"How the west was railroaded"
" ... Before the line was completed, New York could be reached from California only by gruelling stagecoach, a steamer around Cape Horn or a slog through the Panama jungle. Suddenly, the epic journey could be achieved in a week. I get a glimpse of that 19th-century excitement in the New York Public Library as I come across a rare memoir, From the Atlantic Surf to the Golden Gate by William L. Humason, who took the first through train from the east coast to San Francisco on May 11. Humason was a Connecticut businessman who had thrilled to frontier stories of Indians, fur trappers and Western explorers since childhood. His account was to provide a fresh vision of the Wild West and I am immediately inspired to make the trip. ... " [More]
[Courtesy Google Alerts.]