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American Roads: Site Map > Auto Trails > Auto Trail Articles > S.D. Union article 12 Jun 1940


Reprinted from the San Diego Union, 12 Jun 1940, page 12.

Note: The odd thing about the article is that it is written in 1940, fourteen years after the creation of the U.S. numbered highway system. Most of the auto trails mentioned were defunct, or at least their associations were. [SV]


Spreading in all directions from San Diego is a splendid network of highways, making the county's scenic wonders and countless natural attractions easily accessible to motorists.
Roads and highways in San Diego county consist of the state highway primary and secondary systems, containing a total of 500 miles. Three of these major highways run east and west and three north and south. Augmenting this is a system of county roads which act as feeders and still further spread the network to the most remote parts of the county. San Diego is the last large city at the south end of U. S. 101, one of the most highly improved national highways.
San Diego is the western terminus of several transcontinental highways which converge at El Paso, Texas, and continue to the Pacific coast over practically the same route. This general route is the shortest and at the same time the most scenic to the western coast. It is open the year round and draws thousands of autoists from the far east and middle west.
The Broadway of America starts at New York and goes via Memphis, Hot Springs, Ark., Dallas, Ft. Worth and El Paso, and terminates at San Diego.
The Bankhead Highway, originating in Washington, D. C., passes through Richmond, Va., Nashville, Tenn., Little Rock, Ark., Dallas and Kent, Tex. At Kent the Bankhead joins the Old Spanish Trail and continues through El Paso, Tex., to its western terminus at San Diego.
The Lee Highway, beginning at New York City, passes through the national capital and then continues west through Chattanooga and Memphis, Tenn., Little Rock, Ark., Lawton, Okla., northern Texas and cuts through the southeastern part of New Mexico to El Paso and then on to San Diego.
The Old Spanish Trail, beginning at St. Augustine, Fla., goes by way of Tallahassee, Fla., Mobile, Ala., through New Orleans to Houston and San Antonio, Tex., to El Paso and San Diego.
The Dixie Overland Highway, or U. S. highway No. 80, starts at Savannah, Ga., and comes via Shreveport, La., Dallas and El Paso to San Diego.
The Borderland Highway, from El Paso, follows closely the international boundary line. Motorists traveling westward over this route, as well as the others, continue from El Paso through Deming, N. M., and Douglas, Bisbee, Tucson, Phoenix to Yuma, Ariz., where the motorist crosses the Colorado river over a great bridge.
California is entered through the famous Imperial valley, below sea level. From El Centro the route goes over the last range of mountains, where the highest elevation is less than 3300 feet. On the last lap of the journey the motorist passes swiftly through the foothills and valleys and finally glimpses San Diego spread before him in a wondrous panorama that includes mountains, harbor and ocean.
San Diego also is the southern terminus of the Broadway of the Pacific.



Copyright © S. Varner 2006