A British Railway in Brazil

The San Paulo Railway, funded with money from the City of London, was one of the engineering marvels of the Victorian age.

A hand-coloured postcard of an SPR train descending to the mouth of a tunnel.

In the language of the Tupi tribe the name Paranapiacaba means ‘where you shall behold the sea’. On a typical day in the Brazilian town, with clouds squatting on the eaves and drizzle coating the air, it is hard enough to pick out the treetops let alone the ocean. Yet it is that feeble glimpse of the Atlantic that led to the town’s creation.

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