The First Transcontinental Railroad

In May of 1869, at Promontory Point, Utah, two railroad lines, one from the east and the other from the west, joined to become the country's first transcontinental railroad. Over the next twenty years, other railroads reached the Pacific Ocean until the entire West was a myriad of railway lines. It is estimated that between the years 1850 and 1900, a quarter of a million miles of railroad track were laid in the United States, most of the mileage west of the Mississippi River. With the railroad came wave upon wave of immigrants to the western United States. This primary source portfolio features facsimiles of historical maps, letters, photographs, and documents, most often reproduced in their original sizes. It provides students, teachers, and history buffs with a fascinating array of hands-on historical materials. This portfolio includes a Study Guide with reproducible student activities, a timeline of events from 1830 to 1872, and a Who-was-Who list. 4 Illustrated Broadsheet Essays: * Evolution of the Railroad in America * Great Transcontinental Railroad Surveys * Problems of Getting Started * Building the Transcontinental Railroad 10 Primary Source Documents: * S. W. Dexter editorial proposing a railroad between New York and Oregon, 1832 * Thomas Hart Benton's letter proposing a transcontinental railroad, 1835 * First page of the Pacific Railway Act, July 1, 1862, and transcript of pertinent sections of the Act * Full-color poster on completion of transcontinental railroad, May 1869, and advertisement for routes available on the Union & Central Pacific Railroad * Advertisement for rich, inexpensive farming land along the Union Pacific Railroad * William Henry Jackson photos: "Places to See, Places to Stay Along the Transcontinental Railroad" * Map of the United States showing the route of the transcontinental railroad * Proposed time schedule, published two and one half years early, for the Union Pacific Railroad, 1866 * Poster: Advertisements for the North-Western Stage and Western Union Telegraph companies * Photo Collage: Railroad Life in the American West, late 1800s

Product type: Primary Source Portfolio
ISBN: 978-1-5669-6151-6
Author: James A. Crutchfield
Copyright: 1999
Reading Level: Grades 5-8
Interest Level: Grades 5-8
Dimensions: 13 3/4" x 9 1/4"