Sunday, May 22, 2016

Jefferson Highway in Northern Missouri

Thursday 5 May 2016:  Jefferson Highway in Northern Missouri

Jefferson Highway in Northern Missouri as Driven 20160505 Thursday

Like many auto trails, the Jefferson Highway presents a huge challenge to roadies, explorers and tourists as it rarely, if ever shows up on any maps.  In many places, the erosion of time has worn the road down to nothing but barely a reference in old texts found maybe on dusty shelves in old stacks somewhere.  With the advent of modern communications through networking computers, there are efforts to bring the road back alive, at least digitally.  Artifacts of the road are rare, and those who would have memory of the road are long gone.  In a humble, slight, and most probably often misguided effort, I have decided to explore what I can of the road using what resources I can find.  Such an effort is never an individual endeavor.  There are records that have be compiled and kept over the years.  There are individuals who have made it their mission to keep the road alive in their spare time in hopes that someday people may pass the way of the early touring motor coaches and who may experience the charms and hospitality of the many burgs along the route big and small.  I want to give mention to the Jefferson Highway Association, who can be found online at and also at their facebook page  I am grateful for their efforts and also grateful for the kindness shown by Gallup Map Company, of Kansas City, Missouri.
Playlist for this page.. open in a separate window to play in Youtube....

I began my trek later than I'd like to.  I knew I had a lot of road to explore and little time to do it.  I find that if you really want to take advantage of the day, it is best to be on the road by 08:00.  Of course that is not an absolute.  However, what I find is that to try and keep karma with the road at a reasonable pace without being tempted to speed passed many sites, an earlier start is better.  I did not follow my own advice on this trip.  Our first stop, obviously, was at one of my favorite cawfee haus... Headrush Roasters, which is on the route, and can be found online at and on facebook at  
Headrush is located on the Jefferson Highway in Gladstone, Missouri, which was formerly the unincorporated village of Linden, on the Jefferson Highway.
For some portions of the highway, a truck is recommended.  It is even better if that truck has all terrain capability.  I found this out when I explored the southern portion in the mini-van.  I found some parts dangerous to travel in a low clearance vehicle. 
Dogs waiting patiently outside the shop
Looking north on North Oak Trafficway towards the northwest corner of the old town of Linden, which incorporated in 1952 to become Gladstone, Missouri.
Gladstone, Missouri
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Linden can be seen in the screen grab as the grid pattern to the east of North Oak.
Linden is southeast of the water tower.
I begin my trek northward on North Oak from Linden, north of 72nd street.
Take North Oak  north.  It comes to a Y intersection at 111th street.  Continue on straight north into Nashua, which was an unincorporated town that has been swallowed up by Kansas City, Missouri.  In the video I talk about L. P. Cookingham.  He was not a mayor as I wrongly stated he was, but a city manager who was responsible for the city of Kansas City annexing a lot of the northland.
Downtown Nashua
At one time, this was a town...
If I could imagine what a radio station is supposed to look like, this building would fall right into my mental picture.
North Oak comes to a T-intersection with L. P. Cookingham Drive.  Turn left on NE L. P. Cookingham Drive.  Phew, there's too many letters in that.  L. P. Cookingham crosses North Main Street.  North Main street is where the route followed, but it dead ends north of here.  Actually, I didn't notice if a right turn could be made.  When a road is orphaned, often it becomes private property.
To head north, turn left onto the loop onramp to get on US 169 northbound.  The orphaned section of Jefferson highway headed north on Main then headed west before turning north at an intersection which you will cross as you head north on 169.  This time I did look and noticed that the roadway has a gate across it.  Apparently it is private property.  Our next stop is Smithville, Missouri.

Where Jefferson Highway originally made a right angle turn from east west to north south.....
Oh, first, another delay -- fuel, rest break and grub....
Getting fuel a block north of the Jefferson highway turn.
Smithville, Missouri
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Clean rest rooms mean a lot in the convenience store business...
QuikTrip Corporation

If you are heading north on US 169, turn right on Commercial which swings to the northeast, meets a round about, then continue on north...
Here there is a speed restriction for Smithville High School.
Approaching the intersection of E Main Street.  Here we will turn left to head west through downtown.
Link to Smithville, Missouri from a previous trip
West on E Main Street through downtown Smithville, Missouri.
Turning north on Bridge Street.
From Bridge Street, turn right on Missouri F Highway.
Missouri Route F heads east, then northeast, then north.  You follow it north, then northeast to a T-Intersection with Litton Way, turn left to head north.

T-intersection with Litton.
Head north on Missouri F.
Northbound on Missouri F Highway.
Missouri F swings to the east at an intersection with Northeast 180th.  I assidently broke Karma with the road one block before F makes another curve to the north.
We stay on F a long ways.  Enjoy this while it lasts!
Intersection with W.

There is one Swing to the west then north before Trimble on Missouri F.
Trimble, Missouri

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Trimble is the intersection for the branch of the Jefferson Highway to St. Joseph, Missouri.  The St. Joseph Leg reconnects with this leg of the Jefferson Highway south of Bethany, Missouri.
Video I did in November 2014

In Trimble, the Jefferson Highway is known at Port Arthur Road.  It connects with Southwest 214th street, and we turn left to head west then it merges with US 169, where we head north.
Take US 169 north to County road 310, where we have first taste of gravel.  310 comes off of US 169 to the left.

310 is also known as Southwest Hulse Road.
310 comes to a T intersection with 311.  Right on 311 and head east, then left on US 169.
US 169 Northbound
Turn righ on county 294 or Southwest 252nd and head east.
294 crosses 295 and becomes 293.  293 makes a left at 292.

Turn right on County 311 to head east.
Jimmy is enjoying the Jefferson Highway
Things are fine on 169!
Doing the dog thing!
Turn left on US 169 to head north.
Grayson, Missouri
US 169 in Grayson
After passing the small village of Grayson, we head north on US 169 then take a right on County 294 (Southwest 252nd Street) and head east on yet another gravel road.

294 becomes 293 after crossing 295.  Confused yet?  Actually to make it a little simpler, the road is also Southwest 252nd street.  That doesn't help much.  Then turn left on Soutwest Hord Road and head north.  Then turn right on Missouri 116 to head east.

US 169 north of Grayson.  The turn in the picture is County 294, or southwest 252nd Street.
County 294 or SW 252nd Street.

Southwest 252nd Street and Southwest Smith Halferty Road

SW 252nd Street and Southwest Hord Road.  We turn left on SW Hord Road, or county 292.

Southwest Hord Road makes a right on Missouri 116 to head east.
Eastbound on Missouri 116.
MO 116 curves to the north then east towards Plattsburg, where it becomes Broadway.  The Jefferson Highway used to take this bend at right angles.   Jefferson Highway was built mainly on farm roads before road improvements exchanged 90 degree corners for gentle curves.
Coming into Plattsburg, Missouri.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
West Broadway continues straight and heads into Plattsburg.  Missouri 116 actually curves one block to the south and becomes West Clay Avenue to bypass downtown.

East on West Broadway Street.

Downtown Plattsburg comes into view.
Right on South Main Street to head north.
Main Street in Plattsburg, Missouri
We stopped to walk around downtown Plattsburg.

Corner of East Locust and North Main Street.
Main Street heading north out of Plattsburg.

Take Main Street north out of town.  It becomes Northwest Reservior Road.
Northwest Reservior Road curves northeast out of town.
Northwest Reservoir Road approaching Northwest Brethren Church Road.  We will turn right on Northwest Brethren Church road and head east on yesss..... gravel.
Northeast Brethren Road after the turn east.

Northwest Brethren Church Road heading northeast.
Truck Wheels on a Gravel Road.....

Take Northwest Brethren Church Road to Northwest Shoemaker Road turn left to go north.

Northwest Shoemaker Road at the Intersection of Northwest Norton Road
Northwest Shoemaker Road makes a right and intersects with Missouri 33.  We take a right on Missouri 33 and.... PAVEMENT!  Head north.

Northbound on Missouri 33

Take Missouri 33 North to Northeast 320th Street (county 104).
Northeast 320th Street heading east on gravel....
A left will be taken on Northeast Dudley Road to head north..
Northeast Dudley Road with join up with Route T.  A right will be taken to head east on T.
Route T will curve to the north, then to the east....
At Northeast Gilchrist Road, we will take a left to head north.
This is a view of Northeast Gilchrist Road as it intersects with Northeast 344th Street.
Northeast Gilchrist Road comes to a T with Northeast 344th Street.  Turn right to head east on Northeast 344th Street.
Northeast 344th street curves to the east and then north again.
Northeast 344th street (Northeast Hahn Road) heading northbound.
Northeast 344th Street (Hahn Road) comes to a T with Northeast 352nd Street.  Take a right on Northeast 352nd Street to head east.
The intersection of Northeast 344th Street (NE Hahn Road) and Northeast 352nd Street.  Here we make a right turn to head east.
The Jefferson Highway used to go straight through here.  However, Cameron Memorial Airport has been built here, and has cut the roadway, so a detour around the airport will get you into Cameron.
Head east on Northeast 352nd Street to the interesection, then turn right to head north on Northeast O'Connell Road.  Take it to your next right, which is Northeast 355th street, and head east.  If you don't feel comfortable taking the private industrial road, as I did, take Northeast 355th Street east to South West Street and take a right to head south to Euclid Avenue, which is where you will pick up the Jefferson Highway again.  Take a left on Euclid to head east into Cameron.
Taking a private industrial roadway to detour back to the Jefferson Highway.  The industrial roadway is for Sukup Manufacturing.  It is SOO CUP.  Not Suck up as I mispronounce it....
After the private industrial road shortcut, I was rewarded with an old stretch of pavement.  This is Northeast 352nd Street east of the airport.

Sukup Manufacturing short cut.
Northeast 352nd merges with Missouri route A.  We continue eastward on A.
Missouri Route A (Northeast 352nd Street) curves to the north, then to the east and becomes Euclid Avenue in Cameron Missouri.  Euclid curves to the north as it meets and becomes South Harris Street.  My maps say that Jefferson Highway actually bypassed downtown about one block to the south on West 2nd Street, which I took, until I got downtown.  From South Harris Street, take a right on West 2nd and head east.
Cameron, Missouri

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Breaking Karma with the road to take a stroll downtown with the doggies.
Downtown Cameron, Missouri
Iron Horse Primitives

Mural being painted in Cameron’s-train-mural

From West 2nd street, turn left on West Walnut Street to head north.
When exploring, expect to see some of these.  I tried to follow the route as per my map, but the road doesn't seem to go through.

Continue north on West Walnut, it turns into North Walnut and US 69 Highway.

Take the eastern Y and continue on US 69.  Jefferson Highway's original route according to my map deadends at these streets, so continue on northeast on US 69.

Another try at the route, only to turn around...

Turn right on State Road BB to head east.

Turn left on 110th Street to head north.

Turn right on Waltz Avenue to head east.

Turn right on State Road BB to head north.

Turn right on Titan Avenue to head east.

Turn left on 132nd Street to head north.
Winston, Missouri
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia,_Missouri

Interesting old abandoned building on the corner coming into Winston.
Downtown Winston, Missouri
Take US 69 to the northeast.  We opted to visit Winston, Missouri.

Turn right on 148th Street, which is a gravel road.

Turn right on Reel Avenue, which is gravel, then turn left to head north on US 69, which is paved road.

I was thrilled when I came here and saw what looked like old roadbed to the west, right where my maps said it should be.  However, as I re-examine the maps, I see it is actually old railroad bed.  It looks like as I research it an old Rock Island railroad bed...

Doggies waiting patiently waiting inside BETSI...

Continue on north on US 69, over the I-35 overpass that has no access and continue north.

Continue north on US 69, we skipped the zig zags in this area.

Turn left on Ivory Avenue to head west.
South of Old Pattonsburg, Missouri where the Grand River crossing is, an abandoned bridge which dates to 1883 can be found for those who dare to drive the muddy roads to it.
Turn right on 137th Street, which is a dirt/grass road.  It dead ends at the Grand River Bridge.
Here is a Youtube link to another visiter to this bridge...
 Part 1
 Part 2 (Clinton County -- Keystone, Missouri)
Grand River Bridge south of Old Plattsburg, Missouri
BETSI got us here safely!
Grand River Bridge south of Pattonsburg, Missouri.

Doggies in Flea and Tickville!
Turn around and head south on 137th Street.

Turn right to head east on Ivory Avenue which is gravel, then turn left on US 69 North which is paved.
US 69 South of the Grand River
Cross the Grand River, then turn left to head west on 131st street which is dirt/gravel.
Turn left on 137th street to head south until it dead ends at the north end of the Grand River Bridge.  This road is mainly dirt, some gravel, and grass.
Grand River Bridge from the north bank..

BETSI went mudding to get here!

The state of the roads north of the abandoned Grand River bridge.

U turn on 137th street to head north, then turn right on 131st Street.  137th didn't look super passable from 131st northward, so we took US 69 into Pattonsburg.  Turn left on US 69 to head north.

We opted to visit Pattonsburg.

Pattonsburg, Missouri
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The state of 137th Street south of Pattonsburg is not really passable as even a road.  I didn't want to take it for fear that I might be messing up a farmers field.

Abandoned Pattonsburg City hall.
Some buildings remain...
Old city hall sits empty, except for a few items being stored inside.

BETSI and the doggies wait...
Jimmy will be our pilot...

Street signs and a street grid for a ghost town...


We head out...

From Pattonsburg, Granite Avenue is a right turn off of US 69 as you head northbound.  Take a Granite avenue to head east.
Granite Avenue Bridge
Across an ancient bridge that groaned as we passed over....

Granite Avenue comes to sort of a Y intersection with 160th Street.  160th Street is a little deceptive here as it looks like another driveway.  Take the left on 160th, it curves to the east then bends north.

Take a right on Flint Avenue, then an immediate left on 162nd Street to head northeast.

Not aware of the history as I drove this area, I arrive at New Pattonsburg...
The whole town up and moved to higher ground here.

162nd Street bends to the north and skirts the east side of New Pattonsburg, Missouri.
New Pattonsburg, Missouri
Ghost town

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
New downtown...
I saw the old and new Pattonsburg on the maps, and didn't know what I was looking at.  Mystery solved!
From New Pattonsburg, head north on 162nd Street from Missouri Route C.

This area here looks like it could be old abandoned highway continuing north...

Turn left on State Road N from 162nd Street to head west.

Turn right on US 69 from State Road N to head north.

US 69 meets US 136 south of Bethany.  Cross US 136 and you are on West 192nd Avenue heading north.

From 192nd Avenue, turn right on West 320th Street to head east.

West 320th Street curves north and becomes West 200th Avenue.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Turn right on South street and head east.

Turn left on south 12th Street and head north.

Turn right on Main Street and head east.

The Chrysler on the left looks like it may have low miles on it.

Turn left on North 16th Street to head north.  You are forced to turn right on Central Street to head east as Alder Street is one way westbound.  The maps place Alder street as the actual route.

Continue east on Central Street, turn left on N 22nd Street to head north, then turn right on Oakland to rejoin the Jefferson Highway route and to head northeast.

Turn left on North 25th Street to head north.  North 25th Street is US 69.  I bypassed the routing east of here.  To stay on the route, turn right on Daily road at the Y, head east, then take your next left on West 125th Lane.

Continue north on US 69.  My maps shows Jefferson Highway actually east of here.  To continue on the route keep on West 125th lane until it merges with US 69 north bound.

Continue on US 69 Northbound.

The old road bed zig zags around the new US 69 alignment.  These can be interesting to take.  They will usually dump you back on US 69 if passable.  Continue on US 69 north.

Eagleville, Missouri

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Continue on US 69 North through Eagleville, Missouri.

I continued on US 69 north, even though the route does zig zag off.

The route does zig zag around US 69.
Continue on US 69 north to the state line.

US 69 curves to the east on the Missouri Iowa border.
Honey War

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I continued on US 69 north to finish my day in Lamoni, Iowa.
Lamoni, Iowa

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Doggies need their vittles.  I know it is pricy, but Baneful beef stew for dogs has rice in it.  We have had problems with our pups getting very sick on the road with stomach problems.  One time in New Mexico, we met a guy at a Petco who said buy meals with rice in them and it helps to calm their stomachs.  His advice does seem to work.

I am a little scared of this mascot...

To come home, I took one of the successor roads, I-35 south.

I stopped for grub at a truck stop on US 36.

Final Fuel Stop!

Blog Archive