In 2012, I drove a section of the Dixie Highway from the Illinois state line to Indianapolis along the corridor that is now US 136. I’m bringing that trip report here from my old Roads site.
Just after the Dixie Highway enters Montgomery County, it enters Waynetown. Despite being near the west edge of the county, it was platted as Middletown in 1830.
At first I thought the windows on the second floor of the red building were boarded up, but on closer inspection it looks like those are shutters.
This is the most interesting set of buildings in downtown Waynetown.
I was especially taken with the Pizza King sign and the scene it created.
This store entrance looks like it’s straight out of the 1930s.
Just east of Waynetown I found what looks like an old alignment. On this map, I’ve drawn in green where I think it used to go. The only reason I can see for realigning the road was to smooth out that sharp curve, but it sure seems like there would have been less invasive ways to do that.
Here’s where the old road starts on the west end, with just a tiny bit of pavement that hasn’t crumbled to dust over the years.
As I entered Crawfordsville, I followed Old Waynetown Road, which is almost certainly the Dixie Highway’s original alignment. I’m pretty sure that the Dixie crossed the river at what is now Wayne Ct. and followed Wayne Ave. to Market St. before heading due east. I’ve drawn that route in green. I didn’t go look, but Google Maps’ Street View shows Wayne Ct. extending beyond the last house and fading away as it approaches the river, a good sign that there was once a bridge there.
I crossed the river on US 136, of course, but decided to just follow it as it curved around and became Market St. As you can see on this map, US 136 (the Dixie) doesn’t quite go through the heart of Crawfordsville, instead passing along the northern edge of downtown.
That simply wasn’t going to do for me, so I parked and explored downtown Crawfordsville, which lies along US 231. Here’s the road eastbound from there.
A few old European-style street signs remain attached to some of the buildings. This one is on the southwest corner of US 136 (Dixie Highway) and US 231.
A bit south of the Dixie on US 231 stands the Montgomery County courthouse.
Just after leaving Crawfordsville, there is what I think is an old alignment. Where the road would have crossed the creek, there is no longer a bridge, but I see possible evidence on Google Maps that one was once there.
A bit east of there is the tiny town of Mace.
You never know what you’ll find even in the tiniest of towns. In Mace, I found a former gas station and what was probably a tiny diner. It probably offered just enough room for the grill and a counter or maybe one or two booths or tables. It’s used as the rental office for some nearby apartments today.
Next: New Ross and Jamestown.