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Auto tour travels the historic Jefferson Highway

A 35-vehicle auto tour travelled through Kittson County last Thursday on the fourth and final day of a road trip on the northern half of the old Jefferson Highway. 62 members from the Lincoln Highway Association and the Jefferson Highway Association began the 1,000 mile tour in Denison, Iowa, on Monday, making their way north, driving classic cars, modern convertibles, and even an RV. On Thursday, the group stopped at the Nordhem Restaurant in Karlstad for lunch, before hitting the dusty trail for their destination: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Both the Lincoln Highway Association (LHA) and the Jefferson Highway Association (JHA) were formed to preserve the history of the highways they are named after. Their missions are to identify landmarks and preserve the original routes. The Lincoln Highway was the first transcontinental highway from New York City to San Francisco, constructed around 1915. The Jefferson Highway was the first international north/south highway, built around 1916, from New Orleans to Winnipeg.

This is the LHA’s fifth tour, which took about a year to plan. Organizers book hotels and meals, plus create an itinerary of photo ops at historic sites, tours of local museums, or points of interest, often asking locals for ideas as they plan. On this trip, the group had toured places such as the Mary Tyler Moore house in the twin cities, the Jesse James Museum in Northfield, and the Mississippi headwaters at Itasca.

For the complete story, see this week’s North Star News!

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