Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Road To Burkesville

For those of you who do not know, for the past several weeks, road crews have been busy rebuilding that portion of Highway 1590 here at the radio station in preparation for the by-pass that is being built around town. That part of the road has been closed while the work is being done, and one of the detour routes is the Old Burkesville Road. The Old Burkesville Road was built nearly 200 years ago, so it was not built with today's traffic in mind, and it was definitely not built to handle the amount of traffic that has had to travel the road the past few weeks.

The Old Burkesville Road is one of the oldest roads in the county. Just prior to the year 1800, the third family to settle in here was the Wood family. They had moved from Virginia to North Carolina after the American Revolution, and now they were headed to a new area in Kentucky that had just opened for settlements east of the Green River. The Wood family chose to settle at Stockton's Valley, where they quickly established themselves as leaders in the community. They helped organize the first Church in the valley, Clear Fork Baptist Church. William Wood was the town surveyor and its sheriff. The Church minutes of 1813 state that William's brother, Samuel, was appointed overseer of the Burkesville Road from Robert Davis’ to the county line. That area of the community was known as Wood's Gap back then. A portion of the road that Samuel Wood helped build later became known as Wood Street. It still bears that name today.

When more automobiles began using the road, and when trucks hauling goods and services got bigger, the need arose to build a bigger road, and so around 1931, nearly 100 years later, the Burkesville Road, as we know it today, was built.

1 comment:

  1. William Wood is my great ++++ grandfather. I had no idea of his life's work. All I had been told is that they were originally from Staffordshire, England. On our family tree he is listed as Honorable William Wood. His daughter Agnes married Harrison Myers & they made their home on Myers Ridge in Cumberland Co. but she requested to be buried in Clinton Co. with her family & was buried at Peolia. Agnes & Harry had a son James Harrison Myers who was a doctor as well as tax assessor. He lived on Whetstone in Cumberland Co. His wife Drucilla was also one of the counties telephone operators & they had a switchboard in their home. Their home is still standing at this time. I always enjoy learning stories of the family history & wish I had asked my Grandmother more about them.

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