Today in Texas History – February 5

From the Annals of the Highways –  In 1844, the Congress of the Republic of Texas authorized a commission to oversee the construction of the Central National Road. The CNR was planned to run from the Elm Fork of the Trinity River to Kiomatia Crossing on the Red River in far northeast Texas.  It was intended to become part of a larger international highway ultimately connecting San Antonio to St. Louis.  The Congress provided that the CNR was to be at least 30 feet wide with no tree stumps taller than 12 inches from the ground.  Bridges were to be at least 15 feet wide and built of good substantial materials.  The project was to be paid for with public land grants to contractors building the road. The rate was to be 160 acres of land for every mile constructed.

The commissioners chose George Stell of Paris, Texas, as surveyor for the project.  Surveying work began in April 1844. Stell and his assistant traveled northeast, measuring and marking the exact route, which passed through the present counties of Dallas, Rockwall, Collin, Hunt, Fannin, Lamar and Red River. The route largely  utilized existing prairies and natural stream crossings – avoiding densely wooded areas and river crossing requiring bridges.  It is unclear if construction was ever completed.  The CNR appears to have been short-lived and was replaced by the Preston Road and other early routes.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s