The Great Railroad Race: The Diary of Libby West is a fictional diary in the Dear America series. It was published in April 1999 by Scholastic. The book was Kristiana Gregory's third in the series. It was followed by The Girl Who Chased Away Sorrow in September 1999.
- "May 5, 1869
Late this afternoon our tracklayers arrived at the Summit! The Union Pacific engine came to a stop with a loud release of steam. Facing it, on another sidetrack, was California's locomotive. Both engines greeted each other with a sharp whistle. Finally. It was the first time the trains from the Pacific coast and the Atlantic coast had met, and I saw it with my own eyes! We cheered with excitement, men threw their hats in the air, ladies waved handkerchiefs, and Joe ran wild with some other boys.... Everyone is still waiting for Mr. Durant and the others arrive. Then workers will lay the final half mile—that's just about 2,500 feet."
- Main article: List of The Great Railroad Race characters
- Main article: Kristiana Gregory
Kristiana Gregory (born 1951 in Los Angeles, California) is a children's author. Her debut novel, Jenny of the Tetons won the Golden Kite Award for Fiction. Gregory has written five books in Dear America, three in The Royal Diaries, and three in My America.
- "My heartfelt thanks to the rangers of the Golden Spike National Historic Site at Promontory, Utah: Robert Chugg and Bruce Powell for patiently answering questions and helping with research; Robert Hanover for combing through this manuscript, checking historical details, and correcting my errors. Much thanks also to Diane Garvey Nesin for more fact-checking; and to Dick Braese, Curator of Printing Arts at Idaho Historical Museum in Boise, for demonstrating the Washington Hand Printing Press and the old art of setting type by hand. I'm honored by their enthusiasm and willingness to help. I especially cherish my teenage sons, Greg and Cody Rutty, for being critical listeners to the manuscript-in-progress, and for their tolerance and good humor during our long family trip to Promontory."