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Transcontinental Railroad

Transcontinental Railroad

Reading Quizzes

Available to teachers only as part of theTeaching Transcontinental RailroadTeacher Pass

Teaching Transcontinental RailroadTeacher Pass includes:

  • Assignments & Activities
  • Reading Quizzes
  • Current Events & Pop Culture articles
  • Discussion & Essay Questions
  • Challenges & Opportunities
  • Related Readings in Literature & History

Sample of Reading Quizzes

Big Picture


1. How did American travel change during the era of the transcontinental railroad?
2. How did Western settlement change during the era of the transcontinental railroad?
3. How did the construction of the transcontinental railroad change American business?


1. The American West was newly connected to population centers back east, because people could travel across the continent in mere days, rather than in months.
2. Before the railroad, there was only sparse and sporadic settlement west of the Mississippi. The railroad ushered in an age of rapid expansion that turned lands of Plains Indians and buffalo into lands of white settlers and homesteaders.
3. Business and industry pioneered new economic and organizational strategies based on the development of the railroad.