Fabled elm trees west of Clinton may not be around much longer

Elm trees west of Clinton, Oklahoma, documented in Michael Wallis' seminal 1990 book "Route 66: The Mother Road" have died at an alarming rate in recent years and may not be long for this world. A longtime reader with a keen eye alerted me to this a few days ago and shot a short video … Continue reading Fabled elm trees west of Clinton may not be around much longer

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Painted Desert Trading Post group selling T-shirts to help pay for Phase III work

The Route 66 Co-op is selling a new batch of limited-edition T-shirts to help pay for costs related to Phase III of the Painted Desert Trading Post stabilization project. The front of the T-shirt features a design by a longtime roadie and graphic artist, Shellee Graham. The back contains the "Cold Drinks" lettering that still … Continue reading Painted Desert Trading Post group selling T-shirts to help pay for Phase III work

Oklahoma’s black eye amid upcoming preservation conference

The Tulsa World this week published a preview of the “Are We There Yet? Preservation of Roadside Architecture and Attractions" symposium in Tulsa next month. The April 10-12 event is organized by National Park Service’s National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT), Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program, Tulsa Foundation for Architecture, city of Tulsa, Tulsa … Continue reading Oklahoma’s black eye amid upcoming preservation conference

Warehouse fire destroys inventory by several Route 66 authors

Fire destroyed a St. Louis warehouse used by Reedy Press, along with all the stored books by several Route 66 authors, according to several media reports. Smoke from the five-alarm fire that began Wednesday morning was seen for miles, reported the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. At one point, part of the building collapsed onto a firetruck, and … Continue reading Warehouse fire destroys inventory by several Route 66 authors

Book review: “Secret Route 66”

Here's where you know Jim Ross and Shellee Graham's new book, "Secret Route 66," is a success: Not only did they uncover more than a dozen obscure tidbits from the Mother Road that escaped my notice, I jumped into my car to search for one that was nearby. Subtitled "A Guide to the Weird,Wonderful and … Continue reading Book review: “Secret Route 66”

Surprise wedding at Route 66 Neon Festival

Those who attended the Arcadia Route 66 Neon Fest headquartered last weekend at Jim Ross' house off old Route 66 near Arcadia, Oklahoma, got a surprise -- the wedding of two longtime roadies,officiated by a third longtime roadie. Ross and Shellee Graham -- both who have photographed and researched Route 66 for at least 20 … Continue reading Surprise wedding at Route 66 Neon Festival

Reporter finishes walk on Oklahoma City’s Route 66

Brianna Bailey, a reporter for The Oklahoman newspaper in Oklahoma City, recently embarked on a walking journey of Route 66 in that city for a story and a series of blog posts. She finished recently, and the last story is here. Some takeaways: --- We learn the beloved Carlyle Motel sign was purchased by Donald … Continue reading Reporter finishes walk on Oklahoma City’s Route 66

Book review: “Route 66 Crossings”

Because so many Route 66 books have entered the marketplace over the past three decades or so, one initially wonders why Jim Ross' new volume about historic bridges on the Mother Road hasn't been done before. But as one dives deep into "Route 66 Crossings" (hardback, 200 pages, color photographs, University of Oklahoma Press, $29.95), becomes clear why … Continue reading Book review: “Route 66 Crossings”

GlassBoy Studios opens in Arcadia

Joel Rayburn's GlassBoy Studios neon-lighting company -- also home to Tourist Trap Tees --opened for business last week in downtown Arcadia, Oklahoma, next to Route 66 and the town's famous Round Barn. The above photo is shows the business and the custom-painted Route 66 van driven by GlassBoy Studios' first customer, Greg Gaszak. The business is housed in the nearly-century-old Brooks … Continue reading GlassBoy Studios opens in Arcadia

What is the length of Route 66?

The length of the original U.S. 66 is commonly cited as 2,448 miles (although Wikipedia lists it as 2,451 miles). Stefan Joppich's research indicates through bypasses and improvements, the length of Route 66 dropped in miles to 2,278 by 1947 -- much of it through the bypass of Santa Fe, which lopped off almost 120. How long … Continue reading What is the length of Route 66?