UPPER SANDUSKY, Ohio — For my Lincoln Highway trek across Ohio, I’ve stuck primarily to U.S. 30. But there are various alignments of the route across this part of north central Ohio. Instead of the more modern alignment, I could have taken a more southerly route via Lima and along one of the most notorious reroutings of the highway.
According to a 2004 historic assessment of the Lincoln Highway by the National Park Service:
One of the most controversial reroutings of the Lincoln Highway came when the [Lincoln Highway Association] dropped 70 miles of roadway between Galion and Lima via Marion and Kenton in favor of an unfinished rout to the north. This occurred a mere three weeks after these towns celebrated their inclusion on the Proclamation Route of 1913. An unsuccessful petition asking the Lincoln Highway Association to reverse the rerouting was supported by then Senator Warren Harding, which ultimately let to the building of the Harding Highway along the route abandoned by the Lincoln Highway.
There’s a Harding Highway? You learn something new everyday.
Back in Upper Sandusky, the Lincoln Highway passes an Elks Lodge at E. Wyandot Avenue and 4th Street with an aging historic marker out front that sits opposite a brick Lincoln Highway column across the road.
There’s a spring on the property with a storied past, including ties to Charles Dickens. The English author visited this area just before the Wyandotte Indians, who had long-standing settlements here, became the last Native American group to leave Ohio after heading west to a reservation in Kansas in 1842.