Railroad Stories: Railroad Industry Was Booming

Family met a cousin thanks to railroad industry and job opportunities.


| Good Old Days



When I was 10 years old, we had a visitor from "far away." We knew cousin Sadie from her letters, but we never dreamed of getting to know her in person. One winter, she wrote us that she was planning to pay us a visit. The railroad industry was in full swing, so there was no doubt that she would arrive on the train.

When her husband retired from the railroad, where he had held a position of authority, he was given a lifetime pass for him and Sadie. Determined to take advantage of the pass, Sadie decided to travel to Indiana and get acquainted with her cousins.

I knew she lived in Marshalltown, Iowa, but that had always seemed like the other side of the world to me. The farthest I had been from home was the county seat, which was only 15 miles away!

What an exciting day it was when she finally arrived on the train, with her suitcase and a big hug for everyone. She was such a sweet, friendly person, and her visit brought great pleasure to all of us - thanks to the train.

Alma Smock
Monrovia, Ind.


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then Capper’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from Capper’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community. 





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