Steel Wheels
The Evolution of the Railways & How They
Excited Engineers, Architects, Artists & Writers

By A.F. Garnett
September 2005
Cannwood Press
ISBN: 0955025702
286 pages, Illustrated, 6 " x 9 "
$48.50 Hardcover


The scope and span of this book brings together the story of railways in a historical and geographical context. This book describes the feats of the engineers who designed locomotives and bridges that made the world marvel and presents the work of the architects who created astonishing buildings for the new world of the railway.

It also tells how artists, writers and travelers - who had never before seen or imagined these extraordinary machines powered by fire and water and belching smoke, steam and noise - responded to the whole concept of railways. Chapter by chapter the book outlines the ways in which railways were a source of ideas and even of inspiration for writers, and how they were depicted in art, from the earliest lithographs to surrealist painting.

It covers the emergence of railway photography as a genre, the role of the railways in the movies and in music and it gives accounts of rail journeys made by all kinds of travelers from the very rich to the dispossessed. This book is a celebration of the railways and their enduring effect on our collective imagination.

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