Thursday, September 6, 2007

First, Illinois Had the Lincoln Highway...Now the US Grant Memorial Highway

I forgot to mention that on our drive out to Galena and Dubuque on August 22nd, that I noticed that at every intersection along US-20, there were signs proclaiming this to be the "US Grant Memorial Highway" with a picture of him in Civil War uniform. I'd never seen these signs before.

I've since found out that IDOT has placed 125 of these signs along the 196 miles of US-20 in the state. Us-20 was officially designated the "Grant Memorial Highway" by the General Assembly in 1955, but it has taken them this long to put up signage.

According to the official statement, "Illinois is the Land of Lincoln and the Land of Ronald Reagan, but it's also the Land of Ulysses S. Grant." He was born in Ohio in 1822 and died in New York in 1885. But, in between, Illinois had a major impact on his life. He was living in Galena at the start of the Civil War, and a grateful citizenry gave him a house at 500 Bouthillier Street after the war.

He became the commander of all US forces in the war and later became the nation's 18th president.

The signage also commemorates the upcoming 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War in 2011.

Illinois already has a portion of the Lincoln Highway and I-88 is the Ronald Reagan Highway so we are set as far as our two claims to the presidency and highways.

Cruisin' on Down the US Grant Highway. --RoadDog

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