railroad or railway, form of transportation most commonly consisting of steel rails, called tracks, on which trains of freight cars, passenger cars, and other rolling stock are drawn by one locomotive or more. However, there are other types of railways, including those whose units consist of single self-propelled cars, cable-drawn railways used to ascend steep grades, and monorails whose cars are usually propelled along a single rail.
Sections in this article:
- Railroads in Other Countries
- High-Speed Passenger Service
- American Railroads
- Early Railroads
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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