The way a lot of people (especially poor -- Irish in mid-19th century,
south & east Europeans later on) got from the ports to their eventual U.S.
destinations, was by transportation provided by the labor recruiters who
hired them in Europe, with transportation thrown in right from Ireland to
the railhead in Nebraska or from Italy to the coal mine in Scranton.
To answer some of the specific questions people have raised --
Yes, especially by the 1870's, you could "ride the cars" or "take the
(common term for riding a train) from Hancock to Buffalo on the Erie
Railroad. From Buffalo/Niagara Falls/Suspension Bridge ("Suspension
Bridge" was a RR bridge across the Niagara River completed in 1855, and
considered practically a Wonder of the World at the time) several lines
went across Southern Ontario to Detroit, and Michigan was pretty thoroughly
connected up with railroads up and down the state by then.
I don't have references handy about specifically when the railroad reached
Bay City, Mich, but it was probably there or close by 1870, and Gordon
Marion's g-grandmother could certainly have taken the train all the way or
close to it.
As Carolee has noted, there were trains from Walton (NY & Ontario Midland,
later NY Ontario & Western) by 1871 -- these came from the West Shore of
the Hudson opposite NYC by various different routes over the years, and
could connect you with the NY Central in the Mohawk Valley and various
other roads, west to Buffalo and all points beyond.
Coming west overland from the Hudson at Kingston, the Ulster & Delaware
reached Delaware County in the early 1870's; at first it had no RR
connection in Kingston, and until the 1880's you would steamboat up the
Hudson to Rondout/Kingston Point, or RR up the east shore to Rhinecliff,
then ferry to Rondout.
If anyone has family memories or other information about railroads in and
around Delaware County, we'd like to hear about them at the Ulster &
Delaware RR Historical Society.
Thanks and cheers
From: anthony demarchi <antrob(a)worldnet.att.net>
Subject: [NYDELAWA-L] Fw: How did they get there?
Date: Wednesday, December 30, 1998 12:10 AM
> Date: Tuesday, December 29, 1998 21:04:24
> From: antrob(a)worldnet.att.net
> To: NYDELAWA_L(a)ROOTSWEB.COM
> Subject: How did they get there?
> Dear List,
> I think it's remarkable that people had the courage to get on tiny
> boats and sail across the ocean from points in Europe to
> were 'cleared through' Ellis Island and other ports,
they had to get to
> How did immigrants get from New York and Philadelphia ports to Delhi,
> between 1830 and 1910? It couldn't have been easy!
> There are many of you with a wealth of information on the railroads of
> era and I would appreciate being steered to sources of
> Best regards,
> Roberta Meehan
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