rissajones-deactivated20110424 asked: During the Civil War, I know the railroad played a major role, but I always wondered, that since it was controlled mainly by the Union, did they ever run into track problems? Like the Confederates blowing up a stretch of track, or did they have guards?
Maybe another tumblr user can help me out a little in addition to this little rambling:
I know that the North had a considerable advantage over the South in rail mileage, around 2 to 1. Each had their own system connecting their own cities, with the brief exception of Baltimore. The politically divisive city split it’s railroad station in 1861 leading to a skirmish between Union soldiers and Confederate sympathizers blocking their their way to join the Potomac army.
Like in any war, attempts to destroy the enemy infrastructure during the Civil War were high on both the Union and Confederate’s list of priorities-and they were often successful. However, when the Union track was destroyed, the North had access to their thriving industrial cities and steel factories while the South had only a single Richmond plant that was unsuited to replace and mend their broken railroads.
By the end of the war, the Confederate rail system was almost fully destroyed.