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mobilene

The National Road In Illinois

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That corroborates with what the historical signage at the Greenup bridge said: the route was paved in brick and concrete in the early 1920s.

 

I'm pretty sure you did post the 1916 TIB strip maps; didn't I put a snapshot of one of them in the writeup?

 

jim

 

 

Have to share a coupla things previously mentioned with the cool group here:

 

(1) Old bridges - Immediately east of Pocahontas, IL on the old alignment there is what I refer to as a ghost bridge on the north side of the road. Kip and I explored it once on our way to Marshall. The coolest bridges on 40 that I've seen, however, are in IN somewhere between Terra Haute and Indy. (Pat and Denny, can you help with the location and some detail?)

 

(2) Soda fountains, et al - I delivered daily newspapers on my Schwinn in '52 and frequently took time for a flavored fountain Coke at Miles' Drug. I eventually tried every flavor available; chocolate, pineapple, orange, cherry, strawberry, vanilla, raspberry, etc. Price was five cents per glass at a very cool, real-deal soda fountain. It's gone now.

 

When I was a senior in high school I had a part-time job at Wimpy's Drive-In on U.S. 36 which included peeling potatoes (50 pounds at a sitting) and hand-chopping them into fries, washing huge windows, cutting grass, mopping, and whatever else the owner wanted done for the amazing rate of fifty cents per hour. Eventually graduated to the counter/fountain area and that was pretty cool. The car hops, cute young ladies in short skirts, brought handwritten orders for drinks to me and I filled whatever was ordered. Shakes, cokes, water, etc. Also took orders from counter customers for the kitchen and delivered the finished product to the customer. I received a tip once; ten cents - and that was from my mom.....Bliss

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The coolest bridges on 40 that I've seen, however, are in IN somewhere between Terra Haute and Indy. (Pat and Denny, can you help with the location and some detail?)

 

I found one abandoned bridge and a couple-three bypassed bridges on US 40 last year when I explored between Indy and the IN/IL line. http://www.jimgrey.net/Roads/US40/index.htm and see esp. the White Lick Creek, Deer Creek, Big Walnut Creek, and Interurban pages.

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Brownwho63, always pleased to see you join the discussion!

 

Mobilene has done a wonderful job of describing this section of the National Road. Your ghost bridge is intriguing. If I get the chance, I want to see if it is mentioned in the road directions of the time. Do you recall any other specifics (eg distance from Pocahontas, direction, etc)

 

I guess delivering newspapers was the quintessential kids’ job of the 1950’s. I had a morning route....up at 3AM, go to the drop point, fold the papers with a few others who had routes, stuff em in my saddlebags, deliver the suckers, stop at the New York Bakery for a jelly donut, back home by 6AM....except Sundays when it took two or three bike loads to deliver the bigger paper. But I had a J.C Higgins...nothing so fancy as a Schwinn!

 

Did you ever throw a newspaper through a bedroom window at 4AM? Glass, screams, ...an ugly sucker who would have killed me if he wasn’t in his underwear and me on my bike. Ah, what the kids of today miss!

 

I do envy your soda fountain experience...my co workers were guys...but then the girls did come in for cokes. It was a good gig.

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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I worked on two different paper routes over time, both for my town's afternoon paper -- did it right after school. I walked the first route because most customers wanted their paper in specific spots, like inside the screen door, on the back porch, or inside the milk door. (You know the passthrough that the milkman could set the milk inside? Usually the outer door was on the driveway side of the house, and the inner door was in the kitchen.) The second was in a tonier neighborhood with larger yards, so I rode my Roadmaster 3-speed on that one. I rode through the yards, which I wouldn't like done at my house today, but nobody complained then. Today, of course, my paper is delivered by an adult motor carrier and I have to walk out to the end of the driveway to get it. Well, before I canceled the paper, anyway, for their perpetual propensity to improperly protect the paper from precipitation. (Avoid affective alliteration. Always.)

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Today, of course, my paper is delivered by an adult motor carrier and I have to walk out to the end of the driveway to get it. Well, before I canceled the paper, anyway, for their perpetual propensity to improperly protect the paper from precipitation. (Avoid affective alliteration. Always.)

 

It is a shame that many papers seem to be taking the youth out of the delivery system. Our local paper did the same recently, and it took a long time for them to find an adult who was willing to put the paper inside our front screen door like the special needs youth they replaced had done faithfully for a few years...

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My hometown was a typical city with grids of streets, making walking delivery feasible; a teenager still delivers my parents' paper and puts it just inside the screen porch.

 

Indianapolis has large areas like that in the older parts of the city. But I live out in the "old county" from before the city and county merged in 1970. It's full of small cul-de-sac neighborhoods off largish arterials. I don't know how you'd do a walking route out here. You'd have to do two or three of the neighborhoods for it to be worthwhile, and that would involve walking along a well-traveled street while loaded down with papers and thus not very agile, and that would be in the dark several months of the year.

 

I wish my kids could get a paper route. It's excellent work experience. But not where they live; it'd be too risky.

 

jim

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Brownwho63, always pleased to see you join the discussion!

 

Mobilene has done a wonderful job of describing this section of the National Road. Your ghost bridge is intriguing. If I get the chance, I want to see if it is mentioned in the road directions of the time. Do you recall any other specifics (eg distance from Pocahontas, direction, etc)

 

 

We didn't make specific notes about the location but I do recall that when you exit Pocahontas heading east there is an I-70 overpass and just east of that there's a left turn to an old roadhouse and small town on the original alignment. Anyway, just past the left turn to the roadhouse you can see old concrete bridge remains with a decent pathway that was the old alignment Perhaps Kip can shed more light on this but it's fairly easy to locate.

 

 

I guess delivering newspapers was the quintessential kids’ job of the 1950’s. I had a morning route....up at 3AM, go to the drop point, fold the papers with a few others who had routes, stuff em in my saddlebags, deliver the suckers, stop at the New York Bakery for a jelly donut, back home by 6AM....except Sundays when it took two or three bike loads to deliver the bigger paper. But I had a J.C Higgins...nothing so fancy as a Schwinn!

 

 

My first bike was a J.C. Higgins (from J.C. Penney, I believe) and it was a birthday gift from Mom and Dad. I was disappointed because I wanted a plain-jane Schwinn but it was wheels and I nearly rode them off for 3 or 4 years. I personally bought the new Schwinn, a blue and white beauty, from a dealer in '52 for $50 and rode the wheels off of it for a couple of years before it became "uncool" to ride a bicycle. I loved it so much that I still have it, flat tires and all. My wife has begged, pleaded, threatened, cajoled, and whatever else she could think of over the 36 years it's been taking up space in our current garage to try to make me get rid of it. I keep telling her "no dice" and I think she may have finally accepted the fact that it's going to stay. I don't actually understand this myself.

 

 

Did you ever throw a newspaper through a bedroom window at 4AM? Glass, screams, ...an ugly sucker who would have killed me if he wasn’t in his underwear and me on my bike. Ah, what the kids of today miss!

 

 

I delivered my 45 papers after school and then the Sunday edition on that morning. Lots of the other guys "folded" their papers into a sailing square prior to taking off but I always thought that took too much of my valuable time. Instead, I just reached into the bag and grabbed a paper, folded it in half with one hand. and tossed it onto the porch - folded edge first. Businesses had to be taken inside. There were some fussy customers who insisted the paper be put under a rock, inside the screen/storm door, etc. And there was none of the current procedure of the newspaper sending a monthly statement to the customer. Oh no, the way it worked in my little burg was that the paper carrier himself received a monthly statement from the newspaper and he was responsible for buying his own papers for the month. Don't recall what I actually paid per paper but it was less than the twenty-five cents per week per customer that I personally collected from each one and "banked". The difference, of course, was my profit. A very early lesson in capitalism.

 

 

 

I do envy your soda fountain experience...my co workers were guys...but then the girls did come in for cokes. It was a good gig.

 

 

A very good gig! I dated one of the carhops for awhile but it didn't work out mostly because she was an "older woman"- of one year - and because one of the varsity cheerleaders caught my eye while I was playing football. Turns out I married one of the other cheerleaders. Her only problem is that she doesn't like Schwinn bicycles. Ahhh; the good old days....Bliss

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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[bBut I had a J.C Higgins...nothing so fancy as a Schwinn!

 

Thanks for reminding me of J. C. Higgins. My early fishing rod was from that line. I had completely forgotten that name, but then I forget the name of the guy who sat next to me yesterday.

 

I do envy your soda fountain experience...my co workers were guys...but then the girls did come in for cokes. It was a good gig.

In the early 1970's I worked at a local Carvel Ice Cream stand. I went to an all male college, Lehigh University, at the time, and the Carvel was at the edge of the local all-female school, Cedar Crest College. When things were slow in early spring, my boss would have a local radio station announce a free ice cream cake for the first woman to arrive at the story in a bikini. It was always a welcome event.

I also remember the day that a Cedar Crest student arrived to order a soft ice cream cone. At that time we had only the walk up window on which we would need to raise the screen to serve the customers. This attractive woman had on a very loosely knit fish net tank top and nothing underneath. I was a bit befuddled about where to look and what to say, but I did break up my boss when I attempted to hand here the cone without first raising the screen. I think she had the effect she was looking for.

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Jim,

 

I just did Effingham. You have a real nack for making it fun! I like the road of many stripes. And the signs are great.

 

I pulled the 1913 ABB to look at the road at the turn.

 

Here are the directions heading west:

 

Leaving Effingham: Keep ahead across RR and immediately turn left.

 

At 0.3 end of street; turn right on brick pavement straight out or town, winding downgrade at 1.8

.

At 3.2 left hand road: turn left across iron bridge.

 

It looks as though you are correct, the road made a sharp left turn. I found the reference to brick interesting and I wonder if a turn off at the pin (see below) would have led to the site of the old iron bridge. Ahh, fodder for another trip!

 

Image2.jpg

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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Wow, those are great, great stories!

 

Brownwho63, keeping the old Schwinn all those years is amazing! What an incredible treasure. I’m glad to hear the wife has accepted your “foibles.”

 

And thanks for the bridge directions!

 

And Dave, trying to hand the cone through the screen is practically a movie clip! Boy, I wish I had had a boss that gave away gasoline for the first driver in a bikini....some guys have all the luck!

 

Dave, I looked at TR3’s on Ebay just to get a feeing for what I would have to pay for a new toy. Looks like I will be driving the family sedan a while longer!

 

You guys take care. I’ll see you down at the garage, or on the road!!

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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Daggone it, KTSOTR, every time you read one of my pages you come up with at least one new bit of info that makes me want to go back and investigate further!! An old friend, the one who told me about the brick road in the first place, wants to do this trip with me in the late fall, so I'll definitely be looking at this spot more closely.

 

That spot at the pin looks to me, fwiw, as just an access road to the old National Rd. I put the blue arrows in to show where I thought the road went.

 

10_Map_04.jpg

 

But what I'm writing here doesn't jibe at all with your ABB. So now I'm not sure. I want to go back to your pinpoint and see what kind of road is in there. If it's cement, esp. with the widening strips on either side, I'm sticking with my theory! If it's asphalt or dirt I won't be so sure anymore.

 

If you look on your screen shot, there's a spot on the tracks where the old road must have crossed. It shows up almost as blue. I'd like to go to that just to see. Wonder how much private property I'd have to traipse through to do that, though. After that one incident early this summer where I got chased off an abandoned alignment I didn't know was on private property, I'm skittish.

 

jim

 

Oh, and BTW. I have a bead on a 1914 and 1916 ABB, both Vol 4 to cover my part of the world. The 1914's cover is pretty torn up, and the 1916 looks well used but intact. Wish me luck on bidding.

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I hope you get the ABB's. If you don't, it should be easy to copy and send you what I have. I don't think I have a 1914 or 1916 Midwest, so if you get both or either, mine will complement them.

 

It is time to put Bo to bed and hit the sack myself, but so you don't get complacent, why wouldn't a turn at about your third arrow from the right cross the river at an opportune place? The distance from town is about right.

 

Anyway, I defer to the expert!

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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<...>so you don't get complacent, why wouldn't a turn at about your third arrow from the right cross the river at an opportune place? The distance from town is about right.

 

I guess I'm gonna have to just go back out there and see! But as I study it some more, it would make sense to have a hard left there so the road would cross that creek just past where it narrows down. Why build a longer bridge when a shorter one will do?

 

jim

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I guess I'm gonna have to just go back out there and see! But as I study it some more, it would make sense to have a hard left there so the road would cross that creek just past where it narrows down. Why build a longer bridge when a shorter one will do?

 

jim

 

Jim,

 

That was my thought as well, And there is another site there with an island which sometimes is handy for footings. In any event, the old road did cross the river, it was on an iron bridge, and it had to be within one or two tenth's of a mile (at most), based on the ABB directions. I haven't looked, but do the TIB's maps give any hints?

 

Dave

 

PS I am probably going to be following some old wagon roads in Oregon the next few days.

 

Keep the Show on the Road

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Just a couple of blocks west and of the Madonna (on 6th) is the Depot. I've only eaten there once but enjoyed it. Even though it looks a little fancy, the prices are very reasonable. The owner keeps (or did in May) XM's Bluesville playing; A fact that I appreciated much more than my waiter.

 

We're saddened to report that the following appeared in the Effingham, Ill., newspaper about a week ago ...

 

Vandalia Depot destroyed by fire

 

VANDALIA — A fire raged through the Vandalia Depot Monday morning shutting

down railroad traffic and leaving the building unstable.

Firefighters were called to the scene at 5:45 a.m. Monday to find smoke

rolling from the building, which was the former train terminal for the

Fayette County seat. In recent years, the depot was a restaurant owned by

Debbie Hamel.

The fire consumed the entire depot roof and Vandalia Fire Chief Merle

Adermann considers the nearly 85-year-old building a total loss.

As firefighters approached the building, smoke filled the building and the

entire parking lot, said Adermann.

According to Adermann, as he was conducting a

walkaround of the building’s perimeter an explosion occurred, blowing a set of doors off the building and

some soffit off the structure. Adermann suspects the explosion was caused by a backdraft

from built-up smoke and heat in the attic.

“I was about 16 to 20 feet from the double doors when it

exploded,” said Adermann, relieved the fire did not cause any injury.

“In 31 years I have never had that happen,” he said.

Since the building is located near train tracks, authorities

are concerned the vibrations of passing trains could threaten the damaged building’s

stability. Adermann said the railroad shut down the track while firefighters

extinguished the fire.

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We're saddened to report that the following appeared in the Effingham, Ill., newspaper about a week ago ...

 

Vandalia Depot destroyed by fire

What a shame. Technically, it wasn't on the National Road but it was darned close and was a good restaurant in an historical building regardless of location. I sort of had it penciled in for dinner on the way the the Chain of Rocks Bridge at the end of the month.

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