Illinois Roads - US 60/62/51

US 60/62 and US 51/60/62

EB across the Mississippi River bridge from Missouri.

A couple of other bridges visible from there. The first photo is actually the most distant bridge, using maximum zoom from the top of the span to see a mile or two up the Ohio River to the upstream railroad bridge. The second photo is the closer bridge, carrying US 60/62 into Kentucky. All told, they barely spend a mile in Illinois together.

Westbound photos back into Missouri, starting with the bridge plaque north of the beginning of the bridge.

Looking northwest from Fort Defiance State Park at the Mississippi River crossing.

While I'm down in Fort Defiance, here are some views of the Ohio River bridge, which adds US 51 to US 60/62. Well before Cairo was established at the confluence of the two rivers, what's now the state park was part of the Mississippi River, but that doesn't explain why the town wasn't settled all the way to the tip of the land.

Another view of the upstream railroad bridge, looking beneath the Ohio River road bridge.

WB signs leading up to the park entrance. I think there are enough trails this way. I also think that the "INFO" banner is a lot more informative than "Southern Branch," which implies that the Lincoln Heritage Trail actually runs through the dead-end park road.

EB where the two routes pick up US 51 SB to carry it into Kentucky. The second photo is wrong in two regards: it should just say "IL" instead of "ILL," and really, it shouldn't say anything at all, because traffic is already in Illinois.

These shields used to be overhead at that location instead of on the ground, and they have a strange vertical offset as if waiting to fit the state name above them. Photo is courtesy H.B. Elkins, as the signs are gone now.

Even without the bridges, there's still enough material for a US 60/62 page out of its two intersections in IL. This WB sign appears to have been a last-ditch effort to save Cairo from its socioeconomic death after it was bypassed by I-57 in the 1970s, in the hope that traffic would head north through Cairo to get to the Interstates. Well, no, travelers realized it was faster to continue west on US 60/62 to get to I-55, and Cairo lapsed into a coma. There's one restaurant, a couple of social services, one neighborhood that's still maintained by its residents, and two pervasive themes around the other 95% of the city: obsolescence/destruction, and segregation. Many, if not most, African-American residents live in a couple of projects sequestered on the west side of the city, while those residents remaining in the comparatively well-off northwestern neighborhood are mostly white. It's a terrible shame, worse even than the blight spreading across the center and east of the city, with 80% of the city's residents having left since the 1940s, exacerbated by racial tensions during the civil rights movement of the 1960s-70s.

Moving on, here are WB (US 51 NB) photos entering the state from Kentucky, with the Mississippi River bridge to Missouri in the background.

And, finally, EB/SB leaving Illinois on this 1928 bridge.

Onto US 51 alone

Into Kentucky on US 60 and 60/62
Into Kentucky on US 62 alone
Into Missouri on US 60
To I-57
To I-55
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