Camel train

Camel train

A camel train is a series of camels carrying goods or passengers in a group as part of a regular or semi-regular service between two points.

Asia and the Middle East

By far the greatest use of camel trains occurs in North Africa, to conduct trade in and around the Sahara Desert. In antiquity, the Arabian Peninsula was an important route for the trade with India and Abyssinia. Camel trains have also long been used in portions of trans-Asian trade, including the Silk Road.

Australia

In the English-speaking world the term "camel train" often applies to Australia, notably the service that once connected a railhead at Oodnadatta in South Australia to Alice Springs in the center of the continent. The service ended when the train line was extended to Alice Springs in 1929; that train is still called "the Ghan", a shortened version of "Afghan camel train."

United States

The history of camel trains in the United States consists mainly of an experiment by the United States Army. On April 29, 1856, thirty-three camels and five drivers arrived at Indianola, Texas. While camels were suited to the job of transport in the American Southwest, the experiment failed. Their stubbornness and aggressiveness made them unpopular among soldiers, and they frightened horses. Many of the camels were sold to private owners, others escaped into the desert. These feral camels continued to be sighted through the early 1900s, with the last reported sighting in 1941 near Douglas, Texas.

ee also

*Twenty mule team


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