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Pacific Railroad Act

railway union congress construction

The Pacific Railroad Act, passed by Congress in 1862 (12 Stat. 489), authorized the construction of the first transcontinental railway line connecting the east and west coasts. The need for a transcontinental railway to facilitate transportation of persons and products across the United States became increasingly clear in the 1850s due to the acquisition of California and the resolution of the Oregon boundary dispute. In 1862, before the secession of the South from the Union, the REPUBLICAN PARTY in Congress was instrumental in enacting legislation that authorized the Union Pacific Railway and the Central Pacific Railroad to construct such a railway. The Union Pacific Railway was to begin construction at Omaha, Nebraska, with the objective of connecting with the Central Pacific Railroad, which was to begin construction at the same time at Sacramento, California. The law provided that after each railroad laid forty miles of track, it was to receive 6,400 acres of public lands and government loans ranging from $16,000 to $48,000 per mile of track completed.

Congress passed additional legislation in 1864 to provide more land and money to complete the project. The two lines finally met at Promontory Point, Utah, in 1869, thereby providing a fast means of access from the Missouri River and the Pacific Ocean by rail.

The Union Pacific Railway and the Central Pacific Railroad were merged into the Union Pacific Railroad in 1900 by Edward Harriman.

CROSS-REFERENCES

Railroad.

Pacifism - History, Religious Society Of Friends, Mohandas K. Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. And The Civil Rights Movement [next]

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over 6 years ago

This is stupid. It doesn't make any sense. If you were smart you wouldn't listen to this website. effffff.

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almost 9 years ago

The first shots of the Civil War were fired on January 9, 1861 by the Confederates on a Union ship going to Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor. That same day Mississippi was the second state to secede from the Union. The first state to secede was South Carolina on December 20, 1860.



The Central Pacific Railroad acquired the Southern Pacific Railroad in California on September 25, 1868. The Southern Pacific became the dominant line. Collis Potter Huntington, the last of California's Big Four and president of SP, died on August 13, 1900.



In 1901 Edward Henry Harriman of the Union Pacific began buying Southern Pacific stock and it was not until September 26, 1901 that he assummed the presidency of the Southern Pacific. The Central Pacific was only a part of the whole acquisition.



And the joining of the CP and the UP was not at Promontory Point! It was at Promontory, Territory of Utah. Promontory Point is a point of land that juts into the Great Salt Lake and is 25 miles south of where the Golden Spike was driven!

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over 9 years ago

"In 1862, before the secession of the South from the Union..." The South seceded the Union, I believe, in 1860.

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about 5 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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over 6 years ago

What happend before this started? & how was it after .