Twenty-four hour advanced notice encouraged. Materials must be used on-site. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.
The driving of the Golden Spike at Promontory Summit in Northern Utah marked the completion of a railroad that spanned the continental United States. After the driving of the Golden Spike (which was soon replaced by a real railroad spike), the junction between the two railroads, the Union Pacific and the Central Pacific, soon moved to Ogden. Very quickly, the Promontory Summit site fell into obscurity. This obscurity turned into confusion in 1904 when Central Pacific's successor, Southern Pacific, built a shorter route across the Great Salt Lake which crossed Promontory Point- thirty-seven miles south of where the railroads joined. A confusion of where the railroads joined has persisted ever since as many textbooks refer to the driving of the Golden Spike at Promontory Point. The site reached its lowest point when the demand for steel during World War II caused the unused rails to be pulled up and scrapped. A movement to restore the site began as early as the 1920s when area resident Bernice Gibbs Anderson sought to have a national monument established at Promontory Summit. It was not until the 1950s that her efforts were taken seriously and after several years of disagreement and opposition, a historic site was established in 1965. Four years later, a grand centennial celebration was held at the site and two historic steam engines were borrowed from the east to give an authentic feel. 1969 demonstrated Promontory Summit's emergence from obscurity and its beginning as an important historical site for railroads. In 1979, two replicas of the original engines that met at Promontory Summit were shipped to the site. A small distance of track allows the two engines to back up and re-enact the events of 1869. A visitor center has also been built and offers exhibits and films.
The Golden Spike Centennial records (1969) consist of several scrapbooks that document the celebration of the linking of the Transcontinental Railroad. The celebration took place at Promontory Summit in Utah.
It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.
Permission to publish material from the Golden Spike Centennial records must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator.
Initial Citation: Golden Spike Centennial records, Accn 441, Box [ ]. Special Collections and Archives. University of Utah, J. Willard Marriott. Salt Lake City, Utah.
Following Citations: Accn 441.
|1-5||Golden Spike Centennial Scrapbooks||1969|