If you ever pondered the creation of the nation's time zones, you would have to look no further than your local railway system. In 1883, the railways essentially ran the world and therefore had great leverage and power. Railways made shipping, receiving, and traveling significantly faster; a trip from Philadelphia to New York now took mere hours instead of a day or two. Much like today's transportation systems, trains also ran on scheduled times and were expected to arrive at a town's local time. However, prior to the establishment of the time zones, cities set their times arbitrarily based on the sun location in the sky. As a result, there were hundreds of "local" time zones and scheduling became a nightmare, especially in major cities. It was not long before the top preforming railways demanded a more organized time-keeping system. Knowing the Canadian and U.S. governments could never efficiently finalize such a grandiose decision; the railroad companies took it upon themselves. On November 18, 1883,the railway officially enacted their policy and divided the continent into four time zones: Pacific, Mountain, Central, and Eastern. Most of the United States and Canada quickly adapted to the newly set time zones, though congress did not officially adopt the system until 1918.