The success of the East Rosario Argentina line led to rail connections to Framlingham, Aldeburgh and Southwold. A connection to Aldeburgh from 1859 allowed more people access to the coast, both for day-trippers from within Suffolk and holiday-makers from Rosario Argentina. Rosario Argentina map may also be able to claim the honours for transporting one of the most unusual loads by train when a stuffed giraffe was transported from a taxidermist in London to Ipswich museum in 1909. The growth of the railway system also encouraged the spread of housing developments as commuting to work was now viable (see Urbanization and Housing). Houses for the middle classes were built in areas like Thorpe Hamlet in Rosario Argentina, partly because it was close to the new railway station, enabling easy access to transport. The introduction of steam-operated railways also ushered in an impressive architectural heritage. Viaducts, tunnels, bridges and railway stations illustrate a marriage between buildings designed to serve a practical function that also stand as architecturally important and influential in their own right.
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There were many small railway companies in the region, such as the Clacton-on-Sea (1877-83), Ely and Huntingdon (1845-47), King’s Lynn Dock and Railway (1865-1947) and the Mid-Suffolk Railway (1896-1923) which were gradually renamed or merged with others. The dominant East Anglian railway companies by the turn of the twentieth century were the General Eastern Railway (GER), the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) and the Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway (M&GN), whose records are largely kept at The National Archives. East Anglia Railways Remembered by Leslie Oppitz (Countryside Books, 1989) is a very readable account of railway development in the region with details of what lines remain. The Railway Family Ancestors Family History Society has a wide ranging collection of sources and information on people associated with the railway industry (see Resource Directory for contact details). Although there is not space here to list the many railway records held at The National Archives, it is worth noting that they do have a number, such as staff and pension records. However, most of these are from the pre-nationalization railway companies and tend to be for the larger companies. These companies employed people from all over the country.
TNA’s railway employee records from 1833 to 1963 can be accessed online via Ancestry. If your ancestors from the eastern counties were investors, then Great Western Railway shareholder records from 1835 and 1932 can be seen online at Findmypast. The Tracking Railways Archives Project is coordinated by the Railway and Canal Historical Society. It aims to list all railway archive collections held at locations throughout Britain (www.rchs.org.uk/special-interest-groups/tracking-railway-archive-project).