The First Transcontinental Railroad Essay

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On May 10, 1869, one of the most compelling frontiers in the history of transportation transpired. The building of the transcontinental railroad heralded a new era in transportation in the country. Together, Union Pacific and Central Pacific, two rival railroad firms, built the well-known route in just under seven years with the aid of the government. The development of the United States transcontinental railroad played a vital role in the West's urbanization and growth. The driving of the Golden Spike in 1869 marked the end of seven years of construction that employed thousands and cost millions of dollars.
The First Transcontinental Railroad, which united the east and west coasts, opened up a new frontier, enabling traversing the United …show more content…

His awe for the construction of a railroad began in 1844 when he returned from a two-year business trip to China. The journey convinced him of the potential impact of a transcontinental railroad across America. His approach centered mostly on trading with China and connecting the two countries to promote increased trade, immigration, and culture. He envisioned that a railroad would serve as a nexus for trade between Asia and Europe, as well as thrusting America into the spotlight. The greatest feature was that he saw tremendous room for human advancement. He …show more content…

Black powder was used for the majority of the railroad’s construction. But with the continuous use of it would take approximately well over a year to blast through the granite. It proved necessary to use nitroglycerin, however, the transport of the substance was banned. Central Pacific officials commissioned biochemist James Howden to develop the chemical on-site in order to comply with the new regulations. By June of 1867, the Central Pacific Railroad Company hastily built through the mountains and became the first company that arrived at Salt lake City first. At the start of 1869, the distance between the two companies was a mere four miles. Former Civil War General and newly elected president Ulysses S. Grant forewarned the two companies that the federal government will withhold their grants and funding if they did not decide on an endpoint. The two companies immediately arranged their meeting area to be Promontory Summit,

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