How to Wreck a Railroad
DOI link for How to Wreck a Railroad
How to Wreck a Railroad book
The railroad tracks had been pried out of the ground and bent at right angles. It was a mess, and it wasn’t the first time it had happened. Trains had to be halted until the track could be replaced because Confederate soldiers were destroying the tracks. The manual stressed speed. Haupt advised soldiers to use hit and run tactics in enemy territory and he advised against carrying crowbars. Even more effective than wrecking the rails was to wreck a bridge. As effective as Haupt’s tactics were at destroying railroads, he was even better at fixing them. The men were an unstoppable workforce who relaid hundreds of miles of tracks destroyed by Confederate raiders and reconstructed dozens of bridges in just a few weeks’ time. In 1864, the Confederates destroyed a 780-foot bridge over the Chattahoochee River in Georgia. It took Haupt’s men less than 5 days to reconstruct the bridge.