The Lincoln Highway From Philadelphia to Gettysburg

GETTYSBURG, Pa. — I’ve arrived in the place that changed the course of the Civil War. I’ll be here for a few hours checking out some Lincoln-related sites, but before that, I want to detail the portion of the Lincoln Highway I drove a few weeks ago, between York and Philadelphia.

Although I drove this section from west to east, I’ll start in Philadelphia and work my way west back towards Gettysburg.


Independence Hall in Philadelphia (Photo by Michael E. Grass)

Independence Hall in Philadelphia (Photo by Michael E. Grass)

When you think of Abraham Lincoln, you don’t necessarily think of Philadelphia. But Lincoln traveled here a number of times before and during his presidency and through many of the towns the Lincoln Highway passes through between the City of Brotherly Love and Gettysburg.

According to the official Lincoln Highway map from the Lincoln Highway Association, the original route from New York City takes it into Center City right down Broad Street, Philadelphia’s primary north-south thoroughfare, to City Hall, where it heads west along Market Street, the city’s primary east-west thoroughfare, before linking up with Lancaster Avenue heading out of town.

I’ll start nine blocks east of City Hall at Philadelphia’s most recognized landmark, Independence Hall, on Chestnut Street between 5th and 6th streets.

This is a place you normally associate with the Founding Fathers, the Continental Congress and the Declaration of Independence from the 1770s. But Lincoln was here, too, albeit decades later.

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