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By Laura Moncur in Frank McDonough Jr.'s Odometer

Frank McDonough Jr.’s Personal Journal dated May 10, 1869:

Golden Spike Ceremony by LauraMoncur from FlickrToday they drove the Golden Spike in the wilds of Utah. Despite their claims of the completion of the first transcontinental railway, Union Pacific passengers are required to dock a boat to cross the Missouri River. I find it maddening that the papers shout the praises of transcontinental travel and refuse to acknowledge this gap. It makes the work I do every day feel like a defeat.

In a country as fresh and young as these United States, it is hard for me to accept that we will not be the first. Once the rails are lain on the ground that I survey, the Kansas Pacific Railway will complete the only TRUE transcontinental railway these states have. I realize that we are all one company and any pride I should feel should be just as strong for the northern line as for the Kansas line, but I did not work on the northern line. The ceremony should have been delayed until our line was completed or until they built their bridge over the Missouri.