History of Roads?

The first indications of constructed roads date from about 5000 BC and consist of stone paved streets at Ur in modern-day Iraq and timber roads preserved in a swamp in Glastonbury, England.

Early tar-paved roads

In the medieval Islamic world, many roads were built throughout the Arab Empire. The most sophisticated roads were those of BaghdadIraq, which were paved with tar in the 8th century. Tar was derived from petroleum, accessed from oil fields in the region, through the chemical process of destructive distillation.

History of Modern Asphalt Paved Roads 

Today, 96% of all paved roads and streets in the U.S. - almost two million miles - are surfaced with asphalt. Almost all paving asphalt used today is obtained by processing crude oils. After everything of value is removed, the leftovers are made into asphalt cement for pavement. Man-made asphalt consists of compounds of hydrogen and carbon with minor proportions of nitrogen, sulfur and oxygen. Natural forming asphalt, or brea, also contains mineral deposits.

The first road use of asphalt occurred in 1824, when asphalt blocks were placed on the Champs-Élysées in Paris. Modern road asphalt was the work of Belgian immigrant Edward de Smedt at Columbia University in New York City.

By 1872, De Smedt had engineered a modern, "well-graded," maximum-density asphalt. The first uses of this road asphalt were in Battery Park and on Fifth Avenue in New York City in 1872 and on Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington D.C., in 1877.

The road system is Americas back bone,  just like ancient Rome and Greece We have developed an intricate road system that allows millions of Americans to get from point A to point B. Basically if there were no roads there would be no America.

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