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The Iron Way: Railroads, the Civil War, and the Making of Modern America

The Iron Way: Railroads, the Civil War, and the Making of Modern America cover

The Iron Way: Railroads, the Civil War, and the Making of Modern America

$ 30.00

Beginning with Frederick Douglass's escape from slavery in 1838 on the railroad, and ending with the driving of the golden spike to link the transcontinental railroad in 1869, this book charts a critical period of American expansion and national formation, one largely dominated by the dynamic growth of railroads and telegraphs. William G. Thomas brings new evidence to bear on railroads, the Confederate South, slavery, and the Civil War era, based on groundbreaking research in digitized sources never available before. The Iron Way revises our ideas about the emergence of modern America and the role of the railroads in shaping the sectional conflict.

Both the North and the South invested in railroads to serve their larger purposes, Thomas contends. Though railroads are often cited as a major factor in the Union's victory, he shows that they were also essential to the formation of "the South" as a unified region. He discusses the many and sometimes unexpected effects of railroad expansion and proposes that America's great railroads became an important symbolic touchstone for the nation's vision of itself.

Please visit the Railroads and the Making of Modern America website at http: //

William G. Thomas is professor of history and the John and Catherine Angle Chair in the Humanities at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He lives in Lincoln, NE.

ISBN: 9780300141078

ISBN-10: 9780300141078

Publisher: Yale University Press

Publication Date: 10/25/2011 - 12:00am

On Sale: 10/25/2011 - 12:00am

Pages: 281

Language: English


United States - Civil War

United States - 19th Century

Railroads - History