Monday, February 26, 2007

King of the Road

About six months ago I set out on a quest that will take me years to complete.

I am going to drive every mile of every state highway in Massachusetts.

I have posted a couple of times about things I have seen along the way as I have begun my travels: a route sign in Leominster that I think is the oldest in the state and a "moose crossing" sign in Ashburnham that include Rocky Squirrel. But I have also been photographing all of my travels, posting them on my other web site

I am particularly interested in a coupe of things: route signs, and the occasional piece of history that is still in use or visible along the road. The images seen here are good examples.

At the top of this post is a photo I took in Petersham. The old guardrail and overgrown road are what used to be routes 32/122 north of Barre before the highway was rebuilt about 20 feet east of the old roadway. There are a handful of these abandoned roadways still around.

The other two photos are of an old sign post standing on US route 202 in Baldwinville. These black-on-white signs are pretty rare; having been discontined in favor of green signs sometime in the early- to mid-60s. You may be able to see that this particular sign is marked "3-59" in the lower right hand corner.

Perhaps more interesting is the sign post on which the sign is posted. The concrete post with the state seal embossed on the side could date back as far as the 1930s or earlier. I have seen photos from the 1938 hurricane which include signposts of this style, with black on white guide signs like the one pictured here.

I think this stuff is really cool.

If you also find this stuff interesting, feel free to head on over to and poke around. While there are a lot of empty pages (since I have only begun to drive the state), there are photo galleries of the different types of route signs, pictures of the ends of the routes that I have traveled, and a photo travelogue of each of the routes I've traversed so far.

If you're inclined to check in, the best place to start is the page listing updates, as it essentially lists everything that has been completed so far.

Happy motoring!

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