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EMPIRE EXPRESS : Building the First Transcontinental Railroad by  David Haward Bain - First Edition, First Pinting - 1999 - from 100 POCKETS and Biblio.com

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EMPIRE EXPRESS : Building the First Transcontinental Railroad

by Bain, David Haward

Condition: COLLECTIBLE - NEW/New


New York, NY: Viking, 1999. BRAND NEW & Collectible. Masterful biography of the he First Transcontinental Railroad built 1863 - 1869. Narrative starts 1842 with bankcrupt merchant Asa Whitney's decision to devote his regained fortune towards realizing a Pacific Railroad and begins to haunt the halls of Congress, and ends 30 years later. In between are dramas involving an extraordinary parade of characters such as exploring engineer Theodore Judah (responsible for the laying tracks across the Sierra, virtually in the footsteps of the Donner Party), entrepreneur Thomas Durant of the Union Pacific Railroad, frontier surveyors who lost their lives, forbearing womenfolk guarding the hearth, beleaguered Native American tribes, the bluecoats, the onrush soliders of fortune, farmers, ranchers, prospectors, and, not the least, the supernumeraries providing labor. Throughout this story there are also familiar Civil War-era faces of Lincoln, Grant, Sherman, and Sheridan, and literary figures like Mark Twain and Walt Whitman. All of whose lives were inextricably intertwined with the story of the Empire Express.. First Edition, First Pinting. Hard Cover. COLLECTIBLE - NEW/New. First Edition, First Pinting.

After the Civil War, the building of the transcontinental railroad was the nineteenth century's most transformative event. Beginning in 1842 with a visionary's dream to span the continent with twin bands of iron, Empire Express captures three dramatic decades in which the United States effectively doubled in size, fought three wars, and began to discover a new national identity. From self--made entrepreneurs such as the Union Pacific's Thomas Durant and era--defining figures such as President Lincoln to the thousands of laborers whose backbreaking work made the railroad possible, this extraordinary narrative summons an astonishing array of voices to give new dimension not only to this epic endeavor but also to the culture, political struggles, and social conflicts of an unforgettable period in American history.




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