“Remember boys,   nothing on God’s earth  can stop the United States  Mail” was the rallying   call of John Butterfield.   In 1857 his company  opened an overland   stage route between   St. Louis, Missouri and   San Francisco, California.    Every 20 miles a  Butterfield Stage Station  was built across the  Arizona desert. The stage  passed through such  Arizona towns as Tucson,  Maricopa, and Yuma. How did transportation systems help bring people to Arizona? A survey was begun to measure a route for a new railroad, and to make a map of the route. This railroad would link Arizona to the rest of the country. But it was not until March 1880 that the first major railroad steamed into the southern part of the state where most of the people lived. Meanwhile, people had to travel by horseback or stagecoach. John Butterfield operated a transcontinental stage line from St. Louis, Missouri, to San Francisco, California. Transcontinental means across the country. The trip took twenty-five days. The stagecoach carried passengers and mail across the bumpy roads of southern Arizona. Outlaws often attacked the stagecoaches. Despite the hardships, the Butterfield stage was late with the mail only three times in its history. Transportation into Arizona also came from the West in the form of steamboats to work on the Colorado River. The first steamboat was called “Uncle Sam.” It could travel only about fifteen miles a day, but it was faster and smoother than traveling on land. 74 Chapter 7 • Finding an Identity