accomplished one of the greatest feat of railroad construction in the US. The railroad was finally completed in 1893 reaching all the way to Seattle, WA. In 1890, all of Hill's railroad properties were consolidated into the Great Northern Railway Company.454 wrds.

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