The map above shows the different highway route marker shield designs used by each US state for their own state highways.
While Interstate and US Numbered Highways use standard designs across the country, but the same can not be said of state highway markers.
A few interesting facts:
- Pennsylvania’s design is a keystone, after the state’s nickname.
- Kansas uses a sunflower, which is the state flower.
- Utah uses a beehive since it is known as the beehive state.
- Washington uses a silhouette of George Washington’s bust.
- New Hampshire’s design is based on the Old Man in the Mountain
- New Mexico uses the default circle but adds a Zia sun symbol
- California is the only state not to use a square or rectangle.
- North Dakota’s “Red Tomahawk“ design is slowly being replaced by the state’s outline.
- Colorado design includes their state flag.
- Five states (Delaware, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, and New Jersey) use the default shield
- Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, and Oklahoma all use their state’s outline.
To learn more about the US Highway system have a look at the following books:
- The Big Roads: The Untold Story of the Engineers, Visionaries, and Trailblazers Who Created the American Superhighways
- Divided Highways: Building the Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life
- Interstate 69: The Unfinished History of the Last Great American Highway
- The Last American Highway series
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