Charleston in Charleston County, South Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
Building a Nation
Completion of the transcontinental railroad created a boom in railroad construction across the country. There were 30,000 miles of track in the nation in 1860. This number increased to 201,000 miles by 1900. However the zenith of the American railroad occurred in 1916 when there were 254,000 miles of track across the country. Railroads employed over 2,000,000 people in 1920, and an amazing 98 percent of all intercity passenger traffic was by rail.
The 1840s and 1850s were a boom time in Southern railroad construction. Lines were built between Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina. The most ambitious line was completed in 1857 when 760 miles of track connected Charleston with Memphis, Tennessee.
The railways declined after World War I. By 1957, the number of airplane travelers passed the number of train passengers for the first time.
"... the more economical outlets we can open through this chain, the more will the resources of the west develop themselves and the more will the east and the west become united by indissoluble bonds of common interest."
* William Howard, 1829*
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Railroads & Streetcars.
Location. 32° 47.337′ N, 79° 56.233′ W. Marker is in Charleston, South Carolina, in Charleston County. Marker can be reached from John Street, on the right when traveling east. Located between King and Meeting Streets. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Charleston SC 29403, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Railroad Comes To Charleston (here, next to this marker); The Best Friend of Charleston (here, next to this marker); Bound For Glory (here, next to this marker); Passengers and Products (within shouting distance of this marker); Camden Depot (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); William Aiken House The Civil War Submarine, H.L. Hunley (about 500 feet away); The Charleston Museum's Joseph Manigault House (about 600 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Charleston.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. To better understand the relationship, study marker shown.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on January 28, 2011, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 496 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on January 28, 2011, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.