Railroads and the American People

  • by H. Roger Grant
  • Narrated by Todd Barsness
  • 12 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In this social history of the impact of railroads on American life, H. Roger Grant concentrates on the railroad's "Golden Age," 1830-1930. To capture the essence of the nation's railroad experience, Grant explores four fundamental topics - trains and travel, train stations, railroads and community life, and the legacy of railroading in America. 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. Finally, Grant reviews the lasting heritage of the railroads as it has been preserved in word, stone, paint, and memory. Railroads and the American People is a sparkling paean to American railroading by one of its finest historians.
The book is published by Indiana University Press.

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What the Critics Say

"With its wealth of vignettes... Railroads and the American People does a fine job of humanizing the iron horse" (Wall Street 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. But Grant never loses sight of the big picture and the essential role the railroads played in American life. He writes with authority and clarity in a work that can appeal to both casual and hardcore enthusiasts." (Publishers Weekly)
"Is it necessary to comment on an established author such as Roger Grant. Heavens, he is a fine scholar and writes better than Hemingway!" (John White, author of The American Railroad Passenger Car)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

great history of railroad life in America

If you could sum up Railroads and the American People in three words, what would they be?

History, Railroads, Culture


What was one of the most memorable moments of Railroads and the American People?

I enjoyed the history of depots and the agents who lived there


Which character – as performed by Todd Barsness – was your favorite?

Not really in characters in this one


If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

How railroads created America


Any additional comments?

Great history of railroads and life in America.

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- Gene Bowker

interesting to a point

But really no need to give 25 examples when 3 are adequate. Tghten it up.
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- Amazon Customer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-26-2013
  • Publisher: University Press Audiobooks