Wednesday, February 28, 2018

A Big Job in DeKalb in 1917

From the September 6, 2017, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"James Coyne, who is in charge of excavating work for the new garage at the corner  of First and Lincoln Highway, has been working diligently on the 'hole' and today has one of about seven-foot depth.

"Mr. Coyne has had  a large force of men at work ever since the work started and says that a ten-foot excavation is necessary and will mean the hauling out of much dirt."

Gonna Be A Big One.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Sycamore to Lidgerwood, N.D., Auto Trip in 1917

From the September 30, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"F.B. Townsend, Charles Townsend and John Organ of Sycamore left Monday morning on an automobile trip to Lidgerwood, N.D., a distance of some 700 miles.

"Word was received that they traveled the first 150 miles in four and one-half hours, and in a Ford at that, and reached Waterloo, Iowa, the same night, covering 260 miles in one day.  They expect to be away from home for three weeks."

Auto Travel Getting Faster in 1917.  --RoadDog

Monday, February 26, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 7: No Uglys, Nashville Traffic, Alabama


Took I-65 south, past the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green and stopped at the gas station in White House where I used to get Chocolate Uglys, but they don't sell them anymore, so don't have to stop there anymore.

Now approaching Nashville and that horrible, horrible traffic.  Traffic without end.  We were hoping that at 9 a.m. that much of the rush hour would be over.  We were especially concerned with a big slowdown with lots of trucks north of Nashville where 65 is just two lanes.  But when we got to Nashville, traffic was heavy, but no stoppage.  Not bad for Nashville.  Again, it always seems that whatever lane you're in trying to follow I-65 through the city, you're in the wrong lane and never easy to get over to where you need to be.  Nashville seriously needs a huge bypass a long way outside city limits.

Then to Alabama (Sweet Home Alabama according to the welcome sign) and past that great big rocket welcome center to Alabama.  That is impressive.  We stopped and split one of the Hardee's $5 boxes ( double cheeseburger, hot dog, fries, cookie and drink)  The drive from the Alabama border to Birmingham always  seems to take forever.


Bumpy Illinois Highway 64 By Sycamore Gets Governor a Challenge

From the August 9, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1967, 50 Years Ago.

""Although Governor Kerner has not yet accepted Sycamore Mayor Harold Johnson's invitation to visit the city and to take a ride on bumpy Highway 64 east and west of the city, some patching was done on the highway's east entrance to Sycamore."

Bumpy Roads in Illinois?  Who'd have Figured?  --RoadDog

Friday, February 23, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 6: Arrival at Elizabthtown, Kentucky


And, those trucks from hell kept up their scare tactics most of the way through Louisville.  Where are the cops you need them.

We got off for gas and finally were rid of those trucks.  We were out of the Louisville city limits we believe as I don't want to give this shamed city any business if I can help it.  But, as I said, at least we were rid of those horrible trucks.

Got back on and drove to Elizabethtown where we got off and got a room at the Motel 6.  When we're just traveling, we try to pay the least we can for a room, and this fit the bill.

We drove over to the nearby Lone Star Steakhouse.  All we wanted was a couple two three cocktails, but these stake houses serve drinks, but don't have a bar so we had to sit at a table.  Always hate to take up a table when we aren't going to order food at places. We split a shrimp appetizer, though.  And then, they had peanuts in the shell.  I REALLY like peanuts!

I Survived.  --RoadDog

An Accident on the Lincoln Highway in 1917

From the September 30, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"A Ford Car, occupied by four persons, blew off a tire, ran into a ditch and upset yesterday afternoon on the Lincoln Highway about two miles east of DeKalb

"None of the passengers was hurt.  The top of the flivver and one wheel were smashed.  The car was set upright, a new wheel adjusted and the party went on its way."


Pulling Out of the Quick Sands in Sycamore, 1917

From the August 9, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Workmen have begun operations on the stretch of state aid road between the Sycamore limits and the DeKalb township line out near the Claycomb place.

"The cement road from the city limits on each side of the of the street car tracks runs to where it turns into the side of the highway at which place it will follow the center of the highway.  This will carry ba very pleasant message to those who have traveled the quick sands or worse along the pike between Sycamore and the end of the state road at the township line."


Thursday, February 22, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 5: The Shame of Louisville


You have to pay $2 to cross the I-65 Bridge into Louisville, $4 if you don't have E-Z Pass as you will be mailed the bill.  There are no booths to collect your toll either.

Louisville is on my no visit list because they were one of the first cities to take down their Confederate monument.  I've written a lot about it in my Saw the Elephant Civil War blog, where I refer to the city as (l)ouisville in lower case for its shame.  I also will do no more at present than drive through it if necessary, but otherwise will boycott any and all things dealing with it.

And, that's too bad because I really like the Hot Brown sandwich (maybe I can get one elsewhere) and have always wanted to go to the Kentucky Derby.  Perhaps, though, at some time I will be able to forgive the city and University of Louisville (home of Rick Pitino) for their desecration at which time I will be able to visit.

As far as paying the toll, if I am sent the $4 bill, I am a lot more likely to tell them why I am not going to pay it and instead send my money (plus some) to Brandenburg, Kentucky, which stepped up, did the right thing and took the monument. have since put it up.

Some Things Just Aren't Right.  --RoadDog

New Island Off Cape Hatteras, N.C.

From the June 27, 2016, Yahoo! News.

This new island is called Shelly Island after all the shells that can be fond on it.  It is formed by the changing tides of the Atlantic Ocean right off the Cape Hatteras Point.

Two major Atlantic water currents converge in the area: the Gulf Stream and the Labrador Current.

Shelly Island will either continue to grow or perhaps disappear.  Right now it is about a mile long and several hundred yards across.

Authorits warn, though, that it can be dangerous to go to it.

Something Else to See at Cape Hatteras.  --RoadDog

The Corner of Lincoln Highway and First Street in DeKalb, Illinois, Circa 1935

From the July 5, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

Picture of the corner of Lincoln Highway and First Street in DeKalb, Illinois.  It shows the Ward's store and the Standard Oil gas station circa 1935.

This was the gas station so many of the entries from the MidWeek that I have been doing in this blog this past year.

Today, the gas station is no longer there and it is a park.


Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 4: Indy Rush Hour and the "Trucks From Hell"


Took I-74 southeast from Illinois.

Leaving as late as we did, that guaranteed we'd hit Indianapolis during rush hour (that along with losing the hour when we entered Eastern Time).  Normally, going to North Carolina, I take I-70 through the city, but since we were going to I-65 to Louisville, we took the bypass, I-465, around Indianapolis.

Traffic was heavy, but only once did we slow down to 20 mph.  The rest of the way it was fast running.  I use the term fast-running, because all interstates by Indy are 55 mph or less.  You'd only drive at that speed with a death wish as you'd get run over.

Heavy traffic once on I-65 heading south for awhile and then it opened up.  We made good time.

However, from about twenty miles north of Louisville, our lives were endangered by the antics of between twenty and twenty-five trucks in some sort of a convoy and going way over the speed limit.  I mean WAY over the speed limit.  They were also driving in the left lanes which they weren't supposed to be doing.  Nothing like looking into your rear view mirror and seeing nothing but truck grill.  They were riding that close.  At times they were three across all lanes.

Sure wish there'd been a cop around.

I call them the "Trucks From Hell."

Scared, But Survived.  --RoadDog

About That Gas Station At the Corner of First and Lincoln Highway

From the July 5, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"The Standard Oil Company fueling station at the corner of First and Lincoln Highway is in the hands of the finishers at this time, and the building will probably be ready for occupancy in the course of the next ten days."

Well, as we know, it still wasn't ready by January.  Building delays even back then?


Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 3: Some More Great Illinois Travelin' Stations

Once out of range of WDRV, 97.1 FM and the Ten at Ten to 1979, we listened to METV FM 87.7, as far to the left as you can go on the dial.  They play music from the 60s, 70s and 80s.  Unfortunately, it is canned music, but the selection is great and they play a lot of songs we haven't heard on the radio for a long time and fairly often, songs from those eras that we don't know.  Fortunately, they run the names of the songs and singers across the radio dial in the car.  And, obviously, they every so often play theme songs from TV shows.  Great station.

When METV FM gets too weak at Yorkville, we tune over to WJEZ FM, 98.9, Classic Hits in Pontiac.  Then, we tune into WGCO, 106.3 FM in Gibson City which plays beautiful music and oldies.  I never thought I'd be listening to a beautiful music station AND ACTUALLY LIKING IT, but this one has me.

Once that station fades out, we get WKIO Classic Hits, 107.9 FM out of Champaign-Urbana, Illinois.  I'm listening to it right now over the internet and the last three songs are Jimmy Buffett's "Margaritaville," the Raspberries "Go All the Way" and "Sunshine of Your Love" by Cream.

KIO was the name of my dorm floor back in my freshman year at Northern Illinois University, Keggers Independent Organization.  I wonder if the Champagn radio station has anything to do with KIO?

Groovin' Down the Road.  --RoadMusicDog

Unsafe Rail Crossings in 1942

From the July 5, 2017, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"The rail crossing leading into the yards of the factories between Fourth and Sixth Streets at Sixth Street is being repaired today.

"Of late it has become dangerous for cars of any description to use it.  Many of the the crossing spikes were forced out and were not safe for auto traffic."


Monday, February 19, 2018

A Growing Automobile Business in DeKalb in 1917

From the July 26, 2017, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Terry Redmond has been more than busy on account of the fact that he has been moving his office from his residence to Quinn's garage in DeKalb.  Terry says he will have two private telephone lines, of the same number, 197, two drivers at the office all night to take care of all night calls that chance to come his way.

"The downtown office will be of great help to the local hustler in his business and his many fiends about the city bespeak for him greater success."

A three number telephone line?

Growing Auto Business.  --RoadDog

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 2: Radio Tunes

As I mentioned in my last post, we listened to the radio a whole lot on our way to Panama City Beach.

Since we were somewhat late getting off on the first day of the trip, we were able to listen to Bob Stroud's Ten at Ten on Chicago's WDRV, first at 96.9 FM and then 97.1 FM as we got further south.  Always a favorite thing for me.

The year ten songs were chosen from was 1979.

COOL CHANGE--  Little River Band

WE DON'T TALK ANYMORE--  Cliff Richards
I NEED A LOVER--  John Mellancamp

LOVE IS THE ANSWER--  England Dan and John Ford Coley

Brought Back Some Memories.  --RoadDog

About That Gas Station at First Street and Lincoln Highway in DeKalb in 1917

From the May 3, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Work has commenced this morning on the erection of the new service station which the Standard Oil Company will install at the corner of First Street and Lincoln Highway in DeKalb next to the Chronicle building."

There was lots of coverage of the building of gas stations in the paper back in 1917 as the automobiles were well on their way to replacing horses as the main mode of transportation.

The Chronicle had a  lot of coverage on this particular building, which still wasn't finished as the year of 1918 dawned.


Saturday, February 17, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 1: Radioing Through Illinois

We just returned from Panama City Beach, Florida.

We found warm...mostly.  But, anyway, even the quite cool mornings warmed up and overall, temps were mostly in the 60s.  During that time, back in Spring Grove, Illinois, averaged in the 20s most of the time, and with 12 inches of snow.

All-in-all, much nicer in PCB.


Went through e-mails, watered plants and packed for the trip.

We listened to the radio much of the way through Illinois.

Took our usual Chicago bypass, Illinois Highway 47 from Woodstock to Mahomet by I-74.

We got gas in Morris for $2.36 and stopped at the Burger King there which was recently remodeled.  They are the only Burger King we know of that still sells the tacos.  Their tacos are the closest to Jack-in-the-Box's and we really love those.  Always a stop for us in Litchfield, Illinois, when we're doing Route 66.  It is the closest Jack's that we know.    (We have found out that the Jack's restaurants in Alabama are not Jack-in-the-Box.)


The Case of the Purloined Cash Box in 1917

From the June 28, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"One of the conductors of the DeKalb-Sycamore street car line was on his way yesterday afternoon at three o'clock, ready to turn in for the day.  His strong box containing tickets and money was in the rear of the car as usual.

"At Sycamore, there was a crowd of youngsters taken on an outing at Electric Park.  When the youngsters left the car, one of them took the strong box along, and for a short time the conductor was a triffle worried.  He went to the park on the next car, and with the aid of the school ma'am recovered the property."

Juvenile Delinquents 100 Years Ago.  --RoadDog

Angle Parking Comes To the Lincoln Highway in DeKalb in 1917

From the June 28, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"In accordance with the action of the city council at the meeting of last week, the new traffic ordinance was published Saturday in The Chronicle.

"It will be noted that the new law calls for angle parking of cars on Lincoln Highway between First and Fourth street and the same will be in effect in a short time.  In this way, the city authorities hope to eliminate all chance for accidents and at the same time allow more cars to park on Lincoln Highway during the season."

Diagonal parking definitely easier than that cursed parallel effort.

Stop That Parallel Parking Downtown.  --RoadDog

Friday, February 16, 2018

Panama City Beach's Wild Willie Radio: Real Country Legends

We just got back from our somewhat annual trip to Panama City Beach, Florida, where I came across this great radio station, evidently fairly new, Wild Willie, 100.1 which plays great oldies country songs from the last 30 years,.  That was the only station I had on the whole time we were in PCB.  Also listened to it all the way from PCB into Alabama on Wednesday.

I am listening to it right now while typin' away with my two little fingers back in the cold, cold Northlands.  You can be sure I will  be listening to this station a lot from here on out.

I also like another classic station out of Galax, Virginia, called Classic Country 98.1 FM, WBRF which plays even older songs.

Between the two of them, I will get my country fill.

They're playing Bocephus' "Whiskey Bent and Hell Bound" right now at 9:03 a.m..

Good Music Maynard.  --RoadDog

Along 66, January 2018: Forest Manor Motel and Classen Circle

JANUARY 12-  The closed Forest Manor Motel in Lebanon, Missouri, may be converted into a homeless shelter.  This motel is across the street from the Munger-Moss Motel.  I don't know about this.  I like to see efforts to help the homeless, but you never know what kind of activity might result.

JANUARY 15--  The Classen Circle site in Oklahoma City has been sold and avoids the wrecking ball.  I don't remember seeing it, but it looks like a neat site in the pictures I've seen.  Glad it might remain.

JANUARY 22--  The Carthage, Missouri, Chamber of Commerce has honored Camp Me Casa for revamping a once-decrepit property and turning it into a nice RV park.

Always Glad For Something, Anything, Being Revitalized Anywhere, But Especially Along You-Know-What Road.  --RoadDog

Travelin' With My Music

Music is a big part of any of my travels down the road.  I go between radio stations and CDs.  (Well, if I had a cassette player on the '11 Malibu, I'd play that as well.

My brother and sister swear by that Sirius/XM radio with no commercials, and I enjoy it when I get in their cars, but would rather get local color as I travel and that means the local radio stations.  With Sirius/XM, it is the same old same old the whole way.  You never know what you're going get, even that horrible rap.  Needless to say, those stations don't stay on very long.

Now, when I'm traveling by myself, I put on CDs that I haven't heard before, but when Liz is with me, as was the case for the trip to Panama City Beach these past two weeks, I bring along greatest hits collections as she likes songs she's heard before.

We made a long list of good stations (Oldies and Country Oldies mostly) which we listened to on the recent trip.


Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Lincoln Highway Becomes a Mud Hole in 1917

From the June 28, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Of late much complaint has been heard concerning the Lincoln Highway east of DeKalb, especially between Maple Park and Cortland.

"From what facts are obtainable it is said that the road has been plowed up, and instead of a gravel road that was in evidence there, it is now a mud road, unpassable in wet weather."

Evidently the Lincoln Highway was still not all paved by 1917, four years after it was created.

A Mud Time On the Old Road Today.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Intersection of the Lincoln Highway and Burlington Way in DeKalb Marker in 1917

From the May 3, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"J.H. Jarboe, as president of the DeKalb County Good Roads Association and ex-officio member of the committee of the association in regard to the placing of the monument at the corner of Fourth and Lincoln Highway, marking the intersection of the Lincoln Highway and Burlington Way, says today that the marker will be ready to install by June 1.

"The marker as placed by the committee at the time will be six feet high, with base 18-inches square and the marker tapering to the glass globe at the top which will protect the electric light which will be used at night.  The marker will be embellished with a bronze tablet and on the east and west side will be the official sign of the Lincoln Highway, while the north and south side will carry the emblem of the Burlington Way."

So, current Illinois Highway 23 was once part of the Burlington Way road.

I wonder what happened to this marker?


Monday, February 12, 2018

The "Dog" Ghost in the "Foreign" Section of DeKalb in 1917

From the May 17, 2017, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"The police department was called on this morning to take care of a dog in the foreign section of the city.  The officer giving attention to the call found that the inhabitant believed his house to be haunted as each night at the stipulated time, some person or animal would come to the house, and create a disturbance.

"The foreigner stood it as long as he could and last night remained up for the night armed with a shotgun.  About 9:30 a dog put in an appearance and the shotgun soon put an end to the ghost.  However, the foreigner still believes in ghost and proposes to move at once."

A story better suited for around October 31.  A "Foreign" section of DeKalb?

Dogs Best Beware At That House.  --RoadDog

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Along 66, January 2018: Kingman Gateway Arch, John T. Woodruff and the Rose Bowl

These are taken from the Route 66 News which has a daily list of things happening along 66.  I just pick out the ones of most interest to me.

JANUARY 7--  Kingman considers a gateway arch design.  They will choose from five possible choices.  I always like a good gateway arch for a city like the one in Dixon, Illinois.

JANUARY 7--  John T. Woodruff's 150th birthday commemorated in Springfield, Missouri.  he was a major early developer of the city and a key figure in the establishment of Route 66.  His former Kentwood Arms Hotel in Springfield is now a dormitory of Missouri State University.

JANUARY 9--  Tulsa's unique 1961 Rose Bowl building is reopening as the 918 Flea Market.  The Rose Bowl opened as a bowling alley.

I always like to see a new use for an ld structure, especially a unique one.


Friday, February 9, 2018

Another Gas Station in DeKalb in 1917

From the May 3, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Sawyer & Son of DeKalb have made arrangements with the Standard Oil Company where they will install a filling station there at once and be able to take care of all wants along that line.

"It is said that the filling stations up and down the Lincoln Highway from coast to coast will endeavor to cater to motorists in a tip top manner."


Interurban Picture

From the May 3, 2017, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back.'

Every week the "Looking Back" article has a picture that the good folks at the Joiner Library in Sycamore, Illinois, have dug up.

The accompanying photograph was of the Sycamore-Woodstock Interurban Trolley southbound under the Illinois Central tracks in Genoa, Illinois.


Monday, February 5, 2018

Along 66, January 2018: A New Magazine, Neon and Temporary Museum Closing

JANUARY 2--  The original neon sign of the desert Drugs in Kingman, Arizona has been restored.  Always love it when neon is restored.  Not much prettier  at night.

JANUARY 3--  Route Magazine will launch its initial issue on February 1.  It will focus on United States road travel, vintage Americana and, of course, good ol' Route 66.  Looking forward to taking a look at it but can't imagine it to be better than the American Road Magazine we already have.

JANUARY 4--  Extreme cold closes Illinois Route 66 Museum in Pontiac until January 8.  Yep, it was pretty cold up north 120 miles in Spring Grove, Illinois.