By Joel P. Rhodes
Lawyer and journalist, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Louis Houck is frequently referred to as the “Father of Southeast Missouri” simply because he introduced the railroad to the quarter and opened this backwater zone to industrialization and modernization. even if Houck’s identify is little identified this day outdoors Missouri, Joel Rhodes exhibits how his tale has relevance for either the country and the nation.
Rhodes offers a extra whole photograph of Houck than has ever been to be had: reviewing his existence from his German immigrant roots, contemplating his occupation from either social and political views, and grounding the tale in either kingdom and nationwide heritage. He specifically tells how, from 1880 to the Twenties, this self-taught railroader built a community of 5 hundred miles of tune in the course of the desert of wetlands often called “Swampeast Missouri”—and how those “Houck Roads” supplied a lift for inhabitants, agriculture, lumbering, and trade that remodeled Cape Girardeau and the encircling area.
Rhodes discusses how Houck matches into the period of financial individualism—a time whilst males with little formal education formed glossy industry—and additionally supplies voice to Houck’s critics and exhibits that he used to be no longer regularly a simple guy to paintings with. In telling the tale of his railroading company, Rhodes chronicles Houck’s conflict with the Jay Gould railroad empire and provides key perception into the improvement of America’s railway approach, from the cutthroat practices of ruthless marketers to the often-comic ineptness of start-up rail lines.
More than just a biography of a company entrepreneur, the publication tells how Houck not just built the area economically but in addition the lead of Andrew Carnegie through making artwork, tradition, and formal schooling to be had to all social periods. Houck additionally served for thirty-six years as president of the Board of Regents of Southeast Missouri kingdom Teacher’s university, and as a self-taught historian he wrote the 1st entire bills of Missouri’s territorial period.
A Missouri Railroad Pioneer chronicles a multifaceted occupation that reworked a sector. Solidly researched, this full of life narrative additionally bargains an interesting learn for an individual attracted to Missouri history.
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Additional resources for A Missouri Railroad Pioneer: The Life of Louis Houck (Missouri Biography Series)
A Missouri Railroad Pioneer: The Life of Louis Houck (Missouri Biography Series) by Joel P. Rhodes