Just days after the completion of the nation’s first transcontinental railroad, in seven years and ahead of schedule, the country was transformed. Suddenly, goods and people could travel safely from coast to coast in just a week and at 10% of the cost. People could be assured of reaching their destinations, rather than chancing the treacherous sea or land routes that took so many lives. Agricultural products were transported from rich fields in California to the east transforming the way American’s filled their dinner tables. The railroad not only connected the United States, it connected the U.S. to the world, bringing products from Asia and Europe across the continent. In fact, the first freight shipment across the new railroad was casks of tea from Japan.

Promontory Summit

Rounding the Horn

Chinese Railroad Workers

The Summit Tunnel

Shoshone and Paiute


Casement’s City on Wheels

Telegraph Corps