The Pennsylvania Railroad in Indiana

The Pennsylvania Railroad in Indiana

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The Pennsylvania Railroad's keystoneq once ranked among America's most widely-recognised corporate logos. The company's sleek trains attracted discriminating travellers during the golden age of rail passenger service. An economic powerhouse which for years qualified as the nation's largest industrial employer, the Pennsy set the pace in freight tonnage, ridership, excellence of service, and the fast schedules of its famous passenger runs. This unique railroad occupies an exceptional and enviable place in transportation history. Originally built to link the two most important cities in its home state, the Pennsy then captured wider territory - not with its own track gangs, but using an energetic bevy of operating executives, finance men, and lawyers who forged alliances with other railroads, bailed them out of financial trouble, amassed their securities, and then took over their routes. In large part it was the railroads that propelled Indiana out of its qJeffersonianq agrarian outlook and into the robust capitalism of Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller. This is also the story of the growth of cities and industry along Indiana's Pennsy lines. The Pennsylvania Railroad was much more than a mere participant in this remarkable process. It often led the way. The railroad in time exerted a profound influence upon Indiana's economy. At its peak the Pennsy operated one-fourth of the state's rail mileage. Its corridors ranging west from Pittsburgh sliced across the Hoosier landscape, and altered the living habits of people who lived or worked near these heavily-utilised tracks. The Pennsylvania Railroad in Indiana captures the history of the Pennsy and its Indiana predecessor lines. Here we meet its famous passenger trains, the empire-builders who put down track later acquired by the Pennsy, its impact upon the state's economy, the railroad's contributions to Allied victory in World War II, and the post-war decline which led to merger into Penn Central. Wonderful photographs, advertising and promotional materials, and detailed maps resurrect its speedy passenger trains and heavy-tonnage freights, and show how it earned its slogan: qThe Standard Railroad of the World.qCritics pursued scapegoats as the cost of the governments rescue operation escalated. ... The quality of railroad management in the post-World War II era did lag behind that in other industrial enterprises, but could talent ... Would the brotherhoods have embraced change years earlier when diesel locomotives replaced steam engines? ... to conclude that the Pennsylvania Railroada#39;s last genuine opportunities to survive under its own name may have occurred as far back as the 1880s.

Title:The Pennsylvania Railroad in Indiana
Author:William J. Watt
Publisher:Indiana University Press - 1999


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