People began to understand that with the acquisition of California the nation had obtained practically half a continent, of which the future possibilities were almost unlimited, so far as the development of natural resources and the genera production of wealth were concerned.
In the decade before the Civil War various north and south lines of railway were projected and some of these were assisted by grants of land from the Federal Government.
As the contest proceeded, public interest increased and the entire country watched to see which company would win the big government subsidies through the mountains.
Consequently many large railroad systems of heavy capitalization bid fair to run into difficulties on the first serious falling off in general business.
The financial history of the Baltimore and Ohio since the close of the nineteenth century is interesting chiefly in connection with changes in the control of the property.
In the United States three new methods of transportation made their appearance at almost the same time - the steamboat, the canal boat, and the rail car.
Great men are usually the products of their times and one of the men developed by these times takes rank with the greatest railroad leaders in history.
The States which form the northern border of the United States westward from the Great Lakes to the Pacific coast include an area several times larger than France and could contain ten Englands and still have room to spare.
The history of the Erie Railroad ever since 1901 has been a record of progress.
With the reorganization of 1898 finished, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad entered a new period in its history.
The public conviction that a railroad linking the West and the East was an absolute necessity became so pronounced after the gold discoveries of '49 that Congress passed an act in 1853 providing for a survey of several lines from the Mississippi to the Pacific.
Farmers, merchants, manufacturers, and the traveling public have all had their troubles with the transportation lines, and the difficulties to which these struggles have given rise have produced that problem which is even now apparently far from solution.
Many of the railroad evils were inherent in the situation; they were explained by the fact that both managers and public were dealing with a new agency whose laws they did not completely understand.
The construction of extensive railways, however, and particularly the consolidation of small, experimental lines into large systems, dates from the days of the discovery of gold in California.
Horses and mules, and even sail cars, made more rapid progress than did the earliest locomotive.