1. Talk / speech of a railroad spanning the American continent from west to east started after steam powered railroads had been invented in Great Britain.
2. In 1862, Congress passed a bill that called for / looked for two railroad companies to build a transcontinental railroad.
3. The new railroad was to promote / to decide economic development in the western US.
4. In the early 19th century, people had to travel in horse-pushed / horse-drawn coaches.
5. When the two railroad companies met, the transcontinental railroad was completed / invented.
6. To build the Union Pacific-Central Pacific line a lot of money had to be approved / raised.
7. The government left / lent the two companies millions of dollars.
8. The government gave the companies social / public land to build the railroad.
9. The Union Pacific laid / put its first rail in July 1865.
10. The Central Pacific Railroad Company didn’t have enough employers / employees to build the railroad.
11. The Company management found that the Chinese workers were efficient / effective and hard working.
12. Union Pacific had laid 1,086 miles of track / way.
13. The last railroad spike was made of pure / poor gold.
14. The Union Pacific-Central Pacific line was the first railroad to cross the enter / entire country.
15. By 1895, four more U.S. lines had spanned / surveyed the continent.
Ex. 14. Choose the appropriate answer to the questions below.
1. When was the idea of a transcontinental railroad proposed?
a) after steam powered railways appeared in the old world
b) after the U.S. Congress passed a bill to construct the railway
c) after the first steam locomotives were brought to California
2. Why would the transcontinental railroad promote growth of settlements?
a) because there would be more goods to sell and buy
b) because people would be free to travel across the continent
c) because horses could by used on the farms more efficiently
3. Why could the companies attract many investors?
a) because the companies promised them great profits
b) because the investors could be employed as top managers
c) because the companies preferred wealthy people
4. What major problem did the Central Pacific Railroad Company face?
a) they were poorly financed
b) they had no experience in laying railway tracks
c) they were poorly staffed
5. What national custom proved to be particularly useful for the Central Pacific Railroad Company?
a) Chinese tradition to drink green tea
b) Chinese tradition to boil water
c) Chinese tradition to drink hot tea
6. Why did the companies hire the Chinese to work on the railroad?
a) because they didn’t speak English
b) because they were not afraid of difficulties
c) because they didn’t complain about working and housing conditions
7. What event did crowds of people attend on May 10, 1869 in Promontory, Utah?
a) the ceremony of the completion of the transcontinental railroad
b) the football match Central Pacific vs. Union Pacific
c) the President’s address to the Congress
8. Why was the last spike called the 'golden spike'?
a) because it looked like gold
b) because it was covered with gold
c) because it was made of gold
Text For Additional Reading
Ex. 1. Match the words and phrases in column A with their Russian equivalents in column B.
| 1. postal workers, postal staff
|| a) брать показания
| 2. to tie up
|| b) судебный процесс
| 3. experienced train driver
|| c) почтовые служащие
| 4. to uncouple
|| d) маневровый локомотив
| 5. potential witness
|| e) связывать
| 6. crime scene
|| f) номерные знаки
| 7. registration plates
|| g) отцеплять
| 8. to take statements
|| h) подсчитывать награбленное
| 9. to count the proceeds
|| i) приговор
| 10. shunting locomotive
|| j) опытный машинист
| 11. trial
|| k) потенциальные свидетели
| 12. sentence
|| l) место преступления
Ex. 2. Look up the following words in a dictionary:
bedding, chain, evidence, exhibit, to fail to do smth, hideout, investigation, responsible, reward, robbery, sack, search, valuables, value, witness.
Ex. 3 Read the text and translate it into Russian, using a dictionary, if necessary.
The Great Train Robbery
At 7 p.m. on August 7, 1963, the mail train departed from Glasgow Central Station. Its destination was Euston Station in London. The train was hauled by a diesel-electric locomotive. The train consisted of 12 carriages and carried 72 Post Office staff who sorted mail.
At Glasgow, the mail was loaded on the train. The second carriage behind the engine was used for transporting valuables including large quantities of money and registered parcels1. Usually the value of these things was about £300,000. But on the day of the robbery the sum total was £2.6 million (£30 million today).
At just after 3 a.m. the driver Jack Mills stopped the train at a red signal at Ledburn, a small station. He had no idea that the robbers had covered the green signal light and connected a six-volt battery to power the red signal light. The locomotive’s second man, 26-year-old David Whitby, climbed down from the cab to call the signalman from a signal-post2 telephone; but he found out that the cables had been cut. Upon returning to the train, he was thrown down the embankment of the railway track. The five postal workers in the second carriage were tied up.
The robbers (a 15 strong gang from London led by Bruce Reynolds) now faced a problem. They needed to move the train to a place where they could load the money onto their truck. They wanted to do so at a bridge half a mile further along the track. The gangsters decided to use an experienced train driver to move the train from the signals to the bridge after uncoupling the unnecessary carriages. However, the person they selected was unable to operate mainline diesel locomotives because he only drove shunting locomotives. It was quickly decided that Jack Mills himself should move the train to the stopping point near the bridge. Initially, Mills did not want to move the train, but one of the gangsters struck him on the head.
At the bridge, the robbers unloaded 124 sacks, which they transferred quickly from the carriage to the truck by forming a human chain. The gang departed 30 minutes after the robbery had begun. To mislead any potential witness in addition to their truck they used two Land Rover vehicles both of which had the registration plates BMG 757 A.
They headed along back roads and arrived at an old farm 27 miles from the crime scene. They had bought this farm two months earlier. There they began counting the proceeds of the robbery. 2.6 million pounds were stolen in used £1, £5 and £10 notes.
Investigation, capture and trial
At 5 a.m. the police arrived at the crime scene where they took statements from the driver and postal workers. One member of the gang had made the mistake of telling the postal staff not to move for half an hour, so their hideout could not be more than 35 miles away. The police did a search of all places near the crime scene, but failed to find any evidence of the crime.
The Postmaster General3 offered a £10,000 reward to “the first person giving information about the persons responsible for the robbery”. Finally, the old farm was found where the policemen discovered the truck used by the robbers, the Land Rovers, a large quantity of food, bedding, sleeping bags, Post Office sacks, registered parcels, and fingerprints of the robbers.
Thirteen of the gang members were arrested. The trial of the robbers began on January 20, 1964, lasted 51 days and included 613 exhibits and 240 witnesses. On April 15, 1964, the sentences of 30 years imprisonment were passed on seven members of the gang. Others received shorter sentences.
Notes:1registered parcel – ценная посылка;
2signal post – светофорная мачта;
3Postmaster General – министр почт.
Ex. 4. Answer the questions to the text.
1. Where and when did The Great Train Robbery take place?
2. What station did the mail train depart? What was its destination?
3. What did post staff do?
4. Was anything special about the second carriage behind the locomotive?
5. Why did the driver Jack Mills stop the train at a red signal?
6. What did the locomotive’s second man do?
7. What did he discover?
8. What happened to David Whitby upon his returning to the train?
9. What happened to the postal workers?
10. How strong was the gang?
11. Were they from Glasgow?
12. Was an experienced train driver able to operate a mainline diesel locomotive?
13. Who was to move the train to the bridge?
14. Did he want to do that?
15. What did the robbers do at the bridge?
16. What did they do to mislead the police?
17. Where was the robbers’ hideout?
18. Was any reward offered to the first person giving information about the persons responsible for the robbery?
19. How many gang members were arrested?
20. What sentences were passed on the robbers?
Ex. 1. Give the third form of the verbs. Mind the reading of the -ed ending.
to operate, to have, to be, to find, to consist, to carry, to do, to make, to tell, to use, to think, to write, to give, to design, to see, to go, to transport, to increase, to come, to pull, to begin, to become, to offer, to call, to take, to control, to send, to draw, to reach, to know, to say, to construct, to build.