Archive for October, 2011

Norwegian plans for 2013 Lincoln Highway Tour

October 19, 2011

If you have a reliable car from pre-1979, 4 weeks to spare in July 2013, and a sense of adventure, you qualify for the LH 2013 Centennial Tour!

As the group explains at

Our goal is to gather 100 participants who will ship their historic vehicles to the U.S from overseas and spend 4 weeks crossing the American Continent on the Lincoln Highway. This will help raise public awareness and renew interest in the Lincoln Highway during its centennial celebration. U.S residents are also encouraged to join the tour making it as grand and diverse as possible. The tour will conclude at the Lincoln Highway’s western terminus; the Lincoln Park in San Francisco on July 26th, 2013, having covered an approximate 3,389 miles and journeyed through 13 states.

In June 2006, 17 antique American cars from Norway traveled Route 66 on its 80th anniversary. The trip was a private initiative by Harry & Henning Kjensli accompanied by friends and like minded Norwegian enthusiasts. The response received from participants and the public inspired them to launch the 2013 Lincoln Highway Centennial Tour. Check the web site for more info, including a schedule of each day’s travels.

Indiana declares Lincoln Highway a state byway

October 14, 2011

Indiana Lt. Governor Becky Skillman, and INDOT Commissioner Michael B. Cline, have signed a resolution designating the historic Lincoln Highway across northern Indiana as an official Indiana state byway. The Indiana portion of the Lincoln Highway now becomes part of the Indiana Byways Program.

The Indiana Lincoln Highway Association (INLHA) was incorporated in 2008 to begin work on the state byway designation. Through private donations from Indiana Lincoln Highway Association members, funds from Indiana Landmarks, and funds from the national Lincoln Highway Association, the INLHA conducted a resource survey to identify the route. Also identified were significant structures relating to Indiana Lincoln Highway such as historic bridges, tourist cabins, motels, gas stations, Lincoln Highway markers and monuments, and tourist camps. Approximately two years ago the INLHA submitted a state byway application to INDOT. Following two review meetings and the approval of the Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) across northern Indiana, the application was recently processed for signature by state officials.

The INLHA will now form the Indiana Lincoln Highway Byway Council with representatives from across the state. The INLHA and the Council will oversee the development of a Corridor Management plan that will include guidelines for road signage and the creation of tourism materials to promote the towns and businesses and events held along the route.
For more information, contact the Indiana Lincoln Highway office at 574-210-6278 or contact Jan Shupert-Arick, President, INLHA, at 260-452-8140.

Nebraska Archway gets repro Hammer Motel sign

October 12, 2011

A former Kearney icon has been replicated at the Great Platte River Road Archway. The Kearney Hub reports that the archway now displays a Hammer Motel sign, a replica of a much larger sign that once stood at the hotel on US 30 at 19th Ave on the west side of Kearney. Ronnie O’Brien, director of education and the Nebraska director for the Lincoln Highway Association, said the Hammer Motel sign was known across the country. The Hammer family operated the motel from 1947 to 1987. It then served as University of Nebraska at Kearney student housing until 1995, when it was razed. A historical marker commemorating a Lincoln Highway Seedling Mile was dedicated in April at the site of the motel.

I first reported on the Hammer Motel in 2008. (click for link)

2012 Lincoln Highway conference in Canton

October 11, 2011

The Ohio chapters of the national Lincoln Highway Association, along with the official Ohio Lincoln Highway Historic Byway, are planning to bring over 200 visitors to the McKinley Grand Hotel in June 2012 for a week of lectures, seminars, day-long road trips, and banquets all with the theme of “Pathways & Presidents” and celebrating the Lincoln Highway.

The 2012 Lincoln Highway Association conference begins Monday, June 18, with a welcome reception open to anyone wishing to have answers about the historic road. Later in the week will be a special Marmon automobile exhibit.

In addition to official East and West tours, organizer Jim Cassler says there will be additional trips focusing on Ohio’s Amish Country, a train ride on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railway, and a trip to the Packard Museum in Warren honoring Lincoln Highway co-founder Henry Joy, then President of Packard Motors. Presidential activities will include Canton’s McKinley and the First Ladies Museum, while a trip to Marion will highlight Warren Harding’s involvement in the early highway.

Visit or for general history of the highway. Registration information will be available there at a later date.

Pa LHHC Road Rally includes Ship Hotel mystery

October 6, 2011

Pennsylvania’s Lincoln Highway Heritage Corridor is once again staging a Lincoln Highway Road Rally this weekend, October 8 and 9. This year’s rally will start in Jennerstown and end at Mister Ed’s Elephant Museum in Orrtanna, 12 miles west of Gettysburg, and includes a mystery! Although registration has ended, you can see the group along the way with its many antique car participants.

This year’s rally starts 9:30 a.m. with breakfast at the Coal Miner’s Cafe in Jennerstown, then visit the Bicycle Built for Two Roadside Giant, the new Flight 93 Memorial and the former site of the Grandview Ship Hotel. Lunch at the Omni Bedford Springs Resort, then a quilt show and Civil War exhibit at the Bedford County Historical Society. The day will end with a visit to a second Roadside Giant, a giant quarter in Everett.

Sunday includes a stop at the 1920 Seldon Truck Roadside Giant and a visit to Chambersburg, tours of the Thaddeus Stevens Blacksmith Shop, and a picnic lunch at Caledonia State Park. The drive will end at Mister Ed’s Elephant Museum about 2:30 p.m.

Participants will be asked to help solve the murder of a former naval officer at the S.S. Grand View Ship Hotel west of Bedford. Clues will be posted along the route to help solve the crime.

To find out more about the rally or other LHHC events, e-mail or call 724-238-9030.

ACD and NATMUS Museum founder in fatal crash

October 6, 2011

Lincoln Highway Association Past-President Jan Shupert- Arick wrote to say that John Martin Smith was killed on I-69 last night with his wife Bobbie. He was a key figure in founding the Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg Museum and the National Automotive and Truck Museum in Auburn, Indiana, both of which were visited during the LHA conference in 2003. Jan writes, “John Martin was a prolific historian and preservationist. He was a friend and colleague and will be deeply missed. His wife Bobbie worked many years at the NATMUS Museum.” Image from


New Lincoln Highway photo book underway

October 5, 2011

For 14 years, Eric and Kass Mencher have devoted their photographic passion to visually documenting the landmarks, landscapes, and people of the Lincoln Highway. They’re in the final stages of self-publishing a book that celebrates the road’s upcoming anniversary. To see  a still-evolving 200+ page prototype click here to see “Almost Heaven.” Make it Full Screen to see the images large.

Even after a self-financed cross-country trip in both directions in 2010, they have some photographic gaps to fill and so are raising funds for the final work. More than $2,000 has been raised from 21 supporters. If you’d like to help, visit For donations of $275 and above, you’ll receive an archival print of your choice from the Lincoln Highway project. For donations of $150-$275, you’ll receive a copy of their prototype book. You can even make a donation without paying for it by clicking on “free credits.”

Illinois Lincoln Highway murals win scenic award

October 4, 2011

The Lincoln Highway National Scenic Byway in Illinois received a Scenic Byway Award for the “Interpretive Gazebos and Murals” project in the Interpretation category at the National Scenic Byways 2011 Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The large-scale works of art not only relay the significance and history of the Lincoln Highway, but serve as modern-day tourist attractions themselves. The artwork is produced by Jay Allen at his ShawCraft Sign Co. of Machesney Park, Illinois.

Accepting the award, above from left: Justin Hardee, Heritage Corridor CVB; Melissa Hendricks-Kribs, Illinois Department of Transportation; Cindi Fleischli, Illinois Office of Tourism; Bonnie Heimbach, Northern Illinois Tourism; Bob Navarro, Heritage Corridor CVB; and Sue Hronik, Illinois Lincoln Highway Coalition.

The newest Illinois Lincoln Highway Interpretive Mural was installed last week at 67 Main Street in Oswego, Illinois. Only the second vertical mural, it recalls the story of the Boy Scouts of America simultaneously planting thousands of Lincoln Highway concrete directional posts across the nation in 1928.

For more information on the Illinois Lincoln Highway, places to see and things to do, exciting, historic stories and to download an Illinois Lincoln Highway Visitor Guide, please visit