Transcontinental Railroad Research Paper

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The transcontinental railroad was of great importance to the development of the Union because it widened the western frontier to settlement and represented the growing integration of the country. This railroad could be defined as the most unforgettable change in the nineteenth century. It joined the eastern and western halves of the country and has been acclaimed as one of the greatest displays of American engineering and innovation. This would not have been accomplished without the help of Chinese laborers. Despite its work relief and large government programs, the first transcontinental railroad was built crossing the western half of American because its main programs attempted to create a stable environment for private enterprise in the…show more content…
The railroad created many jobs for the white men and also immigrants. Immigrants were attracted to the land of opportunity to make a better life for themselves and their families. Workers put spikes into mountains, holes were filled with black powder, and blasted through the rock inch by inch. These workers faced many hardships and difficulties along the way such as discrimination, hazardous weather conditions and unleveled land but it did not hinder them. Thousands of workers, included Irish and German immigrants, former Union and Confederate soldiers, freed slaves, and especially Chinese immigrants played a part in the construction. Chinese immigrants did most of the work on the Central Pacific track. The white men that worked on the railway were paid at least one dollar to three dollars however the Chinese were only paid seven to ten cents. Most Chinese workers initially planned to return back home with their wealth once the work was completed. When the Central Pacific was finished and offered no more construction work, they scattered and helped build railroads in other parts of the country before immigration laws were changed to exclude them. (Winslow, Mimi. "Building the First Transcontinental Railroad." Loggers & Railroad Workers. 25. US: Lerner Publishing Group, 2002. History Reference Center.

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