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Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and…
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Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of… (edição 2003)

por Les Standiford (Autor)

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4192045,093 (3.85)44
Chronicles the rise and fall of the Key West Railroad--which reached from the shores of mainland Florida to the island of Key West--describing its seven-year construction under the watch of entrepreneur Henry Flagler and its destruction by a hurricane in 1935.
Membro:kewiser
Título:Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of the Railroad That Crossed an Ocean
Autores:Les Standiford (Autor)
Informação:End of Line Clearance Book (2003), Edition: Reprint, 320 pages
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
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Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of the Railroad that Crossed an Ocean por Les Standiford

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Last Train to Paradise is the story of Henry Flagler, an American industrialist best known as a founder of Standard Oil. He also played a part in popularizing Florida as a tourist attraction since he had a pivotal role in extending railroad lines to Florida cities. By building luxury hotels in Jacksonville, Palm Beach, and Miami, he made vacationing in Florida attractive to his wealthy contemporaries such as Rockefeller. Although Standiford discusses Flagler’s wives and children, the main story is about his drive to build a Florida railroad. At first, the rail connected northern stations to Jacksonville and eventually to Palm Beach and Miami. But his vision was to connect the railroad lines “over the sea” so that the Florida Keys would be accessible by rail. He accomplished his goal by partnering with engineers and bridge builders, who shared his enthusiasm for risk-taking and accomplishment.

The press called the Key West project “Flagler’s Folly.” Standiford includes many gruesome descriptions of the working conditions and the lives lost during the bridge’s building to and through the keys. The labor pool for the actual work included unemployed northerners and people from the islands. Many workers were unaccustomed to the humidity, heat, storms, and insects common in Florida. The workcamps that he set up for his workers were less than adequate, and Flagler dealt with workers who wanted to escape rather than work for low wages and risk getting sick and dying. Flagler contended with unfair labor practice claims, including a governmental investigation for slave-labor. His hiring practices would not pass muster today. Flagler would have been unable to forge ahead with his plan under the EPA with the dredging of lands and redesigning nature’s paths to accommodate bridges and roadbeds. In 1912, the overseas railroad to Key West was finished after about seven years of labor, including at least three hurricanes. Much of the railway was damaged or demolished in the hurricane of 1935. Parts of the old path can be viewed from today’s modern roadway leading through the keys.
The value of Flagler’s dreams and accomplishments is for the reader to decide.
( )
  LindaLoretz | Mar 15, 2021 |
I continue to enjoy Standiford's thriller novels but this is the first of his factual books I have read. If you like turn of the 20th century history and the age of the robber barons then this is for you. Interesting history. ( )
  ikeman100 | Feb 28, 2021 |
Loved it. A great telling of an adventurous and thrilling enterprise. ( )
  mullinstreetzoo | Feb 12, 2021 |
The historic, astounding venture to build a railroad from South Florida to Key West reads like an action thriller. Thank you, Les Standiford, for making history come alive! ( )
  JoniMFisher | Sep 19, 2019 |
Last Train to Paradise was a mesmerizing read. I have been a Florida resident for more than 30 years but mostly on the west coast and was not aware of the ill-fated railroad between Miami and Key West. Les Standiford has given us a detailed history of the difficulties of building the train, what with so many islands, so many hurricanes and so many mosquitos. The book is not a biography of Henry Flagler but Standiford gives us enough facts that we end up with understanding Flagler's entrepreneurial drive to complete his pet project. I definitely would recommend Last Train to Paradise to anyone who wants to know about a slice of local history that is not known to most of us. ( )
  debann6354 | Jul 9, 2018 |
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"And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings,
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away."
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This book is dedicated to the memory of the hundreds of "vets" who lost their lives during the Labor Day hurricane of 1935, as well as to the hundreds of Keys residents - men, women, and children - who also suffered and died that day.
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At about four o'clock in the afternoon on Labor Day Saturday in 1935, Ernest Hemingway, by then one of Key West's most notable residents, thought it time to knock off work on weaving together what an editor had called "those Harry Morgan stories," an undertaking that would eventually be published as a novel called "To Have and Have Not."
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Chronicles the rise and fall of the Key West Railroad--which reached from the shores of mainland Florida to the island of Key West--describing its seven-year construction under the watch of entrepreneur Henry Flagler and its destruction by a hurricane in 1935.

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