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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Almanac/Going Down the Road

Air Date: Week of

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This week, we have facts about America's first cross-country highway. Ninety years ago, the 3,300-mile Lincoln Highway became the Main Street across America.


[MUSIC: Leo Kottke “Vaseline Machine Gun” 6 and 12 String Guitar (1969) Takoma Records]

CURWOOD: Welcome back to Living on Earth. I’m Steve Curwood.


CURWOOD: The Lincoln Highway once connected Time Square in New York to Lincoln Park in San Francisco. And in 1928, Boy Scouts marked the highway with small busts of its namesake Abraham Lincoln. Each of the eleven states the highway passed through set up kiosks to greet visitors.

Today, the Lincoln is sectioned into several different interstates and the route has strayed from its original path. The kiosks and most of the Boy Scout markers are gone. To mark the anniversary, one hundred motorists re-traced the routes they once took along the 3,000 mile Lincoln Highway.

Car buff Bob Lichty from Canton, Ohio made the trip in his--what else?—Lincoln Town car.

LICHTY: To follow the original Lincoln Highway you have to know for example that this frontage road across the great Salt Lake is actually the old Lincoln Highway, or a dirt road in Nebraska to a town that has no real roads in it is the same way. It’s almost a little bit like a scavenger hunt. It actually makes it kinda fun.

CURWOOD: Bob and the rest of his caravan made the cross-country trip in a leisurely 17 days. And for this week, that’s the Living on Earth Almanac. What did you do this summer?




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