414 A BICENTENNIAL HISTORY OF MISSISSIPPI lacked improved roads, diversified agriculture, and more advanced industry. Railroads provided transport to the towns along its course and for long hauls, but the farmers outside of town were several miles from the rail depot, and they were forced to use dirt roads “maintained” by each county. In 1910, Mississippi had 185 miles of paved roads in the entire state. By comparison, Tennessee had paved 4,375 miles of its roads. Horse-drawn wagons mired up to their axles whenever it rained. Farmers who made the difficult drive to town needed large lots to camp in for the day and sometimes overnight. The wagon lots were lively gathering places with camp fires for which local merchants often supplied the firewood. The farmers traded and exchanged stories during their foray into town, but such arrangements were not efficient or CORINTH MACHINERY COMPANY The Corinth Machinery Company building, constructed in the late 1860s, has been identified as the oldest industrial building in the Magnolia State. The structure was first home to the Alcorn Woolen Mill, with the Corinth Engine and Boiler Works taking the space in 1904. Eight years later, the business morphed into the Corinth Machinery Company, which was in operation until 1983. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, HISTORIC AMERICAN BUILDINGS SURVEY/HISTORIC AMERICAN ENGINEERING RECORD/HISTORIC AMERICAN LANDSCAPES SURVEY