Route 66 News

Some 2013 Rand McNally atlases also will contain Route 66 error

Not only did some of Rand McNally’s 2012 road atlases contain an error about Route 66, but at least some of its upcoming 2013 atlases will have that mistake, also.

Frank Gifford of found the apparent mistake in the 2012 atlases a few weeks ago. They incorrectly implied that Route 66 followed U.S. 60 northeast from Afton, Okla., to Neosho, Mo., then north on U.S. 71 to Carthage, Mo. That path cut off the Route 66 section of Kansas entirely. Excerpts of the maps, including Gifford’s illustration to better show the apparent error, are below:

On Tuesday, Gifford said he confirmed during a phone call to Jennifer Cavallo, director of retail sales and strategy at Rand McNally, that several 2013 editions of the Rand McNally atlases would contain the same Route 66 error. The earliest 2013 editions have already been printed, and will hit the market on April 23.

In an email later Tuesday, Cavallo said the “primary file release dates for our 2013 road atlas line” were Jan. 3, 2012, and Jan. 30, 2012. Gifford initially reported the error to Rand McNally after those dates, in early February. Cavallo said the deadline to update all 11 formats of Rand McNally’s 2013 atlas line was Dec. 26, 2011.

In a phone interview Wednesday, Cavallo said the 2013 atlases that require corrections would be reprinted later in the year. She said she did not know how many, nor what percentage, of Rand McNally’s 2013 atlases would contain the error.

Cavallo has encouraged readers to post requests for corrections at Rand McNally’s customer-support page.


9 thoughts on “Some 2013 Rand McNally atlases also will contain Route 66 error

  1. anonymous

    While an error, anybody using a Rand McNally to follow Route 66 is going to be very disappointed in the little help it’s going to give them. To focus on the map above: you’d never pass by 4 women the route using that map as the road you’d need to follow the older 2 lane alignment isn’t even on the map at all.

    So yes it’s an error, but not a big deal at all.

  2. Tonya

    Personally, I agree with the comments from Anonymous. While this may seem like a big deal to some, most all serious Route 66 travelers … by the time they’ve reached Springfield, Missouri coming from the east or Tulsa, Oklahoma if coming from the west, have figured out they need a special guide to travel Route 66 — and are asking questions about such, if they’ve not already gotten a copy of the EZ Guide or some other Route 66 map. In seven years at the Rail Haven, I can’t remember a time any Route 66 traveler has told me they were using a Rand McNally atlas as their guide, let alone their only guide. While I agree with Frank that Rand McNally should fix this mistake and it does do Kansas a great injustice — I don’t believe it is really going to lose many or confuse many travelers who are seriously traveling the Route.

    Very few start out trying to drive the Route without doing research beforehand, particularly your foreign tourists. But all of us out here do need to make sure anyone we come in contact with in the next year does know where they are going solely as a precaution.

  3. frank gifford

    To both Tonya and anonymous: I agree there is little if any impact on “serious” Route 66 travelers. They basically know the route, and have the EZ66 Guide or some other reference source(s).

    My guess is the real impact is on a first-time or casual traveler, who has ventured off the Interstate to merely sample 66 for a stretch, perhaps Springfield MO to Tulsa. They have no other reference material and they get lost.

    Again–these are not really “Route 66 travelers” and a better term would be “samplers.” Many of these people are not even aware that 66 goes into Kansas! I’ve met some of them.

  4. cathy bolek

    For some of us small-town business owners we depend on the Route 66 business. I am on Route 66 in Kansas and I consider this to be a serious problem. I hope their navigational systems don’t have the same problem.

  5. Sue Gast

    I agree with Cathy, it may seem like a small mistake, but we have a group of people here on Route 66 in Kansas that have spent a lot of their own time working on making the Route (and has been approved) a “Kansas Historic Route 66 Byway”. To put all of that time, energy and effort into something just to be dismissed as a small mistake and won’t matter to the savy traveler does not make me feel O.K. Small towns work hard to be put on the map and we are one area that works very hard on that. We appreciate all of the directions that are given along the way by others along the route to send them in the right direction and get them to our area. Thank you.

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