The Brady Bunch : 18 Days to California on a train.

18 Days to California on a train.

In the episode Bobby's Hero, Bobby of course has the Jessie James nightmare. In the beginning of the dream Greg asks Mike, "How long does it take to get the before we get there"(They are going to California). Mike then answer "Not long son, with these new trains it only takes 18 days to get to California. First of all it wasn't specified where they were traveling from. But let's assume New York. Now of course if you took a car nowadays it probably takes 5 days, but you have to take into consideration, you stop, for gas, food and hotels. Now obviously it was the late 1980's so there was no cars back then. And yes the trains probably ran much slower back then. But even if the trains only rain 20-25 miles an hour, wouldn't it really take them 18 days from New York to California? Maybe 10-11-12, but 18? I also didn't get Carol's next remark "And that's all the way from Arizona". Arizona is right next to California even if they went on horseback, it probably wouldn't take more then a day or two.

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

The Brady's were morons on many levels.
Depending where you wanted to go in California, in 1870, it would have taken 4 days to get from New York to San Francisco. Add another day to get to Los Angeles.
It only took the pony express ten days to get from St. Joseph, MO. to Sacramento, CA, so it just shows you how stupid the writers of the show were.





I'm a dirty old man and I'm going to be one until I'm a dead old man

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

Bobby's Hero was just an all around bad episode with a lame script. Bobby seemed to old to be playing with cap guns, the creepy old guy who came over to talk to Bobby about Jesse James and Cindy with her line "I'm doing a report on Joan of Arc cause she saw visions" lol!

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Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

Good question. I'm fairly certain that steam locomotives had to make frequent stops for water and coal, and to let the engineers eat. That would cut into the travel time.

But doing straight math: New York to San Francisco (the most likely California destination in the 1880's):

2,904 Miles
25 MPH
116 Hours
4.8 Days... assuming no stops.

They must have taken the scenic route.

Here's a nice Yahoo Answers link on the same topic. They said about a week.

https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=A0LEV0kE8OpXOPQAd.pXNyoA;_ylu=X3oDMTEyMm43aWFsBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDQjE5MTBfMQRzZWMDc2M-?qid=20090920103858AAWf9mF

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

Big problem with your stats.
A train only going 25 MPH? No way. Trains in 1870 regularly went 70 MPH or more, depending what loco was being used.
A fired tender had to stop every 20 miles or so to take on water, and about every 100 miles to take on coal or wood. That takes about 15 minutes for coal, about 5 for water.
Like modern trains, crews would change at different locations, so there wouldn't be an hour or two stopovers to eat. There would be a short stop for passengers to get food while the crews changed.
Trains were paid to get people from here to there in the fastest time possible. That's why they were paid. That's also why so many people died in accidents, because getting there on time was the most important part of the job.

FYI I wouldn't believe most of what's on yahoo answers.

I'm a dirty old man and I'm going to be one until I'm a dead old man

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

But remember, that part was Bobby's dream. He would have no idea how long it would take to go from Arizona to California on a train in the 1880's.

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Re: 18 Days to California on a train.


But remember, that part was Bobby's dream. He would have no idea how long it would take to go from Arizona to California on a train in the 1880's.



It's like on Diff'rent Strokes when they were going from New York to Oregon, Arnold thought it would take them something like 2 months on the subway train.

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.


But remember, that part was Bobby's dream.

Right... it's in the same reality where an outlaw can kill a family by simply pointing, and shouting, "BANG!"

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

I think those outrageous time frames were meant to be jokes.

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.


I think those outrageous time frames were meant to be jokes


Yes, probably, except people believe the stuff on TV programs. Perhaps that's why the US has some of the stupidest people "graduating" from their schools?




I'm a dirty old man and I'm going to be one until I'm a dead old man

Re: 18 Days to California on a train.

18 Days to California on a train...

Sounds like an Arlo Guthrie song.
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