The Motor Vehicle and the Revolution in Road Transport: The American Experience

  • John B. Rae


The history of highway transport in the United States shows clearly that large-scale movement by road for medium or long distances or for heavy loads is a phenomenon of the twentieth-century. Before the coming of the railroad water transport was used by preference where it was available; after that the railroad made highway traffic almost exclusively local.


Motor Vehicle Road Transport Rail Transport Express Highway Toll Road 
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  1. G. R. Taylor, The Transportation Revolution (New York, 1931) p. 132.Google Scholar
  2. Late nineteenth-century Scottish investors in western American land were even more cautious. They wanted their land to be within ten miles of railroad or navigable waterway. See W. Turrentime Jackson, The Enterprising Scot (Edinburgh, 1968) p. 25.Google Scholar
  3. See, for example, Eugen Diesel, Gustav Goldbeck, and Friedrich Schildenberger, Vom Motor Zum Auto (Stuttgart, 1957).Google Scholar
  4. J. B. Rae, The Road and the Car in American Life (Cambridge, Mass., 1971) p. 32.Google Scholar
  5. Malcolm L. Willey and Stuart A. Rice, ‘The Agencies of Communication’, Recent Social Trends in the United States (New York, 1931) pp. 172, 173, 177.Google Scholar
  6. J. B. Rae, ‘Coleman du Pont and His Road’, Delaware History, vol. 16, no. 3 (Spring – Summer, 1976) pp. 171–83.Google Scholar
  7. Hilaire Belloc, The Road (London, 1924).Google Scholar
  8. For the evolution of the Interstate Highway System see Mark Rose, Interstate: Express Highway Politics, 1941–1956 (Lawrence, Kan., 1979).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Theo Barker 1987

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  • John B. Rae

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