ᴅᴀᴠɪᴅ ᴘᴇʀᴇʟʟ ✌ @david_perell "The Writing Guy" | Host of the North Star Podcast: perell.com/podcast | Writing at perell.com/ | Teaching at writeofpassage.school/ Jan. 07, 2020 1 min read

Coolest thing I learned today.

Most American goods move by truck, train, or airplane.

By train, it costs ~4 cents to move one ton of freight one mile.

By truck, ~20 cents.

By plane, ~121 cents.

And, the average U.S freight train is 6,500 feet long — more than 1 mile — long.

Some other learnings:

• It’s more expensive to transport goods by truck than by train, but trucks are more nimble.

• “Canadian National” often runs 14,000 foot trains, meaning that it would take an hour to walk from one side of the train to the other.


The Rostovian Take-Off Thesis:

Railroads were responsible for the “take-off” of American industrialization in the mid 1850s.

By decreasing transportation costs, they widened the market for economic goods.

Coal, iron, and engineering-based industries benefited the most.

You can follow @david_perell.


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