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Iron Rails, Iron Men, and the Race to Link the Nation

The Story of the Transcontinental Railroad
Narrated by: Grover Gardner
Length: 4 hrs and 12 mins
Categories: History, American
4 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Summary

Experience the race of rails to link the country - and meet the men behind this incredible feat - in a riveting story about the building of the Transcontinental Railroad.

In the 1850s gold fever swept the West, but people had to walk, sail, or ride horses for months on end to seek their fortunes. The question of faster, safer transportation was posed by national leaders. But with 1,800 miles of seemingly impenetrable mountains, searing deserts, and endless plains between the Missouri River and San Francisco, could a transcontinental railroad be built? It seemed impossible.

Eventually two railroad companies, the Central Pacific, which laid the tracks eastward, and the Union Pacific, which moved west, began the job. In one great race between iron men with iron wills, tens of thousands of workers blasted the longest tunnels that had ever been constructed, built the highest bridges that had ever been created, and finally linked the nation by two bands of steel, changing America forever.

©2015 Martin W. Sandler, original book published by Candlewick Press (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved

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Raily good

What did you like most about Iron Rails, Iron Men, and the Race to Link the Nation?

Very interesting facts, I was telling everyone I bumped whilst listening to this book about all the amazing things I'd just heard. I just wish the book was a little longer, it didn't feel like it breezed over anything in particular, it's just that I was enjoying it so much!
If you enjoy this subject matter and haven't seen the tv series Hell On Wheels, then you should check it out, or if you have seen the show, then this book will be of interest to you.

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Profile Image for Jeff
  • Jeff
  • 28-08-18

If you enjoy history

I became interested in this endeavor after watching AMCs Hell on Wheels. I learned this is one of the books that inspired the writers of the show. Reading this book gives a greater picture of the amazing task that was the Transcontinental Railway. Looking back I can see where the Show tried to display some of the key moments in the building. In today’s world of strong division this story reignites a sense of pride in our great Country and those who helped build it. If you enjoy history, railroads, or America and her achievements then it’s a must listen. I am about to listen to it a second time because it’s so much to take in and I enjoyed the ride.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Charles J Lee
  • 26-03-18

Walked us through with fun and insight

If you could sum up Iron Rails, Iron Men, and the Race to Link the Nation in three words, what would they be?

not boring AT ALL!

What did you like best about this story?

Everyone had their piece in the story, and learning how each played a role and the circumstances that allowed the pieces to come together.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

no

Any additional comments?

I listened to this with my elementary school children to learn how circumstance and geography is played such a strong role in our country. Also touched on race, the civil war, and different cultures.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 27-01-17

A fascinating look at a Major historical event.

Learned some really interesting details about building the transcontinental railroad. The book is well written and seems thoroughly researched. The narration was top notch. Grover Gardner is one of the best I've heard and doesn't ever lose energy or come across as dry. Nicely done.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Russell Bernard
  • 29-03-19

the wedding of the Rails May 10th 1869

I remember when I was 10 years old the hundredth anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad. this year we celebrate 150 years of the Transcontinental Railroad at promontory Point in Utah. I grew up in Utah and remember how exciting it was in grade school, now we get to do it again. Grover Gardner is a wonderful narrator, he does a great job as Mark Twain narrating many Mark Twain books. he narrates this with Grace and Style. this but is short and to the point and does a wonderful job covering the subject with many hidden secrets and facts that you have might have missed. there are other longer books but I think this book covered everything I ever wanted to know. so check it out and enjoy a wonderful story and a wonderful narrator.

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  • Bob Denny
  • 22-05-18

This is a wonderful story.

The most detailed account you could imagine of the building of the transcontinental railroad. Particularly fascinating were the challenges face by the Central Pacific in building across Donner Pass from Roseville to Reno. I loved this story. Highly recommend it.

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  • Bill
  • 14-09-16

This has been told before... this one, BRILLIANT!

Even though you've heard or read this information before, this book composes the story in an easy to follow, enjoyable fashion. Well worth your time & money!
Now if Mr. Martin W. Sandler & Mr. Grover Gardner would team up on other efforts... I'd be all over those too!!!!!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 21-02-16

Enough history without too much detail

While I admit to being a railroad enthusiast I get easily bored by having too many facts and figures in a historical account. This was a perfect blend of my estimation and well read

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  • Praveen Kumar
  • 23-02-17

awesome audio book .

a very enjoyable book. takes you back in time to the challenging times of railroad construction and the travails undergone by the workers in order to get the job done.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful