Led by his 19th-century Appleton's guidebook, Michael Portillo's railway journey continues through New England. On the banks of the Providence River, he discovers a club that traces its roots and culinarytraditions back to the 1840s. Michael joins in with one of its legendary open-air 'clambakes'.
In the Rhode Island capital, Providence, Michael is on the trail of an historic company that counts US presidents among its customers. Portillo practises the art of penmanship at AT Cross, America's oldest manufacturer of writing instruments. Travelling west to New London, Connecticut, Michael visits the elite US Coast Guard Academy. Established around the time of his guidebook in 1876, 300 cadets enrol every year and train to defend more than one hundred thousand miles of American coastline.
On the literary trail, Michael visits the childhood summer home of an American dramatist who won the Nobel Prize for Literature. Eugene O'Neill's deeply personal and ground-breaking work dealt with human frailty and the struggles of modern life and transformed American theatre.