Historic Route 66
From Chicago to L.A. Route 66runs more than two thousand miles and were part of the lyrics of the famous song "GetYour Kicks on Route 66." Kingman Arizona is at the heart of thelongest stretch of this famed highway still in existenceand intact. That stretch begins just east of Seligman and passes through such towns as Peach Springs, Hackberry, and Oatman en route to the California Border.
The foundation for both the community of Kingman andthe 'highway' was laid hundreds of years ago.Native Americans who lived in thesurrounding desertsand mountains, originally forged the path that was to becomeRoute 66 as a trade route to the Pacific.In the mid 1800's, the path became a trail (under theguidance of a military surveyor) that would eventuallycarry a nation westward. The 'National Old TrailsHighway'was the result and with continued improvement,it was renamed 'Route 66' in 1926.With the unprecedentedprosperity of the postwar years, Route 66 becameone long neonavenue from Chicago to L.A. Through theyears, the highway has had many names 'The Main Streetof America,' 'The Wire Road,' 'The Will Rogers Highway,'and the 'Mother Road' to name a few. Songs and televisionshows immortalized it and Kingman was at theheart of it all. By the 1950's, withthe increase in traffic came the'National Interstate HighwaySystem.' One of the newinterstates was to be I-40,which would parallel Route66 in many places cover it inothers. As many towns were diminished so ended a way of lifefor many of the communitiesalong Route 66 but route 66 is still alive and well in Kingman.