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One of the more interesting things to watch was the hewing of a log that was to be used for the railroad ties.  You want to talk about hard work?  This is it.  Imagine chopping wood and essentially carving a log into a square day after day, for about $.25 a day.  Remember, this was the 1830’s.  It typically took an average worker about 15 minutes to hew one side of a log, which means that they could hew anywhere from 8-12 logs a day depending on long they worked.  The longer they worked, the more logs they hewed.  The incentive to work longer and hew more logs was that they would keep their job.  Work less and hew fewer logs, then you’d be out of job and the next guy waiting in line would take over.