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(TreeHugger)   How fast could you travel across the US in the 1800s or 1930? With the experience of slow travel authentically recreated through the use of a very short eight-slide show   (treehugger.com) divider line 58
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5285 clicks; posted to Geek » on 08 Dec 2012 at 6:26 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-08 05:46:37 PM  
That all depends.

How much buffalo meat is the wagon hauling?
 
2012-12-08 06:22:01 PM  
Viewing pro-tip:

The last three slides are filler and useless.
The first five slides, on the other hand, are useless and filler.

/I'm not getting that minute back, am I?
 
2012-12-08 06:31:32 PM  
 
2012-12-08 06:47:47 PM  
This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.
 
2012-12-08 06:53:46 PM  
With dysentary, broken wagon wheels, terrible hunting skills, and constant food shortages, it's a wonder anyone survived Oregon Trail in the mid-90s..
 
2012-12-08 06:54:07 PM  

Popcorn Johnny: This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.


That's assuming you don't have to deal with any rivers, mountains, marshes, forests, inclement weather, highwaymen or natives during your trek.
 
2012-12-08 06:54:56 PM  
www.gunandgame.com
 
2012-12-08 06:55:24 PM  
It would all depend on your rations and set speed, plus if you ford the river or float it. Or just pay the dam Indian.
 
2012-12-08 06:55:38 PM  
Every time I fly to the west coast I marvel that I'm doing in 5 hours what used to take 9 months by wagon train. And no pesky Injuns.

/just seat kickers
 
2012-12-08 06:56:36 PM  

Popcorn Johnny: This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.


If you were going to make that kind of long distance trip in 1800, you'd have to haul along a ton of stuff with you. Which means you'd need a wagon or a train to haul it. Which may not mov much faster than walking pace on average, with frequent stops.

The limiting factor is not how fast you yourself can walk. It's how fast you can haul all your stuff along with you.
 
2012-12-08 07:01:58 PM  

Popcorn Johnny: This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.


It certainly did. They didn't have paved road. And even with trains, to share the tracks and make the ride more comfortable, there were very long delays between stops that can last for days.
 
2012-12-08 07:02:44 PM  
What depresses me is that it takes longer to get to the West Coast by train today than it did in 1940.

Amtrak needs to be set free of politicians who demand that every train stop at every piss-ant town.
 
2012-12-08 07:08:36 PM  
Fail link is a failure, dumbmitter.

The first slide says, "...the rate of travel by rail from New York City in 1800..."

You know how many miles of railroad the US had in 1800.

Zero.

Ignorant "transportation editor" Michael Graham Richard is ignorant.
 
2012-12-08 07:15:16 PM  

Dwight_Yeast: What depresses me is that it takes longer to get to the West Coast by train today than it did in 1940.

Amtrak needs to be set free of politicians who demand that every train stop at every piss-ant town.


That is the key to quick train travel. In California they want to do a San Francisco to Los Angeles express train. Put aside the fat that they project ridership many times higher than the East Coast corridor, every town along the way seems to be saying "Stop here or no passing through".

That, of course, kills speed.

They need to build several high speed trunk lines right away, then deal with the pissant towns later.

Any Farkers know how European nations managed such a high speed train service across several nations?
 
2012-12-08 07:16:28 PM  

Somaticasual: With dysentary, broken wagon wheels, terrible hunting skills, and constant food shortages, it's a wonder anyone survived Oregon Trail in the mid-90s..


Skyfrog: [www.gunandgame.com image 400x400]


Thisbymaster: It would all depend on your rations and set speed, plus if you ford the river or float it. Or just pay the dam Indian.


At least you could name the characters funny things.

I used to name my Oregon Trail characters after Mega Man villains for the sole of purpose of getting the message:

"BUBBLE MAN HAS DIED OF DYSENTERY."
 
2012-12-08 07:20:16 PM  

Dwight_Yeast: What depresses me is that it takes longer to get to the West Coast by train today than it did in 1940.

Amtrak needs to be set free of politicians who demand that every train stop at every piss-ant town.


This ... plus that cargo trains have more priority over passenger. I don't think that grain or coal needs to be there RIGHT NOW.
 
2012-12-08 07:21:56 PM  
The's a Ken Burns documentary called "Horatio's Drive" about the first person to drive across the US. Naturally it starts with a bet. It's pretty interesting, in that the major problem, of course, is getting over/around the Nevada desert/mountainscape, which is where all the previous attempts bogged down at.

Horaito solved it by going waaaaay up north and using logging routes.
 
2012-12-08 07:25:04 PM  

Ed Willy: Any Farkers know how European nations managed such a high speed train service across several nations?


I can tell you that the European countries built railroads where they wanted, when they wanted because most lines were established in the 19th century while the countries were still monarchies and the governments would grant monopolies and take land as needed. The last holdout was the Pope (who governed Rome as a separate city-state) who didn't allow trains into the city until the 1870s.

What I can't tell you is how they united their networks so that you can get on a sleeper in Rome in the evening and be in Paris the next morning (a distance about the same as NYC-Chicago). It had to be political, but I'm not sure how the networks and companies were established.
 
2012-12-08 07:33:55 PM  

Toshiro Mifune's Letter Opener: That all depends.

How much buffalo meat is the wagon hauling?


You know what, if there are 5 farking people hunting the damn buffalo, they'd better bring back more than 100 lbs or their asses are walking to Utah. I'll stop this wagon train right here, so help me god.
 
2012-12-08 07:34:08 PM  

godwin5: Dwight_Yeast: What depresses me is that it takes longer to get to the West Coast by train today than it did in 1940.

Amtrak needs to be set free of politicians who demand that every train stop at every piss-ant town.

This ... plus that cargo trains have more priority over passenger. I don't think that grain or coal needs to be there RIGHT NOW.


Outside of the northeast the freight companies own the lines. They can do what they want.
 
2012-12-08 07:36:01 PM  

gadian: You know what, if there are 5 farking people hunting the damn buffalo, they'd better bring back more than 100 lbs or their asses are walking to Utah. I'll stop this wagon train right here, so help me god.


HAHAHAHAHA

I'm upset that I can only abbreviate so much of this as your new Favorite note.
 
2012-12-08 07:41:50 PM  
If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.

Mind you, this is how it worked in the 1800s. Local post-master hangs out bag of mail on a hook by the railroad line. Train picks up bag--without stopping. Mail-sorting car in train allows letters to be sorted en route. Sorted mail is put into bag and dropped on another hook--without the train having to stop. If the train does have to stop, no hook. The mail is the first thing off the train and possibly the first thing on the train.

Nowadays, despite massive sorting centres, the mail moves slowly because it has to pass through more hands. To get from you to the house next door it may have to go to the local post office. But if the local post office doesn't do local sorting, it would go to the town or county sorting centre and then back again.

This hierarchical system may save money and union labour but it doesn't save time. In the old system, if the postman got a letter for the house next door he might deliver it--provided it was stamped. He might even have a little cancelling stamp in his pocket. Not today. Efficiency is the law. It just doesn't work, is all.

Mind you, most mail does get delivered and within the standards applied. Sometimes the mail can make it half way across the country in under four days. This is a miracle of mass organzation because the volume of mail continues to grow inexorably, but it is true that many things take more time today than in 1900 or 1870. This is because time is money. You have less of it and rich people have more of it.
 
2012-12-08 07:50:38 PM  

Toshiro Mifune's Letter Opener: That all depends.

How much buffalo meat is the wagon hauling?


You... Are...

/ +1 Interwebs
// I'm speechless in the presence of your glory.
/// Damn you dysentery!
 
2012-12-08 07:50:43 PM  

Lunchlady: Outside of the northeast the freight companies own the lines. They can do what they want.


No, CSX owns the lines in the NE, as well. Around here, a lot of track is shared between CSX, Amtrak and SEPTA, with fright getting priority, which is insane.
 
2012-12-08 07:52:02 PM  

brantgoose: Sometimes the mail can make it half way across the country in under four days. This is a miracle of mass organzation ...


No, the Dabbawala system is: "they make less than one mistake in every 6 million deliveries, despite most of the delivery staff being illiterate"

Post office workers can just about manage one delivery in every 6 million that hasn't been rifled through, stolen, lost or sent via Albuquerque.
 
2012-12-08 07:52:46 PM  

brantgoose: If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.

Mind you, this is how it worked in the 1800s. Local post-master hangs out bag of mail on a hook by the railroad line. Train picks up bag--without stopping. Mail-sorting car in train allows letters to be sorted en route. Sorted mail is put into bag and dropped on another hook--without the train having to stop. If the train does have to stop, no hook. The mail is the first thing off the train and possibly the first thing on the train.

Nowadays, despite massive sorting centres, the mail moves slowly because it has to pass through more hands. To get from you to the house next door it may have to go to the local post office. But if the local post office doesn't do local sorting, it would go to the town or county sorting centre and then back again.

This hierarchical system may save money and union labour but it doesn't save time. In the old system, if the postman got a letter for the house next door he might deliver it--provided it was stamped. He might even have a little cancelling stamp in his pocket. Not today. Efficiency is the law. It just doesn't work, is all.

Mind you, most mail does get delivered and within the standards applied. Sometimes the mail can make it half way across the country in under four days. This is a miracle of mass organzation because the volume of mail continues to grow inexorably, but it is true that many things take more time today than in 1900 or 1870. This is because time is money. You have less of it and rich people have more of it.


Your local post office only does *limited* local sorting these days. Virtually *all* sorting is done at regional sorting centers, to include sorting by local carrier route (this means that a letter you are sending to someone who lives 5 blocks away will take a *minimum* of 2-3 days to arrive, instead of the old next-day delivery when local sorting was done locally).
 
2012-12-08 07:54:25 PM  

brantgoose: If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.


In London in the late 19th century, there were up to FIVE mail deliveries a day, depending on where you lived. I you wanted to invite someone to dinner, you could send a letter in the morning and have their response in the afternoon post.

What killed this huge, efficient and expensive system needed to help run an empire? The telephone.

/I can still ship a package and be certain it will arrive within two days anywhere in the US (one day if it's within 200 miles of me)
 
2012-12-08 07:55:46 PM  

Dezilith: You... Are...

/ +1 Interwebs
// I'm speechless in the presence of your glory.
/// Damn you dysentery!


*tips hat*

Thank ya!

I have to say, the hell of it is, I wish I could dig up an old comp just for the sole purpose of playing Oregon Trail the way it was MEANT to be played: on a black and green screen.

/with a dot-matrix printer!
 
2012-12-08 08:04:07 PM  

brantgoose: If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.


In other words, your knowledge of the world comes from AM radio and Jay Leno monologues.

I frequently drop letters in a suburban Chicago curbside mailbox at 5PM. They're delivered in the city the next day, approx. 18 hours later.

My letters to St Louis take 2 days and Los Angeles takes 3 or 4.
 
2012-12-08 08:09:22 PM  

jaytkay: brantgoose: If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.

In other words, your knowledge of the world comes from AM radio and Jay Leno monologues.

I frequently drop letters in a suburban Chicago curbside mailbox at 5PM. They're delivered in the city the next day, approx. 18 hours later.

My letters to St Louis take 2 days and Los Angeles takes 3 or 4.


Netflixs is a great way to see how well your local PO system works. Around here, I mail a DVD on Monday, they get it on Tuesday and the replacement arrives Wednesday (they used to get DVDs the same day but Netflix slowed down their turn-around).
 
2012-12-08 08:22:09 PM  

brantgoose: If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.


So it took weeks to travel hundreds of miles by train but the mail made it in days?
 
2012-12-08 08:45:27 PM  

Popcorn Johnny: brantgoose: If you think travelling is slower than in the 1940s, try mailing a letter! It takes three days more now than in the 1800s.

So it took weeks to travel hundreds of miles by train but the mail made it in days?


www.transamericanelectricbiketour.com
 
2012-12-08 08:47:22 PM  

Popcorn Johnny: So it took weeks to travel hundreds of miles by train but the mail made it in days?


Local mail did move faster than people could, but long distance mail could be absurd.
 
2012-12-08 09:18:46 PM  

Popcorn Johnny: This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.


Good luck walking through the swamp that was directly east of the Maumee river.
 
2012-12-08 09:54:41 PM  
Jus' call me Johnny Buffalkill.

And those rides must have been murder. Not just those called Donner.
 
2012-12-08 10:16:26 PM  

ClavellBCMI: this means that a letter you are sending to someone who lives 5 blocks away will take a *minimum* of 2-3 days to arrive, instead of the old next-day delivery when local sorting was done locally


Are you sure it doesn't mean you should stop using the post office to deliver something 5 blocks away?
 
2012-12-08 11:14:04 PM  

Ed Willy: Dwight_Yeast: What depresses me is that it takes longer to get to the West Coast by train today than it did in 1940.

Amtrak needs to be set free of politicians who demand that every train stop at every piss-ant town.

That is the key to quick train travel. In California they want to do a San Francisco to Los Angeles express train. Put aside the fat that they project ridership many times higher than the East Coast corridor, every town along the way seems to be saying "Stop here or no passing through".

That, of course, kills speed.

They need to build several high speed trunk lines right away, then deal with the pissant towns later.

Any Farkers know how European nations managed such a high speed train service across several nations?


A just as impressive regular speed local train service so you don't need to stop every 5 feet. I don't know the exact route they want for the SF-LA train but if I were planning it and it's close to I-5, I'd have stops in Bakersfield, Fresno, and Modesto. That's it. Want to go somewhere inbetween, take a regular speed train.
 
2012-12-08 11:47:47 PM  
Popcorn Johnny: This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.

What is even more bullshiat is that Detroit was not even in the United States in 1800.
 
2012-12-09 12:12:25 AM  

Dwight_Yeast:
In London in the late 19th century, there were up to FIVE mail deliveries a day, depending on where you lived. I you wanted to invite someone to dinner, you could send a letter in the morning and have their response in the afternoon post.


I learned this from Downton Abbey. Every time those people turned around, they were getting mail. I thought maybe it was because they were rich and had some kind of full-time courier, but that didn't make much sense.

So now I know.
 
2012-12-09 12:14:18 AM  

Dwight_Yeast: What depresses me is that it takes longer to get to the West Coast by train today than it did in 1940.

Amtrak needs to be set free of politicians who demand that every train stop at every piss-ant town.


That's not the problem here in the midwest. The problem is that Amtrak has to cede tracks to freight over passenger trains.
 
2012-12-09 12:17:18 AM  
Looks exactly like Gundam, actually.
 
2012-12-09 12:18:44 AM  

SanjiSasuke: Looks exactly like Gundam, actually.


Whoops wrong thread. Although...no not at all.
 
2012-12-09 12:44:07 AM  
The limiting factor on travel speed is and almost always has been traffic and available paths, not really vehicles, at least over the last century and a half or so. In terms of speed, a steam locomotive was for all practical purposes as fast or faster than any modern vehicle. Having only a few tracks on a given route is what limited the actual nonstop trains, in the same way that highway traffic congestion around cities limits car travel speed and limited landing space limits air-travel speed by causing layovers for travelers.

//This, of course, relates to some stuff other people have said about high-speed rail and demands for additional stops slowing things down. I'm just too lazy to actually reply to someone specific.
 
2012-12-09 02:15:25 AM  

Dwight_Yeast: Lunchlady: Outside of the northeast the freight companies own the lines. They can do what they want.

No, CSX owns the lines in the NE, as well. Around here, a lot of track is shared between CSX, Amtrak and SEPTA, with fright getting priority, which is insane.


From DC to Boston, the line is owned by Amtrak, except for a small stretch that is owned by something called Metro North Railroad(I think the stretch that is from New York to New Haven. If heading south from DC to New Orleans on the Crescent, that entire stretch is owned by Norfolk Southern. From DC south to West Palm Beach is owned by CSX, with Florida DOT owning the stretch from West Palm to Miami. Through North and South Carolina there are 2 lines going south, with CSX owning both, but of course CSX is headquartered in Ellerbe, NC,

If you go on amtrak's website, they have maps showing you who owns what, with an on time performance percentage. And of course the northeast corridor has the best for the east coast. What may make that not seem so is if your train originated south of DC, then it's gonna be late. CSX hates amtrak, Norfolk Southern does as well, but usually doesn't fark with them as much.
 
2012-12-09 05:06:28 AM  

Toshiro Mifune's Letter Opener: That all depends.

How much buffalo meat is the wagon hauling?


Food is for pussies. Real pioneers eat TIME.

3.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-12-09 06:13:58 AM  

Popcorn Johnny: This has to be bullshiat. For example, NY to Detroit is a 600 mile trip and they're saying it took 4 weeks to make it. If I walked at 3mph for 10 hours a day, I could make the trip in 20 days.


21st century perspective of the world.
/fail
 
2012-12-09 07:31:23 AM  
This was the worst slide show ever..
 
2012-12-09 07:53:30 AM  

JosephFinn: That's not the problem here in the midwest. The problem is that Amtrak has to cede tracks to freight over passenger trains.


It's been a while, but Philly to Chicago takes something like 16 hours at the moment, which is absurd, and there are dozens of stops en route.

I just checked the schedule for the Lake Shore Limited and the train from NYC to Chicago stops NINETEEN times en route. They stop in frigging Sandusky, Ohio. Combine this with the fact that you can't get a berth on an overnight train and that's why the train system in this country is broken.


At least one train a day should run NYC > Albany > Columbus > Chicago, with no other stops. But every train is a local train in this country. It takes longer to take the train from Philly to DC than to drive, because of all the stops the train makes.
 
2012-12-09 08:24:42 AM  

styckx: This was the worst slide show ever..


You haven't seen my Uncle Edgar's one of his trip to Cambodia in the 1970s.
 
2012-12-09 10:18:00 AM  
The All-Powerful Atheismo: Toshiro Mifune's Letter Opener: That all depends.

How much buffalo meat is the wagon hauling?

Food is for pussies. Real pioneers eat TIME.

[3.bp.blogspot.com image 640x468]


How many gallon jugs of whisky where required to decide upon that grandfather clocks and a hat loadout?
 
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