This post excerpted from Missouri Resources, Fall 2016
A Magical History Tour on U.S. 36
by Tom Uhlenbrock
You might expect that a straight shot across the rolling farmlands of northern Missouri would be a real snoozer. As Mark Twain said, "All generalizations are false, including this one." Fact is, there is probably more history on every turn of U.S. 36 than on any other Missouri road. Wait - there aren't any turns.
U.S. 36, which runs arrow-straight for 195 miles across the top third of Missouri, never would be mistaken for its glitzy cousin, Historic Route 66, which headed southwest from St. Louis to Joplin before it was replaced by Interstate 44. U.S. 36 has no sparkling neon signs, no barn roofs advertising a roadside attraction and no barrage of billboards. The four-lane highway rolls with the gentle hills through a land-scape of forest, fields and tidy farms.
Image: A bronze statue of Gen. John J. Pershing stands at his boyhood home near Laclede (General John J. Pershing Boyhood Home State Historic Site). The Locust Creek Covered Bridge State Historic Site is approximately 6 miles west of Laclede in Linn County.
Instead of truck stops and fast-food restaurants, the view out the window is of gleaming grain silos and giant rolls of hay stacked neatly in the mowed pastures.
The highway also has a sprinkling of towns that produced enough talented leaders to bill itself as “The Way of American Genius.” There also are state parks and historic sites that offer quiet respites from the road. Read the complete article in Missouri Resources >>>>>
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