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Celebrating our two-lane highways of yesteryear…And the joys of driving them today!

Larry F.

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Posts posted by Larry F.

  1. This is a suggestion - based on many personal trips - on how to avoid the hassles of traffic in the Chicago metro area along - primarily - I-80, I-90, I-94, and to some degree, I-88.


    I am one who loves to travel secondary roads whenever possible, but there are times that taking 2 lane roads through towns and cities is not a viable option.


    For folks coming from the north and / or west, I recommend taking I-39 south to I-74 at Champaign / Urbana, IL, and then taking I-74 east to Indianapolis where you meet I-65 and I-70 to continue your trip east or south.


    Coming from the south or east, just reverse that route to go north and / or west.


    From the Illinois / Iowa "Quad Cities" area, I-74 is a good route to go across Illinois toward Indianapolis, much better than I-80 to I-65.


    I-39 and I-74 are both excellent roads with much less traffic, and, if one is so inclined, "flow of traffic" speeds of 75-80 mph.


    The freeways and tollways around Chicago area almost always under construction and generally high volume, especially I-80 across the south part of the Chicago metro area all the way east to I-65 in Indiana.

    Accidents often will slow - if not STOP - traffic on the Chicago area freeways, and you may be stalled in traffic for a long time.


    There are good things to see and do in Chicago, if that's what you want to do, but if time is short and you want to avoid delays and hassles, avoid the Chicago area.


    Unfortunately if you are headed to/from locations mostly east and / or north of Chicago, there really is no good alternative to going right through the metro area. :(

  2. If you will let yourself NOT be in a hurry, and are headed from anywhere east or south towards the Black Hills, Devil's Tower and other points west and north, I highly recommend taking what the late Charles Kuralt called "one of America’s 10 most beautiful highways": Nebraska Highway 2.


    It takes you from the Grand Island area (on I-80) north and west through the Nebraska Sandhills

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sand_Hills_(Nebraska) to the Alliance area, where you should not miss

    seeing Carhenge ( http://www.carhenge.com ) and then easily on to Wyoming or South Dakota!


    See: http://www.sandhillsjourney.com/


    I feel the trip is especially beautiful in the late spring when the hills are "in bloom"!

  3. Hi, Road Dog, my friend! I do not disagree about IL Rt 47, but wow, the way the Yorkville and Morris areas are building up, Rt 47 is not nearly as good a bypass route as it used to be.


    As you know, I live in DeKalb (IL) - along I-88 - the E-W (Reagan) Tollway. We often travel to the Louisville, KY area to visit one of our daughters who lives there. I have found that, for me, the most pleasant way to get there is to go back west on I-88 to I-39 near Rochelle, then south to Champaign / Urbana, get on I-74 and go east to pick up I-65 at Indianapolis. It is a few miles (perhaps 25) miles farther, but it is actually less time, and I am thus able to TOTALLY avoid the Chicago metro area :D and all the hassles of Chicago's traffic, especially on I-80 across the south side into Indiana, which is always way too crowded and is almost always under construction!


    I recommend this routing frequently to any of my friends traveling from the north or west who are enroute to points south and / or east of Indianapolis. Unless one wishes to stop or visit in Chicago, one is, IMHO, well-advised to avoid the Chicago metro!


    Unfortunately if one is truly headed to points mostly due east of Chicago, there is NO GOOD WAY to avoid the Chicago metro area. Expects hassles and delays! I think it would be nice if the proposed "Prairie Parkway" became a loop that would run from I-90 all the way around the Chicago area to I-65 in Indiana, but I don't think it will ever really happen.


    Admittedly, this is all Interstate driving, but we are usually short of time, and for that purpose Interstates are great. When I have time, I do take secondary roads, including taking 2-lane state and federal highways through southern and southwestern Indiana - a trip I highly recommend! Great scenery down there, mostly all south and west of Indianapolis!


    If you're trying to get around Chicago and want to avoid the hassle of congested freeways and suburbia, I recommend Il-47. It runs from the Wisconsin border at Herbron and eventually ends up just west of Champagne.
  4. The plan for the proposed trail alongside Old Lincoln Highway includes a 3/4 mile paved trail to the south of the highway and informational kiosks. This is in the area of the restored brick section, somewhat west of Boys Town and east of (the now former) Elkhorn, NE. (I say former because Elkhorn was involuntarily annexed by Omaha. It's now just an Omaha neighborhood, a la "South Omaha" and "Benson", annexed years ago.)


    Full Omaha World-Herald article is at


  5. The Lincoln Highway Bridge, connecting Jersey City and Kearny, was renamed on Thursday, Sept 27, 2007, for Police Officers Shawn Carson and Robert Nguyen Memorial Bridge. The two Jersey City police officers plunged to their deaths on Christmas Day 2005 when they didn't realize the bridge deck had been opened.


    Full article can be seen at


  6. Gee whillikers! I've been posting in here for several months now, and just today discovered I hadn't looked at "page 2" of the LH Forum. I sure am glad I did as your pictures of your 2006 trip across the Lincoln Highway are remarkable. I greatly enjoyed them. Thanks for sharing them with us.


    Larry - a bit slow on the uptake at times


    ...New URL of my slide shows is http://isao-net.com/driving/LINCOLN/index.html


  7. The Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer, at Grand Island, Nebraska, is probably well-known to many who will read this. If you haven't been there, it's well worth a stop some time when you're traveling either the Lincoln Highway or that other wider, less-interesting highway known as Interstate 80!


    From the Museum's website: "...David H. Traill...the traveling executive sectary for the Iowa-Nebraska Lincoln Highway Association. This album appears to have been part of a photographic survey conducted by Traill of directional signs along the Lincoln Highway in Nebraska in the summer of 1939."


    These are some truly historic pictures of billboards serving as directional and promotional signs for the Lincoln Highway.


    Worth looking at



    The Stuhr has other info about the Lincoln Highway, too, at


  8. I noticed today there's an interesting LH-related item for sale on eBay, described as a "flat-tire" tag used by Hinman Super Service of North Platte, NE, probably dating from the 1920s. What caught my eye is that the business (Hinman) and the printer misspelled the name of the Yancey Hotel as "Yancy". The Yancey, now called the Pawnee and used as a retirement facility, is on the National Register. There was also a Yancey Hotel in Grand Island, NE. I grew up in Nebraska and know North Platte and Grand Island pretty well, and have never seen the name spelled Yancy.


    If you're interested, the eBay item is # 300152956824. I did not think I should post a "right-click" saved image from the eBay site in this forum. The tag for sale mentions that the business was on the Lincoln Highway

  9. ..We managed to stop before we ran into 6 or 8 cows headed northbound in the southbound lane..


    Some years back when I used to travel all over Nebraska as a part of my job, I used to fairly regularly use a county road which runs east and then south across the Box Butte tablelands from Alliance (NE) to Scottsbluff, as it was shorter and more interesting than taking the highways.


    One day I was about one-third of the westward along this route, when I encountered some outriders moving a large (multiple thousands) herd of cattle eastward, and I had to come to a complete stop. Shortly, one of the horseback riders angled over to my car and said, "Go slow and go ahead. They'll move."


    I felt like Moses parting the waters, but yes, indeed, they came to within a few feet of the front of my slow-moving car and diverted off to one side of the other. Ever had to swim upstream against the flow of a river? That was the feeling!


    Let's see you find THAT in the middle of Illinois or Indiana!!! LOL


    You won't find this type of experience anywhere outside of cattle country!




    ...Were the...


    I think the answer to every one of your questions is yes! At least it my experience it certainly has been!

    Certainly in almost every small town. It tends to get lost somewhat in larger towns and certainly more so in the cities.


    I think it was Garrison Keillor in one of his routines about Lake Wobegon said that in a small town you can't walk anywhere without people stopping to ask you if you want a ride!

  10. In a special article to the Washington Post (Sunday, Sept 2, 2007, Page P01), Gary Anthes has written an interesting article entitled "Ghost Roads of Nebraska". He mentions the Lincoln Highway, and other rural state and federal highways in Nebraska, including US 385 ("Gold Rush Byway"), Nebraska Highway 2 (Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway), and US 26 (Western Trails Historic and Scenic Byway). The article is not "in-depth" as the author's trip was only four days; clearly not enough to really "see" a substantial part of western Nebraska.

    IMHO, one could spend that much time just on the Lincoln west of Kearney!


    You will have to do a free registration with the Washington Post.com. I've been registered with them for a long time, and have not experienced any unsolicited email attributable to the registration.



  11. Hey, Larry, welcome to the American Road Forum. Lots of real "Road" folks here.


    From one ILHA person to another.


    Keep on Down that Two Lane Highway. --RoadDog


    Hey, Road Dog, my friend. Thanks for your post. By the way, I have some history with the "Mother Road", too. I have driven some segments of US 66 in Illinois, Missouri, and Oklahoma, although not extensively.


    You know of Devil's Elbow, MO? Back when I was stationed at Ft. Leonard Wood in 1968-70 after returning from overseas, I was of sufficient rank that I didn't have to live in on-base quarters. Another E-5 and I rented a small cottage in Devil's Elbow, about 1 block off the route of 66 which used to go right through the place. By then, I-44 had already been completed, and there was only local traffic on the route. As I recall, we had two taverns, a small grocery, and a Post Office. I drove through there the last time I was around Waynesville - Rolla several years ago, and there wasn't much left there - not that there was much there in the first place.


    I'm thinking I probably should have posted this in the Route 66 forum! And, when are you going to add a LH logo to your signature, too! HA!

  12. Here is the picture I took in July 2007 of the 1914 pennant. It's not the best picture, as the pennant and the other LH materials displayed are, understandably, under glass. The Fremont (Nebraska) Area Chamber of Commerce, in the historic old Post Office Building, at 6th and Broad Streets in Fremont, has a nice - albeit small - LH exhibit, which I believe is permanent.


    The city has marked the LH route through the city with smaller route markers, but I did not observe directional (turn) signs, so one would need to be careful not to lose the route.



  13. The magazine, Nebraska Life, published bi-monthly in Norfolk, Nebraska, has had at least one article about the Lincoln Highway and a number of advertisers situated on or near the LH mention the Lincoln in their ads. The most recent mention I've noted is a tourism ad for Columbus, Nebraska, sub-headlined "...along the Lincoln Highway" . The ad design includes a LH "Nebraska Byway" logo, in the Sept - Oct 2007 issue (pg 85).


    The article, called "Touring the Lincoln", was published in the May-June 2000 issue, which was before I was a subscriber and the issue is now, alas, out of print. I shall do some searching and see if I can find a copy of the article and perhaps get permission to reprint it.


    The website for Nebraska Life magazine is http://www.nebraskalife.com


    Also...by way of self-introduction, the following is part of a post I made to our Illinois Lincoln Highway Google Group ( http://groups.google.com/group/ILHA) :


    1. Grew up most of my life in Fremont, NE

    2. Lived/worked for several years in Denison, IA

    3. Lived/worked for several years in Kearney, NE

    4. Now live in DeKalb (well, actually Sycamore) IL


    All on the LH!


    I also lived for some period of time in Lincoln, NE - alas NOT on the LH - in Lancaster County - which is Nebraska is pronounced LAN - caster; not LANK - ester.


    I am active in the Illinois Chapter of the LHA and am also a member of the Nebraska Chapter.



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