10/10/11 Within a month of the Michigan Road being designated a state byway, an order designating the Lincoln Highway as a byway across Indiana was signed by Lt. Governor Skillman on October 3rd. The designation comes after more than four years of planning by the Indiana Lincoln Highway Association which culminated in a presentation to state officials in April, 2010. Kurt Garner assisted the INLHA with survey work of the route and represented the organization to INDOT through the byway process. The designation was delayed due to slow response by MACOG.
The Lincoln Highway was the nation’s first established coast to coast highway providing travelers a route from New York to California through Northern Indiana. The road was established in 1913 and began in New York’s Times Square and terminating at the Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. The highway’s origins are decidedly Hoosier with native Carl Fisher, founder of the Indianapolis Speedway, birthing the idea and leading the charge to establish a good road across the nation. Establishing the route of the highway was mixed with factors such as population centers, grade and land formations, and by influence of politicians. These factors all played a role in Indiana where a unique situation developed creating a later southern alignment through Plymouth in 1928. The Lincoln Highway retained its identity despite being designated as U.S. 30 for thirty more years until 1956 when the Federal Aid to Highway Act was passed bringing about the interstate system.
The Lincoln Highway is already marked across most of Indiana. The Indiana Lincoln Highway Association has developed a byway committee that will begin making marketing plans for communities along the route. Marshall County is now represented by two state byways that travel through the towns of Argos, Bourbon, Donaldson, LaPaz, and Plymouth.