A Sign, a Star, and a Bit of Blue….

Posted by on May 21, 2008

(1)

A few weeks ago, I went on a family trip to see some relatives and ran across the sign above while stopping to rest. This was a neat sign, so I snapped a picture, promising myself I would look into it sometime, just to get some background about the origins.

The other day, I remembered the photo and starting doing some research. At first I thought these markers were some sort of federal interstate marker, created as an offshoot of the big projects of the Fifties and Sixties.

(2)

As it turns out, there is actually quite a bit of history behind these interstate signs. Started as a post World War II project of the National Garden Club, these markers are a remembrance to those who served in the military. Starting just after World War II in New Jersey by the Garden Club of America, these markers proved very popular and soon spread to other states by the individual state chapters of the club. The remarkable fact about this is that in each state, the local chapter(s) had to get government approval to place the markers. Getting through all the red tape is amazing!

The project kicked off in 1944 with a massive tree planting and going forth from there soon achieved success, with the project still in place today. The markers come in differing sizes and shapes, and are not cheap, with the large markers going for $1,000+. They can be places in other areas such as parks, cemeteries and public memorials. The design is of a big blue star centered in a dark rectangular metal background, with the saying flowing around it.

Have you ever seen these?

I’ve got some great links below, if you have a minute to check them out!

Have a great day, see you tomorrow!

Links:

Federal Highway Administration (Historical Backgrounds)

Blue Star Highway Background (Federal Highway Administration article)

Blue Star Highway Marker Background Information

Garden Club of America

Sources:

(1) Me, photograph on trip

(2) Nara

Podcast:

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