Essay/Term paper: Transportation in the first half of the 19th century
Essay, term paper, research paper: History
During the first half of the
19th century, improvements in transportation developed
rather quickly. Roads, steamboats, canals, and railroads all
had a positive effect on the American economy. They also
provided for a more diverse United States by allowing more
products to be sold in new areas of the country and by
opening new markets. Copied from ideas begun in England
and France, American roads were being built everywhere. In
an attempt to make money, private investors financed many
turnpikes, expecting to profit from the tolls collected.
Although they did not make as much money as expected,
these roads made it possible for cheaper (not cheap)
domestic transportation of goods. It still cost more to
transport a ton of freight a few miles over land than it did to
send it across the Atlantic Ocean. But because of turnpikes,
for the first time, goods were able to make it over the
formidable Appalachian mountains. The steamboat was the
first economical means of inland transport. It was faster and
cheaper then the rafts used before them. Additionally, the
steamboats made it possible to travel back up the
Mississippi, allowing farmers and lumbermen to come down
by raft, and travel home in the luxurious comfort of a
steamboat after selling their goods. This also made the
northwest less self-dependent because it was now able to
purchase southern goods. While steamboats sparked the
economy on the western frontier, canals became increasingly
popular on the east coast. Although expensive ($25,000 per
mile), and difficult to build, canals were an important source
for those farmers and merchants who needed a cheap
method of inland transportation. The water allowed horses,
once only able to pull a ton of materials, to now pull over a
hundred tons with the same amount of work. These canals
were not only economical for exporters, but also for the
state. Tolls alone collected from the Erie Canal had, by
1825, already paid for the entire project ($7,000,000), and
now was making a substantial amount of profit. Even though
it had not totally expanded yet, the cheapest, most
economical method of transportation was the railroad.
Speed, durability, and safety all contributed to the success of
it. State legislatures and the national government all provided
aid to the railroad companies by decreased the tax on rail
iron. During this time period, manufacturing also boomed.
New ideas and inventions made it faster to produce
products. However, it is because of these new modes of
transportation that this was ever able to occur. The cotton
gin, invented by Eli Whitney, would never have been able to
develop fully if the transportation system did not make it
easy to obtain cotton from the south. With these new
technological breakthroughs, American economic growth
was significantly increased. By allowing cheaper importation
and exportation of goods, manufacturers were able to
produce more of these products. Also, it opened new
markets to different places. In the northwest, where coffee
was an expensive luxury (costing almost seventeen cents per
pound), it was now a common item. The steamboat reduced
the price by over thirteen cents. Also, our new transportation
system helped other regions work together. And aside from
material items, our country benefited economically from
tourism. Any tourist to the New York area would not miss
"The Great Western Canal." So although manufacturing did
have a significant role in developing the American economy,
it is because of transportation that manufacturing could have
Other sample model essays:
The Treaty of Versailles had a lot of opposition from various groups, but Wilson"s stubbornness was most liable for the failure of it in the United States. There were many problems with the treaty ac...
The Trojan War took place more than a few
thousand years ago in ancient Greece. It was a
war waged by the Greeks on the city of Troy.
This war was said to have lasted ten years. It
The Truman Doctrine In order to contain Communism,
President Harry S. Truman issued the Truman Doctrine in
1947, which provided aid to Greece and Turkey. The
United States gave aid to those c...
On May 1, 1960, two weeks prior to the United
States-Soviet Summit in Paris, a U-2 high altitude
reconnaissance airplane was shot down while flying a
spy mission over the Soviet Union. The Ei...
Directly after World War II the US effectively "shut the door" on all communist nations. A red scare descended on the US as the iron curtain enclosed around Eastern Europe. Mistrust and misunderst...
Russia, a vast country with a wealth of natural resources, a well, educated population, and diverse industrial base, continues to experience, formidable difficulties in moving from its old centrally p...
Some people say that the most devastating war in the
history of the world has been World War II. First of all,
what is a war? Webster"s Dictionary says that the definition
of war is an armed ...
I know you're wondering, what railroad? Well the simple fact is that
everybody has heard of the Underground Railroad, but not everyone knows
just what it was. Firstly, it wasn't underground, a...
Death is a reality. Men should be conscious of that
reality. I say men, because the willingness to die for
a cause is most likely inherent to our sex. We (the
man) were hunters running after ...
A case for the connection of America"s
colonial and revolutionary religious and political
experiences to the basic principles of the Constitution can
be readily made. One point in favor of th...