Charlotte Niel Photography
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Lost and Found-Route 66


When I was growing up, my family traveled the “Mother Road” several times prior to the big push for faster, wider highways.  On those cross country trips, we learned to read by keeping track of all those outlandish billboard messages that entertained and directed for miles and miles. Dinosaur parks, curio shops, neon lit motels and little diners all make up that lost landscape of the past.


These most recent trips have allowed me to revisit old places that have lost their original allure and can be easily missed as motorists speed along to their final destination. Dilapidated signs and road stops such as “Dunes” or “Here it is” are falling into decay as memories fade and life moves forward.  I view these old signs and places with nostalgia, curiosity and sometimes humor.  They are part of this vast landscape of props, messages and characters that were designed to coax you to stop and buy before your final destination and many times did not quite live up to the “promise.” They are guardians of the past when the car was the “king of the road”, gas was cheap and a new life in the west was the hope for many who made the journey.  

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