I just wrote a newspaper article about Maysville, Ohio, pop.: not much. It’s just a small cluster of homes that are loosely configured around an intersection on Rte. 309 here. But Maysville wasn’t always like that. In the mid-1800s, it was a bustling town with two general stores, one shoe store, two blacksmith shops, two hotels, one small manufacturing plant… It was a day horse/buggy ride west of Lima, Ohio, and travelers would stop here for the night. What’s more, many were simply employed and lived here. It was, primarily, a good model of a decentralized community. Then the railroad came, and passenger trains bypassed the town, freight trains bypassed the town, and the town, incrementally, died — as did many other towns across the nation at the time. According to a book I’ve been recently reading (see photo), “…the railroad was warmly embraced by the American people almost from its inception. Its utility in unifying the nation and creating a strong national economy were apparent to nearly everyone.” Everyone except, of course, and apparently, the merchants in Maysville, Ohio.