[Floodgap Roadgap presents the Summer of 6]

<< Previous entry
11 July 2006: Coralville, IA to Chicago(land), IL
 
Next entry >>
13 July 2006: Sandusky, OH to Cleveland, OH
 

12 July 2006: Chicago, IL to Sandusky, OH

Continuing on the "catchup" run from the 9th, we cross into Indiana and then Ohio. Off we go.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
Resuming from south Chicago and our turn on US 6 onto I-80/I-94, we (presently) enter a morass of construction. For this reason, I found no Indiana state line marker heading east at the present time (and if there is one, it's non-obvious). However, traveling westbound, this bridge has a "Welcome to Illinois" sign on the back and the blue mileposts Indiana uses start immediately after, so I will conclude that this is the state line.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
US 6 in Indiana, other than the I-80/I-94 co-routing, has been relatively unmolested and goes through much of the same places it did before.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
It carries and crosses many US highways in Indiana, often minor but still noteworthy. One thing I like a lot is their quasi-overhead signage used for many junctions, even minor ones. It makes the photography really easy and it just plain looks sharp. I think more states should do this.

This is part of the US 35 junction near Kingsford Heights, a small town US 6/US 35 mostly bypasses to the east with a bizarre World War II history. Originally, the town was planned by FDR and the War Department to be built as "Victory City" in 1942 as housing for workers in the Kingsbury Ordnance Plant to the north (north of this junction along US 35). Security was such that even the street names were intentionally obfuscated, set up in such a way that only the first letters were the same of continuous streets so that navigation was nearly impossible without knowing the key. This curious layout persists to this day. After the war, most of the workers left and the remaining residents incorporated themselves into the present-day town in 1956. Its population today numbers 1,453 [2000].

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
It's Walky! WIIGII! This is Walkerton and junction IN 23 in the center of town, a pleasant little community named for James H. Walker, a LaPorte, IN banker who built the Cincinnati-Peru-Chicago Railroad in 1856; the town had been settled originally as West York ca. 1850 but reformulated under the railroad's new survey layout. Nobel Prize-winning chemist Harold Urey (well known to us UC San Diego alums), the discoverer of deuterium, was a Walkerton boy. Its present population is 2,274 [2000].

Both Indiana and Illinois have the same basic type of state marker, a rectangle with the name in it and that's it. This is marginally better than Maine, for example, which just has the rectangle, but it's not very inspiring and it can be hard to tell the state routes apart on highways that cross back and forth since only the name is different (although Indiana uses black trim on big green signs).

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
A wild turkey foraging along the road.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
Through Wawaka (an unclear Indian term for "big heron"), a pleasant hamlet of 1,640 [2000].

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
A rather picturesque study taken passing by.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
The family business. Just kidding.

This was taken in Butler, near the Ohio border, a town of 1,805 [2000].

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
State line.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
Ohio has strung US 6 onto several expressway and even true freeway alignments, bypassing many towns (most notably Bowling Green, of which the old route survives as Bowling Green Rd). This is a little sad in a way that the old local colour is gone in some stretches, but it *is* nice to see that Ohio has restored US 6 to its original role as a major arterial. In fact, many of the US highways in Ohio have been upgraded in such a way, most notably US 30 and US 33 which have long stretches of true freeway along their length; compare this to the treatment US highways have gotten in my home state of California (i.e., wholescale legislative genocide). This is part of the Napoleon bypass co-routed with US 24.

Napoleon's old route is largely preserved by a business routing which is marked in the field as "NAPOLEON BUSINESS ROUTE" -- it is not signed as BUSINESS US 6 from the highway, nor does it appear as a true business route on my maps or NAVTEQ, so we will simply mention it for reference. The seat of Henry county, named for patriot Patrick Henry with a population of 29,210 [2000], Napoleon was named for (who else?) French dictator and conquerer Napoleon Bonaparte and has a troop strength population of 9,318 [2000].

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
This freeway alignment of US 6/US 24 crosses the Maumee River, possibly a corruption of the Native American term me-ah-me (from which we also derive Miami), though no one is quite sure what the original term meant. One of the feeders of Lake Erie, it winds from its confluence at Ft. Wayne, IN for approximately 130 miles. Its designation as a Scenic River seems well deserved.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
An interesting way to memorialize the Grand Army of the Republic Highway, in McClure (named for local landowner John McClure, population 754 [2003 est.]).

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
And a more conventional one, at a rest stop.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
US 6 starts to adopt a Great Lakes coastal route around this point as it trends further northeast. More of this will be seen on the route between Sandusky and Cleveland. This is part of the ample nature preserves near Sandusky, specifically approaching it from the southwest.

[Thumbnail - click for 480x360 image]
Entering Sandusky. More tomorrow.

Tomorrow: Sandusky and Cleveland!

Main page
<< Previous entry
11 July 2006: Coralville, IA to Chicago(land), IL
 
Next entry >>
13 July 2006: Sandusky, OH to Cleveland, OH
 


Subscribe (RSS or E-mail!)

Main page and newest entry | All road log "blog" entries
Send E-mail to Cameron Kaiser
Back to the main Floodgap Roadgap page

Summer of 6 main page | Read the "roadblog"

Copyright © 2006-2010, Cameron Kaiser. All rights reserved.
Send me your comments on Floodgap and the Summer of 6.

[Available in RSS]

[Return to Floodgap Roadgap]