Published Jun 27, 2017 at 9:40 PM | Updated at 10:58 AM PDT on Aug 6, 2018
Known as the Main Street of America, Will Rogers Highway and the Mother Road, Route 66 was one of the original routes in the United States' highway system and one of the most famous roads in the country. Since it was established in 1926, it's earned a place in popular culture with the song "(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66" by Bobby Troup, a TV series in the 1960s and as a key symbol in the novel "Grapes of Wrath."
At one time, it was a main east-west route across the heart of the country, a ribbon of highway uniting urban and rural communities as it stretched from Chicago to Los Angeles. Attractions along the way gave Route 66 its own roadside culture and became well-known landmarks for tourists who were exploring the American West by car.
But as the United States changed after World War II, Route 66 and other highways of the time became outdated as the auto industry grew along with Americans' aspirations. When the U.S. interstate highway system came along, Route 66's demise from its glory days soon followed. The road was bypassed or replaced over the decades and officially decommissioned in June 1985.
In July 2018, a campaign to preserve the historic Main Street of America hit the road. Starting in Chicago and ending Aug. 3 in Los Angeles with stops along the route, the National Trust for Historic Preservation announcement says its month-long road trip is a push for Historic Route 66 to be designated as a National Historic Trail.
Some of the original route remains, and here's some of what you'll see. For a list of sites and itineraries from the National Park Service, click here. And, if you have some of your own photos you'd like to share, please send them to email@example.com.