Timeline of United States railway history
The Timeline of United States railway history
is as follows:
- 1810s-1830s: Various inventors and entrepreneurs make suggestions about building model railways in the United States; In 1825 John Stevens (inventor) builds a test track and runs a locomotive around it in Hoboken, New Jersey.
- 1820s and 1830s: The Baltimore and Ohio is incorporated in 1827 and officially opens in 1830. Other railroads soon follow, including the Camden and Amboy by 1832.
- 1830s-1860s: Enormous railway building booms in the United States of America. Railroads replace canals as a primary mode of transportation.
- 1865: George Pullman becomes well-known for luxury sleeping cars, called Pullmans in his honor, after he loans one of his cars to house the coffin of Abraham Lincoln after Lincoln's assassination.
- 1869: Union Pacific and Central Pacific complete first transcontinental railway link at Promontory Point. Route later becomes the route of the California Zephyr.
- 1870s and 1880s: Strikes break out against railroads and the Pullman Palace Car Company. Corporations hire Pinkerton guards to break up the strikes. Nonetheless, much violence occurs in the strikes; folks are shot dead, buildings and rolling stock are burned, and reports of rioting shocks middle-class Americans.
- 1887: The Interstate Commerce Commission is created to regulate railroads, to ensure fair prices.
- 1902: Twentieth Century Limited inaugurated by the New York Central railroad.
- 1910s: Pennsylvania Railroad builds Pennsylvania Station in New York City; New York Central Railroad builds current version of Grand Central Terminal.
- 1916: US railway mileage reaches greatest extent.
- 1920s and 1930s: Automobiles and airplanes contribute to a decline in ridership and mileage, as well as the Great Depression.
- 1940s: World War II brings railroads the highest ridership in American history, as soldiers are being sent to fight overseas in the Pacific Theater and the European Theater. However, automobile travel causes ridership to decline after the war ends.
- 1950s and 1960s: Drastic decline in railroad travel in the United States of America, due to automobiles, trucks, and airplanes, as first jetliners take to the air. Railroads respond through mergers and attempts to shut down trains and railroad lines. However, the ICC refuses to let railroads shut down many trains.
- 1967: Twentieth Century Limited makes last run.
- 1968: Pennsylvania Railroad and New York Central merge to form Penn Central.
- June 21, 1970: Penn Central declares Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
- 1971: President Richard Nixon and Congress create Amtrak and eliminate several passenger routes.
- 1970s: Conrail, a freight railroad, founded.
- 1970s and 1980s: Amtrak introduces double-deck Superliner rolling stock. Auto Train begins running as independent line (is this in the 1960s?) , but fails a few years later; Amtrak later runs Auto Train as one of its more-heavily-promoted lines.
- 1990s: Amtrak funding comes under heavier scrutiny by Congress, while Amtrak creates new trains such as the Talgo and the Acela.
- 2001: Terrorists destroy World Trade Center and destroy part of the PATH system in the process.