South Carolina's Auto Trails
---An Overview
The first marked roads in our nation were the Auto Trails that would become popular in the teens and 20's.  Many of these trails would run cross country or from Canada south to Mexico or Florida.  In some cases, these trails would be tied together to instate or regional trails and some are more well known than others.  Today, many of these trails are long forgotten; however, a few are remembered by name.  Some have carried the name onto modern highways while in others an ignored piece of highway called "Old" is all that remains.  Some of these early interstates did go through South Carolina, and this page will help to tell their stories.  If you have any information that could help expand the scope of this site and/or improve the factual accuracy, please e-mail me.

Marker
Route and Description
Bankhead Highway: Ran nationally from Washington to San Diego.  It is named after Alabama Senator John Hollins Bankhead who was a champion of the Good Roads Movement.  The Bankhead Highway was a Southern Transcontinental Auto Trail named in his honor that came into existence in 1916.  The term 'Bankhead Highway' is still used in the late Senator's Alabama and also in Georgia, Arizona, and Texas.  Use of 'Bankhead Highway' does not appear to exist in South Carolina today.

Routing: Generally today one can trace the Bankhead Highway by following US 29 in its entirety within South Carolina.  There are two exceptions from Lyman to Greenville you can trace the route by following SC 292 to SC 290 then to Old Spartanburg Road (S-21).  From Greenville to Anderson, the original Bankhead Highway follows today's SC 81.  Then follow US 29 from Anderson to the Georgia State Line.  Please Note: This is a general route listing.  As new information is presented, it will be updated.   

Dixie Highway:  This Michigan to Florida Highway first came to existence in 1915.  Two branches of the Dixie Highway were created under the Dixie Highway Association.  The west branch ran from Chicago to Miami.  The east branch, which ran through South Carolina, ran from Sault Ste. marie, Michigan to Miami.  Both routes were one of the first major north-south touring routes to Florida.  The term Dixie Highway is still used throughout the South and the North and many remnants still exist in Florida.  Part of the Boone Way in South Carolina followed the Dixie Highway also (as seen from the map at right).

Routing:  One can trace the Dixie Highway through South Carolina by following US 25 in its entirety within the state.  One exception can be seen from the 1926 Rand McNally Auto Trails map at right.  Today, US 25 bypasses both Cokesbury and Hodges.  To follow the original routing here, head into Cokesbury by way of SC 254.  Then turn right onto SC 185 to Hodges.  Turn left on to US 178 and then rejoin US 25.  Please Note: This is a general route listing.  As new information is presented, it will be updated.

Links:

  • The Dixie Highway ---Robert Droz
  • US 25 @ South Carolina Highways ---Mike Roberson
  • The Dixie Highway ---Dave Schul

  • Site Navigation:
  • 1920's South Carolina Trunk Routes
  • Return to SC Highways Index

  • Sources & Links:

  • Mike Roberson - 1926 Rand McNally Auto Trails Map scan and other notes throughout
  • South Carolina Highways Page ---Mike Roberson

  • Page Created: April 23, 2006
    Last Updated: April 23, 2006

    (C) 2006 Adam Prince