Building the Lincoln Highway by Dr. David Borges

October 30, 2017

Dr. David Borges, local historian and history instructor at Lake Tahoe Community College, presents the amazing story of the building of the Lincoln Highway, the first transcontinental highway in the nation which passed through South Lake Tahoe and Truckee. […]

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The story of the Lincoln Highway is very interesting. It was not one road, but a collection of roads that took travelers from New York City to San Francisco.  Completed in 1915, the Lincoln Highway brought visitors to San Francisco and the Pan Pacific Exposition and showed the country that the automobile was not just a toy. The highway was also the first tribute to our fallen President, Abraham Lincoln.

In South Lake Tahoe, a designated route passed through Placerville, over Echo Summit and down Pioneer Trail to Carson City. A northern route passed through Truckee, over Donner Pass. Road markers pointed the drivers to the next stretch of road. The Lincoln Highway Association formed in 1913 and helped place the markers all across the country. They also published booklets similar to the AAA “Trip-Tik” giving advice on traveling such as what to take, where to find accommodations, sights to see, etc. It’s quite a story of cooperation between auto makers, tire companies, gasoline companies – all working together to get us off trains and into cars!

David BorgesDr. David Borges grew up in Lake Tahoe and fell in love with its history early on. Lucky for us, he has actively shared the history of Lake Tahoe in various presentations and his class at the Lake Tahoe Community College, “History of Lake Tahoe”. The course surveys the history of the area around Lake Tahoe from its geologic formation and first inhabitants through its 19th and 20th century developments.  He and his wife, Karen, have had a chiropractic practice in South Lake Tahoe since 1985 and are active members of the community.