Our thanks to Geoff Ladd, Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway, for providing the following information for us to share:
Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway delivers series of interpretive statues in nine communities along the Mother Road
A new series of interpretive statues and corresponding wayside panels are in the process of being installed in nine Route 66 communities along the famous highway in Illinois. The Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway coordinated the project, which was funded through grants from the Federal Highway Administration's National Scenic Byway Program and the Illinois Office of Tourism.
Bill Kelly, Executive Director of the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway, explained the significance of this latest series of interpretive exhibits along Illinois Route 66. “Statues tell the story of The Road in a way that is unique and unexpected by visitors. They also serve as a fun photo opportunity”, said Kelly. The Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway in the past has also worked with community partners to develop a series of 31 wayside exhibits and 14 experience hubs that have already been installed for the enhancement of the Route 66 experience for the traveler.
The “shadow statues” are so nicknamed because they are two-dimensional iron statues depicting a famous scene from the history of Route 66 in Illinois.
Running north to south, the interpretive statues are as follows:
Godley - Miner & Mule – an interpretation of the strip-mining of black diamonds in the communities of Braidwood, Coal City, Carbon Hill, Diamond, and Godley that begun in the mid-1800s and ended in 1974.