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A Missouri Railroad Pioneer: The Life of Louis Houck (Missouri Biography Series)

A Missouri Railroad Pioneer: The Life of Louis Houck (Missouri Biography Series)

ISBN: 9780826221414
Publisher: University of Missouri
Edition: Reprint
Publication Date: 2017-09-20
Number of pages: 312
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$33.70

Lawyer and journalist, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Louis Houck is called the Father of Southeast Missouri because he brought the railroad to the region and opened this backwater area to industrialization and modernization. Rhodes considers his career from social and political perspectives, grounding the story in state and national history. He especially tells how this self-taught railroader constructed a network of five hundred miles of track through wetland wilderness, providing a boost for population, agriculture, lumbering, and commerce that transformed Cape Girardeau and the surrounding area. Rhodes gives voice to Houck's critics and shows that he was not always an easy man to work with, at the same time that he followed Carnegie's lead by making art, culture, and formal education available to all social classes.

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