Quarterly Chapter Meeting Minutes — Saturday, October 3, 2015
Whirlow’s Tossed and Grilled
The meeting was called to order at 1:15 pm. 21 people were in attendance.
Officers, Staff, and Committee Reports
Chapter President Joel Windmiller was out of town attending a Ridge Route Anniversary event in Southern California. His report items were submitted by e-mail. Vice President Neil Rodrigues did not attend due to illness. Secretary Jackie Ferreira did not attend due to bereavement. Webmaster James Lin was out of town.
President Joel Windmiller
- Joel will report on his speaking engagement in Lodi at the next meeting.
- The chapter was contacted by Caltrans regarding Lincoln Highway signage along Highway 50 near Clarksville. Joel will forward the email to Mike Kaelin.
- Craig Osborn from the Boy Scout troop in Rancho Cordova said that Scout Zachary Parker would like to create a Lincoln Highway marker for his Eagle Scout project. Their plan is to place the marker in front of Mills Station. Joel told Craig that the chapter would prefer to keep the markers along the 1928 alignment in California.
- Colfax Railroad Days: Joel would like to thank Chuck Spinks for helping out on Saturday and Myrna for helping out with the LH booth.
- Chuck asked if the chapter would help out with replacement signs for downtown Colfax. Michael Kaelin will have a full report on this.
- On September 26–27, Cindy Ainsworth, director and president of the Nevada Chapter, organized a project to repair the bridge railing and pull-off area on I-80 Eastbound west of Reno.
- William Von Tagen of Idaho is working with the City of Truckee on placement of LH sign along Donner Pass Road along Donner Lake.
- We plan to contact the Placer County Department of Public Works about the project along Donner Pass Road.
- Joel will drop off the projector and certificates off with Kevin Shawver.
Chairman of Mapping Committee Paul Gilger
- Rancho Cordova Historical Society: see hard copy attachment from the Society's Executive Director, et al. regarding the upcoming April 10, 2016 celebration and January 9, 2016 Lincoln Highway Association meeting in Rancho Cordova.
- Mark Hoffman of Sports Leisure Travel will be offering a bus tour on October 24, 2015, and will likely offer two Lincoln Highway tours (along Highways 50 and 80) in 2016.
- The Duarte Garage Centennial will be celebrated October 10, 2015 at 10 AM. All are invited.
- Gary Kinst is looking for the wording on the monument in Lathrop. The monument is badly in need of repair. How to deal with future repairs will be discussed at future meetings. A motion was passed for the Chapter to research the costs associated with the repairs (first from Jim Armstrong, second from Greg Gassman.)
- The Western Terminus marker plaque is badly faded and also in need of repairs. A motion was made by Mike Kaelin for the Chapter to do everything possible to have the plaque replaced. Paul amended the motion to add that if the expenses involved are greater than $1,000 the motion will be resubmitted to the Chapter membership. Seconded by Nora Elderton. Passed unanimously.
Treasurer Grant Gassman
- Grant reported the chapter account balance. Contact the chapter for details.
Webmaster James Lin
James Lin was unable to attend. He emailed the following statistics:
- Visits to our web site in Q3 are down about 12% from Q2. We are definitely seeing a seasonal effect — September is about 30% slower than July or August. (But we’re still almost twice as much as Q1, the winter months.)
- Facebook likes are up 5% and Twitter followers are up 3%, which is pretty good considering we don’t post much. Google+ is flat.
Scenic Byway Status
James Lin did some research into scenic and named highways in California. See the appendix below for full details. The summary:
- California has a Scenic Highway program, but it emphasizes natural beauty, making it a bad fit for the Lincoln Highway where it goes through cities and suburbs.
- There is a National Scenic Byways and All-American Roads program — the Lincoln Highway in Illinois is a National Scenic Byway. It’s possible to be one of those without being, in our case, a California Scenic Highway, but it’s rare.
- In both of these cases, you have to come up with a corridor protection or management program.
- California itself has a named highway program, which includes “Historic U.S. Highway” routes, such as US 40, 66, and 101. These are authorized by the legislature and asks Caltrans to come up with a route to be signed, but there's no money associated with the program. Instead, local governments or other entities must raise the money themselves to pay for the signs. Route 66 is not only signed on the highway itself, it’s also signed at freeway exits.
- Since there is no standard state sign for “Historic Lincoln Highway”, it may need to be added to Caltrans’s official specifications.
- Jimmy’s guess is that California’s named highway program would be the easiest to get done, although we would then also need to raise the money for Caltrans to put up the signs.
The next meeting will be held from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm Saturday, January 9, 2016 at Rancho Cordova City Hall, 2729 Prospect Park Drive in Rancho Cordova. The meeting will be hosted by the Lincoln Highway Project Team of the Rancho Cordova Historical Society. Lunch will be catered, compliments of RHS. Ample free parking is available.
Meeting was adjourned at 2:18 pm.
Paul Gilger presented Neil Rodrigues’ photographs from the Henry B. Joy Cross-country Tour.
Respectfully submitted December 16, 2015
California Named Highways
There is a Caltrans publication (PDF) called the 2014 Named Freeways, Highways, Structures and Other Appurtenances in California. Using the page numbers in the lower left hand corner of each page:
On pp. 110–111, in the “Named Freeways and Highways” section, there is a bunch of “Historic U.S. Highway” routes that have been named by the state legislature. Each one has the Assembly or Senate Concurrent Resolution (ACR or SCR) that authorized the naming. For your convenience, I’ve listed them below, along with a link to each concurrent resolution (if it’s from 1993 or newer):
Alt US 40 — SCR 66, 2006
US 66 — ACR 6, 1991
US 395 — ACR 98, 2008
US 99 — ACR 19, 1993
US 6 — ACR 26, 2007
US 40 — ACR 180, 1998
US 80 — ACR 123, 2006
US 101 — ACR 92, 1998
Also, there is “Historic Yosemite Highway” — ACR 27, 1989
Most of the resolutions follow a similar pattern: a private entity or local government asks for signs along a stretch of historic highway, Caltrans figures out where the signs would go and how much they would cost, non-state money is raised to cover the cost of erecting the signs, and finally Caltrans erects the signs. Also, the signs don’t need to be on state highways. County highways and city streets are fine, as long as they’re still open to the public.
p. i goes into more detail about how highways are named. Most names are from Assembly or Senate Concurrent Resolutions (like above), which need to be passed by both houses but not signed by the governor. p. ii lays out a policy that the legislature has recommended for naming highways.
By the way, on pp. 174–175, in the Historical Usage Names section, “Lincoln Highway” and “Lincoln Highway (Northern, Alternate Route to Route 50)” are listed, but there is no legislation attached to the name.
State Byways and California Scenic Highways
I also looked briefly into the California Scenic Highway program. It looks like state and county highways are eligible, but there is no mention of city streets. Also, the FAQ emphasizes natural beauty, which isn’t going to easy to justify for the Lincoln Highway where it goes through cities and suburbs. (Note that the program is part of Landscape Architecture.) Finally, you have to come up with a corridor protection program to preserve the beauty of the road.
At first glance, the byway programs in Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, and Nebraska have somewhat similar requirements, although all of them talk about "historic byways" in a way that California doesn't. It would be worth contacting those state chapters to find out.
National Scenic Byways
Finally, I looked into the federal National Scenic Byways and All-American Roads program. National Scenic Byways have regional significance, while All-American Roads have national significance. Nominations for such roads must go through the state byways coordinator, which for California leads back to Landscape Architecture. Interestingly enough, a road can be a National Scenic Byway and not be a static scenic highway or byway, although it’s rare.
Looking through the list of national byways, the Lincoln Highway in Illinois is a National Scenic Byway, the National Road is an All-American Road in six states, and Route 66 is a National Scenic Byway in four states and an All-American Road in one.
Signage for named highways
Caltrans has a standard sign for historic routes, although it looks like it only considers historic U.S. routes. Historic US 99 gets its own spiffier sign. There is also a separate Historic El Camino Real sign, but it’s pretty boring. These are meant to be mounted on Mission Bell sign assemblies.
Given that there is no state standard Lincoln Highway sign, we may need another entry in California’s Coded Sign Specifications for a Historic Lincoln Highway sign.
Section 2M.103(CA) of the California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (on p. 627, which is actually the 13th page of the PDF) states the policy for historic route signs:
(3) The Historic Route (S18(CA)) sign may be used to identify a “Historic Route” when directed by the Legislature.
(4) Caltrans and local agencies with portions of Historic Routes under their jurisdiction, upon application by an interested local agency or private group and receiving donations from non-State sources for the cost of the sign and their installation, will place these signs as requested.
It then says something similar for Historic Route 99 specifically.
Note that the state will not pay for the signs or their installation. Cities, counties, or private groups have to raise the money. We would also want to make sure that Caltrans signs the intersections where the road turns.
Here is the dream: not only having “Historic Lincoln Highway” signs on the road itself, but “Historic Lincoln Highway Next Right” signs on the freeway, just like Route 66 does.