THE OLD PIKE. A HISTORY OF THE NATIONAL ROAD - 1894 1st Ed.
Searight, Thomas, THE OLD PIKE. A HISTORY OF THE NATIONAL ROAD, WITH INCIDENTS, ACCIDENTS, AND ANECDOTES THEREON. Uniontown, PA.: Thomas B. Searight, 1894. First ed., brown cloth hardcover w/gilt titling and blind-stamped pattern to outer edge of boards, 8vo (8.25 x 5.5"), very good+/n.a., 384 pp. General light wear to bottom board edges, very light spotting on spine, appropriately age-toned to period, no foxing noted, frontis-piece of the author and 95 additional full page plates.
The National Road (also known as the Cumberland Road) was the first major improved highway in the United States built by the federal government. Built between 1811 and 1837, the 620-mile (1,000 km) road connected the Potomac and Ohio Rivers and was a main transport path to the West for thousands of settlers. When rebuilt in the 1830s, it became the second U.S. road surfaced with the macadam process pioneered by Scotsman John Loudon McAdam. Construction began heading west in 1811 at Cumberland, Maryland, on the Potomac River. After the Financial Panic of 1837 and the resulting economic depression, congressional funding ran dry and construction was stopped at Vandalia, Illinois, the then capital of Illinois, 63 miles (101 km) northeast of St. Louis across the Mississippi River. Today, much of the alignment is followed by U.S. Route 40, with various portions bearing the Alternate U.S. Route 40 designation, or various state-road numbers (such as Maryland Route 144 for several sections between Baltimore and Cumberland). In 2002, the full road, including extensions east to Baltimore and west to St. Louis, was designated the Historic National Road, an All-American Road.
Quite the marvelous tome indeed, an 1894 adventure on an 1811 road - a wonderful Capture of Tyme!