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Huge golden spike in Utah drives home the role of Chinese railroad workers

A 43-foot railroad spike was commissioned to honor the sacrifice of workers who toiled on the transcontinental railroad. (Courtesy)
A 43-foot railroad spike was commissioned to honor the sacrifice of workers who toiled on the transcontinental railroad. (Courtesy)

This week, a 43-foot railroad spike arrived at the steps of the Utah state capitol in Salt Lake City. The sculpture was commissioned to honor the sacrifice of workers who toiled on the transcontinental railroad.

Thousands of Chinese and Irish laborers risked their lives without recognition on a project that would revolutionize the United States after its completion in 1869.

Here & Now‘s Peter O’Dowd spoke with Max Chang, a leader of the Spike 150 organization that commissioned the project.

A closeup of the sculpture. (Peter O’Dowd/Here & Now)

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

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