The Lincoln Highway - U.S. Highway 30 - Wyoming Portion of Interstate 80
The Lincoln Highway was America's first transcontinental highway, conceived in 1912 specifically with the automobile in mind. Although parts of the Lincoln Highway were first used in 1908 for the famous New York to Paris automobile "Great Race", it was Carl Fisher of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, fellow industrialists Frank Seiberling of Goodyear Rubber Company and Henry Joy of the Packard Motor Car Company who first envisioned a 3,400 mile improved, hard surface road from New York to San Francisco.
At that time, except for a few metropolitan areas in the northeastern United States and some California cities, few roads existed that were anything but dirt and gravel. Rutted and dusty in dry weather, these trails were muddy at best in the wet weather. All were nearly impassable in winter. It was Joy who would suggest that the proposed route be named after the 16th President, Abraham Lincoln.
The Lincoln Highway Association was created in 1913 to promote the road's construction using private and corporate donations. In July of that year the route was officially named the Lincoln Highway. Americans' enthusiasm for good roads led to the creation of many "Good Roads" clubs and associations. One to them, the Lincoln Highway Association, was able to stir the interest of the Federal Government into designating various rural routes
by number in 1926,
The Lincoln Highway throughout much of the West became known as U.S. Highway 30. In Wyoming U.S. 30 would follow closely the old Lincoln Highway with only minor changes where bridge, curves, and grades could be improved. It was, however, the Interstate Highway System established in 1956 that would forever change the complexion of the original Lincoln Highway.
Large parts of the western portion of the Lincoln Highway became known as Interstate Highway 80. Part of I-80 lies directly over the old Lincoln Highway and its construction lead to the obliteration of other original part of the original route.
The Lincoln Highway enter Wyoming at Pine Bluffs following portions of U.S. 30 through the communities of Egbert, Burns, and Archer to Cheyenne. In Cheyenne the routes follows Lincolnway, or 16th Street, through the downtown, then heads west along Otto Road passing what used to be the Union Pacific Railroad stations Corlett, Borie, Otto, and Granite Canyon. Further west the routr passes Ozone and Buford, climbs Sherman Hill, and descends into Laramie. West from Laramie the route follows parts of U.S. 30 through Bosler, Cooper Lake, Lookout, Harper, Rock River, and Medicine Bow. As the route continues west it would eventually pass through Rawlins, Rock Springs, Green River, Lyman, Ft. Bridger and Evanston before entering Utah.
by 1925 the Lincoln Highway was complete, it was not until 1928 that the entire route was paved. In 1928 the Boy Scouts of America placed over 2,000 concert roadside markers along the route, including more than 200 in Wyoming. In addition to the Lincoln bust seal embedded into the markers these concert posts also provided direction through cities and town and at turns in the countryside.