Rival Rails: The Race to Build America's Greatest by Walter R. Borneman

By Walter R. Borneman

From acclaimed historian Walter R. Borneman comes a blinding account of the conflict to construct America’s transcontinental rail traces. Rival Rails is an action-packed epic of the way an empire used to be born—and the striking males who made it happen.
 
After the crowning glory of the 1st transcontinental railroad in 1869, the remainder of the rustic used to be up for grabs, and the race was once on. The prize: a greater, shorter, much less snowy direction in the course of the corridors of the yankee Southwest, linking l. a. to Chicago. In Rival Rails, Borneman lays out in compelling aspect the sectional rivalries, contested routes, political posturing, and impressive company dealings that opened up as more and more strains driven their means around the nation.

Borneman brings to lifestyles the mythical company geniuses and so-called robber barons who made thousands and fought the elements—and one another—to stream the USA, together with William Jackson Palmer, whose management of the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad depended on leading edge slim gauge trains which can climb steeper grades and take tighter curves; Collis P. Huntington of the primary Pacific and Southern Pacific strains, a mogul insatiably passionate about trains—and who used to be now not above bribing congressmen to meet his ardour; Edward Payson Ripley, visionary president of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe, whose economic conservatism and smarts introduced the again from the edge; and Jay Gould, ultrasecretive, strong-armer and one-man powerhouse.

In addition, Borneman captures the herculean efforts required to build those roads—the workers who did the back-breaking paintings, uninteresting tunnels via mountains and throwing bridges throughout unruly rivers, the brakemen who ran atop relocating automobiles, the tracklayers beaten and killed by means of runaway trains. From backroom bargains in Washington, D.C., to armed robberies of trains within the wild deserts, from glorified farm animals automobiles to streamliners and great Chiefs, the entire nice incidents and techniques of a effective American period are re-created with exceptional strength in Rival Rails.

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Malbushim (Hebrew)—clothing. part one 5 everyone be happy with their share and enjoy it, that’s what I wish with all my heart. And after I’ve lived as many years as I have to live, don’t forget me. Remember to say kaddish* when you can. † ♦♦♦ Bubbe Bashe outlived her husband by many years. In a manner of speaking, she’s still doing it. Not that she sees so well or hears so well or walks so well, but you can’t deny she’s still alive. She’s just more like an old hen than a human being and doesn’t realize that everything has changed.

Moyshe Kulbak, ‘‘From Byelorussia,’’ trans. by Leonard Wolf, in Howe, Wisse, and Shmeruk, The Penguin Book of Modern Yiddish Verse, 388. 17. Ibid. 18. R. ’’ Maisei Kul’bak, Vybranae (Minsk, 1970), 8. 19. , 398. 20. ‘‘The Rabbi’s Son,’’ Isaac Babel’s Selected Writings, 175–176. 21. Nikolai Ostrovskii, Vi shtol hot zikh farkhatevet: Roman in tsvey teyln, ed. M. Kulbak (Minsk: Melukhe farlag, 1937). This Yiddish translation of Nikolai Ostrovskii’s paradigmatic Soviet novel, How the Steel Was Tempered, lists Moyshe Kulbak’s name on the title page, referring to the text having been ‘‘edited’’ (baarbet ) by him; the name of the translator is not listed.

It’s no secret he wants to marry her o√ to a nice Jewish boy. Lately, he’s put down his carpenter’s plane and gone looking for a bridegroom in the synagogues. He’d prefer a kosher slaughterer, someone with a bit of Jewish education. They say the following actually happened. Once, Uncle Yuda arranged for Khayaleh to meet a highly eligible bachelor on a street corner at the far end of town. That night a blizzard struck. Khayaleh went to the corner and waited as told. Although no one, not even a bachelor, would have ventured out in such weather, she was so desperate for a husband that she huddled against a wall and resolved to stick it out to the bitter end.

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