"[A] wealth of vignettes and more than 100 black-and-white illustrations . . . Does a fine job of humanizing the iron horse" ( The Wall Street Journal ).
In this social history of the impact of railroads on American life, H. Roger Grant concentrates on the railroad's "golden age," from 1830 to 1930. He explores four fundamental topics--trains and travel, train stations, railroads and community life, and the legacy of railroading in America--illustrating each with carefully chosen period illustrations.
Grant recalls the lasting memories left by train travel, both of luxurious Pullman cars and the grit and grind of coal-powered locals. He discusses the important role railroads played for towns and cities across America, not only for the access they provided to distant places and distant markets but also for the depots that were a focus of community life, and reviews the lasting heritage of the railroads in our culture today. This is "an engaging book of train stories" from one of railroading's finest historians ( Choice ).
"Highly recommended to train buffs and others in love with early railroading." -- Library Journal
"With plenty of detail, Grant brings a bygone era back to life, addressing everything from social and commercial appeal, racial and gender issues, safety concerns, and leaps in technology . . . A work that can appeal to both casual and hardcore enthusiasts." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)