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Central Plank Road Company, Tallassee Branch records

Identifier: MSS-0292

Scope and Contents

The collection contains the charter and organizational information of the Tallassee Branch of the Central Plank Road Company.


  • 1850-1853


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Due to the nature of certain archival formats, including digital and audio-visual materials, access to certain materials may require additional advance notice.

Biographical / Historical

A plank road or puncheon is a dirt path or road covered with a series of planks, similar to the wooden sidewalks one would see in a Western movie. Plank roads were very popular in Ontario, the U.S. Northeast and U.S. Midwest in the first half of the 19th century. They were often built by turnpike companies. In the late 1840s plank roads led to an investment boom and subsequent bust. The first plank road in the US was built in North Syracuse, New York in order to transport salt and other goods; it appears to have copied earlier roads in Canada that copied Russian ones. The plank road boom was like many early technologies, promising to transform the way people lived and worked, and led to permissive changes in legislation seeking to spur development and speculative investment by private individuals. Ultimately the technology failed to live up to its promise and millions of dollars in investments evaporated almost overnight.


0.4 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Charter and organizational information of the Tallassee Branch of the Central Plank Road Company




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Guide to the Central Plank Road Company, Tallassee Branch records
December 2008
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Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266