Railroads and Conflict in the West Questions and Answers

Start Your Free Trial

What was the significance of the Transcontinental Railroad ?

Expert Answers info

mrkirschner eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2015

write934 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

The Transcontinental Railroad, completed in 1869, had dramatic economic, cultural, and political significance to the development of the United States. The advantages for business are almost obvious. The railroad's ability to connect both coasts with a relatively quick form of transportation opened markets for goods that did not exist earlier. Products that were manufactured in the industrial cities of the east could be delivered to the west coast in under two weeks. The west coast reciprocated by sending finished products from Asia and the west coast to eastern markets. The movement of raw materials in every direction also accelerated the industrial boom that was already happening after the Civil War.

The railroad also had a dramatic cultural impact on the United States. By making the continent seem smaller, the United States became unified culturally. Ideas and discourse were now being shared between the coasts. While regional variations would continue to exist throughout the United...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 641 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Tim Mbiti eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2014

write1,737 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Business

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Asher Wismer eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write2,867 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Science, and History

check Approved by eNotes Editorial