Download Unfinished business: the railroad in American life by Maury Klein PDF

By Maury Klein

A full of life survey of the railroad through the field's major historian.

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see The Race Underground: Boston, New York, and the Incredible Rivalry That Built America's First Subway

EPUB eISBN: 9781466842007

within the past due 19th century, as towns like Boston and ny grew extra congested, the streets turned clogged with plodding, horse-drawn carts. whilst the good snowstorm of 1888 crippled the full northeast, an answer needed to be came upon. brothers from one of many nation's nice families—Henry Melville Whitney of Boston and William Collins Whitney of latest York—pursued the dream of his urban digging America's first subway, and the nice race used to be on. the contest among Boston and manhattan performed out in an period no longer in contrast to our personal, certainly one of monetary upheaval, life-changing options, category battle, sour political tensions, and the query of America's position on this planet. The Race Underground is peopled with the well-known, like Boss Tweed, Grover Cleveland and Thomas Edison, and the not-so-famous, from outstanding engineers to the numerous "sandhogs" who shoveled, hoisted and blasted their method into the earth's crust, occasionally wasting their lives within the building of the tunnels. Doug so much chronicles the technology of the subway, seems on the centuries of fears humans overcame approximately touring underground and tells a narrative as interesting as any ever ripped from the pages of U. S. heritage. The Race Underground is a brilliant American saga of 2 rival American towns, their wealthy, strong and occasionally corrupt pursuits, and an invention that modified the lives of millions.

About the Author-
Doug so much is the deputy dealing with editor for gains on the Boston Globe. he's the writer of continuously in Our Hearts: the tale of Amy Grossberg, Brian Peterson, the being pregnant They concealed and the kid They Killed. He has written for activities Illustrated, Runner's international and fogeys and his tales have seemed in most sensible American Crime Writing and most sensible American activities Writing. He lives in Needham, Massachusetts.

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Extra resources for Unfinished business: the railroad in American life

Sample text

But the railroads were more than just reliable transportation. They became a prime market for other major industries, notably iron and steel, coal, lumber, and heavy machinery. A host of related industries owed their growth to the railroads' constant need for equipment and supplies. And they were the nation's first big business. Railroad corporations pioneered in new methods of finance and new forms of organization. Their complex, far-flung operations required elaborate administrative structures, professional managers, more sophisticated accounting, and other business techniques.

The slavery issue had been a growing political cancer since 1820, and the sectional conflict it spawned reached fruition in 1860 when, for the first time, a western man was elected president on a platform dedicated to keeping slavery out of the western territories that were not yet states. Seen in this light, the American Civil War may be viewed as an accidental byproduct of the development fostered by the pattern of railroad construction along lines that forged closer social and economic bonds between the North and Northwest than between either of them and the South.

One name stuck in my head, reinforced by reading I had done in Wiley's course. Edward Porter Alexander seemed to me a fascinating character, an artillerist as eccentric as he was brilliant. Best of all, no one had done much work on his life. With Wiley's warm support I decided to do his biography as my dissertation. By this cold, calculating, scientific process I came to a fateful decision on my professional future. It proved a happy choice. The Alexander family had bequeathed a rich lode of papers dating back to the late eighteenth century.

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