Civil War tagged posts

About Railroads: The Transcontinental Railroad

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by Allen Johnson

Many of the Union Pacific workers were Irish and German immigrants, and many had seen service in the Civil War. As the railroad move farther west, it entered Sioux territory. While the Indians had largely ignored the occasional wagon train, this was clearly a serious threat to their way of life. Attacks became more frequent and progress slowed as the ex-soldiers were diverted into armed units assigned to protect the remaining work crews. The work went on at a relatively fast pace; one Central Pacific crew laid about 10 miles of track in one day — a tremendous accomplishment since they had no power equipment.

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