Looking at Puerto Vallarta Jalisco maybe five miles south.

On this blogger site one can click on all pictures except for the header above two times each time making them larger which is a feature I like because it gives you the ability to really look very close at all kinds of things not readily seen.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Before There Was I80 There Was Ole's And So Many Others

In many ways Highway 30 across Nebraska is similar to Route 66. These pictures were taken driving west. Some buildings go way back and all the neon is gone for the most part. So many roll their noses in disgust over the thought of driving across Nebraska. I detest attitudes like that as there is plenty to keep the imagination running full tilt.

The "Big Mamou" takes the prize if there was one for best name even though it must not go way back. It helps this route to the West from times gone by traveled by millions both ways live. I remember as a kid and a young adult how vibrant it was here. Ole's sign is probably the best. These pictures were taken last Friday the 15th. The pictures are more illustrative but there are a couple that have a bit of merit. After all most are window pictures.

There is a bit of text and want you to understand that in Iowa everyone was a farmer. Once the state line was crossed into Nebraska you were a rancher/cowboy. That's just the way it was back then.

           This place goes way back. Use your imagination and you can see Bonnie&Clyde parked here.

This was in Lexington and I can not make out the word.

This is a huge icon for anyone who travels east and west across the country on I80 located in Paxton which has a population of 634 if I remember correctly. I wanted lunch. They weren't open like before. I think they don't have to open for lunch now or something like that. This was not the building I remember.

In any case it's full of big game. Pretty damn interesting and a fun place to have lunch if this type of thing doesn't bother you. There's a story as well.

      This is a good one as I believe Ole's has been in business since the 30's.

         I see Bonnie again.

  Some of these places are no paradise that's for sure. I stayed in one in Grand Island. This is not open.

This was out in the middle of nowhere. To think that this provided a lively hood for a few people is interesting.

There were pumps in front of here at one time.

This and Oly's are real icons of the time. The stories that could be told about this if you could talk to the old timers. Notice the Caddy poking it's nose out. There was another as well. Not period but they fit.

Can't see what this says but it's from way back.

I saw a number of these in various states. This one is one of the better ones and might be in Ogallala. There were maybe 15 drive-ins seen on this trip with a handful still open.

     Remodeled but you can bet this place pumped gas for years.

I don't know what the heck this is but I like it. Only the parrot knows.


  1. That is excellent, that is real America to me. It gets even better way off the beaten track. Unbelievable actually. Thanks Tom!

  2. Until I read the text I did think it was Route 66. I think the sign in the third picture might have said Hollingsworth at one time but part of the neon is broken off. Note the "H" at the top. Great photos and a nice taste of Americana.

  3. Well it's kinda like being along for the ride I guess Jim. They're not the best pictures by any means but it's fun. There wasn't much to see until almost to Grand Island.

    That's exactly what it is Leslie. There must have been a chain of these at one time possibly.

    Thanks for coming by and commenting. TB

  4. This was like a visit to my youth. We often traveled to Texas and I think I remember some of those stops.


  5. Great photos as usual.
    I love this old stuff.
    Sort of like visiting the Twilight Zone of days gone by.
    Some of those signs are worth more than the businesses.

  6. Ever read William Least Heat Moon's classic BLUE HIGHWAYS? If not, see if your rural library will order it for you...It's not TRAVELS WITH CHARLIE, but certainly is a classic to me.

    Back when I was a kid (um, 60 some odd years back), there were cafe's and bakeries to be explored and sniffed while passing through on camping trips with the tent and stuff packed on the roof of dad's old '49 Dodge...


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