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Refrigerator rail car patented by William Davis, a fish dealer in Detroit, Michigan, USA First American transcontinental train departs from Sacramento, California. The Cardiff Giant is discovered (a hoax). start · · · · · · · · · Promontory is an area of high ground in Box Elder County, Utah, 32 mi (51 km) west of Brigham By the summer of , the Central Pacific (CP) had completed the first rail route through the Sierra Nevada as the point where the two railheads would officially meet, following meetings in Washington, D.C. in April As of the start of , the Gregorian calendar was 12 days ahead of the Julian May 10 – The First Transcontinental Railroad in North America is completed at The Cardiff Giant was one of the most famous hoaxes in American history.
Tunnels would have to be blasted out of the mountains, rivers bridged and wilderness tamed. Two railroad companies took up the challenge. Progress was slow initially, but the pace quickened with the end of the Civil War.
Finally the two sets of railroad tracks were joined and the continent united with elaborate ceremony at Promontory, Utah on May 10, The impact was immediate and dramatic.
Travel time between America's east and west coasts was reduced from months to less than a week. As the spike was struck, telegraph signals simultaneously alerted San Francisco and New York City, igniting a celebratory cacophony of tolling bells and cannon fire in each city.
Alexander Toponce witnessed the event: I had a beef contract to furnish meat to the construction camps of Benson and West On the last day, only about feet were laid, and everybody tried to have a hand in the work.
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I took a shovel from an Irishman, and threw a shovel full of dirt on the ties just to tell about it afterward. Seymour, a lot of newspaper men, and plenty of the best brands of champagne. Another train made up at Ogden carried the band from Fort Douglas, the leading men of Utah Territory, and a small but efficient supply of Valley Tan.
It was a very hilarious occasion; everybody had all they wanted to drink all the time. Some of the participants got "sloppy," and these were not all Irish and Chinese by any means. California furnished the Golden Spike. Governor Tuttle of Nevada furnished one of silver. General Stanford [Governor Safford? The last tie was of California laurel. Civil War ended on June 22,the Union Pacific still competed for railroad supplies with companies who were building or repairing railroads in the south, and prices rose.
But much of the south had adopted a 5-foot gauge. Transferring railway cars across a break of gauge required changing out the wheel trucks. Alternatively, cargo was offloaded and reloaded, a time-consuming effort that delayed cargo shipments. For the transcontinental railroad, the builders adopted the English standard, what is now called standard gauge. Within a few years, nearly all railroads converted to steel rails. Time zones and telegraph usage[ edit ] Time was not standardized across the United States and Canada until November 18, Ineach railroad set its own time to minimize scheduling errors.
First Transcontinental Railroad - Wikipedia
To communicate easily up and down the line, the railroads built telegraph lines alongside the railroad. These lines eventually superseded the original First Transcontinental Telegraph which followed much of the Mormon Trail up the North Platte River and across the very thinly populated Central Nevada Route through central Utah and Nevada. The telegraph lines along the railroad were easier to protect and maintain. Many of the original telegraph lines were abandoned as the telegraph business was consolidated with the railroad telegraph lines.
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May Learn how and when to remove this template message Route of the first American transcontinental railroad from Sacramento, California, to Council Bluffs, Iowa. Omaha was chosen by President Abraham Lincoln as the location of its Transfer Depot where up to seven railroads could transfer mail and other goods to Union Pacific trains bound for the west. Trains were initially transported across the Missouri River by ferry before they could access the western tracks beginning in OmahaNebraska Territory.
The river froze in the winter, and the ferries were replaced by sleighs. Durantone of the chief financiers of the Union Pacific. Dodge to build the railroad, and the Union Pacific began a mad dash west. He equipped several railroad cars to serve as portable bunkhouses for the workers and gathered men and supplies to push the railroad rapidly west.
Among the bunkhouses Casement added a galley car to prepare meals, and he even provided for a herd of cows to be moved with the railhead and bunk cars to provide fresh meat. Hunters were hired to provide buffalo meat from the large herds of American bison.
In response, the U. Army instituted active cavalry patrols that grew larger as the Native Americans grew more aggressive. Temporary, " Hell on wheels " towns, made mostly of canvas tents, accompanied the railroad as construction headed west.
Building bridges to cross creeks and rivers was the main source of delays.
First Transcontinental Railroad
It was built across the shallow but wide North Platte resting on piles driven by steam pile drivers. In lateformer Major General Grenville M. Dodge was appointed Chief Engineer on the Union Pacific, but hard working General "Jack" Casement continued to work as chief construction "boss" and his brother Daniel Casement continued as financial officer.
The original westward travellers in their ox and mule pulled wagons tried to stick to river valleys to avoid as much road building as possible—gradients and sharp corners were usually of little or no concern to them.
The ox and mule pulled wagons were the original off-road vehicles in their day, since nearly all of the Emigrant Trails went cross country over rough, un-improved trails. The route over South Pass's main advantage for wagons pulled by oxen or mules was a shorter elevation over an "easy" pass to cross and its "easy" connection to nearby river valleys on both sides of the continental divide for water and grass.
The emigrant trails were closed in winter. The route along the North Platte was also further from Denver, Coloradoand went across difficult terrain, while a railroad connection to that City was already being planned for and surveyed. Efforts to survey a new, shorter, "better" route had been under way since