Will County, Illinois

For a short stretch west of Joliet, Route 6 parallels the Illinois and Michigan (I&M) Canal, opened in 1848 to carry traffic between the Illinois River and Lake Michigan. Southwest of Joliet, at Channahon, old Route 6 crosses the I&M canal in a scenic park setting that includes one of the original canal locks. (July 1999 photo)

Route 6 enters Joliet from the west on this double-leaf Bascule bridge over the Des Plaines River, which carries barge traffic between the Illinois River and Lake Michigan.  (July 1998 photo)
At this spot in Joliet, Route 6 begins a close, 450-mile partnership with the old Rock Island Railroad across Illinois and Iowa.  Here is the lift bridge, located just north of the Route 6 bridge (shown above), which carried the railroad over the Des Plaines River.  Today, this part of the old Rock Island is operated by the Iowa Interstate Railroad.


In their early years, Routes 6 and 66 crossed in downtown Joliet. In the late 1930s, the main Route 66 was moved to a bypass east of Joliet. So, at the time of this postcard, the late 1930s or early 1940s, they crossed near Channahon and right by the Manor Motel. (Curt Teich Postcard Archives, Lake County Illinois Discovery Museum) 

Joliet is the site of the conjunction of three storied highways. Here in downtown Joliet Route 6 shares a few blocks with the original Route 66. In the past, Jolietiers who planned to get their kicks by motoring west had two options: Six took off straight west, to La Salle, Rock Island, Omaha, Denver, Tonapah, Bishop, and Long Beach. Sixty-six headed southwest to such notable places as St. Louis, Oklahoma City, Amarillo, Gallop, Flagstaff, [don't forget] Winona; Kingman, Barstow, San Bernardino. (July 1998 photo)


East of downtown Joliet, shown in this March 1997 photo, Route 6 crosses U. S. Route 30, the old Lincoln Highway. 
Another one of the great hotels along Route 6, the Louis Joliet in downtown Joliet. This mid-1930s postcard mentioned two modern conveniences for travellers, air conditioning and a garage.  By this time, downtown hotels were actively vying for the trade of highway travellers. The garage likely would have accomodated overnight parking as well as auto servicing.  (Curt Teich Postcard Archives, Lake County Illinois Discovery Museum)

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