The Northern Pacific RailRoad was completed when the last spike was driven near Independence Creek in Powell County, Montana off of Interstate 90 in the “golden spike” completion ceremony. The Northern Pacific Railway was a transcontinental railroad that operated across the northern tier of the western United States from Minnesota to the Pacific Coast. (Source: Wikipedia) The effort, which laid 6,800 miles of track, took 13 years.
The railroad, which had international branches to Winnipeg, Manitoba and southeastern British Columbia, was primarily used for shipping wheat, cattle, other farm products, timber, and minerals. It was one of the earliest railroads, and despite its troubled financial history, was an important element of supply management for well over one hundred years.