ADKX-tra Credit: Episode 5

Postcard circa 1910, Marion River Carry Railroad (Adirondack Experience collection P017157)

The Rickety-Rackety Railroad

In 1900 the shortest standard-gauge railroad in the world began operation. It was just ¾ of a mile long and 6 miles from any other rail line. This episode explores the history of the Marion River Carry Railroad.

Connecting to Curriculum

  • Read-aloud – Students can follow along while listening. Download a copy of the transcript HERE.
  • Vocabulary – Explore new words. Students will be listening to high level vocabulary in context. Have them identify the definition. Click HERE for the vocabulary page.
  • Geography – Find the towns and waterways from the podcast on the map HERE.
  • Cause and effect – Use the attached sheet with students to dig into the events happening in the Adirondack region and the nation. Click HERE for the activity sheet.


Rassie Scarritt at the throttle. (Adirondack Experience collection P006879)


Higher grade level students may want to explore some topics in more depth.

  1. This episode mentions some influential men that had elaborate vacation homes. Have students take a closer look at who they were. These men were shaping America at a critical time in our growth. What positive changes did they make? What negative changes were a direct result of their influence? What is the danger in having a small group of people have immense power? Is it different today?
    • Alfred G. Vanderbilt
    • Robert J. Collier
    • Collis P. Huntington
    • J. Pierpont Morgan
  2. Imagine a world where the Great Depression did not occur. What are some of the most significant changes to the modern world? Why did they occur?