The Historic Park Motel

in Denison, Iowa, is a Spanish Colonial Revival building built in 1940 to go along with a cafe and service station built to assist cross-country travelers.

What is the Lincoln Highway?

The Lincoln Highway is a 3300-mile long road stretching across the United States from New York City to San Francisco. Its creation was the result of the first successful effort to create an all-weather transcontinental highway specifically for automobiles. Carl Fisher, Prest-O-Lite headlight manufacturer, launched the idea of developing a coast to coast highway in 1913. Fisher was soon joined in the promotion of this road, named the Lincoln Highway, by the cadre of executives from the automobile, tire, and Portland cement industries who used patriotic appeal and mass marketing to mastermind a national "good roads" campaign.

The Lincoln Highway began as a miscellaneous collection of downtown streets, country lanes, and old trails marked with he sign showing the "L" rectangular graphic ...and emblazoned in red, white, and blue. While the confusing and haphazardly maintained condition of the early Lincoln Highway illustrated the long-neglected nature of the American roads inherited by the automobile, by the 1920's it had become the nation's premier cross-country thoroughfare and a testing ground for new road and bridge-building techniques. A dynamic, commercial roadside emerged, pioneering the marketing of gas, food, lodging, and other motorist services through innovative architectural form and design.

Today, the roads that comprise the Lincoln Highway approximate sections of the present day Federal and State Highway System: US 1, 30, 40, 50, and I-80 traversing New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, and California. Early in its history, the Lincoln Highway was also routed through the northeastern corner of Colorado.