Home | About Us | Contact Us

October 30, 2020 -- Did you know the historic Lincoln Highway runs through the heart of downtown Fort Wayne? Today, the Indiana Lincoln Highway Association celebrated the installation of an original Historic Route Marker in front of the Visitors Center — almost 107 years to the date from the highway's original dedication on October 31 in 1913.

creagerOfficials from the Indiana Lincoln Highway Association, Visit Fort Wayne, the City of Fort Wayne, the Downtown Improvement District and the Fort Wayne History Center were joined by members of the Old Fort Model A Club and their cars to celebrate the addition of the historic post in front of the Visitors Center at 927 S. Harrison St.

The Lincoln Highway was the first transcontinental road for automobiles in the United States, dedicated in 1913 at a time when there were few good roads in the country. It was built primarily with private funds from auto manufacturers and auto suppliers in order to promote automobile travel and tourism. It covered almost 3400 miles from coast to coast, New York to San Francisco.

The highway was the nation’s first national memorial for President Abraham Lincoln. It was conceived and promoted by Indianapolis entrepreneur Carl G. Fisher, one of the builders of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In 1928 the Lincoln Highway in Indiana was absorbed into the federal transportation system as U.S. 30. Today, the historic route across the state is an Indiana Historic Byway.

The original production of the 3,000 memorial posts was ordered in 1928, however, many have been lost due to improper care and neglect. Remaining markers are being installed by the Indiana Lincoln Highway Association along the route to build awareness, promote heritage tourism, and educate the public about the highway.

The memorial marks the Fort Wayne Visitors Center as a “Lincoln Highway Control Station.” Historically, motorists would re-set their car's odometer at a Control Station in preparation for traveling the next segment of the highway. Today, both locals and tourists can stop in for information about the highway, about traveling the route of the historic byway, and for local information about lodging and what to see and do in Fort Wayne.

Pictured at right: City of Fort Wayne Historic Preservation Planner Creager Smith with the Lincoln Highway marker.