Chief Sponsor: Karen Kwan

Senate Sponsor: Scott D. Sandall


9     General Description:
10          This resolution designates May 10 as Utah Railroad Workers Day.
11     Highlighted Provisions:
12          This resolution:
13          ▸     expresses gratitude for the dedication and sacrifices of the railroad workers that
14     helped build and complete the transcontinental railroad;
15          ▸     expresses gratitude for the railroad workers today who continue to selflessly commit
16     themselves to the good of our state and nation by connecting Utah and the United
17     States by rail; and
18          ▸     designates May 10 as Utah Railroad Workers Day.
19     Special Clauses:
20          None

22     Be it resolved by the Legislature of the state of Utah, the Governor concurring therein:
23          WHEREAS, the completion of the transcontinental railroad, including the dedication
24     and sacrifice of Utah railroad workers in building it, is an integral part of Utah and American
25     history;
26          WHEREAS, May 10, 2019, will be the 150th anniversary of the completion of the
27     transcontinental railroad connecting the Central Pacific Railroad and the Union Pacific
28     Railroad at Promontory Summit, Box Elder County, Utah, and the Golden Spike ceremony

29     commemorating the event;
30          WHEREAS, it took nearly seven years to complete the transcontinental railroad,
31     requiring all together between 12,000 and 15,000 Chinese, 8,000 and 10,000 Irish (2,000 of
32     whom where former Union and Confederate Soldiers), an undetermined number of African
33     American freemen and freed slaves, some Native Americans, and between 3,000 and 4,000
34     Latter-day Saint workers (cutting, filling, tunneling, and grade building), all told making the
35     workforce of the workers and laborers, who built and finished the overland route across the
36     Great Plains and the American West;
37          WHEREAS, the railroad workers reflected the multicultural and changing
38     demographics of the United States at that time and included immigrants from various nations
39     such as China, Ireland, and Germany;
40          WHEREAS, between 3,000 and 4,000 of Utah's early settlers also helped complete the
41     rail line working for both the Central Pacific and the Union Pacific Railroads, from Humboldt
42     Wells, Nevada, to the west, and to the Wyoming-Utah border to the east, covering over 250
43     miles (a little less than 1/7 of the 1,776 total miles of the transcontinental railroad);
44          WHEREAS, most of the construction of the railroad was done by human labor, with the
45     aid of oxen, horses, mules, wagons, and explosives, and required overcoming dangerous and
46     difficult obstacles to construct rail lines through the challenging terrain leading up to and
47     through the Intermountain West, including tunnel blasting and building on mountainous
48     terrain;
49          WHEREAS, at times, both railroad companies were laying down track at an
50     unprecedented pace, including a stretch of 10 miles of track, west of Promontory Summit, that
51     was laid in a single day by the Central Pacific Railroad crews;
52          WHEREAS, many of the railroad workers sacrificed much, sometimes even their lives,
53     to help finish the transcontinental line;
54          WHEREAS, due to the hard work and dedication of the railroad workers, the
55     transcontinental railroad was finished at Promontory Summit in Utah, linking the United States

56     by rail;
57          WHEREAS, if it were not for the sacrifice of the railroad workers who took part in the
58     construction of the railroad, the successful completion of the transcontinental rail line would
59     not have been possible;
60          WHEREAS, after the transcontinental line was finished, people and goods could more
61     easily travel across the country, introducing a period of growth and expansion in the western
62     United States;
63          WHEREAS, the railroad workers that helped build the transcontinental railroad were an
64     integral part of the history of the American West and of Utah, and the rebuilding of our nation
65     after the American Civil War (1861-1865), reflecting the hardworking determination and
66     sacrifice that helped grow the United States;
67          WHEREAS, the proud heritage and tradition of thousands of railroad workers, who
68     collectively by their brains and brawn, accomplished this grand national goal, continues to be
69     remembered today, as the railroad remains vital to our national and state economy, ensuring
70     that shipments of food, automobiles, agricultural products, and many other types of industrial
71     and manufactured items are delivered across our country; and
72          WHEREAS, the dedication and sacrifice of railroad workers today allows for the
73     continuous and safe shipment and delivery of goods and people across the country and Utah, 24
74     hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year:
75          NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Legislature, the Governor
76     concurring therein, commemorates the contributions of the transcontinental railroad workers
77     and the dedication and sacrifice of today's railroad workers in the state of Utah by designating
78     May 10 as Utah Railroad Workers Day.
79          BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislature and the Governor recognize and
80     express gratitude for the dedication and sacrifice of the railroad workers that helped build and
81     complete the transcontinental railroad and the workers today who continue to selflessly commit
82     themselves to the good of our state and nation by connecting Utah and the rest of the United

83     States by rail.