Limit search to available items
Book Cover
Author Thomas, William G., 1964-

Title The iron way : railroads, the Civil War, and the making of modern America / William G. Thomas
Published New Haven : Yale University Press, [2011]
Online access available from:
JSTOR eBooks    View Resource Record  
ProQuest Ebook Central Subscription Collection    View Resource Record  
EBSCO eBook Academic Collection    View Resource Record  


Description 1 online resource (281 pages) : illustrations, maps
Contents Prologue -- Part I: Tools. Slavery, the South, and "every bar of railroad iron" ; Railroads, the North, and "the velocity of progress" -- Part II: Leviathan. Secession and a modern war ; Fighting the Confederate landscapes ; The railroad war zones ; The Confederate nation "cut off from the world" ; The railroad strategy -- Part III: Vortex. After emancipation -- Epilogue : The road to Promontory Summit -- Appendix : Tables
Summary "Beginning with Frederick Douglass's escape from slavery in 1838 on the railroad, and ending with the driving of the golden spike to link the transcontinental railroad in 1869, this book charts a critical period of American expansion and national formation, one largely dominated by the dynamic growth of railroads and telegraphs. William G. Thomas brings new evidence to bear on railroads, the Confederate South, slavery, and the Civil War era, based on groundbreaking research in digitized sources never available before. The Iron Way revises our ideas about the emergence of modern America and the role of the railroads in shaping the sectional conflict. Both the North and the South invested in railroads to serve their larger purposes, Thomas contends. Though railroads are often cited as a major factor in the Union's victory, he shows that they were also essential to the formation of "the South" as a unified region. He discusses the many--and sometimes unexpected--effects of railroad expansion and proposes that America's great railroads became an important symbolic touchstone for the nation's vision of itself. Please visit the Railroads and the Making of Modern America website at"-- Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Subject Confederate States of America. Army -- Transportation.
United States. Army -- Transportation -- History -- 19th century.
Railroads -- Confederate States of America -- History.
Railroads -- United States -- History -- 19th century.
United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Transportation.
United States -- Territorial expansion -- History -- 19th century.
Genre/Form History.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 0300171684 (electronic bk.)
9780300171686 (electronic bk.)