Do you know which highway was the responsible for bridging the two coasts? The Lincoln Highway was the first successful transcontinental highway and served as the catalyst for the driving improvements that were being demanding by an increasingly mobile public and the carmakers of Detroit. It was the first all-weather, coast-to-coast, automobile highway.
The Illinois Lincoln Highway is a 179-mile National Scenic Byway and once the most famous road in America. Those who travel the Lincoln Highway route across northern Illinois will discover communities rich with culture. In Illinois, the route is now U.S. 30, Illinois 31 and Illinois 28 and begins in Chicago Heights and ends at the Mississippi River in Fulton.
The byways are dotted with gazebos and murals to help share the stories and illustrate the significance of the Lincoln Highway and its communities. Few of the original Lincoln Highway markers designed by Jens Jensen still exist, including one near Franklin Grove.
There are 16 Illinois Lincoln Highway Coalition Gazebos across the Illinois route and enclosed interpretive panels offer visitors intriguing stories about the Lincoln Highway and its local communities. 43 communities are Certified Communities of the Illinois Lincoln Highway Coalition (ILHC).
The Coalition works closely with local historians, civic leaders and talented artisans to create interpretive murals for each of the communities. Currently 27 murals have been completed and the remainder will be completed in the near future.
Has your travels had go drive the Illinois Lincoln Highway? Have you spotted the markers, murals or gazebos during your rides?
Megy Karydes is a professional writer that covers travel, business and sustainable living. Find her at KarydesConsulting.com.