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I May Be Working on the Railroad, but Never Riding One

I was born in the south. I live in the south and will die in the south. This is only a small part of the memories I share.

Early railroad engines helped  deliver goods and people across our nation.

Early railroad engines helped deliver goods and people across our nation.

Time For a Railroad Ditty Called "Railroad History"

courtesy of Col. John Stevens in America. He built the New Jersey Railroad Company in 1815, and the rest, you know what's coming, is history. This was a good thing, even before the Vanderbilt's got their sticky hands into this lucrative and needed industry. Money, even with early railroads, walks. I'm not here to 'rail' about the discrepancies of the railroad because history unveils a whole lot of folks who were bit by the 'greed bug.' Some of their ancestors are still around. No use in me doing in research, since you are somewhat of a history buff.

Nothing galls me worse than repeating facts from one hub to another. The very act drives me to sheer boredom. I'm sure that you're not thrilled about it either. I should have said overkill and been finished with that thought. My maverick-type of thinking says even if I can't write as well as Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, at least I can sound like it.

The Mechanics of The Early Engines

were somewhat brutal to say the least. There were several designs on how the locomotive should look and run, and then after several tries (and errors) the first fathers of the railroad came up with a locomotive by using a steam-driving machine. Plus, the engine used wood to keep the furnace hot which was also a great economical move because wood was easier to manage than coal which was sometimes scarce during the early mining accidents and strikes.

No. The railroad was a cumbersome infant walking slowly on two very long steel rails and the rail cars carried many travelers who were happy to ride the train because when they reached their relatives who lived a great distance, the riders were rested and anxious to catch-up with their friends and relatives.

People in the midst of this great time of prosperity did not really grasp just how needed and important that the railroad was growing to be. And like everything solid and able to turn a profit, the railroad caught the eye of Commodore Corneilus Vanderbilt who bought-up the railroads as fast as they could be built. He had leveraged stock totals in all of the railroads started in the east of America. But to show his giving spirit, he founded Vanderbilt University in Nashvllle, Tn., the noted school of medicine where many of today's doctors are trained.

Some engines were called "monsters" for their size and power.

Some engines were called "monsters" for their size and power.

Reasons Why I Didn't Ride The Railroad When They Were Popular

and these are the real reasons why "just" thinking about hopping onto a passenger (or freight) train gives me the willies. Or is that the willy's? You choose. Sorry. I didn't have a third statement.

One of the reasons why I shy-away from riding passenger trains is the pandemonium that ensures from standing in line to buy a ticket to finding my seat. Both are major battles. I am telling you these things from the time when I saw my first train. Just want to clear that out.

If I were to tempted to hop upon a passenger train is the (sometimes)-rude train customers who just cannot wait to see "Uncle Bobo,"or "Aunt Sally Sue," and people like this are so short-spoken and rude that they take their impatience out on innocent people.

The click of the steel boxcars rolling against the steel rails can keep people awake. Namely me. But steel wheels and steel rails might be a smash in Country Music, by the very-talented and late, Vern Gosdin, but when I'm riding on a train just causes me more frustration. Vern, you are being missed.

Another reason, a solid reason, why I hated to ride on passenger trains was dogs, cats, and birds. Some aloof passengers were so into themselves, just had to have seats next to me or in front of me. All of those barks, meow's, and tweeting, can get on a person's nerve. MINE! P.S. have you ever been bitten, clawed, and pecked many times at the same time?

Passenger freight customers who are in quartets and insist on siting together and have to get in some last-minute rehearsing, would be the same as hiding underneath the Hollywood Bowl when Ozzy Osbourne was playing a one-man show.

Think I'll start traveling by a very safe method: Dog sled.

May 09, 2021_____________________________________________________

Early railroads were built by manpower.

Early railroads were built by manpower.

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© 2021 Kenneth Avery

Comments

femi from Nigeria on May 13, 2021:

When I was in highschool l was in a boarding house up North. Once we resume it was normal practice to travel by myself by airplane to school. The flight was about an hour. My friends often spoke about train travel. So on a few occasions once we vacate despite having a flight ticket l followed some school mates home by train

The train was noisy, smelly, overcrowded and slow. It took about 2 days to get home. Despite this, the journey was memorable and fun.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on May 13, 2021:

Very nice hub. America is a very big country and I suppose railways are not everywhere. But traveling by rail can be fun.I have never traveled by rail in America on my visits. No time.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on May 12, 2021:

I've never had the pleasure of deciding whether to ride on or not.

We don't have them here.

There is one that comes once a year for a charity thing but it costs & is very crowded.

I can see how all thos things would be nerve wracking.

Nice write.

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