At the dawn of the twentieth century, the United States powered ahead to become a world leader in industry, not only because of the steel mills in the East, but because of the West's frontier development. A large part of that success was built upon the iron tracks of the mighty railroad, as they were laid from one end of the country to the other. Now, more than 100 years later, the American railroad has come full circle, from an upstart effort mocked at large, to a booming business that eventually went bust and is trying to find its way again in the modern world. This nostalgic, authoritative history of the railroad industry in the United States is richly illustrated with more than 200 images covering everything from the road's beginning to its heyday in the 1940s and '50s and its current state. Both evocative black-and-white and period color photographs appear, as well as maps, timetables, promotional materials, and other memorabilia. The American Railroad also has the kind of detail rail buffs can't get enough of, highlighting railroading's five most fascinating components-its locomotives, freight trains, passenger trains, depots, and workforce.