Union Pacific Railroad - Piedmont, Wyoming
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Tom.dog
N 41° 13.188 W 110° 37.191
12T E 531864 N 4563227
The town of Piedmont sits along the original grade of the transcontinental railroad and played an interesting part in delaying the Golden Spike ceremony on Promontory Point.
Waymark Code: WM18P17
Location: Wyoming, United States
Date Posted: 09/02/2023
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member YoSam.
Views: 1

The text on the sign reads:

Union Pacific Railroad

The construction of the transcontinental railroad was one of the most significant events in the history of the West. Towns sprang up all along its tracks, some permanent, some short-lived. In 1868, the railroad arrived in Piedmont. Over the next 35 years, the town would experience thriving logging and charcoal-making industries, commerce, and population growth - all tied to the existence of the railroad.

Helper Engines
Trains approaching Aspen Mountain west of Piedmont required helper engines to ascend the steep eight-mile grade. A siding, engine shed, and water tank, were built in the town to house and maintain helper engines.

Delay of the Golden Spike
The Golden Spike ceremony, celebrating completion of the transcontinental railroad, was scheduled to take place in Promontory Point, Utah on May 7, 1869. The day before, the train carrying Union Pacific Vice President Thomas Durant was halted at Piedmont by railroad ties piled on the tracks and 300 angry workers - who demanded $200,000 in back pay. Red-faced, Durant wired for the money and paid the workers. His car was hooked to the next train, and the historic ceremony took place on May 10, three days late.

Rerouting the Railroad
In 1901, the railroad completed a mile-long tunnel through Aspen Mountain, eliminating the previous rail route over the summit. Trains were rerouted from LeRoy to the tunnel, bypassing the town of Piedmont.
Marker Name: Union Pacific Railroad

Marker Type: Rural Roadside

Addtional Information:
This is one of four signs located at the Piedmont Kilns that describe the history of the kilns and the surrounding ghost town of Piedmont. All four of the signs, along with several nearby markers and monuments, can be found listed on the Wyoming State Parks' map of markers and monuments here: https://wysphst.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=70c906c090a0466da9781e2a88ac72b6

Group Responsible for Placement: Wyoming State Parks & Cultural Resources

Date Dedicated: Not Listed

Marker Number: Not Listed

Web link(s) for additional information: [Web Link]

Visit Instructions:
Please post a photo of you OR your GPS at the marker location. Also if you know of any additional links not already mentioned about this bit of Wyoming history please include that in your log.
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