Your SlideShare is downloading. ×
0
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Expanding America
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×

Thanks for flagging this SlideShare!

Oops! An error has occurred.

×
Saving this for later? Get the SlideShare app to save on your phone or tablet. Read anywhere, anytime – even offline.
Text the download link to your phone
Standard text messaging rates apply

Expanding America

113

Published on

The expansion of America via highways and automobiles.

The expansion of America via highways and automobiles.

Published in: Technology, Art & Photos
0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total Views
113
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
2
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

Report content
Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
No notes for slide

Transcript

  • 1. The Expansion Of The United States By Highways and Automobiles PART 1: Building A Country
  • 2. Even before we became a country, getting around was difficult for “civilized” people. Our forefathers had little choice but to follow Indian trading and hunting paths to find their way. But travel was a must, for both colonization and expansion, as our population began to increase at a record pace. During the French-Indian Wars (1754-1763) the need for reliable transportation roads became evident. One of the first “constructed” roads was General Braddock’s Military Road, which, ironically, followed the old Nemocolin Trail, an old Indian hunting path, as shown at the left. (side note: Braddock died en route to Fort Duquesne, now Pittsburgh, and his Colonel, George Washington, was left in charge). Afterwards, Forbes Road, also following an old Indian Trail, completed the conquest of Fort Duquesne. Braddock’s trail was the forerunner of the future trails, chopped out and explored by others, for expansion. US 30 and US 22 still follow parts of this historic road.
  • 3. The Iroquois, or Mohawk, Trail was used to trade and communicate with Atlantic Seaboard tribes, and the upstate New York tribes, via river paths, hunting trails, and mountain passes. The Indian knowledge of the areas was invaluable to the early settlers. A quick look at the map on the bottom left , of the colonies of 1763, will show how difficult it was to get past the mountains for expansion to the west. Luckily, an ancient meteorite crater, an erosion in the Pine Mountain range of the Appalachian's, a natural gap in the Cumberland Range, and a small valley near the crater, all came together at a point where modern Tennessee, Virginia and Kentucky meet; it is the Cumberland Gap. The discovery, and widening, of this natural terrain by Daniel Boone and the Transylvania Company, made travel by many, in carts, wagons and on foot, possible to the frontier.
  • 4. 1789 George Washington becomes President Philadelphia is the largest city, 42,000 New York is 2nd, with 33,000 Boston is 3rd with 18,000 These cities represented only about 3% of our new total population, the rest being farmers, trappers, and smaller towns and cities. A large part of the population wanted, and needed, to expand westward. They wanted to get away from crowded cities and the daily hurry of city-folk. Luckily for them, their future lay before them, but not without some problems to overcome first.
  • 5. The United States that emerged from the War of Independence suffered from a weak government and a primitive transportation system. The rivers and the sheltered coastal waters, such as Long Island Sound, Chesapeake Bay and Albemarle Sound, were the principal highways for travel and commerce. Travelers crossed small streams by fording and the larger ones by ferries. Bridges were few and far between. Cable Ferry “PLANK” road, for rainy weather Extending back from these arteries were roads in various stages of development. A very few of these, near the largest cities, were "artificial roads." ditched and sometimes hard-surfaced with gravel or with "pounded stone." The rest were improved only to the extent of removing stumps and boulders and leveling the worst irregularities of the ground. Many of these roads were impassable for wheeled vehicles in winter or during the spring thaw.
  • 6. Travel in America in 1800 was basically at the speed of the horse. Contours show travel time from New York in days and weeks. Coastal travel by ship was a little faster, thus the contours spread out a little along the coast. Travel into remote, road- less regions like the Appalachians or northern New England was slow. Between steamboats, early railroads, and canals, it was possible to get to almost anywhere east of the Mississippi in two weeks by 1830. The Erie Canal has made it possible to reach the Great Lakes. However, in the Appalachians, northern Maine, Wisconsin and Minnesota, once the limits of mechanical transportation is reached, travel is still at the speed of a horse. By 1857, travel was rapid east of the Mississippi, with better and wider roadways, but beyond about 4 day's travel from New York, everything was still at horse speed. Overland stage routes and trails created two corridors of relatively rapid (three weeks!) travel to California..
  • 7. The Impact of the Postal Service Colonial Post Rider Despite the primitive condition of the roads, a land postal service was operated by the colonial authorities between the principal cities of the eastern seaboard. In 1729, it took 4 weeks to send a letter from Boston to Williamsburg, Virginia. For the most part, the mail was carried on foot or by post riders on horseback who averaged about 4 miles per hour, with no night travel. As the country grew, people in new states and territories petitioned Congress for even more post routes, regardless of their cost or profitability. The Post Office Department, and thus the federal government, had to decide whether to subsidize routes that promoted settlement but did not generate enough revenue to pay for themselves or to operate in the black. The Department struggled with this issue. With congressional support and keeping fiscal responsibility firmly in mind, the Department ultimately made decisions in the 19th century that reflected public service as its highest aim. It funded post routes that supported national development and instituted services to benefit all residents of the country.
  • 8. The Impact of the Postal Service The need to get communications to our Nation’s citizens, military outposts and businesses was urgent, and the Postal Service used many means to get it accomplished; stagecoach, Pony Express, Railroad Postal Offices, and steamships….whatever it took. These methods cast a spotlight on the need for easy, fast and economical transportation venues across the country.
  • 9. The Impact of the Postal Service In March 1796, Colonel Ebenezer Zane, the founder of Wheeling, Virginia, petitioned Congress for permission to build a post road overland through the territory northwest of the Ohio River to the important river port of Limestone, Kentucky (now Maysville). Such a route, Zane said, would be 100 miles shorter than the windings of the Ohio River, on which 15 men with their boats were then engaged in transporting the mails, and would also be immune to interruption by floods, floating ice or low water. The road would afford far faster mail service while saving at least three-quarters of the $4,000 annual cost of operating the mail route. Furthermore, the proposed road would provide a shorter and safer route for travelers both to and from the West. Colonel Zane's request was approved by Congress in the act of May 17, 1796, thereby becoming the first of many Federally Aided Roads.
  • 10. Early Roads Businesses began to increase about 1787, and with the increase in trade came a rapid increase in road traffic, especially near the larger cities. The local authorities were not equal to keeping the roads in repair under this traffic, so State assistance was needed. The debt-burdened State governments met this challenge by appealing to private capital for the funds to build better highways. They chartered private turnpike companies, conferring on them authority to build roads and charge tolls to the public for their use. This illustration is of the 1807 Worcester (MA) Turnpike. Note the “pike” (pole-arm) which was “turned” to allow passage, on the left.
  • 11. Early Roads After about 1820, the ideas of the Scotsman, John L. McAdam, who was responsible for the good roads around Bristol, England, dominated American road-building. McAdam didn't believe in massive foundation courses—he asserted that the native soil, alone. was what supported the road and the traffic upon it and that the function of the road crust was only to protect the basement soil from wetting and abrasion. His roads, 6 to 10 inches thick, were made of angular broken stones, all able to pass through a 2-inch ring, and packed by traffic until they interlocked into a dense mass. From him we get the name “macadam” road, and when a tar binder is used for the surface, it is called “tarmacadam”, or “tarmac” J. L. McAdam “Macadamized” roads were used until the turn of the century, when cars, and their enormous tractive forces on the road surface, made it an impractical way of building.
  • 12. Where Do We Go From Here? A nod to the bicyclists, who had an important part in the laying-out of our roads and highways. Bicycles became practical vehicles for personal transportation with the introduction of the "safety“ design in 1884 and the pneumatic tire in 1888. Almost overnight cycling became a national craze in the United States. The wheelmen (as cyclists were then called) were not content to do their riding on the relatively smooth city streets, but fanned out into the country in all directions. They organized cross-country rallies, road races, weekend excursions. These activities brought the wheelmen into intimate contact with the miserable country roads, and they became vociferous advocates of road improvement. Cycling - circa 1900 Arguing the right-of-way
  • 13. The “Good Roads” MoveMenT Much as they do today, all over the country, the bicyclists formed social organizations, or "wheel clubs," to promote cycling as a sport, if only there were better roads! In response to the cries from both cyclists and early agriculture interests, under the energetic editorship of I. B. Potter, a New York City civil engineer and lawyer, a new magazine was formed in 1892, “Good Roads”. The magazine ridiculed American roads by comparing them to those of Europe, and helped to convince the public about the inevitable need for taxes to improve and maintain better roads.
  • 14. The “Good Roads” MoveMenT As a result of the road improvements, loads such as this could be hauled by two mules on a macadamized road in any weather, where formerly only two bales of cotton could be hauled on an earth road in fairly good weather. Since better roads meant better access to markets, agricultural interests got involved with highway planning also, in a big way. Almost all early transportation planning, financing, and maintenance was put in charge of various state and local agriculture departments. Rural roads were deplorable during bad weather, since they were primarily of earth and sand construction. Transporting goods to market effectively became a tax on such goods, and an unfair one at that. Railroads became a nuisance for farmers, by allowing out-of-area interests to sell cheaper, and often fresher, farm produce at local markets.
  • 15. The “Good Roads” MoveMenT The high cost of transport from the farms was also a tax on the people of the cities who were forced to pay higher prices for locally grown food and farm products. In 1901 fruit from California could be shipped to Raleigh, North Carolina, by rail for less than farmers living only 15 miles away could deliver their fruit to the Raleigh markets. As an article from North Carolina “Good Roads” magazine stated: “You see by this that the railroads enable the fruit growers of California to compete with the fruit growers of your own county towns. . . . The way to successfully compete with these people is to build good roads so as to enable us to get to market at any time and carry a full load, thereby reducing cost of transportation. ... A bad road is a relentless tax assessor and a sure collector."
  • 16. The “Good Roads” MoveMenT In 1891, road traffic, including bicycles, wagons, and other non-mechanized vehicles, was actually looked at in a statistical manner. These statistics showed that such traffic was “inter- county”, and thus problematic for local officials to decide responsibility. This led to the passage of the New Jersey State-Aid Road Act in that year, a milestone in highway administration. It was the first to acknowledge that: “The expense of constructing permanently improved roads may reasonably be imposed, in due proportions, upon the State and upon the counties in which they are located.” All of which led to: 1893 Office of Road Inquiry under General Stone is established in Department of Agriculture on Oct. 3, 1893, with a $10,000 annual budget. 1905 Office of Public Roads is established with a new director, Logan Page, and an annual budget of $50,000 and 10 employees. Which became:
  • 17. The Next Phase Now that we had the beginnings of good roadways, and administrative plans for their creation and maintenance, it was time to start traveling on them. It was time to introduce the automobile to the Nation! PART 2: Expanding A Country
  • 18. ACKNOWLEGEMENTS DOT “America’s Highways, 1776-1976” from Internet Archives (BIG PDF file!) can also be read on-line at this location. YouTube “How Our Country Grew” 10 minute video from Progressive Films, 1950 “The Conquest of Distance” by Steven Dutch, Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay Wikipedia various articles on military, Indian and colonial roads and trails. USGenWeb – various articles and maps US Postal Service Historian Federal Highway Administration, “Public Roads” magazine series

×