Sunday, July 10, 2005

Book review of "Riding the Transcontinental Rails"

Reference & Research Book News (August, 2005) book review of Riding the Transcontinental Rails: Overland Travel on the Pacific Railroad, 1865-1881, by Bruce C. Cooper, Polyglot Press, 2005:

"In 1869 an journalist describes the 'seven weeks of steady journeying' from the East Coast to the West. A lady of the same profession blames the toughness of steaks served in the dining car on their being taken from the 'acrobatic muscles' of the local antelope. A businessman writes to his mother of his frequently snowbound passage from Boston to San Francisco, a 36-day ride enlivened only by wrecks. What a ride it must have been. Enthusiast Cooper keeps a full head of steam in this collection of illustrations, professional writings, and efforts by the aforesaid businessman and a lawman investigating the first Western train robbery, neither of which have seen print until now. The result is a glimpse into what it must have been like to crouch with the emigrants in the cheap seats as well as to loll with the elite in their custom-made cars in a time when buffalo were still a definite road hazard."

—Shannon Hendrickson, Associate Editor, Book News Inc.

Note about 'Riding the Transcontinental Rails.'
Letter sent to the publisher by a gentlemen who gave a copy of "Riding the Transcontinental Rails" to a friend.