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Board of Commissioners of Internal Improvement. Routes for a railway to Providence, 1828
SEE ALSO 51916 Senate No. 4 Report of the Board of Commissioners of Internal Improvements in relation to the examination of sundry routes for a
railway from Boston to Providence with a memoir of the survey. Boston : Dutton & Wentworth, printers to the State, 1828. 1500 copies were printed. The
report went to the Governor on January 24; 1828, he passed it on to the Legislature on January 25th. He sent along brief remarks: either route was
physically acceptable, horses would be the motive power, the line would be built with granite track supports, it would cost about $8,000/mi to build,
not including purchasing the right-of-way. The railroad was expected to net about $60,000 per year. The report began on p. 9. There was a brief
description of the several routes and the more substantial obstacles. The Commissioners chose to run an eastern route and a western route to go around,
not through, the obstacles. Railroaders were always looking for firm, level ground with few and gradual elevation changes. The Commissioners
suggested that New England winters were more severe than old England winters, which influenced the design of the roadbed and rail supports. They came down
on the side of granite rail supports and English iron rails. They recommended only one set of tracks with three side tracks at various locations and
thought it was too soon to plan for steam engines. Groups of carriages were more efficient than single carriages. They felt it was reasonable to
expect 50,000 passengers/year, plus freight. This part of the report was dated January 22, 1828. Beginning on p. 51, there is a detailed description of
the eastern route (p. 51-60) and then the western route (p. 60-66), with elevations, swamps, bridges, etc. noted. There was a discussion of the
pulling capabilities of a horse and the friction generated by the car wheels. There were several mathematical examples. They positioned the side tracks
for optimum use. On p. 72 was the estimate for creating one mile of track: $7,988/mi. On pages 73-76 were the maps of the route. (Digitized from a
microfilm copy of title originally held by the Massachusetts State Library).
Title:   Report of the Board of Commissioners, of internal improvement in relation to the examination of sundry routes for a railway from Boston to Providence : with a memoir of the survey.
OCLC Number:   123536139
Available Volumes
NameFiche CountOnlinePaper Backup
Vol. 1YesNo