transcontinental railroad

Cultural Dictionary

transcontinental railroad definition


A train route across the United States, finished in 1869. It was the project of two railroad companies: the Union Pacific built from the east, and the Central Pacific built from the west. The two lines met in Utah. The Central Pacific laborers were predominantly Chinese, and the Union Pacific laborers predominantly Irish. Both groups often worked under harsh conditions.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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