- By David M. Kinchen
From about age 11 on I grew up in Rochelle, Illinois, a major city on the highway. The main street of Rochelle is still called Lincoln Highway. Rochelle is called the Hub City because two railroads crossed in the town, forming what railroaders call a diamond crossing. In addition to the Lincoln Highway, Rochelle was on U.S. 51, the nation’s first north-south highway.
After graduating from Rochelle Township High School, I attended Northern Illinois University in De Kalb, another Lincoln Highway town about 18 miles east of Rochelle. I commuted to NIU for three years on the Lincoln Highway, living off campus for my senior year. A few years ago I reviewed a book about the development of the nation’s highways, “The Big Roads,” which has a good discussion of the Lincoln Highway: Link: http://www.huntingtonnews.net/11812. My review includes a mention of a book by Michael Wallis about the Lincoln Highway. Wallis wrote a biography of David Crockett a few years ago, and is one of the voices in the hit movie “Cars.”
Editor’s note: The photo of a plaque commemorating Emily Post’s stay in Rochelle in 1915 is from: http://www.lincolnhighwaynews.wordpress.com/tag/murals/