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Highway History


Books You Might Enjoy

Cartoon of 3 books superimposed on a section of Interstate.


Hennessy, B. G., and Taback, Simmons, Road Builders (Puffin Books, 1994).  From the back cover:  “Ever wonder how a road is built?  Grab your hard hat and find out!”

Oh, Do You Know Where This Road Will Go? (Mississippi Department of Transportation).  The story of a new road and what it means to a community.  Written in the rhyming style of Dr. Seuss, this fun book includes games and puzzles.

Ages 5-9

Gibbons, Gail, New Road! (A Harper Trophy Book by Harper and Row, 1983).  From the back cover:  “It’s time to build a new road.  The land has been surveyed and the route planned.  Here comes the construction crew.”

Oxlade, Chris, Bridges (Building Amazing Structures series, Heinemann Educational Books, 2001). Describes the types of bridges and how they are built.

Prince, April Jones, Twenty-One Elephants and Still Standing (Houghton Mifflin, 2005).  The Brooklyn Bridge was so long and unique when it was completed in 1884 that people were afraid it would fall.  The showman P. T. Barnum agreed to demonstrate its safety by leading 21 circus elephants, including the world famous 7-ton Jumbo, across the bridge.  The read-aloud text tells the story of this amazing bridge.

Ages 9-12

Anderson, Mary Elizabeth, Link Across America:  A Story of the Historic Lincoln Highway (Rayve Productions, 1997).  The story of the most famous highway the 1910s and 1920s, the road a future President, Dwight D. Eisenhower, traveled with the U.S. Army’s first coast-to-coast convoy.

Haldane, Elizabeth, Truck (Machines at Work series by DK Publishing, 2005).  From the back cover:  “Have you ever wondered what it’s like to sit in a truck cab high above other drivers?  Or to be in control of the toughest vehicle on the road? … Discover how trucks and their drivers do important jobs—and how they have fun!”

Landau, Elaine, Bridges (A True Book by Children’s Press, a Division of Scholastic, Inc., 2001).  Describes the many types of bridges.

Landau, Elaine, Tunnels (A True Book by Children’s Press, a Division of Scholastic, Inc., 2000).  All about tunnels.

Pollard, Michael, Roads and Tunnels (Superstructure Series by Steck-Vaughn, 1996).  Describes how roads and tunnels are built.

Pollard, Michael, Travel by Road and Rail (Moving Around the World, from several publishers).  (Out-of-print but available in libraries and online.)

Simon, Seymour, Bridges (a Seemore Readers book from SeaStar Books, 2005).  The title says it all! And the book includes four collectible cards, plus stickers.

Vanderwarker, Peter, The Big Dig:  Reshaping an American City (Little, Brown, and Company, 2001).  With pictures and text, The Big Dig takes readers behind the scenes in Boston of one of the most challenging highway/bridge/tunnel projects in Interstate history. 

For Young Readers

Gaff, Jackie, Buildings, Bridges & Tunnels (A Random House Tell Me About Book, 1991).  Written in a question-and-answer format.  (Out-of-print but available in libraries and online.)

Macy, Sue, Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom (With a Few Flat Tires Along the Way), National Geographic Society, 2011. (Written for ages 12 and up, this book tells how the Bicycle Craze of the late 18th century allowed women to break through the many restrictions on their lives to "ride into a new world full of all sorts of freedoms," as the book jacket puts it.)

Shuter, Jane, On the Road:  Travel Past and Present (Raintree, 2004).  From the back cover:  “Get ready to Travel Through Time.  From a Roman chariot to the first cars, you can discover what it was really like to travel in the past.”

Web Sites You Might Enjoy

California Department of Transportation Kids’ Page: http://www.dot.ca.gov/kids/

Iowa Department of Transportation’s For Young Iowans:  http://www.dot.state.ia.us/kidspages/index.htm

New Jersey—Biking in NJ: http://www.state.nj.us/transportation/commuter/bike/kids.shtm

New York State Department of Transportation Kids Corner:  http://www.dot.state.ny.us/reg/r6/i86_project/kids_site/home.html

South Dakota Department of Transportation Kids’ Page: http://www.sddot.com/kidspage/

Tennessee Department of Transportation Kids’ Pages: http://www.tdot.state.tn.us/kids/

Texas Department of Transportation Kids’ Page: http://www.dot.state.tx.us/kidsonly/splashpg/splashpg.htm

A Magazine You Might Enjoy
Ages 8-13

Cobblestone:  The History Magazine for Young People (Carus Publishing).  Every issue contains articles about American history, including transportation history.  For information on subscribing or ordering back issues, go to http://www.cricketmag.com/ProductDetail.asp?pid=15

Updated: 06/27/2017
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000