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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Avery in Shoshone County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
 

Tunneling Toward Tacoma

 
 
Tunneling Toward Tacoma Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, July 22, 2011
1. Tunneling Toward Tacoma Marker
Inscription. Snaking its railroad down the western side of the Bitterroot Mountains, the Milwaukee Road burrowed 16 tunnels to maintain a uniform grade down to Avery.

These tunnels were dug largely by hand using sledgehammers and hand drills. In some cases steam-powered drills and steam donkey engines were hauled to the work site to speed the digging. It took three years, and the toil of hundreds of men before the massive job was completed and the St. Paul Pass Tunnel was opened in March of 1909.

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Hiawatha Tunnel Lengths

Between Roland and Avery there are 16 tunnels varying in length from 178 to 1,516 feet long. The total length of all these tunnels is 8,557 feet, or just short of the length of the St. Paul Pass Tunnel alone. Nine of these tunnels are on the Route of the Hiawatha.
 
Location. 47° 21.677′ N, 115° 39.145′ W. Marker is near Avery, Idaho, in Shoshone County. Marker can be reached from Cliff Creek Road (Federal Road 506) 1.8 miles north of Loop Creek Road (Federal Road 326). Click for map. Located along the Route of the Hiawatha Trail. Marker is in this post office area: Avery ID 83802, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Temporary Trestles (a
Tunneling Toward Tacoma Marker at Tunnel #22 image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, July 22, 2011
2. Tunneling Toward Tacoma Marker at Tunnel #22
few steps from this marker); Section Gangs (approx. 0.6 miles away); A Changing Landscape (approx. 0.7 miles away); Water Does the Work! (approx. ĺ mile away); Manís Mark on the Land (approx. ĺ mile away); No Oneís “Fault” (approx. 0.8 miles away); Bridging the Gaps (approx. one mile away); Little in Name Only (approx. 1.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Avery.
 
More about this marker. On the upper right is a photo with the caption, "Superintendent Tom Walsh and his 1908 tunneling crew in the east heading of Tunnel #22 in front of you. Mostly recent immigrants, these sturdy hard-rock miners earned a dollar a day. Photograph courtesy, Montana Historical Society
 
Also see . . .  Route of the Hiawatha Rail Trail. (Submitted on August 4, 2011, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
 
Categories. Railroads & Streetcars
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 413 times since then and 8 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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