Lincoln Highway

Rick Fredericksen / Iowa Public Radio

A new “Heritage Byway” could soon be coming to Iowa. Extending from Northwood, down to Lamoni, the Jefferson Highway will soon be 100 years old, and promoters are working to keep the legend alive. 

Around 17,000 vehicles a day travel between Indianola and Des Moines on Highway 65-69. Old-timers knew it as the Jefferson Highway. Long before Interstate-35, it was the nation’s primary north-south road, from Winnipeg to New Orleans. The various routes still exist, but the historical meaning is quickly fading.