Kentucky: A Guide to the Bluegrass State

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Tour 17

Warfield -- Paintsville -- Mount Sterling -- Georgetown -- Junction with US 60; 185.3 m. State 40.

Hard-surfaced roadbed except for graveled section between Warfield and PaintsVille.

All types of accommodations in larger towns.

State 40 winds through a mountain area that was isolated until shortly after the World War, when this highway was built. Consequently the mountaineers living in this region have for the most part retained their distinctive speech, manners, customs, and modes of living (see Tours 1, 18 and 19). Jagged mountains, pine groves on inaccessible pinnacles, laurel-grown cliffs with rhododendron in profusion on the upper sandstone ridges, log cabins, and tales of "hants" characterize this country. The topography changes gradually from mountainous terrain to plains as the highway crosses the Knobs belt and enters the outer rim of the Bluegrass.

WARFIELD, 0 m. (662 alt., 120 pop.), on the western bank of the Tug Fork of Big Sandy River, opposite Kermit, West Virginia, was established shortly after the War of 1812 when George R. C. Floyd and associates acquired title to the Ben Say Grant, established the town, drilled a salt well, and started a salt works. They later opened up coal mines, and shipped the product by water. Floyd was a brother of John B. Floyd, Governor of Virginia ( 1830-32).

INEZ, 10.1 m. (600 alt., 500 pop.), is one of the few unincorporated county seats in Kentucky; its former act of corporation was dissolved in order that the State Highway Commission might pave State 40 through the town, construction that the town could not afford. When a post office was established here, the town was to have been called Eden, but it was found that there was already a post office in the State by that name. The postmaster at Louisa, then named the post office for his daughter, Inez Frank. The first settler was James Ward, a veteran of the Revolutionary War and a companion of Daniel Boone on many of his hunting expeditions and in Indian affrays. Ward selected the site for his camp because of the proximity of several salt licks. This region is the locale of Peter Clay's Big Sandy Poems, published in 1890.

Left from Inez on a trail to a small NATURAL BRIDGE, 1.5 m., in a setting of sylvan beauty.

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