Michigan Highways: Since 1997.

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Historic Auto Trails

The following table lists each of the known Auto Trails which existed in Michigan in the late-1910s and 1920s. The "|" symbol denotes a terminus, while a state abbreviation and the ">" symbol (e.g. "Ind. >") denote the exiting or entering of the trail to or from another state or province.

Trail Marker(s)
Name & General Route
Central Michigan Pike marker
Central Michigan Pike
| Holland - Grand Rapids - Ionia - St Johns - Owosso - Flint - Lapeer - Imlay City - Port Huron |
Image not yet available
Chicago Motor Club Route
Ind. > New Buffalo - Stevensville - St Joseph - Benton Harbor |
Chicago Trail marker
Chicago Trail
| Detroit - Ypsilanti - Clinton - Jonesville - Coldwater - Kinderhook > Ind.
Chicago Trail marker
Cloverland Trail
| Ironwood - Iron RIver - Iron Mountain - Escanaba |
Custer Trail marker (original) Custer Trail marker (newer)
Custer Trail
Ind. > Kinderhook - Coldwater - Union City - Battle Creek - Bedford - Hastings - Freeport - Alto - Cascade - Grand Rapids |
Detroit Lincoln Denver Trail marker
Detroit-Lincoln-Denver Highway
| Detroit - Ann Arbor - Jackson - Albion - Battle Creek - Kalamazoo - Paw Paw - Dowagiac - Niles > Ind.
Dixie Highway marker Dixie Highway marker
Dixie Highway - East Mainline
| Sault Ste Marie - Pickford - Cedarville - St Ignace - Mackinaw City (DH West Branch) - Cheboygan - Onaway - Rogers City - Lachine - Alpena - Spruce - Lincoln - Oscoda - Tawas City - Whittemore - Prescott - Sterling - Standish - Bay City (DH Cut-Off/Vassar departs) - Saginaw - Flint (DH Cut-Off/Fenton departs) - Davisburg (DH Cut-Off/Fenton rejoins) - Clarkston (DH Cut-off/Vassar rejoins) Pontiac - Detroit - Wyandotte - Monroe - Erie > Oh.
Dixie Highway marker Dixie Highway marker
Dixie Highway - West Branch
| Mackinaw City (DH East Mainline) - Pellston - Petoskey - Charlevoix - Elk Rapids - Traverse City - Benzonia - Bear Lake - Manistee - Scottville - Ludington - Pentwater - Hart - Muskegon - Grand Haven - Spring Lake - Coopersville - Marne - Grand Rapids - Wayland - Plainwell - Kalamazoo - Paw Paw - Decatur - Dowagiac - Niles > Ind.
Dixie Highway Cut-Off marker
Dixie Highway Cut-Off (via Vassar-Davison)
| Bay City (DH East Mainline) - via Pine-Portsmouth Rds & M-46 - Richville - Vassar - Davison - Ortonville - Clarkston (DH East Mainline) |
Dixie Highway Cut-Off marker
Dixie Highway Cut-Off (via Fenton-Holly)
| Flint (DH East Mainline) - Fenton - Holly - Davisburg (DH East Mainline) |
East Michigan Pike marker
East Michigan Pike
| Toledo - Monroe - Detroit - Pontiac - Flint - Saginaw - Bay City - Standish - Prescott - Tawas City - Oscoda - Lincoln - Alpena - Lachine - Rogers City - Onaway - Cheboygan - Mackinaw City |
Grand River Road marker
Grand River Road
| Grand Rapids - Cascade - Alto - Clarksville - Lake Odessa - Grand Ledge - Lansing - Williamston - Howell - Novi - Detroit |
Hoosier Highway marker
Hoosier Highway
Oh. > Munson - Morenci - Jasper - Adrian - Tecumseh - Saline - Ypsilanti - Detroit |
Horatio Earle Memorial Highway marker Horatio Earle Memorial Highway marker
Horatio Earle Memorial Highway
| Detroit - Center Line - Utica - Romeo - Imlay City| later extended northerly - Marlette - Bad Axe - Kinde - Port Austin |
Lakes & River Drive marker
Lakes & River Drive
| Detroit - Grosse Pointe - St Clair Shores - Mt Clemens - Chesterfield - Richmond - St Clair - Port Huron| possibly briefly extended north - Lakeport - Lexington - Port Sanilac - Harbor Beach - Port Austin |
Mackinaw Trail marker Image not yet available
Mackinaw Trail
| Indiana state line - White Pigeon - Three Rivers - Schoolcraft - Kalamazoo - Plainwell - Wayland - Grand Rapids (original southern terminus pre-1923) - Howard City - Big Rapids - Reed City - Cadillac - Fife Lake - Lodi - Kalkaska - Mancelona - Elmira - Boyne Falls - Petoskey |
Sources seem to indicate the signed Mackinaw Trail never extended north from Petoskey to Mackinaw City!
Michigan-Detroit-Chicago Highway marker Michigan-Detroit-Chicago Highway marker
Michigan-Detroit-Chicago Highway
| Detroit - Ypsilanti - Ann Arbor - Jackson - Marshall - Battle Creek - Kalamazoo - Paw Paw - Decatur - Dowagiac - Niles - Buchanan - Galien - New Buffalo > Ind.
New Hudson-Holly Road marker
New Hudson-Holly Road
| New Hudson - Milford - Holly |
Ohio-Indiana-Michgian Way marker
Ohio-Indiana-Michigan Way
| Kalamazoo - Vicksburg - Mendon - Nottawa - Sturgis > Ind.
Saginaw Valley Route marker
Saginaw Valley Route
| Battle Creek - Bellevue - Charlotte - Lansing - Perry - Owosso - St Charles - Shields - Saginaw |
Tecumseh Trail marker
Tecumseh Trail
Oh. > Ottawa Lake - Blissfield - Tecumseh - Clinton - Manchester - Napoleon - Jackson |
Theodore Roosevelt International Highway marker
Theodore Roosevelt International Highway
Ont. > Detroit - Pontiac - Flint - Saginaw - Bay City - Standish - Sterling - Prescott - Whittemore - Tawas City - Oscoda - Lincoln - Alpena - Lachine - Rogers City - Onaway - Cheboygan - Mackinaw City - St Ignace (spur to Sault Ste Marie) - Moran - Epoufette - Rexton - Engadine - Gould City - Curtis - Germfask - Blaney Park - Manistique - Rapid River (U.P. Branch to Marquette) - Escanaba - Powers - Iron Mountain - Florence, Wisc. - Crystal Falls - Iron River - Watersmeet - Wakefield (U.P. Branch from Marquette) - Ironwood > Wisc.
Theodore Roosevelt International Highway marker
Theodore Roosevelt International Highway - Eagle River Spur
| Houghton (TRIH U.P. Branch) - Hancock - Dollar Bay - Lake Linden - Calumet - Mohawk - Eagle River |
Theodore Roosevelt International Highway marker
Theodore Roosevelt International Highway - U.P. Branch
| Rapid River (TRIH Mainline) - Trenary - Marquette - Ishpeming - Michigamme - L'Anse - Houghton (spur to Eagle River) - South Range - Greenland - Bruce Crossing - Bergland - Wakefield (TRIH Mainline) |
Top of Michigan Trail
Top of Michigan Trail (also known as Northern Michigan Tourist Pike)
| Toledo, Oh. - Ida - Dundee - Milan - Ann Arbor - Brighton - Fenton - Flint - Saginaw - Bay City - Auburn - Midland - Sanford - North Bradley - Beaverton - Gladwin - Meredith - Prudenville - Roscommon - Grayling - Gaylord - Indian River - Cheboygan - Mackinaw City |
Wayne Highway marker
Wayne Highway
Oh. > Frontier - Hillsdale - Jonesville - Pulaski - Concord - Jackson - Leslie - Mason - Lansing| briefly extended north(?) St Johns - Alma - Mt Pleasant - Clare - Farwell - Evart - Mc Bain - Cadillac |
West Michigan Pike marker
West Michigan Pike
| Michigan City, Ind. - New Buffalo - St Joseph - Benton Harbor - Watervliet - South Haven - Holland - Grand Haven - Muskegon - Whitehall - Hart - Pentwater - Ludington - Scottville - Manistee - Bear Lake - Benzonia - Traverse City - Elk Rapids - Charlevoix - Petoskey - Pellston - Mackinaw City |
Also a spur route from Niles via Berrien Springs to St Joseph existed.


Back: Auto Trails in Michigan

Acknowledgements

While the information for both the auto trails, their paths and their markers came from a variety of sources, a special thank-you is warranted for Robert Beasecker, Senior Librarian with Special Collections, Grand Valley State University Libraries. Robert provided several excellent scans from a 1920 Kenyon Company map of Michigan. Not only were the markers on the Kenyon Company map in color—a rarity for the 1920s—but it also pinpointed a few heretofore undiscovered auto trails. Again, many thanks to Mr. Beasecker for his assistance and contributions.

In addition, several other sources have been consulted, including: