Day 3: June 23, 2010
Rain, Sun, RAIN
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Rain put the kibosh on plans to walk to the tour bus pickup. The official hotel and the starting point for all tours is the Comfort Inn. I and some other economy minded folks are staying at the nearby Super 8. One of those folks is Don Hatch and I hitched a ride with him. I believe the rain also upset the bus assignments somehow and Wayne, the assignment guy, told those at the rear of the line to just pick a bus. Believing there was more room in the second bus in line, that's where Don and I went. We found seats but just barely and I think we may have been wrong about the relative room situation. We found ourselves on the east bus. The west bus would go to Fulton then return and go north to Oregon. We would do that tomorrow. The east bus, our ride for today, would dash to Joliet on the expressway then work its way back on the Lincoln Highway. A movie would be shown to help pass the time on the expressway. You might be able to identify it from the screen shot but, if not, here's another clue.

Our first stop was at the Joliet Area Historical Museum. The Lincoln Highway and US-66 both passed through Joliet and both get some attention at the museum though it's not exactly balanced. Both sides of the pictured display panel do mention the LH but that's about it. References to Route 66 are scattered about. The Route 66 map on the wall behind the Blues Brothers was done by the latest Will Rodgers Award winner, Jerry McClanahan.

Several miles west of Plainfield, someone's built a Lincoln Highway marker along their driveway.

The old Lincoln Highway can be seen climbing the hill between the trees beyond the marker. The shelter that the marker points to would have been our lunch stop if it hadn't rained.

This garage on LaSalle St in Aurora was a scheduled stop that became a very good substitute for the picnic shelter. It's owner gave us some history and a hearty welcome. A few cars were displayed in the garages including a 1928 Chevrolet truck and a 1927 Cadillac. The Cadillac is believed to be the rediscovered get-away car from the 1929 St Valentine's Day Massacre.

Dekalb's 1929 Egyptian Theater is a real jewel. We were given a brief history of the theater then allowed to roam freely. An attached hotel and a marble floor were among the planned items canceled by the recession. The substitute mosaic floor is made of broken tile. She's a beauty.

Dekalb is home to Road Dog's alma mater, Northern Illinois University, so he's familiar with the town. We had a little time to check out some of the area near the theater. Many good looking historic buildings set along Main Street including the 1892 First National Bank Building. The bank is now home to the Dekalb Chamber of Commerce so we were able to get some pictures inside. Dekalb is a good looking town with some history.

The Lincoln Highway's first Seedling Mile was laid just west of Malta. We couldn't stop the bus on the actual seedling but we did stop at this nearby marker and gazebo.

Rain returned with a vengeance as we approached Ashton. It was still raining a little when we reached the Lincoln Highway National Headquarters in Franklin Grove but the strong winds had let up. Enough people braved the light rain to pack the place. On Friday, a storm had damaged the fence beside the building and it was still on the ground yesterday. Looking good today.

I just had to get a shot of the Dixon Arch with neon aglow.

The Book Room wasn't as crowded as it was last night so I got a couple pictures of it and a couple of the art show down the hall. While hanging out at the art show, I managed a picture of Russell "Ypsi Slim" Rein and Don "Road Dog" Hatch. It was really good to see Russell at the conference after his really scary encounter with a not yet entirely understood disease over the winter.

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