Augustus Veenendaal 352 pages hardcover
Narrow Gauge in the Tropics is the first
comprehensive history of railways and tramways in the Dutch East Indies
(modern Indonesia) from breaking ground in 1864 to the invasion of the
Japanese during World War II.
During the mid-19th century under colonial rule, the Dutch East
Indies experienced enormous increases in production of sugar, coffee,
and other commodities, resulting in a great dilemma: How were these
goods to be moved to port when wagons hauled by animals was the only
available form of transportation? The solution was to build a railway
network through some of the most challenging terrain on the planet.
Lavishly illustrated, Narrow Gauge in the Tropics explores
technical aspects of the construction of the railways over difficult
terrain, the origin of the technicians who made the seemingly impossible
happen, and the social impact of the railways on the indigenous