Discuss The Role Of Railroad In America

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Many historians consider the railroads to be America’s first big business. Beginning the introduction of railways, local railroads served as a means of transporting precious metals from mines to local towns. As routes were carved out, mining areas transformed into industrial centers and local sites into busy ports. In the United States during the 1830s and 1840s, the railroads linked cities to remote areas, and, by the 1850s, pushed westward and had a part in settling in the west. From cities in the east, American railways grew at a bewildering pace. In 1830 there were around roughly 23 miles of track. Years later, in 1910, the miles of track grew to around 240,000 miles. Being the first form of transportation to surpass the speediness of a horse, trains condensed weeklong trips into…show more content…
Most Americans thought building such a railroad was an impossible feat because of the enormous distance to be covered, and especially the incredible amount of money required for the daring project. Soon, Congress authorized its first federal grant, which consisted of public land to help promote and finance railroad development. More grants to the railroads were brought up throughout the decade, but the greatest land grant was the result of the Pacific Railroad act of 1862. The increase in railroad production changed the United States, aiding in making it the industrial nation it is today. As the leading method in the transporting of people and products, railroads were indispensable to American industry. Where railroads went, towns and cities soon followed, all reliant on the railways for deliveries of food and goods. The production of the railroads produced massive new industries in coal, iron, and steel. No other business of the time so radically motivated the industrialization process as the railroads
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