The Cumberland Road. 1835. Fact 1:. What- The Cumberland Road was the first federal road project. It is how America got the idea to have paved highways for easy travel. . People argued over if the federal government could build across state boundaries.
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The Cumberland Road
What- The Cumberland Road was the first federal road project. It is how America got the idea to have paved highways for easy travel.
The Cumberland Road is made up of turnpikes. They are called turnpikes because whenever a traveler was stopped to pay a toll (fee) the road was blocked by sharp wooden spears called pikes that a man collecting the toll would turn underground so that the traveler could pass.
Who- The federal government paid for the Cumberland Road to be built after people demanded President Jefferson to tie together the East and the early West.
A group of men along the road began to do work on Sundays, gamble on horse races, and heavily drink. The men lived along the sides of the road and worked to build the road. This is how “The Wild West” got its name.
Where- The Cumberland Road is 621. 4 miles long and approximately 66 feet wide. It goes from Cumberland, Maryland to present day Wheeling, West Virginia.
Why- The Cumberland Road was made to make travel more doable for travelers and make trade with the western states easier and less expensive.
When- The Cumberland Road started to be constructed in 1815 and was finished in 1850. Even though construction only stopped once, it took 35 years to build.
Early 1800’s – no good roads, everyone hated travel because it was so challenging
1803 – Congress created the law to build the Cumberland Road
1806 – President Jefferson appointed men to decide the exact rout of the road
1811 – started clearing where the road would be
1815 – construction began
1818 – road reached present day Wheeling, West Virginia
1819 – construction stopped because there was not enough funding to continue the road due to the economic downturn of Panic of 1819
1820’s – construction re-began to Vandalia
1830 – camp meeting started along the road for ministers to preach
1840 – several religious meeting places along the road
1833 – stretched to Columbus, Ohio
1850 – finished at Vandalia, Illinois