Talk:Golden spike

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Golden Spike Neil916.JPG

I've uploaded a photo of the "other golden spike", manufactured at the same time as the original. It's on permanent display at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento, California. The page is somewhat image-heavy at the moment, so when I added another image, it ended up creating large sections of white space. The article needs a bit of tinkering and image organization and I don't have a ton of time to play around with it, so I'm dropping a link here in the hopes that someone else will get a chance to rearrange things around. Neil916 (Talk) 16:36, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

Subject matter[edit]

What is this article about? Is it about the golden spike itself, or is it about the ceremony in which the golden spike was driven, thus completing the transcontinental railroad in the US? The article seems to be confused about what it's talking about. Neil916 (Talk) 16:51, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

Mislabeled photograph[edit]

There's a photograph accompanying this article which identifies an engine being carried on a flatcar as Virginia and Truckee Railroad No. 119. However, this article:

identifies the engine as No.18, which had been decorated to resemble the historic No. 119 for use in the centennial celebration in 1969. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ormewood (talkcontribs) 19:42, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

This has been fixed (thanks)...Ormewood (talk) 18:31, 20 June 2010 (UTC)

Locations/fates of all four spikes.[edit]

If someone has information about the locations/fates of the two other spikes (two are in the article) I think it'd be a good addition to the article. ColinClark (talk) 07:36, 5 July 2010 (UTC)


Many articles on Wikipedia have Pop Culture refs in them. People like to know if a subject is talked about, used, or referenced in other places. I am happy to provide reference material but am not sure how to put them in the article. Vsmith, please do not undo this again or I will have to report you for WR3 Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 18:58, 17 May 2012 (UTC)

Please see WP:other stuff exists. If you can provide a link to a good reference which explains the significance of the movie to the subject of the article, please do - and I or another editor can check it out and if suitable add to the article. The problem is that a movie about some fictional characters or whatever which uses the spike in some way is rather irrelevant here. If you can provide some sourced relevance, please do. Vsmith (talk) 21:42, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
And this is why Wikipedia sucks. It's pop culture. Period, that is enough to list it in the article. Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 01:29, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
The issue in this instance is not really whether or not motion pictures are "pop culture" (they are), but one of if a single unspecified and unsourced "reference" to the "Golden Spike" in the film "Wild Wild West" is encyclopedically significant as well. Over the past almost century and a half the Spike and the Pacific Railroad have been mentioned or alluded to in literally tens of thousands of motion pictures, books (I have written a couple myself about the subject), articles, plays, illustrations, photographs, paintings, newspaper and magazine stories, academic papers, advertisements, and dozens of other types of published and unpublished works that could also qualify as "pop culture" to one extent or another.
Virtually none of such references, mentions, and/or allusions, however, have any particular encyclopedic significance or help to elucidate the main topic and therefore do not merit inclusion in its Wikipedia entry. Therefore just because something qualifies as "pop culture" is simply not "enough to list it in the article". It must also meet the criteria of being significant, illustrative, and/or capable of helping to educate and/or enlighten the reader about the topic.
For an example of the type of pop culture reference that meets these criteria for inclusion, see the material I have added to the article about the film "Union Pacific" in the entry's revised "Pop Culture" section. Centpacrr (talk) 06:02, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
The list had to start some where. I listed the film "Wild Wild West" because that's what I knew of. Feel free to add to the list from the "tens of thousands" of other references. "Wild Wild West" is a fairly recent reference that most people would remember. But I guess it's better to not list anything so no one will ever know. Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 02:28, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
Added my ref to your ref under the pop culture heading. Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 04:00, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
The listing of a fictional reference to the Golden Spike in the Wild Wild West (for one thing U.S. Grant did not attend the ceremony) still lacks any sourcing, citation, or reference, as well as any rationale as to why it is significant to the understanding of the topic over all other references thereto in popular culture -- or at all. Without such it is likely to again be subject to deletion as unencyclopedic and not notable. Centpacrr (talk) 05:37, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
Again, this is why Wikipedia sucks. People like you and Vsmith don't allow others to make changes. I linked to the film article. I noted IMDB. Feel free to add ref tags to any of that. There is a scene in the film that nods to the golden spike. Therefore it is relevant. Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 04:16, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
With respect, I just don't see what encyclopedic value or relevance that a "nod" to the Golden Spike in a fictionalized action comedy about a mechanical tarantula that does nothing to otherwise elucidate or educate the readers of the article has about the real historic significance of the Golden Spike. I have, however, added a Pop Culture reference to the TV series Wild Wild West's relationship to the Golden Spike because of the use in that series of the 1875 V&T locomotive "Inyo" that was also used in the 1939 film "Union Pacific" as well as at the 1969 Golden Spike Centennial celebration and, from 1970 to 1979, as the replica for CPRR #60 ("Jupiter") at the Golden Spike National Historic Site. Centpacrr (talk) 06:59, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
  • Upon further investigation and reflection, I have restored the ref to "Wild Wild West" with additional information. I have also added a reference to the 1924 John Ford film "The Iron Horse". Centpacrr (talk) 13:24, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Very nice clean up. Sorry to have been a pain, just do not know Wikipedia codes for putting in refs and such. Also I did not know the original show had mention of the spike nore Iron Horse. Thanks for the added information. Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 22:49, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Not a problem. In order to justify the reference required finding how it is significant and sourcing it which is what I did. It also inspired me to create the new section on the Golden Spike Days Celebration in Omaha in 1939 using materials in my Pacific Railroad collections and added two other "Pop Culture" items. (I've written a couple of books on the overall subject and our family operates a 10,000+ page website that has been on the web since February, 1999, called the "Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum".) Thanks for standing up for your contribution in here which is always the right thing to do. That's what helps the WP project grow. Centpacrr (talk) 03:50, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
No Problem. Sorry for the "Wikipedia sucks" comments. Just been dealing with this type of issues for many, many years on several articles. :) Crazy Blue Eyes (talk) 19:43, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
LOL, me too. ;=) Centpacrr (talk) 22:40, 22 May 2012 (UTC)