Destination Kansas — Route 66

Destination Kansas

FOUR STATE AREA — Route 66 is one of the most important highways in history.

Used for getting from one place to another and also opening new doors to commerce across the U.S.

From Chicago to Saint Louis to Springfield and over to Carthage, tucked away in the Southwest corner of the state we’re in Carthage, actually home of the first american civil war battle, about 500 residents of that town joined in the war on July 5th in 1861.

This is a tour of route 66 from Southwest Missouri, into beautiful Southeast Kansas and dipping into Northeast Oklahoma. From beautiful intricate courthouses to simple history Missouri proudly boasts its ties to Route 66.

The Maple Leaf City is home to the Boots Motel, an icon on the route.

The square is home to art galleries, eateries, and even a bowling alley.

From Carthage we take a 15 minute drive down Route 66 to Joplin.

You’ll find history in every corner of the town. From homes built over 100 years ago to Main Street staples that have been restored yet serving new purposes.

We find ourselves at the oldest home in Joplin, built in the late 1800’s.

The Julius Fischer Home is nestled among a few dozen historic homes in the Murphysburg District.

Guess what it’s for sale!

Downtown Joplin is Route 66, Wilders Cafe across town to the history and mineral museum.

Without mining, Joplin and the surrounding are wouldn’t be what it is today.

We leave Joplin and head West to Galena, Kansas.

Our first stop, Tow-Mater, yes one of the inspirations for the movie Cars.

Galena prides itself on that connection, a newly opened Decades of Wheels is home to classic cars.

The East side of the 400 block is home to the former Miner’s and Merchant’s Bank which is now Galena National Bank.

Historians believe Bonnie Barrow robbed the former bank.

The mother road takes us South to Baxter Springs.

The town is actually the biggest town in the Southeast Kansas portion of the route.

It’s Main Street is well kept featuring history at every turn.

Northeast Oklahoma is a quick drive further south.

That’s where we find Route 66 pride Oklahoma is referred to as the birthplace of Route 66.

Entering Miami you’ll find the gateway to Route 66.

The route is packed with history from the Coleman Theater to early 1900’s buildings.

Plus, by now, you’re probably hungry, stop in at Souper Sweets.

So we started in the beautiful show-me-state in Carthage, Missouri, we traveled through Joplin then into the sunflower state we found Galena, through Baxter Springs now in Northeast Oklahoma but Route 66 continues for thousands of miles after.

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