Wednesday, January 29, 2014

CPRR iron

From: "Bruce Cooper"

All found along the CPRR grade in Winnemucca, Nevada.

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

CPRR iron, Winnemucca, NV

James Duhurst Taylor, engineer for the Union Pacific Railroad

From: "Gilbert Taylor"

My family has told a story about our great great grandfather being engineer for the Union Pacific [Railroad] and that there is bust of him at a museum in Omaha [Nebraska]. I can't find info on him or the statue.

Have you heard of James Duhurst Taylor?

Reenactor/living history - railroad detective - clothing - conductor’s outfit - costume

From: "Bill Wolfe"

... just stumbled across your website while trying to do an internet search on “railroad detective.”

My family has become interested in living history presentations here in Central Texas (ca. 1870s). My wife is working on a presentation as a librarian and I had the idea of doing some sort of presentation on western railroads.

Aside from the presentation itself, my biggest challenge is going to be to come up with a period-correct costume. I was wondering if you’d have any suggestions on where or what. I’ve seen some railroad goggles on sale on ebay that I thought might be appropriate if I were to dress up as an engineer. I’d wondered about a conductor’s outfit and since I’m a deputy sheriff, the thought of “being” a railroad detective also came to mind.

I’ve purchased a couple of original publications from the 1870's regarding railroads, but I haven’t come across ... any pictures that I felt really gave me a working idea of what real railroaders wore back then. From what I remember from western movies, railroad detectives generally wore business suits. Badge on a vest? Six gun on the hip?

Any advice, direction, or other help would be appreciated. ...

—Deputy Bill Wolfe, Llano County Sheriff's Department

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Articles on "The Joining of the Rails: The Transcontinental Railroad"

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Surveying the first transcontinental railroad

From: "Erica Brandt"

I was researching the Transcontinental railway to use as an illustration. Basically how the two sides needed to come together, and if they were one degree off over time, would not have met in the middle.

But I can't find any details on line detailing the actually engineering/mapping of how the two sides were able to meet at the same place on May 10.

I have read that they were only working miles apart as they got closer, but could you point me to anything detailing how they actually mapped it to come together? ...

—Erica Brandt

Travel in 1873

From: "Bryan Lamkin"

I am working on an article/biography of an Irish immigrant who traveled from West County Cork to Carson City Nevada in 1873. I am looking for "best guesses" about route and fares. Any help or advice you could provide would be greatly appreciated. I have included my draft of the travel section. Thanks!

It is difficult to know for sure his itinerary to Carson City, the only clues being his departure from New Jersey and newspaper reports at the time of his death that mentioned coming from Missouri. Assuming that he did get to Carson via Missouri, a possible itinerary would have looked something like the following. From New York he would have traveled as a second- or third-class passenger on the Pennsylvania Railroad, departing for Pittsburgh via Jersey City and Philadelphia at 5 p.m. on April 21 and arriving in Pittsburgh at 9:40 a.m. on April 22. From Pittsburgh he would have connected with a Pittsburgh, Cincinnati & St. Louis Railroad car headed for St. Louis. Assuming he caught the 2:15 p.m. train, that would have put him in St. Louis by mid-evening on the 23rd. A late evening St. Louis, Kansas City & Northern Railway connection would have him arriving in Kansas City by 9:30 a.m. on the 24th. Next, he would have headed to Denver on the Kansas Pacific line, but would have had to wait until the next morning at 9:45 a.m., and over thirty hours later, at 6:30 in the evening on the 26th, he would have reached the mile high city. The following afternoon at 1:15 p.m., he would have boarded a Denver Pacific train headed to Cheyenne, Wyoming, and arrived in that city at 10:15 p.m. After another overnight stay in Cheyenne, he would have boarded the Union Pacific train for Reno, getting to the biggest little city in the world just after midnight on April 29. It would have been possible for him to catch a 1:55 a.m. Virginia and Truckee Railroad train to Carson City, which would have him arriving at his final destination at 3:40 in the morning, April 30, 1873, after a journey of eight days. Considering the number of connections, the regular and inevitable delays for train travel in that period, the sheer exhaustion Hurley must have felt, and the fact that in the only “biography” of Hurley, an entry in James Scrugham’s biographical section of his history of Nevada, the author notes that Denis Hurley arrived in Carson City in May, it is doubtful the trip took only nine days.

My footnotes concerning fares:

PA RR, Jersey City to Pittsburgh: 444 miles at .03/mile = $13.32;
Pittsburgh to St. Louis = ?;
St. L, KC & N RR, St. Louis to KC: 275 @ .035/mi = $9.63;
KS Pacific, KC to Denver: 639 miles at ;
Denver Pacific, Denver to Cheyenne: 106 miles at .01/mile = $1.06;
UP/CP, Cheyenne to Ogden/Ogden to Reno (589 miles): 1102 miles at ? = ?

—Bryan Lamkin, Professor of History, Director of General Education, Azusa Pacific University

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

How many Central Pacific Railroad tunnels?

How many Central Pacific Railroad tunnels were “blasted through the granite mountains” of the Sierra Nevada?

John J. Berry, clerk in the San Francisco CPRR office, 1874-1876

From: "Pam Meeds Williams"

... Great website!

I am looking for information on John J. Berry, who was a clerk in the San Francisco CPRR office in 1874 to 1876.

He died in 1876 when he committed suicide on his wife's grave at Calvary Cemetery in San Francisco.

I work at the Moraga Historical Society and we have a headstone for Eliza Berry, who we believe is his wife. We think they are from Michigan.

Would there be any old employee records going back that far still in existence? If so where might they be? ...

—Pamela Meeds

Friday, January 17, 2014

African American workers on the first transcontinental railroad

From: "Samuel Lilley"

African Americans were a small portion of the workforce. I was just wondering why. When they spent money to import Chinese people?

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Event announcement

Noon, Friday, January 17, 2014, at the Auburn/Placer Public Library, Auburn, California. Open to all.

From: "G J Chris Graves"

A quick reminder that Bill George and I will expose some odd but factual items regarding the Central Pacific Rail Road of California, including but not limited to:

1. Theodore D. Judah's land speculations

2. Dis-incorporation of the City of Auburn due to railroad speculations

3. Why Rocklin had the roundhouse, not Roseville

4. Strobridge and Chinese workers

5. Samuel Whitmarsh, (station agent, Auburn, Calif. Stagecoach Co), Rattlesnake Dick Barger and the Strobridge children

6. Why nitroglycerin was used only Tunnel 6, 7, 8, and near Highway 20

7. Economics of 1865 that prompted the hiring of Chinese (Sherman Day's family shows how and why)

8. How many Chinese died, and how their graves were marked

9. If time allows, a discussion of Eadweard Muybridge and the murder of Harry Larkyns.

Bill and I hope to see you there. We will not discuss the Auburn Journal of Sept., 15, 2002, Section 2 page 4 unless asked to.

—G J Chris Graves, Newcastle, AltaCal'a

"Western property rights case pits landowners, government"

"Western property rights case pits landowners, government" by Richard Wolf, © USA TODAY, January 14, 2014. (News Article)

"An 1875 congressional law and a 1942 court decision don't answer whether the government or private landowners have first dibs on former railroad property ... The Supreme Court wrestled Tuesday with ... What did Congress intend ... when it passed the General Railroad Right of Way Act of 1875 to give rail lines access to public lands? Now that most of the railroads are out of business and much of the land has been sold, who gets the rail beds -- the government or private landowners? ... " [More]

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Monday, January 13, 2014

Location of culverts

From: "Gerold Herrick",

Where can I find a list and locations of culverts and tiles under the Union Pacific Railroad in Grand Junction, Iowa?

—Gerold Herrick, Mayor of Grand Junction, Iowa

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

CPRR Discussion Group

Welcome to the CPRR Discussion Group at the Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum.

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