Pros and Cons of the Railroads Railroad Industry • • • • • The first major business of the U.S. was the railroads. Railroads contributed greatly to the growth of industrialization. The railroad industry boomed after the Civil War. Railroads were also the first businesses to begin consolidation, or combining smaller companies into one larger company. Consolidation helped eliminate competition in an industry and allowed the business to charge higher rates. Pros of the Railroads • Transportation – Faster – Go places steamboats and horses could not go. – Move goods. • Time Zones • Promoted Trade Cons of the Railroads • Poor working conditions for railroad employees. • Corruption – Credit Mobilier – Selling land grants – Fixed shipping rates Credit Mobilier • Construction company formed by stockholders of the Union Pacific Railroad. • They charged two or three times what it cost to lay track and pocketed the profits. • Many influential members of President Grant’s administration were involved. • $23 million was pocketed in the scam.