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


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Posts posted by RoadDog

  1. This year was the 4th annual event which traverses 90 miles in Illinois from Joliet to Towanda. All twelve towns had stuff going on. This year, each town was giving out a puzzle piece as an added incentive to visit all twelve.


    We started at Dwight and went south to six in the two days and didn't get to the northern six.


    This was the first time we'd ever been able to catch the Ambler-Becker station in Dwight open. We saw the new Walldogs Museum in Pontiac and found the original site of the festival in Chenoa had been moved because of a collapsing building neat the gazebo.


    Especially liked the festival site in Lexington along the old southbound lanes of 66. Towanda had a nice party going on both days in the park, plus a classic car show on Sunday and a party at the Schenk's Garage.


    Lots of fun.


    Anyone else get to visit it?

  2. I came across a 16 vol. set of these offered on eBay with starting bid at $49.95. Sounds interesting. The books were published between 1902 and 1905 by Archer Butler Hulburt and covered Indian roads, Braddoock's and Forbes' roads, Boone's Wilderness Road, portages, military roads, the Cumberland Road, proneer roads and canals.


    Of special interest would be the last book titled "The Future of Road-Making in America" especially considering the 1905 date.


    Does anyone know anything about this set?

  3. December 21, 2009, Salt Lake City Tribune.


    Things are heating up in the state of Utah as to what to call US-Highway 6: Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) Highway or the Michael Dmitrich Memorial Highway after a retired colleague.


    Recently, Utah lawmakers passed a bill naming it the latter. After the local SUVCW (Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War) notified them that it already had a name, lawmakers said they were unaware of it.


    Now, there seems to be an impasse, even though the SUVCW are ok with both names being on it, as long as the GAR has top-billing.



  4. The Jan-Feb Preservation Magazine of the National Trust for Historic Preservation featured two old gas stations.


    The Humble Oil station in San Antonio won the "This Place Matters" contest. Hopefully, this will aid efforts at preserving it.


    The other was a 1921 Standard Oil station in Bowling Green, Kentucky, which was in really bad shape, but recently reopened as a major photographic destination.


    Always great when Americana like this is preserved.

  5. You've probably never heard of it, but had it not been for something that happened in the Civil War, Route 66 might have been routed through this town which no longer exists.


    A Union force of foragers was surprised while on a foraging expedition from Baxter Springs and massacred by Southern guerrillas. Eighteen (15 from the 1st Kansas Colored Infantry) were killed and their bodies mutilated at the Rader farm near Sherwood.


    The next day, Union troops from Baxter Springs, arrived and had the bodies burned in the Rader farmhouse, then the commander ordered every building within a five mile radius destroyed which included the 250 person town of Sherwood, then the third largest municipality in Jasper County (there was no Joplin at the time).


    Nothing remains today of the town except the cemetery which contains the body of a first cousin of Abraham Lincoln.


    Had Sherwood not been destroyed, Route 66 might have been built through Sherwood and Joplin never become the large city that it is.


    Sherwood was northwest of Joplin and west of Carthage.


    A county park was dedicated at the site of the Rader farm on November 11th.

  6. It's so sad to find out that noted Route 66 artist Bob Waldemire will not be with us much longer. He is back in Springfield, Illinois, and living in his converted school bus as his last days go by.


    It sounds like a lot of fans are stopping by tto visit. Liz and I are thinking of visiting next week.


    The Chicago Tribune had an article on him today and the web edition had an excellent video of him in his bus talking about his life.


    You can view both at



    Anyone have memories of Bob?

  7. Sorry to hear that Rich Rheingold reports that he is in a late stage of his cancer after battling it for a long time.


    He runs the US Route 20 Yahoo e-mail group and would like to know if anyone will take over running it.


    A great road person.


    Good luck and my prayers are with him.

  8. Or, just give a couple speeches to get the money to pay for the security.





    I read and enjoyed that myself not long ago and even briefly met the author on a stop in Richmond, IN. With luck, there will be a review in an upcoming issue of American Road Magazine.


    Regarding Jim's "amazing to think that something like this ever could have happened" comment, Truman had no secret service protection and no pension when he left office. He received both later. Starting with George W, Secret Service protection goes away for ex-presidents after ten years. When that happens, GWB will be the first ex-president since Truman without government paid guards hanging around. Maybe he'll take a road trip then :D


  9. Continuing with Friday.


    Next stop was Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis and the graves of John Dillinger (folks put coins on it, I guess because of his love of money), Pat's grandfather, 23rd President Benjamin Harrison (not that big of a monument as you'd expect), and Carl Fisher. Considering his importance for the Lincoln Highway, Dixie Highway, Miami Beach, and Montauk, Long Island, you'd think it would be marked better. All there is, is a family mausoleum with the name Fisher on it and nothing else. That should be corrected. Perhaps a job for Americn Road?


    The highest point in Indianapolis is the hill in the cemetery with the grave of Little Orphan Annie poet James Riley. Nice view of downtown Indianapolis and the old US-421 alignment. The hill, Fisher, and Harrison grave are all right by each other.


    I later found out that the last of Carl Fisher's big projects was the Caribbean Club Resort in Key Largo, Florida. It was designed to be a regular guy's resort. A very little bit of the film "Key Largo" was filmed here. The original building burned down, but the Caribbean Club still exists as a bar. This is always our first stop when going to the Keys. Great views and they are open almost 24 hours a day. Just the place for a welcoming cocktail.


    Keys Disease, you know. "No thinking, just drinking." --RoadDog

  10. As Ned might say to Phil on "Groundhog Day", "That first step's a doozy."


    The Sears Tower will be opening balconies on the 103rd Floor Observaion Deck. You walk out on some special glass and look straight down. The view will be off to the west so you can see both alignments of Route 66 and Ogden.


    There will be no extra charge, but they did raise the fee to the deck to $14.95. (And knowing the mayor, there's probably a tax on it.) That's up a buck.


    You have until this summer to go to the Sears Tower. After that, it will become the Willis Tower.


    Not much liklihood I'll go out on THAT!!!



  11. Again, I would like to thank the Roadmavens for taking me out to Indianapolis' Crown Hill Cemetery April 24th. That is one HUGE place.


    A highlight was seeing Carl Fisher's grave which is in a small vault. Unfortunately, there is just the name Fisher on it and nothing anywhere else that would indicate his prominence. That is too bad for someone with such a huge impact on Indianapolis with the Dixie Highway and the Speedway, and, of course, the US in general with the Lincoln Highway and Miami Beach.


    It would be great to have a marker erected for the general public and for roadfolk to easier locate it (near President Harrison's grave) when making pilgrimages.

  12. AR CRUISIN'-- INDY 500


    I met the Bremers Friday at morning at Charlie Brown's on Main Street of Speedway. Great place for breakfast (I highly recommend the Charlie Brown omelet). A major renewal program is planned for the downtown, unfortunately involving some traffic circles. I hate traffic circles. I think my mom was scared by one when she was carrying me.


    We took a very informative ride on the Indy 500 track for $3 and then toured the museum for another $3. The drive made a feel like a race car driver. I didn't know about the strip of original brick at the start/finish line or the Pagoda. How many lights were in that pole?


    Then, there were all those cars that won the race and the old cars in the museum. I'm not much of race fan, but there is a lot of history here, especially since it's the 100th anniversary of the track this year and the 100th anniversary of the race in 2011.


    This was a $6 well-spent.


    I hadn't planned to buy anything, but shot glasses and fridge magnets are a personal weakness, especially with this year's Indy 500 taking place on May 24th, my birthday. A bunch of stuff had the date on it. Forced to give up some dough.

  13. I want to thank the Bremers for taking me out to Crown Hill Cemetery and seeing the burial vault of Carl Fisher. Sad to see there is nothing but the name Fisher on it. There is nothing else to explain his prominence.


    Quite an interesting life that man led.

  14. Made it home in the rain Monday night.


    Nothing like a good cruise with a bunch of road folk.


    Not only did I cruise the National Road behind the Bremers from Indy, and, of course then with the group Saturday to Springfield, but also Lincoln Highway from Delphos to Fort Wayne and then US-30 to the Lincoln Highway from Aurora to Geneva, Illinois.


    Old roads, interesting footsteps, car races, movies, bridges, and signs. Now, that's one good extended weekend. Oh, yes, did I mention EATIN'.


    Thanks Pat and Denny for setting the whole thing up.

  15. De Plane!! De Plane!!! I remember the big control tower while trying to keep up with Denny and Bliss.


    Would have liked to meet you. Next time.


    Da Road Dog






    Looks like a good time was had by all! I honestly thought about an unannounced fly in to connect with you guys, but a family emergency ended that idea. I'll have to enjoy the cruise via Denny's and other's photos and stories. Maybe next year!




    Keep the Show on the Road!


  16. Never let it be said that I'd pass up bbq. Just hope it's as good as eastern Carolina barbeque, but, hey, any bbq is good bbq.


    It'll just be me as the wife won't be able to go.


    I'll be heading to Indy Thursday and loking forward to seeing Carl Fisher's grave and all that the Maven has planned.

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