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Promatory trivia

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I ran across an article which I don't know if most are aware of "all" the articals in the final track connection.


We always hear about the "hammering in" of the Golden Spike,  most of which,  much if anything is informed about other items which were used.


Although the "spike driver" was of a common manufacture, it is part of that "historical" event.  None of which I have ever seen mentioned as to its "historical" value, of its location or owerwhip, which should be, and possibly is in some museum.


Naturally the Golden Spike is the "ultimate" conclusion in the documentation of the event.   But, there were "2" Golden Spkes, both of which were manufactured in, and presented by the State of Utah.    There has been some documentation of them, indicating their present location of possession, but I don't remember the results of that document.   However, it must be in some website.


With that said, there were also "2" other spikes, which were made of Silver.   "1" presented by the State of AZ, and the other from the State of NV.     The mentioned previous documentation of the Golden Spike, did not mention these Silver Spikes, of which again, I don't know of there location or possession.


Now we come to the "sleeper", which holds the track to the "tie".   Loss of memory, as I don't remember its metal consistence.   But I do know, that there also was not any mention of this in that documentary.


Lastly, the "tie" which is of the California Laurel.   I don't know the properties of "hardness",, but is probably of  a "hard wood" consistance.    No mention of it in that documentary.


To give an ending to the information of the article which I read.     Although the regular spikes, sleeper, and tie were removed, for a couple of months after the "joining", such replacement spikes, sleeper, and tie  were removed (stolen) a few times.  There was some investigation made, and it was  discovered that the "tie" which was stolen, had been cut up into pieces, and sold as souveniers.    Nothing was mentioned as to the result of what had happened to the spikes and sleeper.


I believed that it is a article of trivia information, and believe others might find it of interest.

Excuse any error in sentence construction or spelling errors. 8)

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  • 2 months later...

As I have been reading an amount of the early railroads, I found this information in a later article, than that of the initial post on the "meeting" of the 2 railroads.   I thought that it was of interest, as I had not know about the "happening" myself, and thought it of a worthwhile nature to pass it onto you other railroad buffs.   Enjoy.


Most people know about the "meeting" of the 2 Railroads, as well as about the "Golden Spike"

However, I don't believe that most people know that there was an inscribed "prayer" on it:


>>>>>May God continue the unity of our Country,

as the railroad unites the two great Oceans of the World.  :)

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When the two Railroads first raced toward each other, they didn't stop the building of track; but, passed by each other and continued to build rail for a good distance.


If I remember correctly the government showed up and told both railroads to stop building and get connected.


Both railroads were racing to lay more track to earn government land grants and nether used tie plates.  later they were added.

I believe they did use tie plates for the golden spike event since the race was over by then and tie plates do hold the spike better for the big wigs swinging the hammers.


I believe some of the historical artifacts are in the California transportation museum in Sacramento.  


I didn't know the artifacts had been stolen. It would be interesting to learn how that ended up.

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there were 2 Golden Spikes, both of which were manufactured in, and presented by the State of Utah.

Not the state of Utah... The linking of the transcontinental RR occurred in 1869. Utah did not gain statehood until about 1896. In fact, in 1869, the Utah territory may still have included lands that are now in other states such as Wyoming and Colorado.


there were also 2 other spikes, which were made of Silver  1 presented by the State of AZ, and the other from the State of NV.

While Nevada became a state in 1864, Arizona would need to wait until 1912. Indeed, Arizona Territory had only been split from the New Mexico Territory 6 years earlier (in 1863, during the Civil War).
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Thanks Gwizz,

For your information of statistics.   Now, although I have found the part of the article indicating the metal consistency and the number of spikes, I have not yet found the part of the article which indicates  where the spikes were manufactured.  I may be over stated them being manufactures from a specific "state", and will keep checking to see how the article makes its statement of territory.  :dry:

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The portion of "who" were the contributors of spikes for the joining was not found from a few attempts to locate in the article.   However, as Gwizz mentioned none of the "States" of which I mentioned, AZ, UT, and NV, has not gotten statehood until after the Prometary event.  Hence I did find during my "attempts to locate" the contributors, I did find mention of these "States", as we know of them today, but did not incorporate the word "State" in the article itself.   SO, then I would assume I am in error to have included the word "State" , as they were in some type of "Territorial"  level.   My apology.


Now I do also have to apologize for an "error", of which I have corrected in the original post, to that of the stealing of the spikes, tie, and sleeper.   I failed to use the word "replacement".   In the original, a reader could possibly assume that the "original" items were stolen, and not replacements.



However, during my attempt to find the contributors for the "spikes", I did find some item of interest, which may not have been known to members.   From the artical, I would assume that the "Golden Spike", was not driven into the tie.  This is the way the artical reads:

>>Moreover, once these ceremonial shafts were in place, -  dropped, not driven, into prepared auger holes  = an iron spike,partially driven into an adjacent tie and wired into the nationwide telegraph sysstem, was to be struck with a hammer, similarily wired.  Thus on the instant, the outside world would learn that the deed was done.<<


Now, that being said, a short version is to that of neither Durant, pres. of the UP, and Standford, pres. of the CP, were able to strike the spike on their first swing.   It was the telegraph operator who actually sent the initial signals.


And in the reading I did find the metals used for the "iron" spike of which the article mentions.  It was a composite of "silver, iron, and gold".    Guess it pays to read a little more closely of what is being written.   LOL 



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Actually, Nevada WAS a state in 1869. If I recall correctly, the first 3 western states were:

Calif. 1850 (Compromise of 1850)
Oregon 1858
Nevada 1864 (hence its"Battle-born" motto)

Ariz and Utah were territories. Interestingly, Nevada had initially been smaller in 1864, but by 1869 it had carved off two slices of Utah and a wedge of Arizona. That wedge (all of Nevada south of Arizona's northern parallel) contains Las Vegas and most of modern Nevada's population.

I encourage you to play my US History map. Not only does it announce each and every state admission following the Missouri compromise, but with over 450 events, it plays like an entire campaign on a single map.


That reminds me, I have a minor update to upload one of these days.

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