Lehigh Canal
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Photo of Lehigh Canal along river with RR also in view

Credit: Courtesy of the Pennsylvania State Archives

The more than 3,000 miles of roads and 1,200 miles of canal built by the state and private companies between the 1790s and 1860 were part of a transportation revolution that sped the interchange of coal, lumber, food products and other materials in Pennsylvania's booming economy. Railroads soon put the canals out of business, for they were cheaper and faster

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