Railroads for Michigan
By Graydon M. Meints.
Cloth with dust jacket, 180 B/W Photos, notes, references, index,
8.5 x 11,
640 pages, 9x11.5", June 2013.
Also Available:Indiana Railroad Lines and Michigan Railroad Lines, 2 volumes
"In this thoroughly researched history, Graydon Meints tells the fascinating story of the railroad’s arrival and development in Michigan. An engaging and accessible text, the book describes the long-awaited and often-troubled advent of the railroad in the state, the building of which shifted from private to public efforts and back again, amid tumultuous social, business, and political developments.
"The railroad would come to play a role in almost every critical event in Michigan’s history, including the Civil War, the Granger Movement, and the Gilded Age, before beginning to wane following the arrival of the automobile, the Interstate Commerce Commission, World War I, and the Great Depression. A brief growth spurt during World War II was short-lived, and it was followed by the collapse of several major railroads and the formation of Amtrak and Conrail. Looking ahead to the future of the railroad in the Great Lakes region, Meints assesses the strengths and shortcomings of this revolutionary invention. With careful attention to the personal impact of the railroad, Meints recognizes in brief biographies the many man and women responsible for the development and operation of Michigan railroads, as well as the triumphs, tragedies, and spaces that shaped their lives and work.
“Tangible proof that no one knows Michigan’s fascinating railroad history better than Meints. Meints has assembled the story of Michigan railroads from the first charters and railroads of the 1830s lines to the beginning of the 21st century in a format that will satisfy novice and knowledgeable alike.” —Gordon Olson, Grand Rapids City Historian Emeritus.
"Graydon M. Meints has served as president of the Kalamazoo County Historical Society and as treasurer and trustee of the Historical Society of Michigan. He is a member of the Lexington Group in Transportation History and the Railway and Locomotive History Society."