Photo: By Thomas R Machnitzki via Wikimedia Commons

Modern replica of an early 1800s flatboat

thought this would be good to revisit

Early settlers arrived by boat, horseback, in wagons and on foot following

Indian trails or traces. The trip from North Caroline took a month or more.

Richard Nixon, in 1821, blazed his way from Madison County through cane brakes

and heavily wooded areas. Soon after Brownsville was designated as County Seat,

men were appointed to lay out roads in the direction of the county seats of

adjoining counties. Land owners adjoining these roads were responsible for

maintaining them.

The two rivers, Hatchie and Forked Deer, were navigable in the early 1800’s and

the steamboat Red Rover and her Captain Newman appeared at Brownsville Landed in

the fall of 1827. James Bond had his own steamboat to bring supplies up the

Hatchie and carry his farm products away. Traffic up and down the Hatchie and

Forked Deer rivers was mostly in small craft and flatboats. Among the several

ferries in operation were those at Lowry’s Landing, Brownsville Landing, Dupree,

Thompson and McGuire.

In 1836, the Stage Coach route from Jackson to Memphis came through Denmark,

Brownsville, Durhamville, Covington and Randolph.

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