Travel was of great importance in Polk County's early days. Civilized Indians—particularly Creeks, Alabamas, Coushattas and Kickapoos—were numerous and had many trails for intercommunication. Long King's Trace (named for a chief) led from Alabama villages through site of present Livingston, past site of this marker. The Coushatta Trace began in Louisiana, wound through what is now Polk County, joining (more than 100 miles west) an ancient road into Mexico. The Alabama Trace branched off El Camino Real (The King's Highway) east of Nacogdoches and came to the site of present Alabama-Coushatta Reservation. Indians started many other local roads.
A Mexican-Indian trail became the Nacogdoches-Liberty Stagecoach Road, after white settlement began in the 1820s. Settlers brought in goods by Trinity River boats, establishing 20 landings (or wharves) on the 72 miles of Polk County riverfront. Roads led to the interior from the landings; boats handled shipping of county produce for many years.
Northeast of Livingston is the "Old Israel Road"—named for a religious colony whose buildings have disappeared. As with many of the Indians, memory of these people is preserved only in the road's name.