Good Roads Movement

This article was published in the January 2, 1910 Indianapolis Star and provides an update to the good roads movement that was underway in the United States at the time. In reading the article it is interesting to note that even by 1910 the notion that the automobile was not an entirely established and widely accepted transportation solution and was just then only taking root.

This article was published in the March 20, 1910 Indianapolis Star. It concerns an inflection point for the evolution of the automobile, the fashion of motoring apparel and the influence of women on both. It is only tangential to motorsport but I like to include pieces like this to paint the larger contextual picture of the early days of both automobiles and racing them.

Originally published in the Sunday, March 20, 1910 Indianapolis Star, these articles were part of  a special supplemental section about the upcoming March 28 Indianapolis Automobile Show presented by the Indianapolis Automobile Trade Association (IATA).

This article about the formation of a corporation to build a toll road between Indianapolis and Chicago was published in the May 28, 1909 Indianapolis News.

Charles Thatcher was an early 20th century "good roads" advocate - described in the attached article below as "the good roads national boulevards apostle." The article is from the July 2, 1909 Indianapolis News and describes the passage of Thatcher through the city of Indianapolis as he waged a multi-state tour to raise support for upgrading roads across the country.

As everyone in America digested the reality that a new product called the automobile was transforming everyday life opinions differed on how to best take advantage of it. One of the challenges was the country's highway infrastructure, which was almost entirely dirt roads well into the 20th century - especially in the countryside. While these trails were adequate for the mode and pace of animal-drawn conveyances, carriages propelled by internal combustion engines were a different proposition.

The August 20, 1909, Indianapolis News article contained in the attachment below is about bold, ambitious plans to build a super speedway to dwarf the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but is perhaps more closely tied to the "good roads" movement of the early 20th Century.

There seems to be no end to the businesses and professional activities that Carl Fisher, founder of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, took ownership of or led in some way. Among them: