Showing posts with label Railroads. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Railroads. Show all posts

Monday, August 26, 2019

Camera and Locomotive - A Mapped Story About the Transcontinental Railroad

Camera and Locomotive is the title of a fantastic mapped story published by the Library of Congress. Camera and Locomotive tells the story of the building of the Transcontinental Railroad and the development of photography in the United States. As you scroll through the story you will find interactive maps that are loaded with photographs taken during the construction of railroads. You can click on any placemarker on the maps to reveal an image. Clicking on an image will take you to a corresponding Library of Congress page where you can learn more about the photograph and download a high resolution copy of it.

Camera and Locomotive has seven connected sections that you can jump to from the introduction. One of the most fascinating sections for me was Plumbe's Dream. Plumbe's Dream is about John Plume, Jr. who was a photographer and early advocate for the construction of a transcontinental railroad who never did see any of the tracks of what would become the first Transcontinental Railroad. From the section on Plumbe the story continues to tell readers about other photographers including Andrew Joseph Russell who captured some of the iconic photographs of the west associated with the Transcontinental Railroad.

Applications for Education
If you teach U.S. History Camera and Locomotive could be a great addition to your lists of resources for teaching and learning about the Transcontinental Railroad and the westward expansion of the United States.

A couple of related resources worth noting are Railroad Journey and the Industrial Revolution and this collection of primary sources hosted on DocsTeach.

H/T to Maps Mania for the link to Camera and Locomotive. 

Friday, November 18, 2016

A Brief History of Timezones

When I signed into Facebook this morning I was greeted by a notice that on this day in 1883 the railroad industry in North America began using the four timezones that are still in use today. Upon reading that notice I immediately remembered a TED-Ed lesson on the topic. Where did timezones come from? What is "standard time?" The answers to those questions and more can be found in the short TED-Ed lesson How Did Trains Standardize Timezones in the United States? Watch the video below.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

A Crash Course on the Effects of Railroad Development

The latest installment to Crash Course World History is all about the effects of the development of railroads during the industrial revolution. The Railroad Journey and the Industrial Revolution isn't about the building of railroads. In the video John Green covers how rail travel led to changes in where people lived, where they vacationed, and how they interacted with each other. A short lesson on the origin of Greenwich Mean Time is included too.

To bring the lesson into a current context, Green also does a nice job of making comparisons between the effects of the development of railroads and the effects of the development of the Internet.


For more resources on railroads, check out Living With Railroads.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Living With the Railroads - Maps, Images, and Videos of U.S. Railroad Development

The development of railroads across the United States is included in every US History textbook that I've come across. The following three resources provide excellent visuals to help students understand the expansion and contraction of railroads in the United States.

Historypin offers a great resource that can help students see the development of railroad in the United States. On Living With the Railroads students can explore a Google Map laden with nearly 1,700 historical images of various railroad stations across the United States. At the bottom of the map students will find a timeline slider that they can move. Moving the timeline slider will reveal images specific to the time frame selected on the timeline.

Living With the Railroads was developed in partnership with the Spatial History Project at Stanford University. The Spatial History Project features even more maps and interactive visuals about the history of railroads.

The following video, U.S. Railroad Map History Map 1830-1990s, provides a concise overview of the expansion and contraction of railroads in the United States.