Caravan to traverse Tracy’s portion of Lincoln Highway
by Sam Matthews
Jun 20, 2013 | 2398 views | 0 0 comments | 48 48 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Vintage autos of many ages, shapes and sizes will travel through Tracy on Sunday, June 23, as part of an eight-day cross-country tour commemorating the 100th anniversary of the nation’s first transcontinental highway network.

The eastbound caravan, numbering more than 60 old-time cars, will be en route from Lincoln Park in San Francisco to Sacramento on the opening day of the Lincoln Highway Centennial Tour that will wind up June 30 in Kearney, Neb.

After passing through Tracy on 11th Street sometime after 11:30 a.m. Sunday, the caravan — divided into smaller units to ease highway congestion — will turn north onto Banta Road and stop at the Banta Inn for lunch.

“There should be vintage cars beginning with a 1914 Packard up through the 1950s,” said Mike Kaelin, a Tracy resident who is active in the Lincoln Highway Association’s local chapter. “There will even be old cars from Norway and Germany.”

The Lincoln Highway, established in 1913, was the first effort to form a coast-to-coast highway system. Tracy was on its original route between San Francisco and Sacramento.

Later, in 1928, a dual route over the new Carquinez Bridge near Vallejo was added, but the route through Tracy remained a part of the Lincoln Highway network.

Kaelin said that after leaving San Francisco on Sunday morning, tour drivers will stop at Duarte’s Highway Garage in Livermore around midmorning to visit a Lincoln Highway museum.

From there, they will take the Old Altamont Pass Road to Tracy, arriving in town on Byron Road, which was a part of the Lincoln Highway route.

“We expect them to begin coming along 11th Street about 11:30 a.m.,” Kaeling said. “The caravan will be divided into groups of cars, so it will take a few minutes to get through town.”

From Banta, the old cars and support vehicles will travel north on Highway 99 frontage roads to Sacramento. On following days, they will drive east across Nevada, Utah, Wyoming and western Nebraska, arriving in Kearney the following Sunday, June 30.

A similar tour will head west from New York City, arriving in Kearney the same day as the West Coast caravan.

• Contact Sam Matthews at 830-4234 or shm@tracypress.com.
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