A century of planning, seemingly endless construction and hard-fought political disputes form the backdrop of one of the largest projects in the history of German transport-infrastructure. This book vividly illustrates the fascinating origins of today's modern canal and its two historic precursors. Additionally, it takes stock of the current role of ship traffic on the Main-Danube Canal in its third decade of operation, offering well-researched accounts of the social, political, environmental and economical impacts. A wealth of current and historic photographs as well as colorful documents bring the narrative to life. Charts and maps describe and clarify the technological dimensions.