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A Look at the History of the Federal Highway Administration
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May 21
1912 Director Logan Page has invited State highway officials from around the country to DC to meet Albert Mahieu, Engineer-in-Chief of France's Department of Bridges and Highways and Secretary-General of PIARC. Page wants U.S. road builders to learn what foreign countries are doing to improve their roads.
1928 The Federal-Aid Highway Amendment of 1928 authorizes the use of Federal-aid funds for planting shade trees along Federal-aid routes. The first year passes without any State proposing the use of funds for that purpose. BPR's annual report for FY 1929 notes that some States may be devoting funds to "more utilitarian purposes" while others may "find it feasible" to use other funds. The report add that the greatest use of Federal-aid roads "is by those seeking pleasure and recreation by travel. To many such users a pleasant roadside prospect means as much as a smooth surface and easy grades."
"In this one respect [roadside beautification] the roads of the United States are as yet inferior to the highways of Europe. The satisfaction of [the] instinctive desire for beauty is an object that should no longer be ignored in our public works, and especially in the improvement of our highways."
FY 1929 Annual Report, BPR
1961 The First National Highway Week begins, declared by President John F. Kennedy on April 29 "in recognition of the vital role of highway transportation in our way of life."
Alabamans celebrate National Highway Week with this ribbon cutting ceremony on 1-65 between Montgomery and Birmingham. Left to right: Chief Engineer R. D. Jordan, Alabama Highway Department (AHD); AHD Director Sam Engelhardt; Mrs. Morgan Reynolds (sister of Governor John Patterson's wife); Executive Assistant Walter H. Craig, AHD; and BPR Division Engineer B. A. Scott.
1962 Harold Rib of the Physical Research Division begins presentation of a course in air photo interpretation at the offices of the Wyoming State Highway Department. Officials from Colorado, South Dakota, and BPR's Region 9 office also attend.
1982 Opening ceremonies for Seven Mile Bridge, part of the U.S. 1 Overseas Highway leading to Key West, FL, take place. The bridge is the Nation's first of any length employing precast segmental construction.
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