The Great Machines
“Like a long freight train rumbling past a rural grade crossing, its cars emblazoned with names and slogans from every region, this wonderful anthology shakes the very ground of American culture, demonstrating the fierce and enduring grasp of the railroad on poets and songwriters.”—John R. Stilgoe
“Hedin's imaginative and thorough work fills a void. This volume should please a range of readers: academics, folklorists, railroad enthusiasts, and everyone interested in the literary and cultural impact of the iron horse and flanged wheel.”—H. Roger Grant
“What a plum pudding this is. What raisins! What plums! All the railroad songs and poems I know are here, plus about three times as many more. A feast for railroad lovers.”—Noel Perrin
Here, for the first time, is a feast for anyone who has ever been beguiled by the trains that formerly thrummed through the landscapes of our lives. This entertaining and evocative anthology presents the amazing variety of poems and songs written about the American railroad in the last century and a half. Comprised of selections from both oral and written traditions, the volume celebrates the historical and cultural significance of this marvel of engineering skills. Hedin's anthology allows all readers, from the most avid railroad buff to anyone who has fond memories of train travel, to enjoy the romance of trains.