An Object Lesson Road:
The next half-mile of trail follows the 1907 roadbed of an "Object Lesson Road." Early in the 20th century, most rural roads, especially here in the Appalachians, were little better than in the days of Daniel Boone. The US Department of Agriculture sponsored the building of short segments of smooth, crushed-rock roads graded for good drainage in key, high-visibility spots around the nation. The object of the lesson was to convince voters of the convenience and value of building better roads with up-to-date techniques.
This model road was paid for by subscriptions. All the names of the contributors from Middletown, Bell County (Kentucky), Lee County (Virginia), and Claiborne County (Tennessee) were published in the Middlesboro News -- along with the amount they gave -- after the roadwork was completed. One many gave $100. Some people subscribed for as little as $1.