Lodging on Route 66, Past & Present
Route 66 history includes the growth of the Lodging Industry, to serve the thousands of travelers on the new US Highway that would connect Chicago to the Pacific Coast in Santa Monica, California.
Early travelers in the 1920's found few places to stay, and most camped in their cars or slept in tents in campgrounds along the Route. As more demand increased in the 30's, rooms were offered in Tourist Camps and Tourist Courts, usually with fewer than 15 rooms. Later, larger cities offered beautiful Hotels, while rooms with a carport became known as Motels, and by then, Route 66 was well-established as the main commerce Route for those migrating west, and for the growing ranks of Tourists vacationing along the way.
Today, many of the original Tourist Courts are gone, along with older Motels with bright neon signs. Those that survived are being restored to their original appearance, only with modern conviences such as color tv and air conditioning. Even the small group of "Wig-Wam's" are still open for business.
These old photos and postcards show what it was like to get a good night's rest after a long day's drive on this famous highway, so when you make this famous Roadtrip, be sure to stay with the friendly Inn-keepers who helped build America along the Mother Road...you'll be glad you did!
Will Rogers Hotel, Claremore, OK.
Restored Wagon Wheel Motel, Cuba, MO.
Boots Motel, Carthage, MO.
Carterville Hotel, MO. Circa 1900
Ambassador Hotel, Amarillo, TX
Star Tourist Camp, Joplin, MO
Filling Station & Cafe
< Keystone Hotel
Both Hotels gone.
La Siesta Motel,Joplin, MO
Circa 1950's, on the 1958 alignment of Route 66.
Elms Motel, Joplin, MO
Circa early 1950's, on the future 1958 alignment of Route 66. Was located on the N.W. corner of East 7th. St. and Rangeline Road. Gone now.
Castle Motel, Joplin, MO., 1950's with new sign
Castle Motel, Joplin, MO., 1940's with original sign
Ozark Motel, Joplin, MO., on Route 66 & Hwy. 71. Had popular restaurant. Note the Bunny Bread sign. Sign on right promotes their "Air Foam Mattresses" and "Tile Baths"!
The sign also states that the Motel is "Brand New". Gone now.
Wigwam Motel. In Holbrook, the neon may have dimmed but at Jo and Aggie’s Café, good food still is served, and you can still spend a restful night in a whimsical teepee at the Wigwam Motel. Logs of stone and brilliant star lit skies are the link that bridge the past and the present.
Hotel Monte Vista, Flagstaff, Arizona Shattering the preconceived notion that Arizona was a land of sun-scorched rocks, sand, and cacti was the drive west was over a shade dappled road where a hint of pine dances on the breeze.
In the heyday of the national auto craze, when Route 66 was the "Mother Road," a man named Frank Redford had the idea that motorists would make a roadside stop when an attraction was visually startling. Redford's Wigwam Villages in San Bernardino, Calif., Holbrooke, Ariz., and Cave City, Ky, are concrete teepees (each containing an individual motel room) encircling a larger teepee housing a restaurant, gift shop, and gas station.
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Best Budget Inn, 13008 State Hwy. 96, Carthage, MO. 64836
It's easy to book your stay at the
BEST BUDGET INN
on Route 66
BOOTS COURT MOTEL
Built in 1939 and opened after
restoration work in 2011-2012