One of the functions of the county court was to hear petitions from local residents regarding the establishment of new roads. After the petition was received, commissioners were appointed to determine the feasibility of such a road and, finally, owners of the land on which the road was proposed, must give consent for the project.
The following report was for a proposed new road through Bells Mines in the northern part of Crittenden County. The Tradewater River is the dividing line between Crittenden and Union Counties. Stephen Rutherford, one of the commissioners, lived in this area and his old family cemetery is located in a small wooded area just off present-day Hwy 365, near the local office of Kimball International Inc., the current owners of this land. John T. Black also lived in this area and is buried in the Newcom-Black Cemetery across Hwy 365 from the Rutherford Cemetery.
"Bells Mines, August 1868.
Your Commissioners would respectfully report to the Honorable County Court that they met at Mr. Thos. Harlands on the Marion and Morganfield Road near to Bells Mines, Ky. and near to or at the corner of S. Rutherfords field fence, thence running along an old neighborhood Road out side of Mr. S. Rutherfords fence and on his land near his line, for about a half mile. Then leaving his land, and running on or through Mr. G.W. Trapnells land along or near to the same old neighborhood road about half a mile down to Tradewater, about 75 yards above Bells old Tip.
And your Commissioners would further report that to have a Public Road established along the above described route, crossing Tradewater at or near to Bells Tip and intersecting the Road from thare to Caseyville (via Caseys Mines) will save in distance about one half and we do believe it will incur no material disadvantage to the community, but will be of an advantage to the travelling community and citizens especially. Yours Respectfully, L.M. Lowry, Stephen Rutherford, Commissioners. Attest: John T. Black, J.P.C.C. [Justice of the Peace Crittenden County]
And your Commissioners would further recommend to have the Road that leads from the Newcom ford, on Tradewater to Bells Mines annexed to the new road as they will be in 150 yards of each other, where they intersect the Marion and Morganfield Road. And we further Recommend that you would appoint Mr. John Braden for Surveyor of Road from the Newcom ford on Tradewater to Bells Tip on Tradewater. This is the most direct way from the Miners shaft & Company mines to Bells Mines & Caseys Mines & Caseyville.
I Stephen Rutherford give my consent for the establishing of the foregoing Public Road this Augst 8th 1868. Stephen Rutherford.
I Hiram Smith agent for George Trapnall give my consent for the establishing of the foregoing Public Road this Augst 10th 1868. Hiram Smith agent for George Trapnall."
Filed 13 Oct 1868.