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KWL Chart • On a sheet of notebook paper make a list of everything you know about railroads in the mid 1840’s • Make a list of everything you Want to Know about railroads
End of the Line What happened to the Blue Ridge Railroad?
Why build a railroad? Why there? Why then?
History • Mid 1800’s Railroads developed with the invention of rail iron, steam-powered locomotives, passenger and freight trains • 1836 -1837 John C. Calhoun explored Blue Ridge Mountains looking for a “Carolina Gap” • 1830’s SC wanted to compete with Savannah, GA by providing rail transportation to Charleston
• 1836 -1837 SC wanted to make a new line from Charleston west over the mountains to Knoxville, TN and on to Cincinnati, OH. • SC was behind other states in developing their railroads because they were opposed to accepting federal funding for internal improvements. This put the entire financial burden on SC and private investors.
1840 only about 3, 000 miles railroad tracks
Construction on the State Capital building began in 1851, Work on the redesigned structure began in 1855, slowed during the Civil War. In 1852 a charter was issued for the Blue Ridge Railroad of SC because the Blue Ridge Railroad of GA would bring the railroad to the NW corner of SC.
• The rail line was only completed to Anderson, Pendleton, West Union and Walhalla by the late 1850’s
• 1855 Petition to Continue Funds for the Blue Ridge Railroad The State sent money to resume work on the line to Walhalla but not beyond. Therefore, work was suspended on the Stumphouse Tunnel at the end of 1859.
1860 Railroads developed more quickly in the Northern states. Over 27, 000 miles of track laid across the US.
Railroads changed the landscape • Train lines moved traffic away from main water routes and across previously undeveloped land • Towns and farms grew up along railroad routes • Areas once inaccessible to outside markets could transport goods for commerce • Railroads cut the time of shipment and travel
Stumphouse Tunnel • Literally the end of the line in an attempt to complete a direct railroad line from Charleston, SC to Cincinnati, Ohio. • Misuse of money by original contractors Anson Bangs & Co. misrepresented their qualifications to build the railroad • SC investors lost over 2 million dollars
“The Railroad Mania: and Review of the Bank of the State of South-Carolina, A series of essays, By Anti-Debt. ” Charleston Mercury, Charleston, South Carolina: Burges, James and Paxton, Printers 1848. Essay VII. • “Many, doubtless think, that in constructing these Roads they will be toiling and sacrificing for posterity. But let them beware how they buy hopes with ready money. Let them remember that the worst of all legacies is debt, and the worst after that unprofitable property. ”
Cost of Stumphouse Tunnel • Steep grade • Blue granite – had to be drilled, blasted with black powder, dug and hauled • Funding ran out • Lack of an adequate work force
• 1860 Abraham Lincoln elected President – he was in favor of a Federally funded Railroad connecting the Pacific Ocean. The Southern route to California, suggested by Jefferson Davis would be rejected because it would run through slave states. December 17, 1860 SC voted to leave the Union
End of the Line • The political climate at the time ended any hopes for a completion of the line through Stumphouse Tunnel
Assessment • Complete the “Learned” portion of the K-W-L chart. I will be looking for at least two reasons why the Blue Ridge Railroad failed to complete a route from Charleston, SC to Cincinnati, OH